FL - Gunite Pool Build

sevendaysoff

Member
Sep 3, 2010
12
Hello all,
new here. Pool isnt complete yet, but since I have only asked questions and havent offered anything, I decided I'd create this thread...

We're in Brevard County FL (cocoa beach/melbourne area). The pool is almost done, thankfully. There have been a few setbacks with the design and progress. Power had to be moved underground, pool deck had to be 10ft' from where the power ran, which the way we ended up doing the deck puts us literally right at 10ft. Digging the 32" trench from the power line, all the way across my lot and back over to the other side wasnt fun either, but saved me a good amount of $ over hiring a dig crew.

My wife and I purchased this house right after we got married 3 years ago, since we've completed remodeled the interior and have now moved to working on the exterior. of course we had to start that venture with a pool :) . We did do the privacy fence & wood deck first. We decided to keep the wood deck and have it screened in with the pool.

here's the pics

first day of work, june 30th. they got a lot done.



2nd day of work, july 13th. They shot the pool


3rd day of work, july 14th. backfill, formed deck & installed tile & coping



4th day of work, july 19th. poured deck


5th day of work, july 30th. applied deck texture


6th & 7th day of work, aug 11th-12th. screen contractors came




8th day of work, sept. 2nd pool crew applied plaster (fl gem french silver)


and that's where we're at. yesterday they plastered and today they're suppose to expose the aggregate and fill with water. i've been told the equipment will be in tomorrow (hayward 1200 pump/filter, aquarite salt cl generator system, hayward colorlogic led lighting system). after that they just have to apply a sealing paint to the deck, clean up and put my fence back together. I'm ready to go swimming!

What I've learned so far.... it only takes about 2 weeks of actual labor-working to build a pool. We were quoted 13 weeks, we're a week over that now and of the 14 weeks there has been 8 weeks where nothing was done (4 in the begining, and the entire month of august). I wont get into that though, these guys do quality work and have the best reputation in town. Rule #1, never trust a contractor with a time frame (no offense guys). I will tell you this, for you guys who build pools on here, I would have gladly paid a $1000 - $2000 expedition fee. I imagine if someone really wanted to they could completely build a pool in about 3 weeks. **** I'd pay the fee to get it done in 8!

once the pool is done im sure i'll be here bothering you guys all the time! thanks!
 

lborne

Well-known member
Jun 29, 2009
462
Vero Beach, FL
Nice pool. I like the sun deck. Surprised they allowed you to build so close to the house. Our pool was finished almost exactly 1 year ago.

I had the same problem with weeks going by when nothing was done. Part of the problem is that so many things are contacted out - like gunite, electric, plaster, etc. So if weather or some other thing delays you just 1 day, its not like the gunite guys can reschedule for the next day because they have someone else to do then. So you go to the end of the que for them.

In my case, it was mainly pool builder incompetence. For example, we made sure he ordered the tile early - which he did. And it sat in the boxes in his office for weeks unopened. He delivered it to the site the day they guys were ready to install it and discovered it was the wrong tile. Then he failed to re-order the tile for over a week.

But it sounds like you have a pretty competent builder. Enjoy.
 
G

Guest

I can usually do the dig, trenching, steel, plumbing, gas and electric and gunite in 2 weeks. A week of cure on the gunite shell and I am ready for tile and coping, so I am ready for decks and then plaster in 4 weeks. 9 times out of ten I am waiting for the customer after gunite to make up their minds on tile/coping still, and then decking, so I sit and wait! I could easily build a pool in 6-8 weeks if I had all the decisions made by the homeowner!

Looking great :goodjob: Almost time to get wet :party: :party: :whoot: :whoot:
 

sevendaysoff

Member
Sep 3, 2010
12
yeah delays are to be expected unfortunately. I can say we were on the ball though. We picked out tile, coping & deck color when we went to do the deposit! I'm still hoping the french silver comes out how we wanted. We wanted something not too dark but not that bright blue you see all the time. I actually wanted lagoon but wifey wasnt having it, lol. We met in the middle with french silver.

I'm hoping we'll be swimming this weekend. How long after fill/equipment can you swim in it? I dont know if they work on saturdays but I imagine they would fill it with water today and leave it stagnant through next tuesday? I was told equipment will be delivered tomorrow.

Luckily with these guys, only 2 processes are contracted out, the gunite and the screen, everything else is in house.
 
G

Guest

I am actually surprised that the equipment is not already set. I always have mine set way before plaster, as I want to get the system up and running as soon as I can after it is filled.

The finish is pretty durable (they will be walking on it today to acid wash/expose), and I would let you swim as soon as it is filled, and chemicals are in. Just be careful as it will be a little "soft" still and could leave marks. Do not put a pool cleaner (especially a wheeled one) in for the first month, as it can/will leave marks also.

Our guys are working Saturdays (especially this Saturday since so many folks want their pools up for the holiday), since work is so slow out here. Heck, I think they'd work any day/time/place at this point :( Not a lot of pools being built currently.

Get it filled and go swim!
 

lbridges

LifeTime Supporter
Nov 12, 2009
323
Indialantic, FL
Looks good! You might want to start thinking about heat - solar or heat pump - especially with a screened enclosure. I know that sounds silly given the temps Brevard has seen this July & August, but....
 

sevendaysoff

Member
Sep 3, 2010
12
I hope they show up to install equipment tomorrow. That would be awesome. Unfortunately my pool guy is crazy-busy. currently doing 25 new pool installs, which is why there is usually such a large gap in getting the work done each phase.
 

