Loop loc Mesh vs Solid

norbie

Active member
Aug 21, 2007
39
Massachusetts
I am currently shopping around for a loop loc safety cover for my 16x32 w/4x8 steps.....I plan on installing it myself but I have a couple of questions before I go any further....1st of all when I give the measurements how do I determine weather my steps are on the left or right? If I'm on my diving board facing the low end of my pool the steps are on the right. 2nd I live in Massachusetts and we do get quite a bit of snow in the winter, I was just wondering if I could still get away with the mesh cover as opposed to the solid cover (my concern is the weight of the snow). Any information would be greatly appreciated, Thank you in advance :cheers:
 

bk406

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2009
2,690
Central Massachusetts
Cant help with the measurements, i had mine done. However, i'm in central Massachusetts and have a Loop-loc mesh. Works great. Just lower the water level down to just below the skimmer. Keep the water between 12-18 inches below the top of the pool. When snow piles up, the cover will flex enough to sit right on top of the water. The water actually holds the cover up. You dont want the springs so tight the cover is like a drum. When hte snow melts, the water goes right in the pool so you dont have to pump water off the cover. You want a little give to it. Close it up around Columbus day and open by Patriots day and you will have no green water issues.
 

danbutter

Well-known member
May 3, 2009
105
I got the solid because I saw what a mess my neighbors pool was with the mesh, but we don't get much for snow here. If it snows here it melts same day...mesh may be better for you if you get a bunch.
When I did the measurement it was very time consuming. The instructions said something like two points along the long side of the pool...say A and B.
Then measure from A to the pool on spot 1 then move two feet and A to spot 2 and so on every two feet until you have it all the way around the pool. Then repeat with point B to spot 1....yada yada. So it is a long time with a long tape and some chalk to mark your points and spots. Better get it all done before a rain too or you have to start over.
Now I see they can estimate from the size of your pool, but not sure how they would add in your steps.
We used in the swim and believe it or not they were pretty helpful over the phone answering questions about all this.
 

bk406

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2009
2,690
Central Massachusetts
Just a quick point on the mesh. I think the older mesh covers had more issues with junk getting into the pool. The new mesh material used (at least what Loop-Loc uses) is so tight that it's near impossible to get more than a little bit of fine dirt into the pool. In fact, the mesh is so tight that it takes several hours just to drain water through after a modest rain. My 1st year with the mesh cover, the water was as clean when I opened as it was using a solid tarp.
 

norbie

Active member
Aug 21, 2007
39
Massachusetts
I remember reading somewhere that you have to have "professional installation" in or to take advantage of the loop loc warranty...I know when you go to register the loop loc cover on line it asks you who installed the cover. If I install the cover does this void the warranty?
 

JohnT

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Apr 4, 2007
9,471
SW Indiana
norbie said:
I remember reading somewhere that you have to have "professional installation" in or to take advantage of the loop loc warranty...I know when you go to register the loop loc cover on line it asks you who installed the cover. If I install the cover does this void the warranty?
From LL's site: "only when installation has been correctly made by qualified persons." I'm not sure how you'd interpret that. I believe I'm qualified, but LL may not.
 

WestSidePool

Well-known member
Jun 14, 2009
424
Cincinnati, OH
Most sites I researched when i bought mine told me how to determine the side the steps are on, and how to get a proper measurement.

I bought the Loop-Loc II mesh cover, and self installed. I have to agree that it takes a while for the water to drain from it, but it doesn't pool up like a solid would, If i lift up on a corner and look under it's fairly dark (eliminating the suns rays)

I have a submersible pump to stick in there and drain when I feel the water level is getting too high.
As for clarity I am unable to answer that this year. I opened to a green monster at the begining of the season, but that's do to my chemicals not being in balance and having algae issues. This year with the help of TFP i've had a crystal clear pool all season, so hopefully when I close/reopen it's nice and clear.

