Possibly rehabbing a badly neglected IG pool

Apr 17, 2017
16
NJ
#1
I purchased a house last summer with a badly neglected in-ground concrete pool. It had not been open in a number of years. It is a concrete pool possibly dating back to the 50's when the house was built. We purchased the house with the pool AS IS. You can see the horror of it here (http://imgur.com/a/JFZZj) It does seem to stay filled with water at all times. I know something has to be done with the pool this year. If feasible I would like to save it and turn it into a pool again, but would like to proceed incrementally so I can educate myself on what it will take. If absolute necessary I will have to pool removed but I am hoping it wont come to that. Any advice or comments on my plan would be appreciated.

First I plan to drain the pool. I imagine there is a lot of gunk down there. I plan on renting a trash pump and trying to pull all the gunk out I can. I am aware of hydrostatic valves, and I will open them is there are any. The pool is up on a bluff overlook a river so drainage should not be a problem.

Secondly I will look into my surfacing options. I would like to paint it, but may have to go with replastering. Anyone had luck with paint? Opinions seem pretty low online of painting your pool. Some people have suggested unless the surface is completely destroyed I can power-wash it and at least enjoy one season before plastering.

Before I pay for plastering, a new pump and filter I would like to know if my lines are sound . Can I get the lines tested on an empty pool? There seem to be three lines coming from the pool. If I open the valve on one water rushes out. One line is still hooked up to the old filter. The other seems to be just sitting there. I have no idea where those lines go.

Complicating this all is that all the lines for pumps and filters are halfway down the bluff, making access difficult. Any input appreciated. Thanks.
 

Patrick_B

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 7, 2011
14,999
Midland TX
#2
Welcome aboard!

We love a good rehab as much as any new build, so we look forward to seeing your project. Paint is a bad option if you want it straight. It doesn't last, and will ultimately lead to disappointment. If you have the option to resurface, don't even give paint a second thought.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
36,615
Tallahassee, FL
#3
If it is holding water now then there is no reason to not wait until you can do a replaster. That will give us time to help you get the pool and equipment up and running so you can enjoy it this summer.

I will check this thread again when I get home and can see the pics. If you put them in the thread using the IMG code that would helpful as well. Makes life easier for all in the long run.

:hug:

Kim:kim:
 

rlefig

Bronze Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 29, 2013
238
Reading, MA
#4
I say go for it. My pool was a disaster and had not been open in years. It was a gunite and the water was as black as night. But it held water and gave me hope. Lots of bleach and filtering with a new filter and pump got that thing sparking in about a month.

I have pics all over this site, check them out. Let me know if you have any questions
 

borjis

LifeTime Supporter
Aug 19, 2014
2,669
Pacific NW
#5
haha "pool of death."

The former owner of my last house had painted the pool.
Everytime I brushed it, some paint particles would come off and
cloud the water for a bit. And every time I had guests over.

When I backwashed it was white, again paint.

I'd recommend not doing it.
 

Flying Tivo

Well-known member
Jan 24, 2017
565
Monterrey, NL, Mexico
#6
In my perspective, it would be easier and less painful on the wallet if you drain, inspect the plaster, clean the drains, purge the lines and if
required a slight acid pressure wash. Its quite obvious that you need new equipment. While the pool is empty you can trace your lines and
reroute closer to the pool and build a small shed for protection of the new equipment. After that you can refill with clean fresh water and
it would be quite easy to get you going on the chemistry.

Good luck and keep asking

Felipe
 

CaptainCannonball

Silver Supporter
May 18, 2016
239
Woodland, Ca
#7
I can't wait to see this one!!! No doubt there is some nasty in there, but it might not be as bad thanks to the multiple covers.

LOL, "pool of death" is pretty ominous, soon to be "the jewel of Jersey?" :) keep us updated!!!
 
