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Thread: New Northeastern Pa Build

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    New Northeastern Pa Build

    SOME PICS BELOW. . . Working on yard pics now

    Pretty new here so go easy I don't know a lot. I have a lot of experience in the home building side of things, but pools are totally new to me. I never grew up with a pool just swam in others.

    My build in in northeastern pa. so we will use the pool pretty much 3 months out of the year and then I will be staring at a green cover for the other 9 months. lol Therefore the pool is not as crazy as some of you guys who get to enjoy these oasis's year round.

    I live in an area that has zero concrete pool companies cause we just don't have the population or weather that will get the benefit of concrete so I pretty much only had one choice for a builder. This is also hard for me cause my whole home was built by my dad's friends who I have known since I was a baby so trust was never an issue. Now I am going to have a team of people in my yard I don't know doing the most important work of this backyard build.

    They will only be doing the pool and the coping. I will be handling the pool house and hardscaping.

    I don't have pretty pictures yet. My hand drawings are with various friends who are trying to get some rough estimates on material together for us to be able to start in the fall.

    What I'm here for is to document this build and to make sure I'm making the right choice with the pool so far cause I on't know what I have read here thus far.

    So. . . .

    1. 17x32 free form concrete pool with a surface area of about 544 square going from 3.5' to 6' deep.
    2. there is steps into the pool with a 7-8 foot bench connected to the entrance steps.
    3. there is another 7-8 foot bench in the deeper end.
    4. we are using bullnose pavers from hanover block for the coping cause my dad's best friend who has been a mason for 50 years doesn't want me using say blue stone case of flaking and cracking with our rough winters. I really wanted to use bluestone or something natural cause all my porches are pa blue but they are all covered.

    that is my first question. anything out there that can stand up to all the freeze and thaw out there for the northeast winters.

    5. interior is cobalt ansylbrite. we didn't go pebble like everyone here cause we wanted a smooth finish but we didn't want to go straight plaster either to try and get some more life out of the finish and to have a nicer water color

    6. we will have 2 LED's for lights
    7. 2 floor drains
    8. 2 skimmers. one is a solar recirculating system they call it. it was only 300 so we added it. this adds a second skimmer and pulls water from top of pool and pushes it through floor drain. Even if I don't use it it will get me my second skimmer.
    9. 2 returns no booster pump return cause we will be using a robot of some sort.
    10. pool pump jandy flo pro 2 hp variable
    11. salt equipment is fusion soft salt system
    12. heater is ray pak 399k btw nat gas
    13. tile not sure yet.

    14. coping will lead into full pavers (6x6's and 6x9's) sitting on a 4" concrete pour. the upper pool decks are 40x13 on the one side and 20x10 on the other side. the other 2 sides of the pool will go right into landscaping due to those sides of the pool being towards the side or rear of my property. figured it would look nice.
    15. the smaller deck leads to 3 steps down to a lower paver area which will be about 12x40 and then flow into a 12x40 pool house which will have storage, an open living area with fireplace, kitchen with bar and a half bath.


    i will have some pics to follow but so far how is my equipment for the pool size and choices sounding?

    16. we are now adding a 40 square foot spa which will be level with pool. not raised but outside pool square footage. 6 venturi jets and 1 LED light for it.
    17. same equipment will be still used.


    is that ok?

    also i am setting up for a zodiac RS brain with the iaqualink. they want one to do the 8. do i need that though? can i get away with the 6?


    rip it apart if need be. we haven't signed a contract yet so i want to make sure i get this right.

    i appreciate any help and sorry if i'm missing anything!

    i will have pics soon!

    i'm worried about the pool setup at this point.

    again i appreciate all this site offers!

    jim

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    nothing?

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr
    right side of yard to show pool house with lower paver area and end of property into neighbor

    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr
    left side of yard for pool layout

    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr
    pool and upper deck

    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr
    pool house simple view

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    I would suggest ditching the fusion mineral system for a pentair swg.

    I never heard of a solar skimmer.

    Otherwise sounds like a good plan!

