New pool liner , stairs damaged during ...

Gary Rees

Member
Nov 9, 2020
7
Ontario
The liner installer found a seized screw at the bottom of the stairs (the clamp that holds the gasket and liner to the stairs) . I watched as he ground the head off of the screw allowing the gasket clamp to be removed.
Then vice grips were attached to the screw stub in an attempt to remove it ( I would have used a soldering gun to apply heat and/or a liquid wrench type product to free the screw) . The installer chose the "Armstrong method"
and we ended up deforming the internal metal strip inside the fiberglass stairs creating a bulge . Needless to say the gasket and clamp installation failed and 1 1/4 " inches a day of water disappeared .
Days later he returned and caulked the 3/8" bulge (underwater repair). This stopped or substantially reduced the leaking.
I do not believe the "repair" is appropriate or lasting. I don't see how the stairs can be repaired so they need replaced. I have been told that the liner should be replaced at the same time?

Any comments will be appreciated. See photo. The damage is hidden by the clip on plastic trimleakystairs.jpg
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
25,659
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Are you asking if the installer should replace the steps and liner?

Who is telling you the liner should be replaced at the same time?

What warranty's has the installer give you about your installation?
 

Gary Rees

Member
Nov 9, 2020
7
Ontario
AJW I am asking for opinions . I have been told that the liner should be replaced and I have been told that it is very difficult to reuse the liner . The stair manufacturer is defunct , new stairs may not match up .
The installer has offered no warranty with respect to the installation. The warranty like many would be worthless as the contractor claims they did the work perfectly. Do you see a way to repair the stairs?
 

cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
6,685
Southern OK
underwater caulking will fail, when is the question... and you will not know when until you start losing an inch of water again...
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
25,659
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
The stair manufacturer is defunct , new stairs may not match up .

That is new information.

The installer has offered no warranty with respect to the installation. The warranty like many would be worthless as the contractor claims they did the work perfectly.

I think all work on existing old structures is done on a best efforts basis unless some specific terms are said otherwise. A technician never knows what will be in something existing until he digs into it. You choose to hire him and he tried his best to deal with what he found and make it work.

Do you see a way to repair the stairs?

I don't know since I can't see anything or put my hands on it and see the situation. Maybe @jimmythegreek has seen this before.

AJW I am asking for opinions .

My opinion is you need to discuss it with the installer and see if he will work with you on some fix. I would be happy if the installer agreed to install a new liner at cost and you buy new stairs and pay for the installation of the new stairs.

Chances are high that the existing liner would not work with new stairs from a different manufacturer. But you never know if you get lucky and you should look into your stair options before you commit to a new liner.

You can see how long the caulk fix lasts. Maybe you will get lucky there and get a few years and maybe a reapplication of caulk or two.
 

Gary Rees

Member
Nov 9, 2020
7
Ontario
Hey AJ thank you for your reply. I had an established pool store to do the work, the installer is an employee or dependent subcontractor to the pool store. As an employee he is not liable for errors or omissions it
is totally on his employer. There is no such concept in this jurisdiction as best efforts. I will not get into what we want and what they want we are close to having a settlement conference.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
24,823
we ended up deforming the internal metal strip inside the fiberglass stairs creating a bulge .
That does not sound correct. I don't think that there is any metal strip. I suspect that you don't really know exactly what is causing the bulge. Probably the screw is poking up and causing the bulge.
 

Gary Rees

Member
Nov 9, 2020
7
Ontario
Thank you James for your reply. I saw the whole event unfold. My x -ray vision was disabled so I could not see through the gel coat . The bulge was not caused by the remains of the screw. Metal strip or not the fiberglass was damaged. 3/8" bulge . Gasket did not work. I will check with the manufacturer(s) and let you know.
 

jimmythegreek

TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
In The Industry
Aug 10, 2017
3,692
Morris Cnty NJ
There is no metal in the stairs. Only where it meets up with the metal wall and bolts together. I cant make out anything from the pic posted. Stairs can be repaired for way less than replacing. The liner should be ok to reuse. Worst case access hole is drilled from front side and repaired from front amd back them a fiberglass repair amd a paint job. Can even have them ecofinished a different color so they aren't white anymore pool will look richer with colored stairs
 

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