OP
OP
D
Apr 17, 2017
16
NJ
#8
Update,

Well we drained to pool this weekend and it was actually better then I had hoped. The walls and floor of the pool are in surpassingly good shape. You can see all the full resolution pictures here. (http://imgur.com/a/JFZZj) The deep end had more of the original cover on it and had less algae on the walls. Some damaged tiles around the skimmers but otherwise looks good. We tested the lines and it seems that one skimmer has been plugged but the other hold pressure. Seems both return lines are good. We have not yet been able to get a good look at the main drain, but I am pretty sure that has been plugged as well. Any advice for cleaning the surface? Power wash comes to mind, but I could also look into acid washing or "polishing." Best I can figure the pool is about 40,000 gallons, what sized pump would you all recommend? Thanks for the help

OJkA9Wfb.jpg UHn363wl.jpg
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
36,615
Tallahassee, FL
#9
I see LOTS of bleach in you future! I would try that before an acid wash as the acid wash can be hard on the plaster. I hope you have a shop vac you can sacrifice to the project. That is some nasty looking goo there!

Kim:kim:
 

rlefig

Bronze Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Apr 29, 2013
238
Reading, MA
#10
My pool was a pit of black murky water for years before we bought the house and it got clean quickly and the pool worked well for 3 years before we decided to give it a makeover this year.

Good luck and it will turn out great
 

AmyJo

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 18, 2015
661
Atlanta, GA
#11
Love the design! The plaster looks amazingly great for the age. Ours looks worse and it's only 16 years old. We are rehabbing too. Looking forward to reading along about your progress!
 
OP
OP
D
Apr 17, 2017
16
NJ
#13
Quick Update,

Updated Gallery here (http://imgur.com/a/JFZZj) Turns out the pool is painted. The plaster has been chipped off to bare concrete and painted with what I believe to be a chlorinated rubber based paint. The type of paint I still need to confirm. It has cleaned up nicely and I do not think I am going to go through the expense of having it sandblasted and resurfaced. I am currently looking into options for touching up the paint while the pool is empty.

0ZYD6jGl.jpg
 

AmyJo

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 18, 2015
661
Atlanta, GA
#14
Unfortunately paint is not a durable coating. We now know our pool was painted about a month before we moved in and it lasted about one year cosmetically. So you either resurface now - or deal with it fairly soon. After all we've been through with our pool, my advice would be to deal with it NOW. There were paints available 30-40 years ago that lasted, but they were outlawed due to environmental concerns.
 

kevreh

In The Industry
Jun 2, 2007
412
Annandale, VA
#15
Deluca-

What's your long term plan with this house and pool? Plan to be there a while? Can you afford (cash or home equity loan) to do a complete overhaul now? It would be tedious to spread out the repairs over the next couple years, and you wouldn't get to use the pool. From a glance, looks like at a minimum you need a new pool equipment pad (pump, filter, heater, etc...). New pool light, possible new plumbing, etc.

All that black pipe with clamps is sketchy. Can you figure out how far the black pipe runs to the pool? Where it comes out of the ground I would at least connect it to pvc so everything on the equip pad is pvc.

Since the pool is drained now is a good time to get a hammer drill/chisel and remove that tile and replace with new tile. Also seal the transition between the pool wall and coping. Why don't you call a couple pool companies to get there $.02, I'm sure you'll learn a thing or two along the way.
 
OP
OP
D
Apr 17, 2017
16
NJ
#16
Hello,

Here is an update on the pool. (As always full slideshow and full resolution here http://imgur.com/a/JFZZj) This morning this pool has had a pump turned on for the first time in at least a decade. Here is what it looks like.

XE1b7y4t.jpg pQ5uxHVt.jpg

I did decide to paint the pool. I know this is not recommended generally, but the plaster had been previously chipped off and pool painted professionally. One light coat of chlorinated rubber paint sealed and boded the old layers. Time will tell how long it lasts, but one major factor for me was that including the cost of water painting the pool cost about $700. A replaster would be nearly 10,000. I could paint the pool 14 times for that price.

I am waiting on my vacuum equipment to come in, and am currently balancing the water chemistry. I have my TF-100 kit and my current challenge is getting the CYA levels up.

My attention is turning to the surrounding landscape that was just as badly neglected. Fencing work and a patio restoration need to be done, I will keep the thread updated as we make progress, but we are looking forward to our first swim!!

Dan

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