Liner out of track A-B-Cs

waste

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
4,160
Coastalish 'down easter'
#1
Hey all of you with beaded liner pools!
The question of ‘reattaching the liner back into the track’ comes up on a regular basis so I figure it might be nice to have one place for the ‘tips and tricks’ of getting a ‘popped out’ liner back in track.
First and foremost (!) make sure that the track is clear of dirt/ debris (ants like to make their colonies in the track) – usually splashing some water into it will clear the dirt, but sometimes you have to clear it with a screwdriver.

A – Try to pull the liner up enough to put it back into the track, on a warm day with direct sun, it’ll usually go back in. * The bead has to slide in perpendicular and at a slight downward angle (ok, that defies the ”perpendicular”, but I hope you know what I mean) to the track.


B- Not enough stretch to the liner, or a cold and cloudy day? My first trick to adding some stretch to a liner is to rapidly rub the area with a cloth to generate a little friction and try to pull it up again. If that’s not enough, or the area is too big to make it practical, hot water from the tap
should be enough to give you the stretch you need – pour it on the entire area both on the poolside and behind the liner. I DO NOT recommend boiling water – it will soften the vinyl too much and you could end up poking a finger through it while pulling up!

C- It is possible to use a hairdryer or heat gun to warm the liner enough to stretch it back in, but *BE CAREFUL!!!!!* not to burn a hole in the liner or warm it too much!!!! Use your other hand to feel the temp of the liner and *DON’T!! put it directly on the liner or too close to it!! DO warm the entire liner from bead to waterline and ~3” past either end of the part that’s out of the track. (note - sometimes you have to lower the water a little (you don’t want to warp the tile pattern)


D-SUPER SECRET TECHNIQUE (I had to be cleared by the Pentagon to be able to give this info!) If you fold the bead over to be ~perpendicular (as above) to the wall just below the track, you can ‘nudge’ the liner back into the track. (Here’s where it gets hard to describe) With the bead folded so that the ‘nose’ of it is perpendicular to the wall, use the flat part of your index fingers (** detail – put your hands out in front of you, palms facing away – thumbs perpendicular to fingers [like you were going to brace yourself on a wall], curl your fingers [but only the fingers – don’t make a fist] so that the middle bone of your fingers creates that flat area) put your thumbs (thumbs are still extended) on the coping , turn your elbows out and reach down so that the ‘flat’ of your index fingers is just under the seam that connects the bead to the liner. Gently ‘kneed’ the bead up the wall – the bead will ‘inch’ it’s way up and into the track (angstrom is probably more accurate than inch). It doesn’t go quickly, but you’ll be able to see the 2 ends of the ‘pop’ going back into the track, and all of a sudden – the liner is back in. (I know that I didn’t explain this very well – if someone figures out what I’m trying to say and can put it more eloquently, please post it and I’ll edit, with credit) A lot of times I can use this ‘trick’ without resorting to heating the liner, but sometimes still have to relax the liner first.


I wanted to make this post ever since I read this http://www.poolforum.com/pf2/showthread.php?t=7114

There are a few things in that post on which I’d like to comment or expound upon:
1. HeatherC fears using a screwdriver (flathead or [-]) to force the bead into the track – I use the screwdriver, sometimes you have to tuck the bead’s lip into the track—her recommendation is to use a popcicle stick (it’s a good idea , less chance of damaging the bead using wood instead of steel), but sometimes you need something a little thinner than the tongue depresser.
2. Liner lock, the barbed bullnosed plastic strips, can be used where you have an area that keeps popping out to secure it. It can also be used when you have a large ‘pop’ to keep what you’ve put back in, in the bead while addressing the rest. Sumo and Cleancloths also had some good alternative things to use.

I’ve tried to make this complete (so I don’t have to go back and edit it), but if I missed something, or was unclear, please respond and I’ll ‘touch it up’.

HAPPY SWIMMING, EVERYONE!!
 

DrC

Well-known member
May 9, 2007
87
Ohio
#2
Thats a very informative post Waste. But when it comes to part D I think a picture is worth a thousand words. If the oppurtuniity comes for you to get some pictures of the hand positions it might even be a better post. However, Thank-you for getting the information out there. I know someone who melted their liner attempting to warm it.

He used a heat gun instead of a hair dryer. You know how us guys get the Tim Taylor thoughts sometimes. If a little heat is good a lot should work better. :oops:
 

waste

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
4,160
Coastalish 'down easter'
#3
What's up, Doc? :lol:

I'd love to post some pics, but my partener is a little 'uptight' and this is one of the busiest times of the year - maybe I can talk him into doing the pics after Mem Day. I've never tried to post "D" before because of the difficulty I'd have with 'putting it into words'. (I did however purchase a $40 digital cam so I could snap some shots of what I talk about -- the resolution is what you'd expect for the price, but not horrible-- when I get a chance, I'll show everyone the hands for D and what I'm talking about when I speak of the pools we build)
 

waste

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
4,160
Coastalish 'down easter'
#5
Sorry, none have come out so far :x

The trouble is that the person doing the tucking is in such a position to prevent the photographer from getting a good shot - I need to find one just off a corner to be able to snap the photos.
 

danbutter

Well-known member
May 3, 2009
105
#6
I just the other day noticed we have one in just such a place...wanna come visit? Hahaha.
I'm having a hard time getting a hold on it since there is very little bead...unless I'm just showing my ignorance and this is another type of liner.
There are a couple pennies stacked up in the corner right next to this so I guess the installer was having a hard time with it too eh?
 

waste

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
4,160
Coastalish 'down easter'
#7
Certainly sounds like they had trouble keeping the liner in that corner when they installed it :(

Of course I'll come over and help, when should I expect the plane tickets? :lol:

The 'folding the bead over' trick works well for this, you're using the bent down bead to allow more force to be put on bringing the liner up.

