New Construction (fiberglass) - Chicago, city proper

avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
Your house is gorgeous, the design really really nice. You didn't ask about saving money but....

1) I can't help but think 3 LED lights in that size pool is overkill. And costly! You'll be signalling all the UFOs for landing...

2) if you want to save a buck- deck jets are something fun for about..,oh...45 minutes. Sometimes they're noisy splashers and bother folks trying to talk. Me? I'd hate them to hit my hair if I weren't planning on it. Folks tend to use them less and less until.... <shrug>

Just somethings to consider.

Keep us posted please....lots of pics!!

Maddie :flower:
Maddie,

Thank you for your comments. We are already discussing with our builder about the lights. My question is if they are dimmable, and if we can go down to two lights. He threw a third light in for free but I agree with you it may be overkill.

With regard to the deck jets I think we felt it might be nice to hear a little water noise when we are on the deck up close to the house. I don’t really think we were planning on using them while we are in the pool.

Thanks for all of the suggestions, keep them coming.

Mark
 
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Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
804
MA
Yes, actually that was part of an email I sent to our builder yesterday. So we are exploring placing a sump.
Great. It is short money to install now to give you piece of mind that you will be able to deal with any water issues if they arise as well as the ability to monitor the ground water level. When you place that much stone around any structure in the ground there is always a possibility of it collecting water from surface or ground. If there are no apparent ground water issues you certainly don't need to place a pump immediately, However I would recommend at least getting a conduit from sump to pad so you can easily wire one up in the future.

Looks like you are right on top of things.. Great work... ?
 
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avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
I’m going to post daily updates/plan per the onsite PB team. I will keep a running tally of questions/issues I have for the PB related to the build. I welcome all questions/comments/concerns. Also, are there any considerations I should have to I prepare for the future that I haven’t yet thought of?

*I may have incorrectly understood the contractor with regard to details/order of operations.


4/27/2020 plan:
*Continue digging out to grade.
*Install light(s) - we had 3 lights in the contract but we think one light will be sufficient. Thinking of placing light in the steps facing away from the house so we don’t get blinded. Awaiting answer from PB re: if lights are dimmable? 4/27/2020 decided to put two lights on one switch, one light on another switch so we can have 1, 2, or 3 lights on depending on our mood. ?
*Gravel base (per above). Will be putting 8” gravel base.
*Awaiting PB response re: sump.
*Once that is done, crew is going to lift (by hand - shell is 500 lbs) onto the gravel base. I am aware of pitfalls associated with this step and will be vigilant to make sure they don’t shift the pool after it has been set.
*Return PVC pipe added - at 45 degree angle.
*Plan to keep all plumbing out of mortar eventually
*Backfill if all above performed in time.

Unresolved issues related to build:
*Automation - we wish to add this outside our contract. Email out to builder on 4/24/2020
*Sump - wish to add. It’s in the plans for the city but not in contract. Email out to builder on 4/24/2020
*Pool fill - per contract is our financial responsibility. Need to ask how this will work.
*Grout color -pool and housepatio will be natural stone - Bluestone - Blue Select thermal
*autocover - need to choose color - using Coverstar - thinking charcoal
*lights location/quantity - solved per above on 4/27/2020.
*How gas will be run from front of house to back. 50 feet included in contract.
*timeline!!
Thanks!

Mark
 
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avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
Thought everyone might like a couple of pics.
PVC attached to drains. Hand digging the remainder of the hole.
Installing light niches for our three lights.
Descent into its new home!6022231E-CDD1-4AF8-AE69-2E160578D792.jpeg5D0B3A53-65C2-424F-9B20-814DE704B30A.jpeg3F711D99-FCCB-49CD-B5C0-36F45CFB65D1.jpegD9F57367-E80B-46E5-9F83-142DC2B712B6.jpeg
 
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Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
804
MA
Once that is done, crew is going to lift (by hand - shell is 500 lbs) onto the gravel base. I am aware of pitfalls associated with this step and will be vigilant to make sure they don’t shift the pool after it has been set
Really not a very big footprint to get level so hopefully that went well. A little side to side sliding to settle in would be acceptable but you certainly would not want to see them lifting a side and packing stone under the edge. Now is the time for you to double check to make sure things are as you expect.
How high above the side walk is the pool coping supposed to be ? I am not sure where your coping sits in relation to the top of the pool but you should have a clear understanding of how it is set to confirm the pool is at the correct elevation. The pool is so close to the sidewalk that the elevation is critical to achieve proper (but not too much) pitch.

