New pool Build in Lutz (Tampa), FL

Werdnaycart

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2018
64
Lutz, Florida
Hello all! I’ve been lurking the forums for a few weeks now, and reached out to a few people regarding building a new pool. I would like opinions on doing an owner build vs hiring a pool builder. Has anyone in the Tampa area done an owner build that could give me some pointers? We are still very much in the beginning stages of our pool build. We know we want a pool with attached spa, large spill over, sun shelf, and an overall rectangular design (not free form). Any help would be greatly appreciated!
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
47,000
Tallahassee, FL
Another thing you can do is ask anyone you know who has a pool who did their work. They might remember the different subs. Once you find a good sub then ask them who THEY would use for this and that job. Once you start finding the different people in each trade you will find some names that keep popping up. Some for use and some for NOT use. Make sure to keep good notes so you remember down the road.

kim:kim:
 

Werdnaycart

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2018
64
Lutz, Florida
So I've had a few meetings with pool builders. One thing that keeps coming up is the depth of the pool. Everyone is recommending 3-5'. This seems very shallow to me. I was thinking 3.5-7' or even 4'-7'. Would that be unusual? I don't think I'd be able to swim in less than 3.5-4' of water.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
47,000
Tallahassee, FL
YOU are correct! Anything less than 3.5 is almost un-swimable as you will scrape your knuckles on the bottom. I like 4'-7' as that lessens the slope and is very swimable!

Kim:kim:
 

Werdnaycart

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2018
64
Lutz, Florida
So in the last few months we've been busy researching, reading many posts on this forum, and communicating with others that are building similar backyard projects. We've finally decided that we are not going to do an owner build, but will be hiring a pool builder, and a GC for our roof. We've currently got a 23'x54' concrete pad in our back yard. We are going to build a truss roof to cover the entire pad, and then 5' our from the current pad start the pool. The swimmable area of the pool will be 16x32 not including the spa and sunshelf 23'x32' including them. We'll have an 8x6 spa, and a large sun shelf. We are currently debating between ivory Travertine and polsihed Ivory Shellock. We like the look of the travertine, but are concerned with its durability and maintenance. Our pool builder claims that the travertine they use is of a better quality and that there's no need to be concerned with having it with a salt water pool. Our pool builder uses all pentair products. We'll have a pentair intellicenter for automation / control. (I know very little about these, any help would be appreciated.) We will have 2 pumps. The main pump will be the Pentair 3HP variable speed pump. We'll also have a pump for the water features 2 or 4 deck jets (yet to 100% decide) and 3 bublers on the sunshelf. We'll be using the a pentair salt cell (I don't know which off the top of my head, but was assured it'd be the largest they make) We'll have a 400k BTU propane pentair propane heater and a pentair DE filter I believe 75 sq ft. (is this large enough?) For the interior we're planning on using Alpine Blue pebblesheen. Any items I should be asking for from the pool builder? I've been assured all plumbing will be at least 2" (they claim to have an engineer or a specialist or something who will design the plumbing system. I don't have those details yet, but will have to sign off on them) I've instructed not to use ball valves (only rebuildable valves), there will be unions at all the equipment, and they'll be making a bypass for the heater. Any other things I'm not thinking of? I've attached photos of our drawing for the truss roof, a shot of the yard currently, a first draft of the design (the spa will no longer be rasied) and a 2D which is our current design. Any input would be GREATLY appreciated! Thanks everyone!
 

Attachments

Werdnaycart

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2018
64
Lutz, Florida
I forgot to add, the travertine we're planing on running right up to the edge of the pool, and not using anything else for coping. When doing this is there a risk that we could get some of the joint sand washing into the pool?
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
47,000
Tallahassee, FL
risk that we could get some of the joint sand washing into the pool
There is the risk so what you do is "seal" the last 2" or so of each "crack" at the pool edge to keep it from happening. Your installers should know how to do it but make sure to check with them and share what they way they will use and ask to see their work after they do the first one so you are happy with the results.

Kim:kim:
 

Werdnaycart

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2018
64
Lutz, Florida
Ok great thanks Kim! So I finally have tracked down all the equipment that will be used for the pool. We'll have 2 pumps. The main pump will be a Pentair Intelliflo SKU 011056 its a 3HP variable speed/flow pump, a Water Feature pump Pentair SuperFLow 2 HP SKU 340040 (running 3 bublers and 2 deck jets - we may add 2 more for a total of 4.) , an 80SF Quad DE Filter SKU 188593, a Pentair Intellicenter SKU 521906 upgraded to an IC60 salt cell, and a MasterTemp 400K BTU LP heater. Does anyone think there's anything here we should change? Thanks for all the help so far!
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
19,379
Bedford, TX
W,

After looking at your list, it is clear that you have been paying attention to what we basically recommend. I see no red flags about the equipment you have chosen..

I personally would go with a large cartridge filter rather than a DE filter, but the DE will work fine.

I like how you have tucked the stairs away at the end of the pool so they do not get in the way of the swim lane..

Have you ever been in a gunite spa?

I am not a fan of gunite spas, but if I were to have one, it would be raised.. What made you change your mind on the spa being raised?

Thanks for posting the pics,

Jim R.
 

Werdnaycart

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2018
64
Lutz, Florida
Yes, we’ve had a pool with a gunite spa, and one without. We greatly missed our spa. Are there reasons beyond aesthetics to have a raised one? We liked the idea of it blending into the pool. The last one we had had like a stair case waterfall on it. It was a constant battle with the pH going through the roof with all the water action of the waterfall. Not running the water fall left the water in the spa largely ignored by the SWG and pump filter etc, and left us with a green spa. We were never able to find a sweet spot where enough sanitized/filtered water was sent to the spa to prevent it from turning green vs not so much to cause a lot of aeration and an increase in pH.

Thanks again for all the help. This will be my third pool (first one we’ve built) but ever since I found this website my water has always looked amazing!
 

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
19,379
Bedford, TX
W,

I was only thinking that the main attraction to having a spa is the visual effect of the waterfall (spillover).. But you make some excellent points and have changed my mind.. Sounds like you have it all thought out. Your plan sounds great to me..

Good luck with your pool build,

Jim R.
 

Werdnaycart

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2018
64
Lutz, Florida
A question came up that I need some help with. After reviewing our design i noticed that we don't have a step into our spa. Should we have one? I'd appreciate any feedback anyone has on the attached design.


Thanks!
 

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Randrx2

Bronze Supporter
Dec 13, 2018
374
Orlando, FL
The 4 returns are good, but check the locations. I think there should be one on each wall in the corners to get circulation. Something like this photo. Have the builder check the circulation.
 

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kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
47,000
Tallahassee, FL
I would ask for a small step in one of the corners to make it easier to get into and out of. It can also serve as a higher seat for anyone that does not want to be all the way in the spa or for a small person or child!

Kim:kim: