Owner build in NJ DIY steel/vinyl liner

jimmythegreek

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Aug 10, 2017
1,171
Morris Cnty NJ
you can get 2500 mix is the lowest strength, and just fine for 99% of pool jobs. I had to pump and #84 mix from this supplier is what pump guy wanted, I had no problems with it as I didnt have a choice it HAD to get done before this rainy week lol.

Poolguy Im gonna do Verm I think. I may have groundwater come up down the road so I think its safer than a masons mix bottom. My neighbors both have pools to each side, one guy is a few feet above me and never had an issue, but guy to left of me is on my grade but has 8' depth I only have 6' but he said twice in 20yrs he had liner float and he had pool installed and said they pulled out tons of material too like me and did alot of stone. Im low inside pool I actually had the mini excavator inside the pool last week and took out the top layer of muck and some extra to be able to put stone in to tighten up the mud. It worked pretty well in overdig, and i have rolls of soil stabilization fabric for under pavers/roads etc. that is a last resort. I plan to put a 10"sump pit next to my deepend w clean stone for a sump pump thats going to be wired and piped all underground w skimmer lid access. I am toying with idea of laying sdr weeping pipe on top of footers and running it to sump pit. I did a mini pit in deepend w filter fabric and clean stone and it lasted 2 days before the filter fabric got clogged w mud and is barely perking into sump bucket now. So I dont know what to do w a drainage system behind walls, if i do clean stone for all backfill I think its gonna clog up and may cause settling of dirt under patio. If I wrap in filter fabric and do clean stone I think the muck will eventually clog. I can do road QP/road base but would have to run plate over it and that wouldnt perk.
 

PoolguyinCT

In The Industry
Jul 21, 2014
3,083
Connecticut
you can get 2500 mix is the lowest strength, and just fine for 99% of pool jobs. I had to pump and #84 mix from this supplier is what pump guy wanted, I had no problems with it as I didnt have a choice it HAD to get done before this rainy week lol.

Poolguy Im gonna do Verm I think. I may have groundwater come up down the road so I think its safer than a masons mix bottom. My neighbors both have pools to each side, one guy is a few feet above me and never had an issue, but guy to left of me is on my grade but has 8' depth I only have 6' but he said twice in 20yrs he had liner float and he had pool installed and said they pulled out tons of material too like me and did alot of stone. Im low inside pool I actually had the mini excavator inside the pool last week and took out the top layer of muck and some extra to be able to put stone in to tighten up the mud. It worked pretty well in overdig, and i have rolls of soil stabilization fabric for under pavers/roads etc. that is a last resort. I plan to put a 10"sump pit next to my deepend w clean stone for a sump pump thats going to be wired and piped all underground w skimmer lid access. I am toying with idea of laying sdr weeping pipe on top of footers and running it to sump pit. I did a mini pit in deepend w filter fabric and clean stone and it lasted 2 days before the filter fabric got clogged w mud and is barely perking into sump bucket now. So I dont know what to do w a drainage system behind walls, if i do clean stone for all backfill I think its gonna clog up and may cause settling of dirt under patio. If I wrap in filter fabric and do clean stone I think the muck will eventually clog. I can do road QP/road base but would have to run plate over it and that wouldnt perk.
I’ve seen your puddles, in my book they are nothing, not big ground water.

Grading is going to be most important for your yard.

- do you know anybody, you can toss a few grand & they can bang out a floor in an afternoon for you? Floor may be one place to apply your sweat equity savings..

When your ready, I’m here.
Ray
 

jimmythegreek

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Aug 10, 2017
1,171
Morris Cnty NJ
I’ve seen your puddles, in my book they are nothing, not big ground water.

Grading is going to be most important for your yard.

- do you know anybody, you can toss a few grand & they can bang out a floor in an afternoon for you? Floor may be one place to apply your sweat equity savings..

When your ready, I’m here.
Ray
thats what Im looking into now poolguy, im thinking if i can get someone to bang the bottom out in a day I can do liner the next day in between rain and be ok for time being. I got some shaping up to do in the meantime, Im just worried that I spend hours w the guys inside getting it ready and it slides on me, I think Im gonna be forced to just do some build up on the steep hopper walls w the verm or some type of mortar base, dont think stone is gonna pack and keep shape
 

mapleridge

New member
Oct 13, 2013
1
When we were building our pool a few years ago, we had many rainstorms. We ended up buying the largest plastic we could and threw it over the pool every time. It saved us from fixing so many cave ins. I highly recommend spending the $100 or so on plastic.