Best thing is, when the season starts getting warmer I just don't drain the pool, when I take the cover off for opening I don't need to add any water :whoot:
 

norbie

Active member
Aug 21, 2007
39
Massachusetts
My pool has at least 4 feet of concrete all the way around it until it gets to my wooden deck.... I keep trying to convince the wife that the cover will pay for itself... Im sick of buying a new cover every other year, spending a couple hundred dollars for the cover and new water bags, than spending a weekend to either open or close it. Loop-loc is the brand that seems to stand out to me due to the quality of the cover but I know how companys can be when it comes to the warranty. I reviewed the installation instructions and it does not seem that difficult (I do have a hammer drill and concrete drill bits). Im just trying to get away with doing this by spending as little money as possible. Oh ya I did find out about the steps.....its when you stand at the low end looking towards the deep end, thats what side the steps are considered on.
 

jhirsch1

LifeTime Supporter
Oct 28, 2007
71
I am also looking to purchase a winter safety cover on a custom shaped pool. I am convinced the cover will never pay for itself over time since the prices I am getting for it is about $1900-2100 just for the cover...I will install myself. I am very interested to get some feedback on the Merlin SmartMesh cover which claims to block 100% of the sun instead of the 98-99% from loop-loc or GLI ProMesh. I want to purchase quickly because I'm sure the leadtime is going to be long at this time of year.

Any help you can provide is appreciated.
 

norbie

Active member
Aug 21, 2007
39
Massachusetts
Got this reply directly from Loop-Loc....

I plan on purchasing a loop-loc mesh safety cover online in the very near future (within a couple of days) however I did notice in the warranty section on your web site that it states "only when installation has been correctly made by qualified persons". My question before I purchase the cover is who is considered a "qualified person? I don't want anything to cause the warranty to be voided.

"Thank you for your inquiry. Qualified person is only some who is able to do the installation correctly if the cover is installed by a dealer or consumer the warranty is valid providing it correct ."

Has anyone else installed the cover by themselves......just a little concerned about the cement cracking when I drill the holes....
 

PoolGuyNJ

TFP Expert
May 20, 2007
3,192
South Central NJ
1) Stay at least 2-1/2" from any edge or expansions joints.
2) Drilling in concrete requires a 3/4" hole.
3) Masonry collars are available. These will hide most chipped edges and protect a deck surface from the installation/removal tool that comes with the cover.
4) I typically drill about 1" in from the end of the strap with mesh covers and 2" with solids.

Scott
 

norbie

Active member
Aug 21, 2007
39
Massachusetts
Your the man Scott....you don't know how much of a burden you just took off my shoulders...ordering it today, getting the loop-loc for $819.
 

bk406

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2009
2,690
Central Massachusetts
I'd also recommend usig a rotary hammer rather than a hammer drill. There is a difference. Although both will work, a rotary hammer wont be as apt to chip the concrete, and it will be able to drill the 3/4" holes much easier and smoother. For installing a safety cover, go rent one. It's worth the small cost.
 

LinerMfgr

In The Industry
Jun 16, 2010
25
Loop Loc makes a quality safety cover, but there are others out there that match or exceed their quality. Here is a quick overview of the various "quality" manufacturers of safety covers. This is just my opinion, so please don't sue me.

Pegasus/Coverlon has an "okay" cover. All the dealers seem to be in love with their springs. The springs are heavier than most others. Also, they do full webbing top and bottom. Most covers are only fully webbed on the top and partially webbed on the bottom. I'm not entirely convinced this is the best way to do things. One school of logic is if you bend the webbing the top and bottom will bend at different rates and cause the thread to loosen up.... who knows.

Merlin, home of the 100% shade mesh SmartMesh safety cover. They definitely drove the industry for a while with the development of the SmartMesh cover. All the other manufacturers tried to copy them causing all sorts of legal issues in the industry. They use high quality components, and have a pretty good cover all around.

And lets not forget the inventors of the safety cover, Meyco. They are supposed to have the best burst strength on their webbing. They use all U.S. made components. If you have a raised wall, this is the cover for you. Their raised wall system is awesome. They also use DuPont treated thread that is supposed to hold up to UV better.

As stated before--Loop Loc makes a good cover, but you end up paying extra for the brand. You can do yourself a favor and save a couple hundred dollars by going with one of the others listed above.

Good Luck and Happy Pool Closing to All
 

danbutter

Well-known member
May 3, 2009
105
bk406 said:
I'd also recommend usig a rotary hammer rather than a hammer drill. There is a difference. Although both will work, a rotary hammer wont be as apt to chip the concrete, and it will be able to drill the 3/4" holes much easier and smoother. For installing a safety cover, go rent one. It's worth the small cost.
I'll 2nd that!!
I used a hammer drill and it took me three weeks because it was killing me...the most I could do each day was five. That is mostly due to the composition of my decking, but still. Get the rotary!
 

PoolGuyNJ

TFP Expert
May 20, 2007
3,192
South Central NJ
Having [played with as many covers as I have over the years, I can say a few things too.

Coverlon, Heavy duty springs with a horrible attachment system. Royal PITA to adjust. Solid covers use vinyl which weighs! Improperly adjusted solids may form two or more ponds. This causes the material to stretch if the cover pump isn't moved or requires adjusting the spring tension so water drains toward and drain panels. Only mentioned here because they were referenced by LinerMgf. I put them in the same category as rest of the non mentioned, 2nd tier manufacturers.

Merlin: Smart Mesh weighs as much as most solid covers. The staff doesn't understand what no center strap means or reduced overlap. They want more overlap on their free forms than most. They force the use of a dive stand kit which costs extra and requires an additional hole to be drilled. Moving the web/strap over 12" to one side so it doesn't interfere with the dive stand or require a dive stand kit isn't that hard. The raised wall treatments are poor and can let someone's foot slide between the cover and cable. Last time I did a rock wall with them(2 years ago), they required 1/2" holes that used a spread leg design that lets go. Others use 3/8" designs that are stronger, hold tighter, and last longer. Solid covers are vinyl so the Coverlon and Meyco peeps have company.

Meyco; I don't like the people there. They remind me of the used car lot. Decent quality cover. Decent wall treatments and hardware. There is a lot history between Meyco and Loop Loc. A lot. I hate their Pop Up anchors.

One glaring miss is Anchor. They are famous for their use of the black rubber straps. Every tech I know hates installing them, storing them, dealing with them. They are the only manufacturer I know that uses a 1/4" hex to raise and lower the anchors. Everyone else uses a 5/16" hex head. This allows a tech or homeowner to use a standard screwdriver bit turned backwards (point end in the chuck) in a cordless drill. More 1/2" holes in the rocks or raised bond beams. Holes are drilled every 18". They don't even ship a tamper to set the anchors. They do more solids than mesh. The solids rest on the water. Any holes and pool water comes through and gets pumped off. I have seen unchecked covers fall in to an emptied pool because of this.

Loop Loc: Mesh II and Meyco's mesh are comparable. Wall treatment forces the foot or other falling object toward the cover so it can't get stuck in the cable. The cable and turnbuckle are the strongest I've seen. Solid cover is polypropylene and weighs about 1/4 to 1/3 less than anyone else's solid offering. The zipper treatment for going around objects above the water line works! The built in flaps for raised spas to block debris works better than the wedge bolsters others use to fill the gap. They use stronger thread for their sewing and they aren't stingy with it either. Every cover comes with a long cover attachment/removal tool and a long Allen key that frees dirty anchors when the drill won't. The support and build team listens! They stand behind the product they manufacture.

Any hammer drill that doesn't at least accept at least an SDS bit will be under powered. The Bosch Bulldog is the minimum when drilling a cover's 3/4" or 1" holes. When space is confined, a Hilti TE6S or similar will do it but I wouldn't use it for an entire cover.

Others may offer different opinions. Thats OK. My reputation and my customer's kids safety depends on it.

Scott
 

jhirsch1

LifeTime Supporter
Oct 28, 2007
71
The feedback is great....but unfortunately I didn't get to see the comments until after I ordered my a GLI ProMesh cover. I'm sure it will be fine. To be honest, I just glad to be past that step in the process. According to the sales guy at poolcenter the company has is very quick and will ship the cover within 72 hours of recieving the order. So if all goes well I may be able to install this weekend.

I quick question on the hammer drill vs rotory drill. I have a Hilti brand large hammer drill used by an electrician...so I think it is pretty good. Is the recommendation that I still rent a rotory drill instead? Or will a good drill bit used along with a 2*4 with a guide hole in it be ok?
 

PoolGuyNJ

TFP Expert
May 20, 2007
3,192
South Central NJ
Which Hilti?

Standard 1/2" chuck drills will not do it. It must be a drill that accepts either an SDS, SDS Max, or Spline bit. These drills hit harder and the bits are designed to take the hits.

Scott
 
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