Advice for New Pool in Houston, Texas

teamramrod

New member
May 28, 2021
1
Texas
Hi everyone,

My family just signed up with our PB in Houston, TX and I wanted to post our pool specifics and design to see if you guys can help us avoid mistakes or think of things we missed. And of course (hopefully) to get feedback as we go through the construction process. Thanks in advance to everyone (and thanks already for all the initial advice/help I was able to gather just from reading the wealth of information on this forum - I'm glad I found TFP!).

We have one 2 year old boy (and one on the way) and will generally be hosting family and friends at our house. No one is a diver and the pool is primarily for leisure and cooling off during the summer (we also will plan to play some water sports like basketball/volleyball). I've gone back and forth on the depth but I am only 5'9", my wife is 5'2" and the rest of our family is fairly short. We would like to have as much of the pool be usable as possible so we've gone with 3.5 feet to 4.5 feet but are wondering whether we should go to 5 feet instead. Our PB suggested that 3.5 to 4.5 was common/plenty for a leisure pool but would welcome feedback. The pool will be in some shade so not too worried about temperature (although we have the option of adding a chiller down the road if needed).

After reading this forum, we've opted for the SWG (against our PB's recommendation) but given our pavers/brushed concrete, we understand that the risk is lower. We do have a brick patio next to the pool but are not too concerned. Also, I work a lot (at least for now) and will not have time for maintenance so will likely be hiring a pool company to come weekly. We did opt for the in-floor cleaning to help minimize work in between visits. I also figure that one day I would like to be more hands on so the SWG and IFCS will help. We understand these newer A&A systems work very well (after checking with a local pool company as well). We also added a 2nd skimmer after reading some feedback on other threads.

I've attached some images here but one important change was to add sheer descents out of the pillars on the long side of the pool. Our design choices (funnily enough) were pretty similar to what the images/rendering show.

We are generally like the clean/rectangular aesthetic and just want the pool to look nice/be a fun place to have friends/family over (and of course for the kids to play). We will have a brick/covered patio right next to the pool (which I think eliminates the need for as much decking) and are trying to preserve as much of our backyard as possible to have a grassy area for the kids.

I've posted more detailed pool specs below, thank you all in advance!

Best,

TRR

***
General pool specs:
15x30 "main" rectangular pool with a bump out in width for the tanning shelf and hot tub.
Depth is 3.5 to 4.5 feet.

Location:
7 feet from back of the house
7 feet from brick patio
3.5 feet from fence
12 feet from big tree
Shelf is 10 feet long, 6 feet wide
Hot tub is 10 feet x 5 feet + 12 inch wall (6 feet total)
Patio 10 feet by 6 feet (9 x 8.5 including coping)

Now for the more specific details directly from the PB (I'm just looking for someone with experience who can advise if we overlooked something obvious):

POOL PLUMBING
  • Versa Plumb Equipment Set.
  • VGB Compliant Main Drains.
  • Dedicated Suction from Main Drain(s).
  • All plumbing pipe is schedule 40 PVC.
  • All pipe and valves are non-corrosive.
STEEL REINFORCING
  • Steel reinforcing 4 Bar Box Beam 1/2" rebar.
  • Steel reinforcing grid @ 10" on centers 3/8" rebar.
ELECTRICAL AND ELECTRICAL COMPONENTS
  • Electrical hook up of pumps, lights, controllers, etc. in required conduit unless Electrical is not purchased by buyer.
  • GFCI breakers for Pump(s).
  • Sanitation System and overhead or underground utilities to be re-routed by Buyer if needed.
GUNITE STRUCTURE
  • Pneumatically applied gunite structure per code.
  • 12" x 12" bond beam with 6" walls and floor and 8" coves.
  • Buyer to water gunite structure down 2 times a day for the first 7 days starting the day after gunite completion.
  • One set of steps.
DECKING
  • All poured type concrete decking has fiber mesh in the mix.
  • Concrete decks have 3/8” rebar at 18” on centers for reinforcing.
  • Concrete decks are 4" thick.
  • Concrete type decks have deck dowels tied in from swimming pools.
  • If concrete type decking, mastic to be included.

DIMENSIONSPOOLSPA
WIDTH20.504.50
MAX. LENGTH30.0010.00
Depth 13.50N/A
Depth 24.50N/A
Depth 3N/A
AVERAGE DEPTH4.003.50
PERIMETER103.0029.00
SURFACE AREA 499.0045.00
INTERIOR AREA911.00146.50