We have sand here but we ran into many natural springs. Our deep end was continually caving in on us from those springs. We dug it down, placed crushed stone in and a sump pump. We were idiots, though, and buried the line to the sump pump-we thought we'd only need it during construction. The next spring, we had a floating liner and that sump pump would have come in handy!!

We did have to reshape the deep end with cement (because of the natural springs, not rain). It took forever and it's not pretty. We had to do a lot of build up before we could do the 2 in base. We're not the kind of people that pay anyone to do anything (ever...) but it might have been worth it if could have been done quicker and better by someone with experience. Having said that, there isn't too much harm in having bumpy slopes. None of our crevices are so bad that the pool vacuum can't get them clean.

We have drainage around the entire pool, wrapped in landscape fabric and buried with clean stone. We now also have a perimeter drain. Lots and lots of drainage...

We now also don't drain the pool quite as much in the fall and we use a screened winter cover. We found that the weight of the water inside the pool will keep the liner from floating. We do open to a swamp in the spring, though. :( The solid cover we started with that first spring allowed for crystal clear water--but we won't take the chance of having a floating liner again.

Lastly, I don't know what you're doing for a pool deck, but GO BIG!! It looks like you have the equipment and skill set to build your own forms so it should be cheaper for you than most. We built our own pool deck-10 feet on one length and 15 ft on the other. We have plenty of space for tables, chairs, etc and have no regrets. We stamped it ourselves as well--you can rent stamps or buy them online.

Good luck!!
 

uxbridgechris

Bronze Supporter
Jan 25, 2018
633
uxbridge, Ontario Canada
Buddy, looking great. I have renovated 7 houses, underpinned basements, built additions and garages and the common detonator is that on every project there was a time of self doubt and regret. My pool build is no exception. Ya, I completely regretted starting my pool. lol. At some time in the not so distant future you will start making memories in that pool with your family and those memories will push out the traumatic ones you have. Then the kids will start fighting over what floaty is theirs. lol.

Push on :)
 

jimmythegreek

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Aug 10, 2017
1,171
Morris Cnty NJ
So I finally got around to the pool again. My dad had a mild stroke 3 weeks ago at age 75 super healthy so it all stopped. Thank God he's all there and is like 90% physically back to normal. I missed alot of work and time w wife and kids being there for him I've got great employees and family....

So thurs i grabbed the mini ex and spent all day regrading above and below pool and around the patio area it all caved and washed out w all the rains we've had. I couldn't keep water out of deep end I had to make a 2ft deep sump pit inside pool weeks ago. I grabbed a couple sticks of 10"pvc and made 3 9ft sump tubes drilling hundreds of holes in each. I dug 10ft deep about 3ft round and lined w filter fabric and filled w clean 3/4 stone. They work like a charm I've got sump pumps in each one on autopilot. I spent Saturday installing all return fittings and skimmer and dug out an equip pad next to house then backfilled and compacted my electrical trenches form weeks ago and graded next to house.
Sunday I had a Greek retired pool guy come help me w the vermiculite floor. Weve had 5 days no rain and floor was touched up saturday late in day to be ready. This guy laughed when he saw the mixer said were not using that. I said huh? He tells me he's installed 100s of pools he's gonna teach me something....
So I throw in 10 bags of premix verm in shallow end and he rips em open and makes a pile. I sit and flat shovel into piles while he sprays the piles w hose on mist setting. 64yo guy worked like an animal. I wouldn't have believed it but he got the consistency perfect like this and I loaded 5gallon pails and he trowled it faaaaaaast. On the back wall and side wall I lost like 8 to 10 inches of soil from rain. He had me grab 20 bags of concrete ahead of time 40pounders and we mixed same way on my deep end slab and flicked onto hopper walls and it stuck like butter. 18 bags later the hopper is perfect and we get 20ish prefix bags about half pool done and clouds roll in and steady rain. I had a huge tarp on hand we tarp the whole pool and I stick a storage tote in deep end w a slit in tarp to fall into it and throw a sump pump in it to keep it dry. We wrap up and he came back 2day and we finished in 3 hrs another 30 bags by hand mind you. 2moro touchups w Portland cement and liner goes in just gonna add water. I also poured 30 bags of Crete after he left and finished my equip slab. Lots of progress in past few days I feel much better about everything including this pool. This old timer does the opposite of everything I've read or seen but I'm in construction and nobody is telling me what or how to do my work I see he knows alot about pools and I needed help w the floor and it's doooooooone he made it look easy and that's what a pro does makes it looooooook easy lol
 

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kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
40,757
Tallahassee, FL
Very glad you were able to be there for your Dad and he is on the mend.

