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Thread: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

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    Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    We are in NJ.

    My head is spinning from the options!

    Cannot decide between gunite and fiberglass (San Juan, Leisure or Trilogy).

    Please tell me which you would choose based on ease & longevity (we plan to be here for 15 years). Will be doing SWG.
    If you choose fiberglass, which of the 3 options is best & why?

    Thank you!
    304K gal., IG, 75' x 82' (Shallow End 4', Deep End 9'-13'),Ceramic Tile/Grout, 2 Griswold 20 HP Pumps; SFHP 23, Flow rate on pump 2: 1,229 gpm, I'm currently collecting all the pertinent information when it comes to the pool.

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    Based on a few of the reports of major problems with fiberglass pools (both during the install and later) here in the forum, I would stick with gunite.

    Of course, the key is just to have talented people doing the install of either.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    Problem is that up in the NORTH EAST part of the world, finding a GUNITE PRO is no easy job easy.

    I had the same problem, head was spinning. I did a ton of research and found a local PB that had a GREAT reputation for knowing how to install a FG pool, and it is PERFECT! and will last FOREVER WITH LITTLE MAINTENANCE.

    So...don't be scared of a FG pool, it has plenty of benefits and is a great option. WE LOVE OURS!
    14,750 GAL IG Fiberglass (16 x 33) NE Ohio || Jandy 1HP 2 speed Pump || Waterco MultiCyclone 16 Centrifugal pre-filter (removed due to not working with sand filter) || 30" 575 Lb. Sand Filter || AquaCal 140K BTU Heat Pump || Solar Cover || Inter-fab Adrenaline Slide || GLI Monsoon Solar Cover Reel || K-2006C Test Kit || BBB with Liquid Chlorine Stenner Injection || Rayner Mighty Mesh Winter Cover

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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    The biggest key is the installer of any pool be it fiberglass or gunite. We are a Trilogy dealer and have had excellent experience with them. We had a San Jaun dealer that he was the problem not the shell. He wasn't doing the installs correctly. Good luck with your project.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
    We build vinyl, fiberglass, stainless steel pools
    Certified in Hydraulics

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    We specifically chose to go with FG for one reason in particular- I'd read that algae has a harder time getting established on the slick surfaces of FG. No rough surfaces that provide places for algae to take hold, y'know?

    I've never had algae so who knows?
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    FG here (Leisure). 5 years in, no problems. It is all about the installer.
    Jim

    Southern Frederick County, MD - Leisure Moroccan 38 Fiberglass Pool - 19,800 gallons
    Pentair 1.5 hp 2 speed pump - Cartridge filter - Dolphin robot - TF-100 Test Kit - SWCG

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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    Thank you for your replies so far

    If you have fiberglass, which brand?
    304K gal., IG, 75' x 82' (Shallow End 4', Deep End 9'-13'),Ceramic Tile/Grout, 2 Griswold 20 HP Pumps; SFHP 23, Flow rate on pump 2: 1,229 gpm, I'm currently collecting all the pertinent information when it comes to the pool.

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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    I have one from Thursday's Pools, not sure they reach out to your neck of the woods. But they are a smaller incredibly high quality family business that has been in the Fiberglass world for years. Helped some of the BEST boat builders in the world during the past 20-30 years.

    I think I can share this link, if not please remove.

    http://www.thursdaypools.com/
    14,750 GAL IG Fiberglass (16 x 33) NE Ohio || Jandy 1HP 2 speed Pump || Waterco MultiCyclone 16 Centrifugal pre-filter (removed due to not working with sand filter) || 30" 575 Lb. Sand Filter || AquaCal 140K BTU Heat Pump || Solar Cover || Inter-fab Adrenaline Slide || GLI Monsoon Solar Cover Reel || K-2006C Test Kit || BBB with Liquid Chlorine Stenner Injection || Rayner Mighty Mesh Winter Cover

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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    I think I can share this link, if not please remove.
    FYI:
    You can certainly share the link. Forum rules allow links in text or sigs to members having more than 200 posts AND that do not constitute direct selling.

    You certainly have the requisite 200 posts and the link is in direct response and helpful to OP's questions so it is not interpreted as direct selling.

    This rule is provided to keep the forum free from unsolicited advertisers or drive-by spammers. Y'all would probably be amazed at the number of dishonest posters and spammers that the Mods intercept and that never make it to the public forum.

    JasonLion and the Mods do an amazing job of keeping this forum perhaps the cleanest and friendliest place on the net. That said, folks that try to "trick" us are dealt with rather quickly.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    Quote Originally Posted by towncenter
    Thank you for your replies so far

    If you have fiberglass, which brand?
    Hatteras Pools (NC, SC area)
    http://www.hatteraspools.com/index.php
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    Fiberglass (2005 Viking Pool & Spa) Beautiful, and on a maintenance scale of 0-10, a 2 [I sometimes feel guilty for doing so little].

