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Thread: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

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    Join Date
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    Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    We live in West TN and are looking to have a pool ready for out kiddos this summer. We have priced out a couple of pools with the local builders and they are within a couple thousand dollars of one another. So price is not such a big deal. We have never had a pool and don't know what type to get. We know the shape and style and the asthetics, but don't really even know the right questions to ask the builders. As far as chlorine, salt, or UV, i would be intersted in hearing any feedback on those.
    What other questions should we be asking?

    Thanks in advance

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    Welcome to TFP!

    We recommend liquid chlorine or a salt system (which generates it's own chlorine). We do not recommend either trichlor tablets or UV for residential pools.

    UV systems are used to increase oxidizing capacity, but chlorine is still required for sanitizing. Once you are using enough chlorine for sanitizing, the chlorine will also do all of the oxidizing you might need (except for the largest pool parties, which take a day to recover from). Thus the UV system serves little purpose and still adds to the expense and complexity. UV is much more useful in commercial pools, where far more oxidizing is required.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    Thank you for the quick response and I am really excited about the new pool. Okay, some additional questions:
    Steel Wall Construction with vynal liner or Concrete walls with vynal liner. Both companies have been doing pools for 20+ years and very reputable.

    There a few differences in perks, ideas for stucture (tanning shelves and steps).
    The biggest difference I have seen so far is the pluming of the pools, one wants to install 3 skimmers and use 2 inch pluming and the abitlity to switch on and off all systems indepently, while the other uses 1.5 in plumbing with only two skimmer that work on the same system and cannot be indenently turned off without plugging the skimmer.

    what are some other questions I can ask the builders that will better inform me on who to use?

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    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
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    Re: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    Welcome to TFP!

    Jason has covered your direct question, but it's time to begin your education in the Pool School. Start with these:
    ABCs of Water Chemistry
    Recommended Pool Chemicals
    How to Chlorinate Your Pool

    If you look around many folks post about thier build beginning on the estimates and equipment builders are suggesting. As you move forward keep posting what is being proposed and many will jump in with suggestions.

    You posted while I was, so on edit*****

    I like the idea of larger piping and the ability to close each separately. Mine is plumbed that way so I can turn off each of my two skimmers or main drain. I find this handy as i work on projects. Additionally I have valves so I can turn on/off my return to either the sheer waterfall or return "eyes". Generally more valving gives more options.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    The most important thing is to get references and check them. The quality and helpfulness of the builder is almost always the most important thing.

    Steel walls with a vinyl liner is very standard. Concrete with vinyl is much less common, usually much more expensive, and once built just about the same quality.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    The whole process can be very overwhelming. Take some time to peruse through some existing build threads on the forum to see what is involved and what kind of problems may arise. Knowledge is power! Make sure to get as much as you can in writing and cross out any warranty that excludes everything important (common in pool contracts).
    14K Freeform Gunite w/60% Blue Quartz plaster, Quad DE filter, Intelliflo VS Pump + Booster for Cleaner, Aquacal Heat Pump

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    I would suggest that for ease of maintenance, to go with a saltwater system. It makes life easy.
    TFP recommends the system sized for twice the capacity of the pool. For example, if you have a 20, 000 gallon pool, get a system rated for 40,000. It will last years longer and cost difference between them is not much.
    Over a period of just a few years, you save hundreds of dollars by going with a bigger unit.

    Regarding the pool walls, concrete with vinyl liner is out. Too expensive and really nothing to gain. If you want concrete because of the flexibility of benches, tanning shelves and such things, I wold suggest to go with conctete pool with plaster finish. Usually several or more 1000 dollars above cost of vinyl lined pool.

    Steel walls have been around a long time. Eventually though, they do rust (takes years) and can potentially need repairing at some point down the road which is usually at the same time as a liner replacement. Salt system will exasperate the rusting on a steel wall, which means more extensive repair to it -eventually.

    I would recommend to consider a Polymer wall. They are super strong, yet light, they do not deform and they absolutely will never - ever rust.
    Its a couple of hundred dollar upgrade vs steel, but IMO, its well worth the money.

    Plumbing, - go with the independintly plumbed option with valves for each pipe at the equipment pad. You will love the flexibility of that and its not much more, if any, dollars added to the cost of the project.

    Please post up more of the specifics of the pool and equipment being offered and we'll be glad to give you further advice.

    If you dont have an equipment list yet, then tell us the shape and size of the pool, and how far you esitmate from the pool to pump and filter location and we can make recommendations to consider. (the options are MANY), so ask away and become familiar with the equipment and the pros and cons before making a firm commitment.

    You only have 1 chance to get a swimming pool right, so that its easy to maintain and enjoyable over a LOT of years.
    So, now is not the time to be shy. We are glad to help however we can.

    Quote Originally Posted by ashmills75 View Post
    Thank you for the quick response and I am really excited about the new pool. Okay, some additional questions:
    Steel Wall Construction with vynal liner or Concrete walls with vynal liner. Both companies have been doing pools for 20+ years and very reputable.

    There a few differences in perks, ideas for stucture (tanning shelves and steps).
    The biggest difference I have seen so far is the pluming of the pools, one wants to install 3 skimmers and use 2 inch pluming and the abitlity to switch on and off all systems indepently, while the other uses 1.5 in plumbing with only two skimmer that work on the same system and cannot be indenently turned off without plugging the skimmer.

    what are some other questions I can ask the builders that will better inform me on who to use?
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Jan 2015
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    Jackson, TN
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    Re: Can't decide on salt/chlorine/UV pool

    18x36x41 lagoon shaped pool. Approx 50 feet from pump system. They are talking about using a 1.5 gal silencer pump and Hayward motor. Concrete stamped coping or flagstone, haven't decided. A Polaris 280 cleaner. 3 color led lights. Into the pool there will be steps and a 10 foot tanning ledge. In deep end by pool there will be a swim out bench. No ladders in pool. Salt system VXII with intermittent timer and remote. Filter is a 425 cart(sp?) filter.

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