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Can I ask why? What is the difference for when I ask them? Will I still be ale to control it with iaqualink?

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    i'm bringing my build back from the dead. we held last year cause the hardscaping got out of control and i didn't want to cut back at all so we are going to now start mid summer this year, stop the pool build after it is shot, and then pound through the hardscaping to get most done and hopefuly get the pool house framed and roofed so when winter hits we are in good shape for the spring to brick the pool house to get the final fence in so the pool can be plastered and filled. i can't get the fence up without the poolhouse brick on so the fence can be tied into the pool house and also without the fence it will be easier to work back there.

    so right now the company is still offering the same deal to me as last year.

    we decided to add a spa. 1 foot raised. we are responsible for the facing of the spa. i forgot the square footage of it right now but i will add it, but is there any rule of thumb i should be following for the proper layout of it for jets and such?

    also i know i got one comment on the salt generator being used but they don't offer any other choices. do i press to do somehting diff or will i be fine.

    agaiin how does the layout of what they r using look?

    jim

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    I like your ideas. I can't wait to see your photos as it progresses.

    I recommend considering making the shallow end a bit deeper than 3 feet, unless you have small children or a specific reason for preferring a very shallow area. We are finishing our pool and opted to do 4 to 6 feet for the depths on a 20x40 rectangle. Personally, I prefer at least 3'6 in the shallow end (4 is probably slightly deep to start with).

    Regarding the coping, you might look at some of the coping options from Techo-bloc. They have some very pretty concrete alternatives to stone. PRODUCTS | Landscaping Products Supplier | Techo-Bloc
    We used flamed bluestone, which is very resistant to flaking, but I don't think it is as pretty as some of the cleft and more colorful bluestone options.

    Coincidentally, we are using similar pavers (6x6 and 6x9 in a basketweave). We are starting the patio this week. I will post pics in a separate thread when we finish. We are using ones by Cambridge (Renaissance tumbled in onyx natural, a pale grey). We almost went with Techo-bloc but opted for Cambridge at the last minute because they had a nice old-fashioned look and promise they wear well over time (they use only fine aggregates and a special binder that preserves the finish / look as they wear).

    We also have a passive solar return as you describe (I think it is the return not the skimmer - but have not used it yet so am not sure). It is supposed to be a nice feature because when on, it circulates the warm water on the pool surface around and down throughout the pool and can help keep the pool warm. At the equipment pad, we have an extra "arm" of conduit labeled solar that is dedicated to this feature, but essentially it is a means of circulating the water to optimize the heat from the sun.

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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    How in the world did I miss this one the first time and am just now finding Well I am glad I found it now!

    Go deeper than 3'. Take a tape measure and hold it up to your self to see how shallow it will be and that is saying the WATER is 3' but most of the time it ends up being 3' from bottom to coping! So it will be even less water! Something to think about.

    salt water generator (SWG) go big. The bigger the better. Right now you are not sure how many gallons your pool will hold. Once you nail down the size we will work on the size of the SWG.

    What I see you saying is that you are going to do the pool all the way to gunite then stop work on it and shift to the pool house. You are doing this so you can get the fence in place correct?

    I really like your design! The shape will be good for swimming but again that 3' could keep your from doing a full on swim as your knuckles might drag the bottom.

    Where will you be putting the lights? Skimmer? returns?

    Can you share a pic or three of the yard where it will be going?

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit, Become a TFP supporter!

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Quote Originally Posted by yankeelawyer View Post
    I like your ideas. I can't wait to see your photos as it progresses.

    I recommend considering making the shallow end a bit deeper than 3 feet, unless you have small children or a specific reason for preferring a very shallow area. We are finishing our pool and opted to do 4 to 6 feet for the depths on a 20x40 rectangle. Personally, I prefer at least 3'6 in the shallow end (4 is probably slightly deep to start with).

    Regarding the coping, you might look at some of the coping options from Techo-bloc. They have some very pretty concrete alternatives to stone. PRODUCTS | Landscaping Products Supplier | Techo-Bloc
    We used flamed bluestone, which is very resistant to flaking, but I don't think it is as pretty as some of the cleft and more colorful bluestone options.