Just to check, the liner is warm and the pool water is less than 3" from the track?

Good luck with this, in the meantime - until you can get it back in, slam some pennies on the other side of the slip, so it doesn't get any worse. :wink:

I'm thinking I may have to 'stage' a corner pop so I can get the photos for y'all :cool:
 

Tammi

LifeTime Supporter
Jul 8, 2010
32
#8
Well, we just had quite a deal with this subject....we had our 21' pool installed 3 years ago by "professionals"...a few days before we were to open the pool this year, I looked out the window to find my cover sitting inside my pool, all torn up...I ran outside to see my yard flooded...it took a moment to realize what had happened....our liner came off the bead! During the swimming season, I remember there was a tiny section that didn't seem to stay in all that well....well, I had a new guy come to replace the liner....he saw immediately that the receiver was installed UPSIDE DOWN!!!!!!!!!!!!! Because they installed it upside down, the liner never fit snugly and the stabilizer bars would not fit over the receiver, so they were never installed (they must have just driven away with them)......I just paid him $700 for the new liner and install, $125 for him to come back to put the stabilizer bars on, and over $200 tomorrow when I pick up the stabilizer bars.....yeah, I'm serious. So, if your liner is coming off the receiver, make sure it was installed properly! Hope this helps to prevent someone else from this kind of misery!
-Tammi
 

pedsrn

Well-known member
May 29, 2007
68
Alabama
#9
Waste, you are awesome!! Your "secret technique" was great help! With some hot water, about ten pennies, your technique and the tool for changing the blade on a circular saw, we were able to fix three spots in about twenty minutes.

When we built the deck, we built over the top rail (not smart). We cut away two boards (got lucky where we started, the top rail was visible for the most part because we have a door there to access the filter) so we could remove the top rail. HUGE mistake. We thought we were going to have to drain the pool to get the top rail screw holes to line back up on reinstall! So, on next two spots, we did not remove the top rail and was able to get it done.


With this little tool, we were able to do the rest fairly easily without removing the top rails.

Perfect size and angle!!
 

Malagant

In The Industry
Feb 26, 2014
2
Ottawa
#11
Its a really good post. I have been in the pool business for 14 years, and the best method I found to re-installing a bead that came out is hot water (you do not need to take water out of the pool), do 3-4 ft sections at a time, pour the kettled water on the bead, pull the liner just over the track, bend the bead enough to re-insert the bead and insert it. Before you start the procedure, yes make sure the track is clean. Best method is any suction tool (shop vac) and clean it that way. I do not advise using water to clean it as any dirt in the track can go to the walls, making spots sticking out of the liner. A vac is more than sufficient, and if the dirt doesnt come out, use a screwdriver to loosen the dirt, and at the same time, make sure the vac is very close so if any dirt wants to "fly" out of the track, the vac will pick it up. If you do feel the need to use water to perfectly clean after, again make sure the vac is very closeby, but I have never needed to use water to clean it. Once the liner is back in the bead, and this is very important, is make sure there is the same gap between the top of the bead and the track itself. If there is, the liner is locked in. If there is no gap, the liner is not fully locked in. To fix this, rub your thumb hard on the bead. 90% of the time it will lock itself in after doing this. If not use a screwdriver and gently push it in with the tip at the top of the bead that is already inserted in. If that fails, re-check the track as there still might be some dirt especially where the liner actually locks in. Once done, work on the next 4-5ft and repeat. Once it is all in, I advise the liner lock and dont just lock one section. Liner lock the entire pool if the pool does not have liner lock on it. It will look better and you will be sure the liner will not unlock itself anywhere else around the pool. For the extra what hundred bucks or 2 most, you will not need to do this again for the life of the liner and it will not look like a patch job. I am strongly against using hair dryers or heat guns to heat the liners as if there is too much heat in one spot, it will make a hole in the liner. Kettle of boiling water is the safest bet.
 

Malagant

In The Industry
Feb 26, 2014
2
Ottawa
#12
I find the kettle water the fastest way to heat the liner (without the use of a heat gun). Depending on the size of the bead that is out of the track is how many kettles I prep. Once the kettle water is ready, the job is insanely fast.
 

smforte

Well-known member
Sep 12, 2013
668
Montgomery,Al
#13
I have about 5 small places 6" or less. I tired to reinsert today using the hot water and a stiff plastic spatula. Apparently I'm not strong enough so if any if you strong guys are ever in Montg, Al please come fix it for me! :mad:
 

Casey

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 16, 2007
10,515
SW PA
#14
Sorry you could not fix it yourself smforte. Do you have a neighbor with some muscles that wouldn't mind helping you?