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Thread: Water level problem on new pool

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    Water level problem on new pool

    Hi all, Hoping someone here can provide guidance. I had a 17,500 gallon pool built early this year and I noticed early on that the water level wasn't quite even on the tile line from one end of the pool to the other. It was close though and I disregarded. Now though the situation seems to have gotten worse and it is a few inches off- on one end the water is at the very top of the tile and the other end (right at a skimmer unfortunately) is the low point where it is at best halfway down the tile (about a 2 and 1/4" difference). It seems like a small amount over the span of the 34' of pool but I am afraid it may continue to oget worse and it also makes maintining the pool level a biut more challenging during the summer when it evaporates quickly. If I fill the pool any higher than halfway up the tile I cause a algae problem on the other side where there is a stone wall.

    So any advice here? Is this a problem the builder should fix or am I on my on? I have left a couple messages with the builder but so far they wont return a call.

    Appreciate any advice.
    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Welcome to the forum, catoars

    What type of pool is this? Vinyl, plaster, fiberglass, etc? You mentioned the pool builder; can we assume that your pool is newly installed? If not, how old is the pool?
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Hi, thanks for the reply. Pool is plaster and yes it is a new one- completed in January this year. It has been uneven all along and seems worse now.
    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Doubtful the pool is sinking, but it is possible! Are you on a slope, in poorly compacted material or any other application that may cause movement?

    Waterline tile gets set out of level quite often (which annoys the $%&^ out of me!) and can give the illusion of a "sinking" pool. If you do truly have a problem, I would think that you may want to place a call to your PB and get his thoughts.

    Good luck!

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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Quote Originally Posted by catoars
    Hi, thanks for the reply. Pool is plaster and yes it is a new one- completed in January this year. It has been uneven all along and seems worse now.
    I think you have a potentially very serious problem unless, as simicrintz suggested, your tiles are just misaligned. But that doesn't seem to fit your description.

    If this were my pool I would first contact another pool contractor (not the same I used to complete the build) to evaluate the situation and then ask for and retain a written estimate for any repairs recommended. Re-read your contract to understand what may be covered under your warranty. Even if settling or concrete cracking during your warranty period is excluded, that doesn't mean the builder won't want to make it right. Then I would get very knowledgeable about state and local building code and download everything there is to download on the subject of contracting, pool building etc from my state's consumer affairs department or commission and the fed.

    Create a log, beginning with the dates/times I left messages on this subject for the contractor. At this point, armed with lots of information and a repair estimate, I would talk to the installer (general contractor) either in person or in an unhurried telephone conversation. (Knowing what I do about builders I wouldn't leave any messages through a secretary or assistant, nor via voice mail. Even if it takes days to get them on the phone.) Your patient insistence will likely produce a better outcome than angry talk. But better angry talk than just leaving messages that are ignored.
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
    __
    View of spiral galaxy in Ursa Major NGC6217 - Hubble Telescope 2009

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    thanks for the replies and suggestions guys. I finally got a return call from the PB today and he said the pool has most likely shifted due to the extreme drought we had over the summer (in Austin TX) followed by the recent rains of the last couple months. He is to come by and take a look- keeping my fingers crossed on this one.
    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    If you have a laser level, set it on the wall one evening so it's easy to see and check the distance to the water from the laser line.

    Is the deck around the pool ok?

    Scott
    PoolGuyNJ
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Hi Scott, yes the deck is indeed ok all around the pool. There are no cracks to be seen anywhere in the pool or the decking. PB came by earlier this week and he is confused what's happened since there are no cracks anywhere- not reassuring to say the least.

    He seems to think that since there are no cracks anywhere then it must have been crooked all along, which isn't quite the case. (Its always been off, but not by this much). He is having the guys that did the coping and tile work come by to take a look.
    Fingers crossed as I am growing more nervous each day....
    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    If you can post a pic or two that shows your concerns, there are several builders (I am not a builder) that may be able to offer some highly qualified insight.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Ok, here are a few pics that should show the issue. Still waiting to hear anything back from the PB after he took a look so very much appreciate any advice.