Throw a level on the pool edges (4' level would be best).
I saw the string lines but I would do some measuring off the walk and house/ garage to be sure it is sitting where you want.

When discussing the backfill just ask as a question how "how do you get the gravel all the way under the seat"? Just so they know you will be looking for it. There should be a lot of pushing and packing the stone under the seat. This of course should be done with some water already in the pool. That pool is so light that the could possibly lift it by packing stone under the seat. I would recommend getting some water in there before any backfilling is done. Just putting stone beside that pool could shift it out of place or even a worker walking by and bumping it. Hopefully you can be present at the backfill. Once the pool has some water in and stone around it I would ask them to just double check the measurement off the walk edge. If it is not parallel with the walk it will stick out like a sore thumb when the finish work is done.
 

avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
Really not a very big footprint to get level so hopefully that went well. A little side to side sliding to settle in would be acceptable but you certainly would not want to see them lifting a side and packing stone under the edge. Now is the time for you to double check to make sure things are as you expect.
How high above the side walk is the pool coping supposed to be ? I am not sure where your coping sits in relation to the top of the pool but you should have a clear understanding of how it is set to confirm the pool is at the correct elevation. The pool is so close to the sidewalk that the elevation is critical to achieve proper (but not too much) pitch.

Throw a level on the pool edges (4' level would be best).
I saw the string lines but I would do some measuring off the walk and house/ garage to be sure it is sitting where you want.

When discussing the backfill just ask as a question how "how do you get the gravel all the way under the seat"? Just so they know you will be looking for it. There should be a lot of pushing and packing the stone under the seat. This of course should be done with some water already in the pool. That pool is so light that the could possibly lift it by packing stone under the seat. I would recommend getting some water in there before any backfilling is done. Just putting stone beside that pool could shift it out of place or even a worker walking by and bumping it. Hopefully you can be present at the backfill. Once the pool has some water in and stone around it I would ask them to just double check the measurement off the walk edge. If it is not parallel with the walk it will stick out like a sore thumb when the finish work is done.
Rich,

Thank you for your comments.
#1 They did do some of what you’re suggesting - they lifted a side and put a bunch of stone under the pool. They did this with both sides, but they really filled in completely to the middle. The base of the pool is actually only about 6 feet so it didn’t take much to do that. Hopefully it’s satisfactory.
#2 The coping is supposed to be 1 inch above the sidewalk to provide proper drainage.
#3 The pool seems to be perfectly level.
#4 I’ll ask the PB tomorrow how he plans to get gravel all the way under the seat. The pool is currently sitting with about a foot of water in it (prior to backfilling). See attached picture. The water looks perfectly level in the pool so I’m super happy with it so far. He didn’t have a torch to install the lights so he couldn’t fill to the level where the lights are at. This is what they’re going to do tomorrow. I’ll be present at the backfill tomorrow and will ask #1 how he plans to get gravel all the way under the seat and #2 double check measurement off the walk edge after some stone is in it. Right now the measurements are spot-on.

Thanks again for your comments, they are truly appreciated.

Mark

8710E259-2AB2-474C-A337-B8CD6B82D5AB.jpeg
 
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avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
4/28/2020 plan:

*Backfill pool. Per Rich D comments - ask #1 how he plans to get gravel all the way under the seat and #2 double check measurement off the walk edge after some stone is in it.
*Install lights - 3 light niches installed yesterday in steps

Unresolved issues:
*Grout color
*Autocover color - Need to choose Coverstar cover color, awaiting samples - thinking charoal
*Running gas line from house (tap in at utility room in basement)?
*Lighting for backyard/pool area - thinking about doing something like this (not over pool, but along property line from house to garage) - E26 Commercial String Light Sets With Suspended Socket - S14 LED Filament Light Bulbs - Hometown Evolution Inc.
*Timeline - may take 3 weeks to get our natural stone/Blue select thermal
*Backyard speakers - We have Sonos system in our house and two outdoor speakers. Thinking of adding Sonance (sonance.com)

Resolved issues:
*Will be installing 8” sump next to pool (middle of pool)
*Will be installing SaniKing as backup sanitizer - if SWG has problem, too cold, etc.
*Automation - PB adding automation
*Pool being filled with Chicago water (our hose) - in this thread, I am discussing pool chemistry here: Chicago water report
*Pool Lights - installed 3 lights, 2 will be on one switch, the third will be on another switch
 
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Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
804
MA
That all looks great. I should have said to be sure they really pack under the seat and stairs. The stairs look even more challenging.

