1st pool build - Spring, TX

Sep 5, 2021
5
Spring, tx
Hello, all. New to the site and this is our first pool build. I wanted to get some opinions on the pool equipment and see if there is anything else I don't know about (mostly everything). I listed everything I know about the build. I am still waiting on other quotes.

Again, I am new to this and don't know if there are other questions I need to know or if something looks out of place. Any advice?

Pool Perimeter: 107
Maximum Length: 38
Maximum Width: 15
Square Footage: 493
Pool Depth: 3.6 x 6.0
Travertine Coping
Cool deck
1 Skimmer
Anti-Vortex Safety Drains
Auto Fill System Included
Sub-Panel
Pebble Plaster
4" Area Drains
Equipment
Filtering System Jandy Cartridge 460
Jandy Variable Speed Pump 2 HP
Controls I Aqualink
Nature2 Fusion
Pool Lights: Light Type 2 - Jandy LED
Water Features
6 Inch Raised Wall Included
12 Inch Raised Wall Included
2 - 18 Inch Columns Included
2 - 1 Ft. Sheers Included
1 - 4 Ft. Sheer Included
3 - Bubblers Included
Booster Pump


#3 Rebard 8" Off-center
Floors and walls: 6-inch - 8-inch thickness
Raised walls and beams: 12-inch thickness
 

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Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Welcome to TFP! :wave: I only have two items to point out for your consideration:
1 - Dump the Fusion. You do not need minerals (copper) in the water. It won't help with sanitation. You'll either be adding liquid chlorine manually each day or ask about a salt water generator (SWG). Many builders seem to frown upon salt as if it's the end of the world, but it is not. It's a very effective way to create free chlorine.
2 - You have a considerable amount of water features that, if used often, can contribute to lots of aeration which will increase your pH. So if you elect to keep them, be sure you have 100% control of when they are actually in use.

 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
17,507
Evans, Georgia
Hey there SpringBuild....welcome to TFP. Exciting time ahead, huh!? Next summer is gonna be fun at your house.

The only things I see that you may want to address is the lack of a 2nd Skimmer (always a good idea in case the primary gets clogged) and that Nature2 Fusion is a huge no-no to us here at TFP because it uses copper and other minerals. The copper builds up in the pool and stains the walls and can cause blond hair to turn green. How about a Salt Water Chlorinator instead?

Maddie :flower:
 
Sep 5, 2021
5
Spring, tx
Exciting times indeed! We are very excited.

Dump the fusion all together? Or replace it with the swg?
My wife is a big fan of the water features. She was worried the lack of spa would make the pool very plain. I'm sure they won't be ran all the time, our thought was that it added some appeal and maybe cool a bit in the hotter months. Maybe this isn't accurate? I was told I could run any or all at any time.
I have asked about adding a second skimmer. I wasn't 100% sure if it was needed or not.

Thank you for the quick replies!
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Yes, say no to the Fusion completely. If you can get an SWG installed, that's a great option for hands-free chlorination. Tabs are fine short-term only because they increase the CYA (stabilizer) over time. So then you'll switch to liquid chlorine or use an SWG if installed. As for the water features ....... gotta keep the wife happy. :) Just understand it's best to run them a minimal amount of time each day to purge the lines and then again only if out there lounging around. Don't leave them all all day.
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Take a look at this thread.

 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
17,507
Evans, Georgia
A Salt Water Chlorinater (SWG) is in my opinion the absolute best way to sanitize your pool. No running back and forth to the store to buy various chlorine products..... you set the pool up with the appropriate amount of salt and the equipment and it runs and provides you your chlorine painlessly~
 
Sep 5, 2021
5
Spring, tx
We did want to go with chlorinated pool rather than salt water. We have metal and soft stone around that we know our young kids will splash on constantly. Is there anything we should add for chlorinated pool after removing the Fusion equipment?

What about the floor and walls? Is 6-8 inch in Houston good?
I did see in another thread I should ask for the 2 skimmers to be independently plumbed. Are there any plumbing questions(or any questions really) I should be asking/should expect?
 

HermanTX

Gold Supporter
May 20, 2020
2,517
Katy TX
I want to emphasize the need for independent control of every water feature. This means you have a valve - a Jandy 2 way valve - on each pipe that goes to the water feature. Each also should have a valve actuator controller on it that is connected to your iAquaLink (ask for RS-P8 version) so you can rotate each on or off. You want to avoid doing it manually if you can. Since you will have only 1 pump then your only control is via the 2-way valves.
Also, you have 2 lights. Discuss with the PB if you want to operate both together or independently. This will require additional auxiliary connections in the automation box if you want independent control.
It is vey important to discuss with the PB what you want to control so you get the right size of automation system, valves and actuators to handle all the communication wires for the lights and valves. Look at the PDF downloads at this link
 

red-beard

Gold Supporter
May 27, 2019
1,393
Houston, TX
We did want to go with chlorinated pool rather than salt water. We have metal and soft stone around that we know our young kids will splash on constantly. Is there anything we should add for chlorinated pool after removing the Fusion equipment?

