PB experience so far... Night and Day

mrramsey

Well-known member
Jul 19, 2014
169
Hudson Ohio
So we met two pool builders over the weekend. They were completely different experiences. The first one (our preferred choice) was very professional. He started by asking us what we wanted in a pool and back yard. How would we use it etc, a very holistic approach. We discussed drainage and finish grade that I had concerns about. I had sketches and sizes of things I was thinking about. He spent nearly an hour and a half with us and took all of our information to design us aback yard space and put numbers to it. He also discussed his construction methods. They do Gunite, Steel wall Vinyl, and Fiberglass pools. In our case we are going vinyl liner to which he said that they only build their vinyl pools with gunite floors. They also employ all of their labor and own all of their excavation equipment, no subcontractors.

The second guy we were not at all impressed with. He essentially took a look at the sketches I had and started jotting down the prices of each one like I was ordering a sandwich. No questions were asked really of what we wanted. It got really interesting when he started breaking down the "allowances" for concrete, electrical, excavation and builders. He indicted that we would pay his subs directly. I didn't indicate to this fellow that I have 30 years in construction. I was seeing problems with this scenario all over the place. He set off red flags with me by mentioning using flexible pvc and misinformation on a SWG.
 

mrramsey

Well-known member
Jul 19, 2014
169
Hudson Ohio
Oh yeah and one more thing on the second guy... He had no interest in designing anything and also told me that I would be the one picking up permits. What? Really, why would I hire you to run crews? This is the classic "contractor" that does nothing.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
39,926
Tallahassee, FL
WOW! If ever there is a lesson in what NOT to do the 2nd guy is it!!! Just think if someone only talked to him and did not know any better! :sad:
 
  • Like
Reactions: mrramsey

Arizonarob

Gold Supporter
Silver Supporter
TFP Guide
Mar 25, 2018
2,548
Chandler Arizona
The problem with a lot of these bad contractors is, when they have work flowing, they act like they’re doing you a favor by working for you.
They’ve forgotten that only a few short years ago when the economy tanked, that only the best ones survived.
 

mrramsey

Well-known member
Jul 19, 2014
169
Hudson Ohio
I like the good guy but he really seems to want to steer me towards a 16x32 pool but en though that seems to be a common size I really don' want one that big. Even the no good guy was trying to do that as well stating that you really don't save much. but that really depends on what lens you are looking at it through. I want smaller like 10x20 or 12x24 max, less to heat, cheaper liner replacement costs, cheaper covers etc... I am anxious to see what they come up with. They said they would have something to me this week.
 

jimmythegreek

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Aug 10, 2017
1,041
Morris Cnty NJ
I hate to say this but ur not saving much going smaller. The cost is just doing it. Going up on size is a few % of the budget. I'm a contractor and I saw it like u. I built my own pool because i could and didnt want to spend a fortune but the cost of covers liners etc is tiny from 12x24 to 16x32. Heating water is depth more than size. I kept mine shallow w a smaller 6 ft deep area. Heats fast and solar cover keeps it in. Solar on roof is next for me it's free and an easy install. Nobody says I wish I had a smaller pool. Many say I wish I had bigger. I have 14x30 it's great I was maxed on impervious coverage I needed a variance was a huge pain to get mine in but I wish I was wider length is fine. I agree on first guys deal but around here many customers pick up their own permits u pay them dollar for dollar anyways in end.
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
32,176
Sebring, Florida
I cannot recall a post wherein someone lamented, "Gee, my pool is too big.....wish it was smaller"
 

kimdurg

Well-known member
May 26, 2014
78
North Canton, Ohio
I'm in the same area as you, and I have a 16x32 with an ~8 1/2 foot deep end. Before our first swim for the season (usually around mother's day) we turn on the heater. I keep the solar cover on when the pool is not in use (I purchase the cheapest cover, I bought a 16 mil and it lasted only 2 seasons just like the 8 mil). The heater usually doesn't have to be turned on again until September. On average, I spend $30 additional, per season, on gas.
 