    My only issue is with the concrete decking. The SWG water is eroding it in some areas. Wish I had been warned about that, not sure what to do now.

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    ComputerGuyInNOLA's Avatar
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    For what it is worth I would choose the cheaper option since you are only going to be there for 15 years. You will never recoup the cost of the pool so financially the cheaper alternative will reap the biggest benefit. Also, when you sell, the new owner will have a much easier time removing a fiberglass pool if they don't want a pool.
    Gunite/Plaster pool at 13k gallons. All Jandy with CL340 series cartridge filter, 1.5 HP Jandy Stealth pump. Jandy 1400 SWCG and PDA4 controller. Dual waterfalls. Polaris 280. Pool installed August 2012. Southern Louisiana. And lets not forget my trusty TF100 test kit!

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    It just seems so difficult to get a FG pool installed correctly. Over time they settle, then crack or break and this will surely happen within 15 years if it does. I'm with Jblizzle on this one. If you can afford to go Gunite, do it and don't look back.
    TFP Moderator
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    Rick H's Avatar
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    We live in Upstate NY, and chose fiberglass (Leisure), and have no regrets. The weather fluctuates from below zero in winter, to 100 in summer. As with any pool, the PB choice is probably the most important choice in the whole plan. Study as much as you can, and gather informed information. When installed properly, they won't settle, crack and break any more than any other properly installed pool. Maintenance has been easy, surely easier with the information that I have obtained here. As with any decision, study, study, study. But, don't fear fiberglass, it offers plenty of benefits when done correctly. We used Royal Fiberglass Pools of Tully, NY.
    Upstate/Central New York. Roman style IG fiberglass pool, 13X33, 8800 gallons, installed July 2012. Pentair cartridge filter, 1 hp Pentair single speed pump. Taylor K2006 Test kit. Went BBB route in spring of 2013, no problems, no regrets!!!!!!

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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    Went with gunite and didn't really consider FG or a liner. I knew what I wanted both in feel and appearance. I got what I wanted. You can tap, bang, jump, scratch or hit the pool shell and there are no ill effects (on the shell that is) and it always feels like a rock, because it is. I think the concrete based pools also give a continuity of material to the pool area that I appreciate, all from the earth.

    I do think that often times people's appreciation for, or acceptance of different materials for pools comes from what they experienced growing up. My formative years were spent (pool wise) entirely in a large neighborhood commercial pool, obviously concrete. So that's ingrained in my mind as to what a pool is and how it should feel, for me.

    It's not that cost wasn't an issue, but I wasn't going to build a pool unless I could afford gunite. And of course you need to be ready/willing to accept all of the compromises that the different types of pools require. Nothing can replace spending quality time here reading the volumes of incredible information people share on their builds and operating experiences.

    In our 20 sq. mi. area I'd say pools are maybe 70% gunite, 25% vinyl and 5% FG. Less scientifically in # of pools it's surely gunite > vinyl > FG.
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. w/ gray plaster
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    We have choosen FG. Doing install next month. Did a lot of research and maybe too much. Anyway 2 factors for us was cost, did not want to buy the farm so to speak and the resurfacing cost down the road. We were also going with SWG system so its my understanding that the saltwater system is least intrusive to the pool's finish. My neighbor just had his resurfaced and what a nightmare, they had to do it twice....ugh!!!!!
    Granted, froma design point, gunite is endless. FG not so much, but we were not looking for a the glit and glitter(spa, water features etc....)
    12 x 26 Viking FG IG, Bermuda Model, 3 1/2' to 5', 7000 Gallons, Diamond Series Maya, Hayward 1 1/2 HP Maxflo VS, Hayward Stay Clear Plus Cart Filter C17502(S), Hayward Aqua Rite SWG w/T3 cell, Color Changing FIBERSTAR Lighting, Aqua Bot Supreme Robotic cleaner, Brushed Concrete with CCI Liberty Tan color, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Armor Foundation penetrating concrete sealer(lifetime warranty).

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Please help me decide fiberglass vs. gunite

    Congratulations!

    I hope it will be all you've dreamt about it. Please start a thread when you begin and let us see the progress. Best of luck on your project.
    TFP Moderator
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    ABC's Of Pool Chemistry, Test Kits, SLAM Your Pool
    28K Gal IG FreeForm, CLI Quartz, Pentair 36"SF & VS Pump, Dolphin M5, Rheem

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