What about the floor and walls? Is 6-8 inch in Houston good?
I did see in another thread I should ask for the 2 skimmers to be independently plumbed. Are there any plumbing questions(or any questions really) I should be asking/should expect?
All chlorine pools are salt water pools. When I converted my pool to "Salt", I tested the water and it was around 1000 ppm. I had drained and refilled my pool 4 months prior. ~3000 ppm is common for Salt Water pools. This is one third the level of tears and one tenth that of sea water. It should not affect plants or most surfaces. I have "Flag Stone"/Sandstone and it is not affected by the salt.

Most of the people here have eventually ended up going to Salt Water. I helped one of my friends spec out a pool this Spring and insisted she go VSP and SWG. She was so happy with the pool all summer. She was complaining TODAY that the air is 70F and the pool too cold to swim. She's in Upstate NY.

I do not see a pool heater in your list. I suggest a 400,000 BTU Natural Gas or Propane heater which will heat your spa much more quickly. They do not cost much more than the smaller ones.

Invest in a floating solar pool cover. This will help extend the season and allow the SWG to keep working in the winter by keeping the water temp above the minimum level.
 
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Sep 5, 2021
5
Spring, tx
Thanks for the explanation. We asked the PB about adding in an SWG and said they use Nature2 Fusion Soft. It has the mineral sanitizer built-in but if I didn't want to use that part, I just don't use the cartridge.

We are not installing a spa, so we do not have a heater. We debated the pool heater but ultimately decided it isn't worth it for us.
 

red-beard

Gold Supporter
May 27, 2019
1,393
Houston, TX
A few people have that setup and it works fine. Just don't install any mineral cartridges no matter what the Pool Builder says. Make sure it is the one sized for 40K Gallons. This will ensure a long life.

 
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BowserB

Silver Supporter
Jul 29, 2018
632
"Old" Katy, TX
Thanks for the explanation. We asked the PB about adding in an SWG and said they use Nature2 Fusion Soft. It has the mineral sanitizer built-in but if I didn't want to use that part, I just don't use the cartridge.
We are not installing a spa, so we do not have a heater. We debated the pool heater but ultimately decided it isn't worth it for us.
FWIW, we use the spa more than the main pool. Bottle of chilled Prosecco, a tube of Ritz crackers, and a hour in the spa. Happy hour. Daughter and granddaughters come over. Wife and daughter in the spa; grand daughters in the pool. Our pool would be way less used without the spa.

Heater: My wife does not like cold water. Cold water to her is anything under 90 degrees. This morning at 11am the water was 87 degrees. We use the spa all year long, and we use the heater more than you might guess. In fact, there has not been a month in the last year that we didn't use the heater at least 2 or three times heating the spa only and at least once or twice heating the whole pool. Want to use your pool in April, in late October and November? You're probably going to wish you had a heater. Our heater will heat the spa to 90+ degrees in the winter in about 20 minutes or so, then another ten minutes up to 100 degrees, and since it's natural gas, it doesn't really cost a lot to run. Winter evening in the spa. Best time ever. We're located in old Katy--about 30 miles south of you in Spring.

Also, an observation. Yes you need two skimmers. Figure out what the normal prevaling wind is in your yard, and put one of the skimmers at the downwind end of the pool; second at the other end. Also, a couple of returns in the bottom of the pool helps to keep the water temperature more even and not cold at the bottom. Also helps with mixing chemicals.

Things we're glad we did originally:
  • Nice roomy spa, although now I would have continued the seating all the way around. The seat does not continue around where the spillover is. Spillover is wide (4.5 ft or so)...would be better if not so wide.
  • Pebble finish plaster
  • Overflow drain out to the street--includes draining the decking and two downspouts from the roof gutters.

Things we did that we regret:
  • Opted for a 6' deep end instead of the 5' recommended by the PB. I would prefer to be able to stand anywhere in the pool--to rescue a kid or do certain maintenance things. And 6 ft is not deep enough for diving anyway. Too deep for standing; not deep enough for diving.
  • Got a "sun shelf" because everyone gets one. Stairs all the way across the shallow end would be much more useful, as they would provide multiple levels of seating while not blocking ingress/egress.
  • Allowed our landscape architect to put in Wax Myrtle trees because "they help with privacy" and "they're evergreen." Yes they help with privacy, but "evergreen" means they drop skinny wax myrtle leaves into the pool all year long!
  • Stone coping. Something harder, waterproof, and more durable and not requiring periodic sealing than the flagstone coping. Even before we added the SWCG, it has in places chipped and flaked off.
  • See pot-construction changes below--pressure side cleaner and booster pump; inline tablet chlorinator

The changes we have made AFTER building the pool in 2018:
  • Stopped using the tablet chlorinator
  • Added a SWCG
  • Stopped using the pressure side cleaner and associated booster pump
  • Bought a Maytronics robotic cleaner for the bottom and sides of the pool (1,000 times better than a pressure side cleaner!)
 
Sep 5, 2021
5
Spring, tx
I appreciate the responses and helping me understand SWCG. We have since added the Nature2 Fusion Soft (the SWCG). The mineral sanitizer is built-in so we just won't put in the cartridge. We now have a contract.
 
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