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Thread: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

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    Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    I have a rectangular pool, 16 x 36, I am planning a major remodel on. Fuller details to come, but right now I am wondering where to put the lights. I am planning two color changing LED's. Most of the posts I have read counsel to put the lights points away from your entertaining area. For me, that would mean putting them both on the long side of the pool. I have read some websites that say that a rectangular pool should have lights on each narrow end. One website said that would minimize any flaws in the pool surface and plaster, since any uneven areas would be hit by light from both ends and so would not cast shadows.

    Here is a drawing showing the pool, house, the main entertaining area and a secondary entertaining area. The long side light position is shown with yellow arrows, the narrow end positions are the red arrows.





    The view from the house is not that important - we don't have many windows that look out at the pool. The view from the main entertaining area is very important. We like to sit there at night in the summer, eat outside and hang out. The secondary entertaining area we normally only use in the daytime, although we sometimes use it for a kid's table if we have a lot of people for dinner. At some point, we might put a fire table back there, which would presumably mean we would use it more at night. Both lights can't point away from both entertaining areas, but the primary one is definitely the more important of the two. The kids sometime swim at night and presumably that will increase as they get older.

    My main concern with putting the lights on the side is that I think the light beams beams will be sort of funnel shaped, and leave dark an area between the lights and at each end of the pool between a light and a pool corner.

    Love to hear suggestions from others with rectangular pools. If anyone has photos of their pools at night with lights, that would be even better.

    Thanks!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Retro Classic Pool built ~1960, remodelled 2018. In ground gunite 16x36, 8.5' feet deep, 8' diving board, 25,000 gallons, polished pebble with glass beads, travertine coping and deck, 420 square foot Pentair cartridge filter, Pentair Intelliflo variable speed pump, Pentair IntelliChlor 60 SWG, Polaris 280 with booster pump, two Pentair Itellibrite colored LED's, autofill

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    riley00dog's Avatar
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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    Ours are going on either end like you have shown. Our pool won't be big enough for laps though, which can be a concern for some.


    3.2 x 6m | inground concrete | ~27,000 litre | 1.2 - 1.8m | salt and pepper mini pebble | SWCG Atral eq35| Viron xt 1.5 HP VS pump | Astral CA280 sand filter | DB3 robot | 2 x LED lights | travertine coping and paving | ceramic waterline tile |

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    riley00dog's Avatar
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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    ^in red.


    3.2 x 6m | inground concrete | ~27,000 litre | 1.2 - 1.8m | salt and pepper mini pebble | SWCG Atral eq35| Viron xt 1.5 HP VS pump | Astral CA280 sand filter | DB3 robot | 2 x LED lights | travertine coping and paving | ceramic waterline tile |

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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    Can I assume your pool is currently filled and you're determined to replace the light fixtures? Best bet is to get the lights and temporarily attached them to a pole or something. Drop them in the pool and test. This way, you would know what to expect and hopefully satisfy your needs.

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    In most cases I normally suggest putting the lights as you have shown by the yellow arrows. However, the suggestion of putting them on opposite ends to reduce shadows of the imperfections is not a bad idea. I do think that I'd still suggest putting them on the long side near the house, because of the secondary entertainment area. You don't want a light shining directly toward that area.

    Ideally you should install four lights as you have shown with the ability to control them in pairs. The long side lights on one control and the short side lights on a second control.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    All our lights are where your yellow arrows are. We have three Color changing LED. One of the main reason we donít have any in the red area is we do intent to swim and probably use it most often for that. We didnít want lights directly in line with the swim path. So that might be a consideration.
    Rectangular 24'x40' Salt Water, 4' to 6'. Pentair EasyTouch 8, Screen Logic 2, w/wireless kit. Pentair IntelliFlo VSF Pump, Pentair CCP520 Cartridge Filter, Pentair IC60 Cell, Wet Edge Northshore Tahoe finish. ~28,000 gallons. TF-100 Test Kit. Completed: Dec 2017 Build Thread

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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    Thanks to everyone who replied. These lights are pretty pricey, so I want to limit it two. If I were going to spring for four, Bama Rambler's suggestion would be really great. I guess I am leaning towards two on the long wall / side wall as shown by yellow arrows. If anyone has a photo of their pool with a similar set up, or a link to somewhere on the web, showing such lights in use I would be most grateful.
    Retro Classic Pool built ~1960, remodelled 2018. In ground gunite 16x36, 8.5' feet deep, 8' diving board, 25,000 gallons, polished pebble with glass beads, travertine coping and deck, 420 square foot Pentair cartridge filter, Pentair Intelliflo variable speed pump, Pentair IntelliChlor 60 SWG, Polaris 280 with booster pump, two Pentair Itellibrite colored LED's, autofill

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    bmoreswim's Avatar
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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    Here are few of our pool at night. Our lights are at your yellow arrows. Our pool is also 8 1/2' deep. The deep end is darker. The lighter your plaster the less of an issue the dark areas will be because of reflection from the other side. Our plaster is light grey. Overall it's fine. I wouldn't put them anywhere else. No place is perfect.

    2013-06-24 21.58.12.jpg

    2013-06-24 21.59.04.jpg

    2017-06-17 21.30.02.jpg
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. w/ gray plaster
    Hayward equipment (cartridge filter, 2-speed pump, SWCG, automation) View Our Build
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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    Thanks, Bmoreswim! Amazing how different they look from different angels. I think that does it for me, they're going on the long side where the yellow arrows are.
    Retro Classic Pool built ~1960, remodelled 2018. In ground gunite 16x36, 8.5' feet deep, 8' diving board, 25,000 gallons, polished pebble with glass beads, travertine coping and deck, 420 square foot Pentair cartridge filter, Pentair Intelliflo variable speed pump, Pentair IntelliChlor 60 SWG, Polaris 280 with booster pump, two Pentair Itellibrite colored LED's, autofill

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    Re: Light Placement in Rectangular Pool

    Our pool is 36' rectangular, we used 3 lights, with 2 on one of the longer sides and 1 on the opposite side in the middle. We have been very please with the coverage from this setup.
    18x36 Vinyl, sports depth, 8' Roman steps at each end. Hayward 1.5hp 2speed pump, catridge filter, 2 skimmers, no main drain, 3 SR Smith Treo LED lights

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