ID​
DESCRIPTION​
QTY​
#3610​
Price Book - Houston
1​
BASE POOL
#3564​
Geometric BP SS
Sub Panel Included In Base Pool
1​
CITY PERMITS
#7892​
Houston
1​
ENGINEERING
#1930​
Proximity
1 ea.​
FENCE
#8916​
Fence up to 2 section and self closing gates up to 2
this is replacing existing fence that is taken down to excavate the pool. no new boards etc. are included in this price.
2 ea.​
EXCAVATION
#1968​
Dump Zone Fee
1 ea.​
#223​
Access up Driveway to be Pressure Wash at Day of Rebar Installation
Driveway to be pressure washed at day of rebar installation
1 ea​
MAIN DRAIN FOR POOL
#2772​
Dedicated Suction to pump measurement from drain to equipment 2.5in pipe
48 per.ft.​
SKIMMER
#3605​
Ultra Quickskim Skimmer 3/4in ball valve
1​
#3604​
Main Skimmer Run Total 2" and 1" pipe
22 per.ft.​
#7189​
Pool Cleaner line must be purchased on all pools 1.5in pipe
25 per.ft.​
#2824​
Add Additional Skimmer with 1in return and ball valve
1 ea.​
#7192​
Additional Skimmer Plumbing Runs (3/4" pipe per ft.)
65 per.ft.​
FILL TYPES MUST PICK ONE
#2780​
Auto Fill Line
80 per.ft.​
MAIN POOL PUMP
#199​
Jandy VS Plus Pump Variable Speed 2.7 THP 150 gpm at 50 ft. (Includes required GFCI Breaker)
150 gpm at 50 ft. of head
1 ea.​
FILTER TYPE(S)
#204​
Cartridge 460 sq.ft. max flow 150 gpm
1 ea.​
LIGHTING
#8158​
Jandy Watercolor 12V. LED Pool Light 100'
1 ea​
#2586​
Nicheless LED 12v 24 watts light each
1 ea.​
#2594​
300 Watt Transformer
1 ea.​
#2596​
Water Bonding Nicheless Light
1​
TIMERS AND AUTOMATION
#2535​
I-Q904 Pool Spa I-Aqualink
Client has gone over in detail that controller will handle all items needed to operate the pool in the manner they desire.
1 ea.​
HEATERS - HEAT PUMPS - CHILLERS
#2555​
400,000 BTU GAS Heater and non corrosive check valve
Client understand they must get gas meter upgraded at their expense.
1 ea.​
GUNITE
#19795​
14" Wide Pool Beam
1 ea.​
#2710​
Column(s)
2 ea.​
GUNITE - STEPS-BENCHES-TANNING SHELVE(S) & BEACH ENTRY
#2612​
Tanning Shelf (ea)
1 ea.​
#2605​
Bench #1 (per ft.)
7.5 per.ft.​
RAISED WALLS 12 INCH (PER LN.FT.)
#3672​
12" Raised Wall Steel and Gunite
15 ft​
RAISED WALLS 12 INCH COPING (PER LN.FT.)
#9468​
LA SCALA GRAY 16X32 PAVER
15 ln.ft.​
RAISED WALLS 12 INCH VENEERING (PER SQ.FT)
#10374​
6X24 SILVER FOX LEDGER (KSLE-23)
Ledgestone
24.5 sq.ft.​
RAISED WALLS 12 INCH #2 (PER LN.FT.)
#3672​
12" Raised Wall Steel and Gunite
6 ft​
RAISED WALLS 12 INCH COPING #2 (PER LN.FT.)
#9468​
LA SCALA GRAY 16X32 PAVER
7 ln.ft.​
RAISED WALLS 12 INCH #2 VENEERING (PER SQ.FT)
#10374​
6X24 SILVER FOX LEDGER (KSLE-23)
Ledgestone
18 sq.ft.​
CITY REQUIREMENTS FOR GAS DRAINS AND ELECTRIC
#7951​
Drainage Permits Decking
1​
#3606​
Master Plumber 4in. Area Drains With Downspout Connection (ALL CITY JOBS)
Client understands this is an estimate on the length of pipe needed anything less PB to credit back, anything more client to pay.
80 per.ft.​
#2756​
City Gas Line - Includes up to 10 feet, City Gas Permit, T & P Gas Valve, and one Regulator)
105 per.ft.​
#3617​
Electric Permits-and 360 Degree Ground
1​
POOL COPING (PER LNFT)
#9468​
LA SCALA GRAY 16X32 PAVER
66 ln.ft.​
POOL WATERLINE (SQ.FT)
#19155​
Seabreeze Mix Series Light Mix 1x1 (LTSSBLMIX1)
32 sq.ft.​
TILE AND COPING - GROUT COLOR,CUTS AND EXTRAS
#2838​
Colored Grout Coping
Colored Grout: 78 Sterling Silver (Silver Shimmer)
1 Included​
#7258​
Colored Grout Tile
Colored Grout: 78 Sterling Silver (Silver Shimmer)
1 Included​
DECKING AND DRAINAGE
#8328​
Mastic
1 ea.​
#2946​
Deck Coating per sq.ft. 400 sq.ft. min.
404 sqft​
#17842​
Extra Forming For Concrete Stepping Pads
24 sq.ft.​
SPA'S
#2649​
Standard Spa With 4 Jets Venturi with 1hp Blower
1 ea.​
#2650​
Extra Spa Jet for standard spa
2 ea.​
#11245​
Spa Plumbing Runs
55 ln. ft.​
SPA COPING (PER LNFT)
#9468​
LA SCALA GRAY 16X32 PAVER
16.5 ln.ft.​
SPA TILE LINE (PER SQ.FT)
#19155​
Seabreeze Mix Series Light Mix 1x1 (LTSSBLMIX1)
15 sq.ft.​
SPA LIGHT (ONE MUST BE PURCHASED)
#2656​
12watt MINI Color LED Light for Spa
1 ea.​
SPA SPILLWAYS
#3240​
Open spillway per. foot
14.5 sq.ft.​
SPA SPILLWAY TILE (PER SQ.FT.)
#19157​
Seabreeze Mix Series Light Mix 1x1 (LTSSBLMIX1)
22 sq.ft.​
WATER FEATURES
#3382​
Gushers (need 18 gpm per gusher)(ea.)
2 ea.​
#7173​
Loop Plumbing 2.5" Pipe to 1.5" Pipe
29 per.ft.​
SHEERS
#2659​
Sheer Descent 1' (need 15 gpm)
2 ea.​
#2662​
Sheer Descent 3' (need 45 gpm)
1 ea.​
#7179​
Sheer Descent Plumbing Run 1' to 6' 1.5" pipe
118 ln.ft.​
WATER FEATURES PUMP(S)
#19387​
Jandy VS Plus Pump Variable Speed 1.85 THP 100 gpm at 40 ft. (Includes required GFCI Breaker) - (Water Feature)
100 gpm at 50 ft. of head
1 ea.​
#7181​
2.5in. Suction Line for Booster Pump 140gpm.
46 ln.ft.​
FITTINGS COLOR
#19389​
Grey Fittings
1​
INTERIOR SURFACE
#7607​
Platinum Blue
Platinum Blue
1​
SANITIZERS
#123​
Inline Chlorinator
1 ea.​
#945​
Jandy Chlorine Generator
Customer has decided to do saltwater against PB recommendations. Customer needs to seal coping and any porous materials around the pool at time of completion and every 2 to 3 years after. No warranty due to saltwater damage will be offered by PB. All other warranties are still in effect.
1 ea​
AUTOMATIC POOL CLEANERS
#2698​
A&A In floor Cleaning System
1​
#949​
A&A In Floor System Plumbing Runs 2" pipe
 