    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Yikes! I do not know a solution but that is pretty darn serious. I cannot imagine a gunite pool tilting like that but I also cannot imagine getting the tile out of level so far.

    I think you have a legitamate problem that needs resolution. I'm sorry this happened. Please keep us posted
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    I can't imagine a pool shifting that much and not showing any changes in the decking, where it meets the decking, or the shell not showing signs of stress such as cracks in the plaster. If it shifted, then that would indicate the pool shell is very, very strong and thick. That's a lot of settlement in such a short time, if that's what it is.

    Do you have any pictures during the build, especially the pre-gunite stages?

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Did the tile/coping guys show up to give you their opinion? When you wrote about what your PB said to you in response to your inquiry, this sounded to me like a friendly way of blowing you off-- he's hoping you'll just go away.

    At this point, I stand by my post of last December: get another contractor to give you an estimate of the work required to get it right and go from there.
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
    __
    View of spiral galaxy in Ursa Major NGC6217 - Hubble Telescope 2009

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Thanks guys, I'll see if I can dig up a few pics that shows how it appeared earlier in the year.

    Nothing from the tile/coping guys or any follow up from the PB since his initial visit. Would you guys expect that the PB would resolve this issue or am I likely to be on my own here? Yeah I'm sure the PB does hope I go away but not likely- I am close to panicking here just wondering how much worse this is going to get. Does a PB usually cover repair if a pool shifts so soon? Or is there not such thing as 'usually' in these cases?

    Will heed the advice and call a separate pool repair company to see what they say.

    Thanks again guys and will keep you updated.
    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Or is there not such thing as 'usually' in these cases?
    Yours is the first pool I've seen on these forums that looks as if it has settled........so, yeah, 'usually' is not the case.

    I'm wondering if PB's don't have available some type of very high deductible insurance protection just for a case like yours. I suppose it's somewhat irrelevant but would be a little reassuring to know.

    Was that never before disturbed soil under your pool? Do you remember any problems PB had with the dig? Water in the hole, etc?
    Dave S. - Forum owner
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    duraleigh,

    That is exactly why I asked if pics of the pre-gunite stages were available.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Alright here are a few pics- hopefully they show what you guys needed to see and I do not recall any issues with the dig. No water was encountered and the ground wasn't disturbed before a pool went in. One of the pics you can see the waterline right after it was filled with water and it looks pretty level. Like I said it was I think, just a touch bit off, but it is clear that it is nothing like it is today.

    One thing I should have mentioned earlier is that one of my next door neighbors had a similar issue with his pool however it hasn't shifted nearly as much and it took about 25 years for it to do so since it was built in the early 80s. My neighbor behind me and the one on the other side of my house have had no issues with their pools and both those have been there since the 70s.

    I do have a pool repair company coming to take a look at it- hopefully they will be here this week.

    with my nephew and golden retriever rolling around in it.








    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Just an FYI, if it might help. In our area shifting is a real problem. Many of the new houses are having major problems but the older houses seem to have been built with better measures used to combat the shifting. Many of the houses are built on edges of hills adding more reason for shifting. My house was built in 74 right on the edge of a significant drop off. The house concrete pad is very intact (no problems) although water runs down hill, about 60 ft, and out the back door (this has been a plus for the three floods we've had, over the years, from water heaters). The pool, 1981, is built into the hill with only 1/3 of the shallow end dug into the ground; the rest is pier and beam supported, with a 12 + ft drop off at deep end. The pool has only settled or shifted slightly since 81 with the water level less than 1/8" difference from shallow end to deep end, and no cracking in pool. The decking has moved around considerably, up in areas and down in areas, with one large crack near deep end, but that is pretty insignificant compared to a whole pool shifting.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    Any chance a soils engineering report was done?

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

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    Re: Water level problem on new pool

    wow, yeah I would love for this to be a 1/8" difference. With it being 2"+ now I wonder where it would stop as it may not be done shifting.

    And no, no soil test done that I am aware of. Is this SOP for a pool build?
    18k gallon, plaster, Hayward DE6020 filter, 2.0 HP Hayward pump, H Series Hayward heater, inline chlorinator (that I no longer use as I have switched to BBB)

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