LOL on "we are going to do it like this"......................THIS is what experience will do for you. Nice job on listening to him and letting him do his thing his way!

Kim:kim:
 

jimmythegreek

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Aug 10, 2017
1,171
Morris Cnty NJ
Huge hurdle overcome 2day. After giving this pool too many hours the liner is in and it's filling as I type I'm up to the steps gonna shut down water soon I have no plumbing in yet gotta keep water kinda low. Big surprise of the day was opening the liner box and seeing the wrong color liner and paying several hundred dollars upcharge from poolwarehouse to have no border. Liner has a border of course why would things be right on this pool. I'm pretty mad and I have a feeling things won't go well on my call to them 2moro. I had to put liner in I have rain coming 2moro way too much work to get to this point. I either want a refund of the liner cost or the right one free I'm willing to swap liners it was not hard to do at all. Here's some pics this is greystone seaglass from hydra pools and there's no grey in it anywhere juat deep blue and blackish specs. I could live w it if it didn't have the border pattern.
 

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kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
40,757
Tallahassee, FL
What?????????? Oh me oh my :( Well................at least it fits..........they got the size right.

Oh Jimmy, I am so sorry this happened....put a smile on your face when you call. It can be heard through your voice. Use facts with no emotion when you talk to them....oh and ask to speak to a supervisor from the get go.....no reason to go through the story more than once. Let us know how it goes.
 

PoolguyinCT

In The Industry
Jul 21, 2014
3,083
Connecticut
Huge hurdle overcome 2day. After giving this pool too many hours the liner is in and it's filling as I type I'm up to the steps gonna shut down water soon I have no plumbing in yet gotta keep water kinda low. Big surprise of the day was opening the liner box and seeing the wrong color liner and paying several hundred dollars upcharge from poolwarehouse to have no border. Liner has a border of course why would things be right on this pool. I'm pretty mad and I have a feeling things won't go well on my call to them 2moro. I had to put liner in I have rain coming 2moro way too much work to get to this point. I either want a refund of the liner cost or the right one free I'm willing to swap liners it was not hard to do at all. Here's some pics this is greystone seaglass from hydra pools and there's no grey in it anywhere juat deep blue and blackish specs. I could live w it if it didn't have the border pattern.
Your better off with the tile border .. above & below water fade at different rates and looks terrible without the borders after a couple years.
 

jimmythegreek

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Aug 10, 2017
1,171
Morris Cnty NJ
So after a few weeks of little work I got time to give it some love. I spent a day last week laying 4" schd40 drain pipe around pool wrapped in 3/4 clean stone wrapped in septic fabric. Took forever cause I'm ocd and used plywood to keep the sides vertical against backfill. I am cut into a slope so it drains into 2 of my 3 well points that will be pumped out by automatic sump pumps trenched and powered underground. Came out rly nice. The nice folks at bobcat of n.jersey let me demo a new mini excavator for the weekend and I put my plumbers hat on and got to work trenching for the plumbing. Since last post I poured my equip pad and set the equipment and fished my wiring in my conduits. I pulled 13hr days saturday and Sunday and got 2 hrs in Monday early b4 dropping machine back off at dealer. Thank God I got 20ft sticks of pvc from supply house made things better. I forgot to run waterfall line that's what I finished Monday morn. Pool had about 5k gallons in it for 3 weeks to hold down liner and stretch it and was green. I ran 2 hoses from house into deep end sat morn and pulled water w pump from shallow end for a few hours and got it much lighter green by sat afternoon. As soon as i had water near returns I primed the ecostar and fired her up circulating lots of liquid chlorine. I finished up plumbing Sunday and slammed the pool all weekend by guessing at my #s based on volume and I could see shallow bottom by Monday afternoon. I tested my water yesterday and was spot on w slam #s and today my pool is clear to deep bottom. Mind u i have the pump at 75% power 24/7 since saturday afternoon and i have a big filter. Less than 10pds pressure operating I ran dual 2" home runs for drains and skimmer and 4 home runs at 1.5" for 4 returns all on their own jandy neverlubes. Ran a 2" line on own valve for 3ft sheer decent too. Came out rly nice and runs excellent couldn't do better if i paid somebody lol. Kids and wife took a dip yeaterday while I scrubbed pool time to order a robot.
 

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Thasista

Gold Supporter
Jul 1, 2018
265
Western KY
I absolutely love all the room you gave yourself in that equipment pad. I’m going to request that in my build. Room to maneuver what a concept!