ia_soxfan

In The Industry
Mar 7, 2016
24
Iowa
Will echo what was said previously - the cost for going bigger is incremental. Does not take us much longer to dig and set a 16x32 vs 12x24.
 

mrramsey

Well-known member
Jul 19, 2014
169
Hudson Ohio
For the record and, I am sure that there are others out there, I wish I had a smaller pool. Going smaller was never about the cost of installing it. The cost of consumables may very well be negligible. My current 24' AGP hits a high temp of 77 degrees after a solid week of 90 plus temps. Solar cover was a waste for the most part. It didn't raise the temp of the pool and actually caused me more grief with algae issues. Ran the last 2 seasons without a cover with zero water balance issues.

I don't need or want a larger pool in any way. Of course the costs are incremental to go bigger. I don't want bigger.
 
  • Like
Reactions: fp22

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
3,360
Damascus, MD
1st guy sounds like A&S. We had bids from them they were very professional but they do not deal at all. They are high and the price was the price no negotiating at all. I suggest you get a few more bids.
 

jimmythegreek

Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Aug 10, 2017
1,041
Morris Cnty NJ
its different with an above ground pool. the air around the pool cools off at night and the temps are usually lower on average. an inground uses the earth for insulation, thats why solar covers work so well. if you have your chemistry right the cover wont interfere with it at all, you may have to make adjustments to what you are adding.
 

Nectarologist

Well-known member
Apr 3, 2015
518
New York
This is a good post so others looking know what to expect from bidding companies.

I think you'll be happy going from an agp to the in-ground. Water cools you off either way but it is a nice addition to the yard aesthetically. I too don't use a solar cover for my in-ground. I did with the agp and it was a pain. So once the in-ground went in, I figured I 'd see how much the gas bill was after the first year and then decide. The cost was much less than I anticipated so I never got one.

I understand you want a smaller pool but just make sure you know how it compares to your 24' agp. A 12 x 24 pool is significantly smaller than a 24' round pool.. A 16 x 32 is slightly larger. I had a 28' round and thought my 16 x 32 was going to be bigger until I did the math (it's over 100 sq ft smaller). The 24' round is 452 square feet. 12 x 24 is only 288 and a 16 x 32 is 512. Smaller may work fine for your use and yard but I just wanted mention it (I'm not trying to push you on it, just something to be aware of). A good rule of thumb is 20 sq ft per person in shallow water (15 in water you need to tread/swim) so only you can decide if you need extra room or not.

Enjoy the process :)
-Chris
 
  • Like
Reactions: mrramsey

mrramsey

Well-known member
Jul 19, 2014
169
Hudson Ohio
This is a good post so others looking know what to expect from bidding companies.

I think you'll be happy going from an agp to the in-ground. Water cools you off either way but it is a nice addition to the yard aesthetically. I too don't use a solar cover for my in-ground. I did with the agp and it was a pain. So once the in-ground went in, I figured I 'd see how much the gas bill was after the first year and then decide. The cost was much less than I anticipated so I never got one.

I understand you want a smaller pool but just make sure you know how it compares to your 24' agp. A 12 x 24 pool is significantly smaller than a 24' round pool.. A 16 x 32 is slightly larger. I had a 28' round and thought my 16 x 32 was going to be bigger until I did the math (it's over 100 sq ft smaller). The 24' round is 452 square feet. 12 x 24 is only 288 and a 16 x 32 is 512. Smaller may work fine for your use and yard but I just wanted mention it (I'm not trying to push you on it, just something to be aware of). A good rule of thumb is 20 sq ft per person in shallow water (15 in water you need to tread/swim) so only you can decide if you need extra room or not.

Enjoy the process :)
-Chris
I think what I am after is referred to as a "Spool". I am very spatially aware. There may have been onetime last year when there were actually 4 people in the pool (milling about and talking). While i do have plenty of space in the yard to support a large pool I don't want to sacrifice that much of it either. I also have 650 square feet of decking to redesign / replace which is what sparked the idea of the in-ground pool. Re-doing the deck and keeping the existing agp are just not an option. I am supposed to have some design options from the PB today.