    Coincidentally, we are using similar pavers (6x6 and 6x9 in a basketweave). We are starting the patio this week. I will post pics in a separate thread when we finish. We are using ones by Cambridge (Renaissance tumbled in onyx natural, a pale grey). We almost went with Techo-bloc but opted for Cambridge at the last minute because they had a nice old-fashioned look and promise they wear well over time (they use only fine aggregates and a special binder that preserves the finish / look as they wear).

    We also have a passive solar return as you describe (I think it is the return not the skimmer - but have not used it yet so am not sure). It is supposed to be a nice feature because when on, it circulates the warm water on the pool surface around and down throughout the pool and can help keep the pool warm. At the equipment pad, we have an extra "arm" of conduit labeled solar that is dedicated to this feature, but essentially it is a means of circulating the water to optimize the heat from the sun.
    awesome. i'll check out that company. my dad's buddies are just worried. even when i built they didn't want any bluestone laid that was not under cover. they do it all the time but for me they didn't want it.

    re: the depth. pretty sure it's 3.5'. i misspoke. i do have to double check before i sign.

    re: the solar thing. they keep saying skimmer. what you are explaining is how they explain it also so i have to check on that also. i told them i wanted 2 skimmers for ease of keeping the pool clean and he keeps say 2 skimmers. i have to check.

    so do you have to hook it up to something? how come u didn't use it yet. i guess i just don't understand how it interacts wit hthe pool, but how you explained what it is is how they are explaining.

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    hey kim. i won't have drawings till i sign. then the returns and skimmers and lights will be there for you guys to rip apart. lol

    i have to double check depth.

    i am a bit worried about who i'm using, but i have literally no other options. i just live in an area that does not have concrete pools going in. so i have to go with the big company. this worries me cause these guys will be the only people who ever stepped foot on my property that i didn't grow up around since a kid. all these guys are like dad's or brothers to me and they watch out for me. was a breeze building my house cause of that. i'm hoping with all of us on cite we can keep the pool company on it's toes. . . and i might not have to they might be awesome. i just don't know them and that's what i'm not used to.

    that's why i came here. i am just clueless on this. when i built i knew so much more from growing up around it. pools no.

    what i am thinking about now is maybe not raising my spa 1 foot higher than the pool and just making it the same hight of the pool and let the water just flow over the wall separating the 2. i'm thinking i might not have to worry about leak issues i have seen here with them raised and also not worry about wrapping the raised spa. just one less thing to worry about. i don't want it inside the square footage of the pool though. i want it to be an extension off the pool.

    once i sign i will have pics. i'll grab some pics of my backyard too. i have some summer pics somewhere.

    today i have to call the guy who put up our swingset to see about moving it a few feet back. my wife thinks i'm nuts but if i can pick up a few feet between the fence and swingset that will be good.

    i'm taking the pool to concrete for the winter cause i want it to sit the whole winter and cure to make sure we don't have structure problems also so i can pace out the money a bit cause we are doing this without financing and it will give me more time to build up some more cash. the other reson i won't be able to totally finish is cause yes the pool house os part of the fence.

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Jim,

    Back to your Salt System. If what you are getting is just standard Jandy Saltwater Chlorine Generator, then that is good. If, on the other hand, you are getting the "Mineral" and Salt System, called Nature 2, then I suggest you search this site for all the negatives that come along with it. Almost no one on the site recommends adding mineral systems to sanitize your pool water.

    Thanks,

    Jim R.
    Finished in 2015 - 17K Gal, IG, 20' x 25' Almost Rectangular Pool, Pebble finish, three rockport water falls. Pentair Equipment: EasyTouch 4, IC40 SWG, 3 HP VS Pump, CCP520 Cartridge Filter.
    TF100 with SpeedStir and SampleSizer, ColorQ Pro 7, Dolphin Premier Robot Cleaner, added Screen Logic 2.

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Hey Jim.

    It says fusion soft salt system on the estimate. That's it.

