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Thread: Feedback Wanted on Begining Stages of DIY Pool Remodel Planning

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    Reynolds's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Clarksville, TN

    Question Feedback Wanted on Begining Stages of DIY Pool Remodel Planning

    Hello TFP! This forum has been an amazing resource as we have worked to get an abandoned pool back up and running in a new house this spring.

    Next up we are wanting to do a bit of a remodel on the pool. Major components need to be replaced very soon, and even if we don't get to the entire remodel this year, we have to a) start costing it out and more importantly, b) make sure that anything we have to do *now* will be compatible down the road, and there are so many components I am struggling to get my head around them all!

    In the end, we want a lower maintenance pool that allows us to be gone for 2-3 days regularly and 1-2 weeks occasionally.

    We are currently planning on adding a DIY spa adjacent to the pool, tied in to the pool filtration system and overflowing into the pool*. The spa would be set about two feet into the ground and have an upper edge about bench height (18").

    We would like to also put in a SWCG, new filter (I am thinking cartridge, but my only reason is to eliminate backwash), a new pump, a new liner, a more robust skimmer solution, and a heater**.

    The current filter and pump need to be replaced - they are both in rough enough shape that it wouldn't be cost effective to repair them, not to mention I believe they are incorrectly sized.

    Please feel free to shout any feedback you have about that plan - I would appreciate it! I also have a few more specific questions:

    1) Adding the spa makes the already complicated feeling filter/pump question even more complicated! Can anyone help point me in the direction I need to be on on those? The filter may not have any special requirements, but the pump...I'm lost! What do I need to be able to run the spa jets adequately? My goal is to have a low power/speed pump that runs 24/7, and then I think I want to be able to turn it up for spa time?

    2) *I'm not sure that this is wise - I want to be able to use the hottub year round. With a low power/speed pump, though, I don't think I would mind running the system while the temp was below freezing to save the lines - is that all I would need to do?

    3) **One of the things that makes doing this so attractive is that I feel I can get way more bang for my buck by doing everything together. Can I get a heater that works for both the spa and the pool? Then a pool heater would just cost [Heater Cost minus Spa Cost] more than I'm already spending!

    4) This isn't really a cheap project, but we are trying to make the dollars stretch further by DIYing it - are there any other features or things we should look at that aren't cost prohibitive while we are doing all the above? I'm sure there are awesome things that people love out there that I don't know about or I'm missing!

    5) Are there any unusual/different liners out there (that don't just involve fish graphics )? Are there any other design notes that are usually considered 'out there' that you love? I'd love to hear them!

    6) Would you speak out against doing any of the above? I'd love to hear that also!

    Here is my current pool layout (pipes aren't accurate here):
    15x30(x5) vinyl liner inground pool
    ~16,875 gallons
    Northern TN, wooded suburbs.
    Ultimate landscape vision "secret fantasy garden"

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Gonzales, La

    Re: Feedback Wanted on Begining Stages of DIY Pool Remodel Planning

    First of all I'm no way a expert so please do your research. I did do a lot of searching before doing the DIY pool myself. There are plenty of knowledgeable people and lots of information here.

    So your current pool is a vinyl liner pool and you want to add a Gunite Spa is that correct? That would require the gunite spa to be close to the pool and the spill back extend over the edge so the water falls back into the pool. I'm guessing you will have to bust out concrete to accomplish this? What size suction piping is from the main drains and skimmer? I see you want to replace the liner. Might consider changing main drains to duals for safety reasons if they not already dual main drains. Ever consider just replacing the liner pool to gunite? With liner, piping, skimmer and additions to the pool you currently have you might as well step off the cliff and redo the whole pool.

    Equipment for pool only will be some type of VS pump, 420 sq ft cartridge filter, automation panel(for pool and spa), SWG. Those three alone will cost you 3K+. You will also need pool valves that can be used with actuators for swapping from pool to spa mode.

    Equipment for Spa I'm not real sure about. Maybe another pump? Blower for air, and a heater. Heater alone 2K+ depending on size and model.

    Current pool drawing shows one main drain, one skimmer and two returns? If you are redoing the liner I would add a few more returns and dual mains so you can circulate the pool alittle better.

    I'm sure others will chime in with advice.

    15x36 Gunite w/Diamond Brite(Bahama Breeze plaster), 3.5-6', Pentair Easytouch Automation panel, Pentair 3HP VS pump, Pentair CNC 420 filter, Pentair 5G color changing light, Polaris 360 cleaner w/booster, Pentair IC-20 SWG
    My pool build

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