DBfan187

In The Industry
Aug 7, 2007
806
near the swamp
Wow 14 weeks is crazy! Builders here have it done in 1 week, yes 7 days, Mon-Sun. One of their motto's is "We dig Monday, you swim Sunday!" and these are gunite/shotcrete pools.
 
G

Guest

DBfan187 said:
Wow 14 weeks is crazy! Builders here have it done in 1 week, yes 7 days, Mon-Sun. One of their motto's is "We dig Monday, you swim Sunday!" and these are gunite/shotcrete pools.
Wow, that's pushing it a little (IMHO)! No cure out on the shell? Seems like that could lead to some "problems" as it tries to suck up the moisture from grout and plaster :shock: Seems like an good opportunity for mistakes to get buried in the gunite (steel, plumbing) since guys are trying to stay ahead of the nozzle!

I've heard the stories (from some of the guys that have been there) of how the Extreme Makeover homes get built in a day. Don't think I'd want one of those homes....

I can build them pretty quick, but I don't think I'd want to push quite that hard!
 

sevendaysoff

Member
Sep 3, 2010
12
good news. they were here last night and acid washed the pool and began to fill it. I came home and was a bit scared to see the pool filling with water with no light or heads on the piping. I called the pool co they said they like everything to fill with water first then add that stuff. they came back this morning, brushed the pool, added and equipment and were good to go. It was pretty funny watching him hang over the side with his head in the water and a mask installing the light.



my only concern now, is they said they wait 5 days to add salt! they say they do every pool like this, and he was aware without me mentioning that 30 days is recommended. Im going to call FL Stucco on tuesday and see what the rep tells me, then call the pb to discuss.

have a great weekend everyone!
 

sevendaysoff

Member
Sep 3, 2010
12
thats what im planning on telling them tuesday, but i need to call the stucco manufacturer first and get the exact reasoning so i can relay this to the PB.

the pool looks great, but there are some white/light smear looking marks all over the bottom of the pool. im hoping these will come up as it cures and i keep brushing. there were darker streaks too, but those have already started to go away with 2 brushings but i want to make sure the pool doesnt need to be acid washed again. i will try to get some pictures that show it when the sun is up a little more.
 

sevendaysoff

Member
Sep 3, 2010
12
woke up this AM to a slightly green pool. tested the water, Cl wasnt on the charts and pH was off the charts. Added a couple cups of Acid and a gallon of Cl and it turned perfect in about 10 minutes. When I talk to the PB tomorrow I'm wondering if I should have him add some stabalizer since I dont want the salt system on for 30 days. It would suck if i had to add a gallon of Cl every other day. It did rain pretty heavy last night though which I'm sure threw things off, along with me religiously brushing every cm of the surface & cleaning the filter right before the rain started.

besides that everything is good. there's some white splotchy areas on the bottom that im going to talk to the PB builder about, but i think it might just be areas still curing? what do i know.. i love the color of the water, it's like jaguar teal! the pic I took with my iphone doesnt do it justice as the water was still a little green, i'll have to get a better one with a better camera now.

hope everyones having a great labor day weekend!
 

lbridges

LifeTime Supporter
Nov 12, 2009
323
Indialantic, FL
Since stabilizer will have to go in anyway, why not use some trichlor tabs until the 30 days are over. That's what my PB did - installed a Rainbow 320 with appropriate pipe/union-fittings, then pulled it 320 out and put in the IC-40 SWG in the same spot. Even after 30 days they still had to add stabilizer to reach the 70ppm level.
 
Sep 6, 2010
13
I live on Merritt Island.

I see you used All In One Pools, I've known several people that have used them and have been very happy with there pools. Steve is a great guy. We have also put in some fences for them in the past.

We would have used them however because my brother owns a pool supply company and I own a fence company in Brevard, we decided to install our pool ourselves as an owner/builder. They will be breaking ground later next week. We are so excited.

I have started a blog showing all the steps at http://www.buildingmydreampool.blogspot.com.

Best of Luck!!!

Best of luck!
 

sevendaysoff

Member
Sep 3, 2010
12
yes all in one builds awesome pools. steve is a nice guy as well, though we havent seen eye to eye on every aspect he seems to have tried his best to keep us satisfied. the pool isnt done, still lots of cosmetic issues to address and then deck needs to be painted/sealed, but i trust that steve will get the job done to my satisfaction. lets just hope it all gets finished soon as tuesday will be 15 weeks since the adventure began and 10 weeks since they started digging.

side note: I would hate to be a PB. seems like customers would love you in the beginning and hate you towards the end, lol.
 
G

Guest

sevendaysoff said:
side note: I would hate to be a PB. seems like customers would love you in the beginning and hate you towards the end, lol.
Best job I've ever had! Put the customer first and do the best you can and you actually make lots of nice new friends with awesome pools to hang out with if you do it right! But, if you don't pay attention, try to cut corners, tell stories, don't do what you said you would do, don't return phone calls, etc. then it could be no fun!

I can't think of a better job than building fun! I could never sit in an office all day; I'd go crazy! Way better to be outside and making happy memories for so many families by building them their pool!
 

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