1" above sounds correct. I assume this is at the highest point of the walk. Does the walk pitch down towards the garage?
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
13,923
Evans, Georgia
When we installed our fiberglass pool the pool guy told me its very important to keep water at the same level as the backfill as it progresses upwards. They are sort of a balance act of wall support against each other, as they go.

Enjoying this thread. I sort of feel sorry for the apartment dwellers behind you who are going to be looking down enviously at your oasis come August.

Maddie :flower:
 

avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
When we installed our fiberglass pool the pool guy told me its very important to keep water at the same level as the backfill as it progresses upwards. They are sort of a balance act of wall support against each other, as they go.

Enjoying this thread. I sort of feel sorry for the apartment dwellers behind you who are going to be looking down enviously at your oasis come August.

Maddie :flower:
Maddie,
Thanks. That was my same thought too - although it is a small amount of water in a very small pool with many angles, all of which the pool builder told me helped add to the structural integrity.
Hopefully it will turn out okay.
I’m having a lot of fun with this build thread. It’s fun to document all the progress and get insight from all the experienced folks.
And yes... those apartment dwellers. I had thought of that. ?
Mark
 

Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
804
MA
Sorry, I misunderstood. No there is no pitch to the yard at all.
Oh, ok. So when you do get a monsoon where does the water end up leaving the yard?
I noticed the gutter downspouts for the house. It looks like they go into pipes. Do you know where those pipes go?
You are going to have significantly more hardscape then before. Is there any drainage plans in place. The reason I ask is if the lot is truly flat and you are relying strictly on the water flowing out on its own, then having the pool only 1" above the walk all of a sudden sounds a bit low. If you get some ice build up in the winter it sounds like you could possibly start to get water in the pool.
 
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avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
Rich,

We haven’t had water problems in our yard (to date). The gutter downspouts for the house drain into the sewer, not the yard.
The PB wants to do a sort of French drain plan between the walkway and the pool patio (leaving about 6 inches).
We are raising the grade of the yard about 2” with the project.
Where the water goes? My layperson answer is I don’t know...
 

avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
So today, the crew (2 guys) spread the gravel around only two sides of the pool, and they told me they didn’t pack it in. Luckily everything looks level and the pool hasn’t moved, but I know from reading this forum that this isn’t the way things are supposed to be done.

I asked the foreman twice to be sure that this wouldn’t cause a problem with the pool moving and he insisted that it wouldn’t.

There are major access issues in our project due to our small urban yard and minimal access around the pool. They can’t truck in a big semi of gravel because only have small alley access.

Tomorrow they’re bringing more loads of gravel to backfill in around the remaining sides. Water is staying where it’s at until more gravel comes in and they start packing it in (with 2x4 and rake).

Anyway, I’m frustrated this isn’t being done by the book, but hope nothing untoward comes of this.

Also, I don’t know how to rotate the pictures! :/F425465C-A083-4887-95E1-7505DF32607C.jpeg465C167B-0C89-4AAE-9D64-20173320E2D5.jpeg71F8D3FF-9990-4163-A0F0-EFBB1A5CB740.jpeg
 

avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
4/29/2020 update

No work today as it is a literal monsoon in Chicago, rain supposed to continue through to tomorrow.
There was no water around the pool and it didn’t look like it has moved, and there is no significant change in the level of water in the pool, but obviously I’m nervous given the fact there is only stone around two sides (west and north sides).

Hoping this doesn’t result in a disaster..
 

avenger_chicago

Gold Supporter
Jun 22, 2019
155
Chicago
Rich,
Unfortunately nothing to report 4/30/2020 or 5/1/2020. Rain continued on 4/30/2020 and on 5/1/2020 the foreman had a family emergency.
Hoping to get the rest of the gravel around the pool on Monday 5/4/2020!
I told them to bring a sump for the water that’s collected around the pool...