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HermanTX

Gold Supporter
May 20, 2020
2,777
Katy TX
Pool Size
14600
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Hi fellow Houstonian. Welcome to TFP.
Very nice pool design and layout. It appears you have most every aspect covered from the design and equipment selections.
It is very interesting the adjustment to the warranty due to incorporating a SWCG. It will be fine.
Just a couple of minor points
  1. It mentioned the requirement for a cleaner line but not the type of cleaner. Is it a pressure side cleaner? There is one mention of a booster pump. What type of cleaner are they providing? Or am I confusing those specs for the In Floor Cleaning System and thus you have no separate "cleaner". I read it as an additional line but that just may be my mistake.
  2. There was a reference to a ball valve on one of the lines. It is best to get Jandy never-lube valves vs. a standard ball valve. You can perform maintenance on a Jandy but a standard ball valve has to be cut out of the plumbing and replaced if it leaks in the future.
  3. Ensure your equipment pad is large enough to allow maintenance - a 3x8 is sort of the norm but if you could bump that a little based on where it will be positioned it would help. Maybe a 3x9, 4x8 or 4x9. Especially if you may consider adding a chiller in the future you should plan for that on the pad now.
  4. Depth has so many variables. 3.5ft is the minimum to make it comfortable when in the pool. You need to think about kids jumping off the side (not diving) or even playing games (marco polo, picking up rings underwater) where you may want to be a little deeper. You may want to consider stretching it to 5ft. Mine is a sport pool with 4ft on one side, 5.5 in the middle and back up to 4ft then 3.5 by the steps to exit. Also, ensure the PB is putting in the contract "water depth" and not total depth because you have 4 inches from middle of waterline tile to top of coping which is "not water" but overall depth.
  5. You did not state the model of the SWCG. You have between 14,000 to 15,000 gal pool with spa. Thus you need 2x rating or about a 30,000 gal SWCG. The Jandy Aqua Pure 1400 is rated at 40,000gals and has better reviews then the new TruClear which is rated at 35,000gals. If you have a choice I would go with the Aqua Pure 1400
  6. Suggest you still have return lines to the sides of your pool in addition to the IFCS returns at the bottom. Sometimes PB don't put the side returns in so you may want to ask about that. It is a good addition to have the side returns if your IFCS would ever fail.
  7. Did you consider a bubbler with a LED light on the sun deck? Some people really enjoy that.
  8. Remember to purchase your test kit when you are about 1 month out from completion so you can test your tap water and get ready for your first fill.
  9. BTW - do you have a water softener on your home? You may want to determine if your external taps are hooked to it or on a separate circuit.
Good Luck and keep us posted.
 
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