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Quote Originally Posted by jimim View Post
    Hey Jim.

    It says fusion soft salt system on the estimate. That's it.
    I suggest you talk with your pool builder and find out exactly what you are getting...

    Jim R.
    Finished in 2015 - 17K Gal, IG, 20' x 25' Almost Rectangular Pool, Pebble finish, three rockport water falls. Pentair Equipment: EasyTouch 4, IC40 SWG, 3 HP VS Pump, CCP520 Cartridge Filter.
    TF100 with SpeedStir and SampleSizer, ColorQ Pro 7, Dolphin Premier Robot Cleaner, added Screen Logic 2.

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    With any and all equipment we want model numbers and kind.

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit, Become a TFP supporter!

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    I have to second that. From our experience you must know when equipment you are getting to ensure that is exactly how you want your pool to be set up.
    To be built Spring 2016. 750 sq foot gunite free form. Raised spa with spillover and dedicated pump, 16 foot fiberglass slide built into hill with bolder steps, approx 1,000 sq foot stamped concrete deck, Pentair VS+SVRS pump, Sta-Rite 400,000 btu gas heater, Sta-Rite System 3 cartridge filter, Pentair Intellichlor IC60 SWG, Pentair Intellichem, Pentair Easytouch, Rapids 4WD pool cleaner, 2 LED Intellibrite lights.

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    ok first thing first cause i'm so friggin' confused.

    i get my drawings after i sign so that's fine cause the deposit is 100% refundable if i bail. at that time i will know all placement s and such.

    here is what i know so far and i think i got some red flags already. maybe i'm wrong.

    1. 2 skimmers. they both are home runs, but the one skimmer is tied into the solar return system cause that skimmer is needed to recirculate the warm top water to the bottom drain to heat the lower water in the pool.

    2. 2 return lines. the one return is a 2" home run and the second is 1.5" off the first one. so 2" to the pad from the first but second is run off first but a smaller line also.

    3. cleaning line is home run.

    no booster pump cause will be using a robot.

    4. here is all equipment thus far:

    The heater is a Ray Pak Heater is a 406 Gas Heater. You can view its specs here: http://www.raypak.com/product.aspx?i...3-78A6471032E8

    Filter is a 60 sq ft DE Jandy Filter You can view it here: http://www.jandy.com/en/products/filters/dev

    Jandy 2 HP Flo Pro Variable Speed Pump : You can view the specs here: http://www.jandy.com/en/products/pum...vs-flopro-2-hp

    Fusion Soft Salt system with mineral sanitizer included. You can view the specs here:http://www.zodiacpoolsystems.com/en/...e2-fusion-soft

    5. pool is 20,963 gallons.

    So that is what I know thus far. like i said i don't know placements yet cause i didn't sign but that is how plumbing is laid out and what the model numbers of major equipment is.


    I really really appreciate everyones input. i will post pics of back yard soon.

    thanks so much,
    jim

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    ok pics. don't mind the yard. it's winter up here. lol

    looking down my yard. the deep end is at my feet in this pic and the front of pool house will be facing me in this pic like the drawings i posted.
    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr

    i'm standing in the low end pretty much here looking up to deep end to where sidewalks will wrap around that porch fireplace out to driveway. swings is getting pushed another 5 feet towards my neighbors to make more space between the fence and swings/ slide.
    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr

    i would say i'm statding in my storage room of the pool house looking towards my front yard. all the electrical and water and gas will come out from this side of the house. that's where all my utilities are as you can pretty much see. we will just dig out the foundation at tap through. the waste for the bathroom does straight out to the sewer here also. that's why pool house was put where it was. it is also the fence for this side of the property to block out my neighbors yard. we like them but figured the little elevation change here would work nice to bring pool house lower than pool and allow for me to slope off into them a bit.
    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr

    i'm standing on the lower paver area infant of pool house looking out to pool and in the far reach of the yard is the pad for equipment. puts it close to pool so runs aren't crazy long and it will be away from living spaces and hid behind whatever i come up with.
    Untitled by Jim, on Flickr

    this just shows like in my one drawing to show the elevation change of the steps which will be built to go from the pool (higher) to lower pool house area. the steps will shoot off the corner of the porch where the downspout is. the area infant of the snoopy coop for my fireplace will be raised planters that wrap around to the hvac units and slope off. the fence will come off the corner of the house into the pool house for access.

    how's that?!

    side note cause i do actually have green grass. my grandfather and father had a large landscaping business when my grandfather was alive. my dad only helped maintain it but had a diff full-time job. when he passed (grandfather) my dad couldn't keep it alive cause of his regular job. my dad said i'm all my grandfather cause i love flowers and landscaping. i wish i was older when he passed cause maybe i could have taken it over. i would have loved it. doing my yard was the best part of building my home. i put a lot of care into my yard. kinda killing me that i'm loosing everything back there.

    IMG_8841 by Jim, on Flickr

    there a bunch of flower pics in my flickr account along with a ton of other pics of my last project at my home pic anyone like flower pics.

    Thanks again for all the help!

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    3. cleaning line is home run.----------------what cleaning line? Are they still putting this in even though you will have a robot?

    2. 2 return lines. the one return is a 2" home run and the second is 1.5" off the first one. so 2" to the pad from the first but second is run off first but a smaller line also.----------only 2 return lines and one is on a smaller line off the other one? That does not allow for any adjustment of the returns and I THINK you need more than two returns for a pool that size but I could be wrong. I will do some checking.

    Fusion Soft Salt system with mineral sanitizer included. You can view the specs here:http://www.zodiacpoolsystems.com/en/...e2-fusion-soft----------Full STOP on this one! This is what we thought it would be and it is NOT good. These are very expensive to use over time AND cause harm with the mineral additions. Over time the minerals will build up and cause stains and messed up water

    You are much better off with a "straight" SWG. I will let you read over this link:Pool School - Salt Water Chlorine Generators

    Do some reading in the forum about the different SWG and we will help you pick the best one out for your pool.

    I am SO glad you found TFP! We will save you some bucks and hopefully heartache.

    Kim

    - - - Updated - - -

    We were posting at the same time LOL I posted then saw your pics!

    Your yard looks great and you have a good vision for your yard! I love what you have done so far!
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit, Become a TFP supporter!

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Quote Originally Posted by jimim View Post

    re: the solar thing. they keep saying skimmer. what you are explaining is how they explain it also so i have to check on that also. i told them i wanted 2 skimmers for ease of keeping the pool clean and he keeps say 2 skimmers. i have to check.

    so do you have to hook it up to something? how come u didn't use it yet. i guess i just don't understand how it interacts wit hthe pool, but how you explained what it is is how they are .
    We are just finishing our pool now and water went in a few weeks ago, so we have not had a chance to try the passive solar yet. The way it is set up is that it is integral to the system -- there is an additional section of conduit next to the equipment pad that is a permanent part of the system. I think one flips a switch or something on the pump to change the way the water is circulating. We had a difficult build (er) and our builder refused to do pool school, so I am learning from the TFP folks and a local pool shop. Also, as in your proposal, we have 2 skimmers.

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    Re: New Northeastern Pa Build

    Beautiful backyard for a pool. Which direction is north in the pics?

    As Kim said, no Fusion (bad). You want an AquaPure PLC1400 since you are going Jandy. Jandy only has two sizes of SWCG's. One is for 12K gallons, which is too small, so you want the larger one. It should be sized at 1 1/2 - 2 times the size (gallons) of your pool.

    It will all be beautiful again soon enough - guaranteed. Don't stress over the mess and destroyed lawn. Use your energy to stress over what matters, the build itself. You are asking good questions. One mistake people do make is to not take good advice.
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. Saltwater w/ gray plaster
    Hayward equipment (cartridge filter, 2-speed pump, salt cell, automation) View Our Build
    Coverstar automatic pool cover | StoneMakers concrete retaining wall and decking
    Groundbreaking: 2/14/13 | Plaster: 5/21/2013 | First Swim: 5/30/2013

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