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Thread: Upgrading an older pool

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Upgrading an older pool


    We currently have an 18'X40' inground pool, w/ vinyl liner. It currently had 1 skimmer input, and 2 return drains.

    The liner in it is in really rough condition (multiple patches, weird stains on it, bleached out in spots, and the entire deep end has a large patch to even keep the water in, with the original liner shrunk down below the water line).

    We originally were not sure whether or not we were going to fill in the pool, or keep it, so we've gone this summer with the current liner, and it looks like we'll be keeping the pool.

    My question is this, while we are changing the liner, what else should we do to keep things updated?

    Some ideas we've had are below:

    1) Replace all the underground plumbing to and from the pool. It's currently some sort of steel pipe that ends up shooting bits of rust into the pool. We'd replace this with PVC piping.

    2) We're looking at adding a main drain to the pool. From what I've read these seem to be pretty standard in pools this size. Are they worth the extra work to add?

    3) Addition of a dedicated vacuum port. After a big storm, we're left with a choice, run the skimmer to clean off the top of the pool, or run the Kreepy Krawly to clean off the floor, would be nice to be able to run both.

    4) "Modernize" the shape of the pool. It's currently a standard oval, anyone know how hard it would be to turn this into more of a customized shape that is a bit more exciting?

    5) Replace all the hardware such as returns, skimmer inlet, basket, etc.

    Is there anything else we should be considering? Anything anyone has recently added to their pool or always have that they consider a "must have" now?

  2. Back To Top    #2
    JasonLion's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Silver Spring, MD
    If you want to do your entire list you might as well get a brand new pool. The big one is changing the shape of the pool, anything beyond perhaps a stair cutout, is going to mean getting a new pool.

    With iron pipe I strongly suspect that any change to the plumbing or fittings might as well be a complete plumbing replacement. The price on all that is highly variable, depending on how deeply the pipes are burried, how long the run is, and how you are going to get under the deck to get to the back side of the fixtures. Almost all of the digging will probably have to be done by hand which can get expensive if you hire someone to do it or cheap if you have a gaggle teens eager to swim and you watch them carefully.

    Once you have everything opened up adding a pressure or vacuum line will be trivial. Adding a main drain is trickier. It means even more digging and trenching and involvement with the bottom of the pool. That could be easy, asuming you are already doing the other plumbing, or a pain, depending on what is under the liner on the bottom. You have to trench the bottom of the pool to add the pipe to the main drain and then get it to match back with what was already there. With a sand bottom that might be easy, with concrete trickier, with something else it all depends on finding a materials match and getting the compaction the same.
    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

  3. Back To Top    #3
    We are in the middle of a pool renovation.

    Decreasing the depth to 4.5 feet.
    Replacing all suction and return lines and through-the-wall fittings.
    Replacing the skimmer
    Replacing the concrete deck
    Replacing the coping
    Replacing the liner
    Replacing the filter. Going from sand to DE

    The polymer walls and the hole are the only two things that are original. Get a number of estimates from people that do renovations and check them out. We checked with the BBB and searched the local court dockets, looking for lawsuits. On guy had been sued 14 times. Dodged a bullet there.

    Hope this helps.
    26' x 14' 18,400 gallon freshwater IG plaster w/spa; American Sandpiper high flow sand filter; Raypak RP2100 digital pump; rooftop solar heater.

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