New Spa - What would you select if you could design your system from scratch?

Al D

Member
Nov 29, 2019
6
Southern California
Location: Southern California
Type: In ground gunite Infinity Edge spa
Size: 9' x 8' 3"
Perimeter: 17' 4"
Surface Area: 74.25 Sq. Ft.
Volume: 1088 Gallons (Not counting surge tank)
Water Weight: 9,074 Lbs.

Initial Design Plans - all selection subject to change
  • Automation System - Hayward
  • Filter - Pentair Cartridge Filter
  • Heater - Raypac
  • Pump - Jandy or Pentair
  • Lights - Jandy
  • Jets - Still looking
  • Etc.
I'm looking for member's insight and knowledge. I am building a new spa and just breaking ground so my option are unlimited.

Some posts I've read recommend staying with one brand of automation for compatibility reasons. The automation system should be able to control the spa, lighting, maintain PH and chemical balance, landscape lighting etc.

Inevitably, water will splash/spill onto my grass, hence I want to install a low chlorine system. I am considering running a mineral spa with metals and an ozone generator.

If you could start from scratch, what would be your ideal system?

Thank you for sharing your knowledge and insight.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
10,829
Northern NJ
Welcome to TFP.


I would look at JetPaks - Paramount Pool and Spas

Not sure which low chlorine system you are thinking of but we don't think any of them provide adequate sanitation. Read...




Automatic systems to maintain pH and chemical balance don't work reliably. None of them are set and forget. You have to be testing the water and watching over them to catch when they fail because they do fail.


Mixing Hayward automation with Jandy or Pentair pump and Jandy LED color changing lights will not work. Pick one vendor to use for it all. I would go with a Pentair IntelliCenter, Pentair VS pumps, and Pentair MicroBrite LED lights.

You have NG for the heater?
 
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kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
41,557
Tallahassee, FL
Instead of going to the costs and effort of building an inground spa I would buy a stand alone spa. They are much more comfortable than a spa made of concrete. They many more jets in just the right places.
 

Al D

Member
Nov 29, 2019
6
Southern California
kimkats, thank you. I agree some of the manufactured fiberglass spa's are ergonomically pleasing and cost effective. However, I have a contemporary home, backyard and the design I'm looking for is a infinity spa. Unfortunatly, they are not manufactured.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
41,557
Tallahassee, FL
I get what you are saying. Lets work with that then! Allen has you well covered with what to do and not do. Keep all of the equipment in the "family" so they can all talk together.

Keeping your spa clean, clear, and healthy will be a learning process that will be made MUCH easier with a good test kit of your own. Yeah the pool store will test the water for "free" but we have found their tests are not as accurate as they need to be. Add to that the high costs of the "fixes" they will try to sell means they will make their money that way. Look in my siggy below to see our recommended chemicals. Most can be found in Target, Walmart, and Lowes. How neat is that??

All the links from Allen will show you the truth about using different ways to keep your spa clean. You can also do searches on TFP (make sure to use the G button for the best search) to find regular people's thoughts on the different systems.

Now lets talk about the construction of the spa its self. Do you have the plans yet? Share them here and we can look them over for you. Are you building it your self? Hiring it out?

Kim:kim:
 

Al D

Member
Nov 29, 2019
6
Southern California
Kim

Thank you, I do not have the spa plans at this time. When speaking with the pool engineer it was determined that I would need a minimum of a 24"x18" copping. 24"x16" are common, however 24"x18" are a little more challenging. Thus, I have changed my design a little. I should have my permits within the next few weeks.

I plan to build most of the spa myself. I am in the process of excavating now, I will sub out the gunite, the some of the electrical and possibly the steel.

The new design will look similar to the attached image.

Best wishes,
Al

OII-414-AQ.jpg
 

Al D

Member
Nov 29, 2019
6
Southern California
I don't think it possible to cover this type of spa, the water flows over the bondbeam, down the side into a trough. If you place a cover over the spa it would impede the water circulation.
 

Snikwah

Bronze Supporter
Jun 11, 2019
171
North Dallas Area
I would suggest doing the benches at varying depths, as this has been something I've enjoyed with mine. Having the variety is nice. Also, do gunite arm rests so you don't have to rest your arms on the coping. And get as many jets as you can.

MIne is not quite as large as yours, roughly 7' x 7', but heating it has not been an issue from ambient temps. Going from water temps of mid 50s to mid 90s takes ~40 minutes. Which is not bad IMO. If I know I'm going to use it, I can just get on my phone and start it up ahead of time. Or you can set a schedule to have it preheat at a certain time to, say 80 degrees. Then when you're ready going from 80 to 98 or whatever will take no time at all. Once it's up to around 80, it's just a few minutes to get up to temp.