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Thread: Drop in Steps (AG) The Good, the Bad and the Algae

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Drop in Steps (AG) The Good, the Bad and the Algae

    I'm about to order steps as our deck was just completed within the last 24 hrs. We previously got along with the ladder but more and more our guests, and even we, find it harder to climb up and down a ladder (getting older!) I want to make the pool guest friendly to everyone. What I do not want is steps that collect algae behind them or go out into the pool so far that they infringe on swimming space. Cost is a factor but not the driving force. Easy installation, sturdiness and maintenance and main factors (I do ALL the opening,closing and cleaning myself)

    So tell me whats the good ones out there - I'm leaning towads a Biltmore set, anything else similar or better I should know about? Pictures would help - thanks in advance!!!
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    I have Biltmore in my pool. Seem to be good but dont overload them. I am thinking of cake style for my next set. They hold a little more weight.
    Steve
    Echo Canyon II by Artesian Pools, 13.5 KGal AG Round, 22" Artesian Sand Filter 2 hp Artesian pump
    Med Lab Tech for 12 years in E.TN
    Chem testing by Trouble Free Test Kits

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    steps...

    Steve, I saw pics of yours on our other "roost" and they look nice. Can you tell me a bit more about the overloading issue? I know you had modified yours to fit onto your deck - I'm wondering if I'm up to modifications. I'm sure I will have to anyway as I haven't seen any that really look like they attach well to the deck.

    Do the Biltmore's stay clean in the back? Algae not a problem? Thanks in advance (also if anyone else has some suggestions on other brands or info on what they use?)
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Would it be possible for some folks to post pics of their AG steps and give a little info on pros/cons of that brand/type? (Steve - I have seen your nice steps with the modifications!) Anyone?
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    Sorry it took me so long to respond....
    I have had not problems with algae in the steps. The Biltmore allows for good flow through the steps. You have already seen the mods I made to get mine installed on my deck. The steps I bought had the outer ladder kit but you can get a deck kit to go with these steps. I havent see this kit but it looked simple enough to install.

    I dont think the deck kit includes the back rails (T,F) witch I moded from the ladder kit But has rails that hook at upright Z.
    If you have more questions let me know.
    Steve
    Echo Canyon II by Artesian Pools, 13.5 KGal AG Round, 22" Artesian Sand Filter 2 hp Artesian pump
    Med Lab Tech for 12 years in E.TN
    Chem testing by Trouble Free Test Kits

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Oh thanks a ton Steve. Where did you get yours? did you order online? I see wide price ranges $169 -$259 without the ladder kit plus shipping or including shipping, depending.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    The steps were included in the pool package. I got the ladder option but built the deck before I used the pool. I wen to the pool store trying to get the deck install kit but they were out of stock. Moding the ladder kit was a better install so I guess I am glad they didnt have the deck kit.

    The deck install kid didnt have parts marked by black arrows and attached where the blue arrows are pointing. I used a orange noodle to prevent tripping between the wooden deck and the step platform. Looking at your solar pannel install I would bet you could make the mods very easy or use PVC to make the back hand rail.
    Steve
    Echo Canyon II by Artesian Pools, 13.5 KGal AG Round, 22" Artesian Sand Filter 2 hp Artesian pump
    Med Lab Tech for 12 years in E.TN
    Chem testing by Trouble Free Test Kits

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    Great info! I really am looking hard at the Biltmores. Oh yep, we just about live and die by PVC around these parts. We have 4 parrots and pvc is easy and cheap perch, playstand and gym material so it probably wouldn't be tough to mod the steps to add just the right touch for rails, etc.

    We also have a bit of a gap between deck and pool to plug for safety (also larger than I would have wanted for looks but good for maintaining things) so I am trying to work on a good mod to "fill" that gap without looking cheezey. Maybe a custom, removable "fill" made with expanding foam, filed down and painted to match (I love that stuff - makes great Halloween props)
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    I have wedding cake steps, but with two rails (my mom is 81, has some balance issues, but loves to swim).

    I put a slab of plumber's shower stall vinyl under the steps to protect the liner--it's super-smooth 40 mil and prevents any movement of the steps from abrading the liner.

    Algae is a problem, but not a big one. I sometimes drop floater with a single puck inside set to the lowest setting. Still, by closing there's some algae. But also if you weight the steps down with plastic bags of salt, it will dissolve and keep the local area free of algae--if you don't mind adding salt to your pool. But they dissolve before summer's over.
    Stay ahead of your water!

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    Carl, thanks for the steps info. I have seen your pool - so beautiful. We had a pad under our ladder last year but wondering would someplace like Lowes carry that shower stall vinyl? I know we will need to put something bigger than that pad from last year under the steps.

    WRT the salt in the steps issue, salt is no problem. I was one of those over at PF involved in the "salt in Non SWG pools" experiment - lol. I plan to go that direction again this year. We loved the results.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    Lowes should have it. I got it at Home Depot. If not, try a plumbing supply shop. It's 4' wide and you cut the length you'll need.

    Thanks for the kind words! I'd say I work hard on my pool....but I don't. I just worked hard to get it to look nice and interesting. My wife was TOTALLY against a standard A/G pool because of the way they look, but this one she liked. I prefer to swim laps in a rectangle to an oval anyway. But I think ANY pool looks good if it's maintained and makes its owners happy!
    Stay ahead of your water!

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    We have the Royal Entrance Steps........they do come out into the pool a bit, but we find that floats will go right over the steps without a problem as only the top step or so is actually out of the water. We love them, handles to hang onto, can sit on the steps. We place a small vinyl liner under the bottom step.
    18 ft.52" Round Atrium AG -7600 gallons, Sand Filter, Vinyl liner, Royal Entrance Steps, 80 lbs.solarsalt

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    Quote Originally Posted by NWMNMom
    WRT the salt in the steps issue, salt is no problem. I was one of those over at PF involved in the "salt in Non SWG pools" experiment - lol. I plan to go that direction again this year. We loved the results.
    I think we may need to start a new thread on salt in a non SWG pool in Chemistry 101.

    The Builtmore has wide flanges on the bottom so I havent worried about a bottom liner for the steps. Once weighted and placed the steps dont move so I havent worried about friction tears on the bottom of the pool. I also have a pollycrete bottom so I dont have a problem with sand shifting on the pool bottom causon divits from the steps.
    Steve
    Echo Canyon II by Artesian Pools, 13.5 KGal AG Round, 22" Artesian Sand Filter 2 hp Artesian pump
    Med Lab Tech for 12 years in E.TN
    Chem testing by Trouble Free Test Kits

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