Potential problem with new pool build...

Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
582
MA
Who actually cut the 'V' swale around the pool? Unless your original guess of 7" of pitch to the street is way off then you should not have that much standing water. In theory if you cut a 7" deep swale around the pool that had a perfectly flat bottom then you should only have approx 1" deep puddles here and there after the rain stops just because it is impossible to keep soil perfectly level. I would guess they did not use a laser level or even just a old school builders level and you have a one or many high spots in your swale. If graded properly a simple swale will work but who want to look at that and you also need to be sure to maintain it so you do get any damming action. The stone and pipe I suggested just makes it more aesthetically pleasing and far more maintenance free.
 

Oscar G.

Well-known member
Who actually cut the 'V' swale around the pool? Unless your original guess of 7" of pitch to the street is way off then you should not have that much standing water. In theory if you cut a 7" deep swale around the pool that had a perfectly flat bottom then you should only have approx 1" deep puddles here and there after the rain stops just because it is impossible to keep soil perfectly level. I would guess they did not use a laser level or even just a old school builders level and you have a one or many high spots in your swale. If graded properly a simple swale will work but who want to look at that and you also need to be sure to maintain it so you do get any damming action. The stone and pipe I suggested just makes it more aesthetically pleasing and far more maintenance free.
I cut the "V" myself based on the PB suggestion. The super told me that it would serve as a "basin" more than a swale and it would be ok if the water stayed in the "V" as it would recede and dry out. I mentioned a lot of the things I have read on TFP and other sources concerning water getting under the deck and shell. He said that with our arid climate water could be dealt with as he suggested, and that it was not a problem for the water to rise up to the bottom of the deck as long as is was able to recede when the rain stopped. IDK...

I did not cut a swale all the way to the street because I didn't think I needed to based on what I was being told. This has been frustrating to say the least.
 

Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
582
MA
I cut the "V" myself based on the PB suggestion. The super told me that it would serve as a "basin" more than a swale and it would be ok if the water stayed in the "V" as it would recede and dry out. I mentioned a lot of the things I have read on TFP and other sources concerning water getting under the deck and shell. He said that with our arid climate water could be dealt with as he suggested, and that it was not a problem for the water to rise up to the bottom of the deck as long as is was able to recede when the rain stopped. IDK...

I did not cut a swale all the way to the street because I didn't think I needed to based on what I was being told. This has been frustrating to say the least.
Ahhh, ok... I certainly would not be comfortable with the water getting That close to going in the pool. I would at the very least cut the swale all the way to the street.
 

Oscar G.

Well-known member
The stone and pipe I suggested just makes it more aesthetically pleasing and far more maintenance free.
I've been doing some research on the use of drain pipes and it is my understanding that at minimum, i would need 1/8" per foot of slope for a drain pipe to work. I did a rough measurement and from the back of the pool to the street it is approximately 110 feet. I would need 13.75 feet of slope to make that work, unless i am mistaken. Its like I have enough slope to cause problems but not enough to help fix it...:confused:
 

Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
582
MA
I've been doing some research on the use of drain pipes and it is my understanding that at minimum, i would need 1/8" per foot of slope for a drain pipe to work. I did a rough measurement and from the back of the pool to the street it is approximately 110 feet. I would need 13.75 feet of slope to make that work, unless i am mistaken. Its like I have enough slope to cause problems but not enough to help fix it...:confused:
13.75 "inches" :geek:

That is a "recommended" slope for drainage that usually involves solids and liquids ( sewerage ), clean drainage water is different. Water will seek it own level. The lower the slope the slower it goes but it will go. With only 7" of pitch you really have no choice but to set it practically level. It will work
 

Oscar G.

Well-known member
13.75 "inches" :geek:

That is a "recommended" slope for drainage that usually involves solids and liquids ( sewerage ), clean drainage water is different. Water will seek it own level. The lower the slope the slower it goes but it will go. With only 7" of pitch you really have no choice but to set it practically level. It will work
LOL, yes 13.75 INCHES :giggle:
 

Chris Guzman

Active member
Apr 30, 2018
39
California
Ah yes, gotta love pool builders..... It’s unfortunate that so many never mention drainage. I went through this with my build, with all of the rain we got in SoCal this last winter, I quickly realized that we left out one important thing, DRAINS. The pool builders who are only concerned about about quantity over quality will never mention things outside of the pool itself unfortunately. Mine could guarantee that water would not get into the pool but did not care about the surrounding area. Ultimately we ended up busting up all decking, built a retaining wall and added numerous drains. I’m fortunate enough to be on 2 acres with a lot of slope. Is there any way you can make a concrete swale and then fill it with river rock? I have one that runs around one side of my house and it does a great job moving water. This way you also wouldn’t have to worry about water seeping under the coping/pool walls.
 

Oscar G.

Well-known member
Ah yes, gotta love pool builders..... It’s unfortunate that so many never mention drainage. I went through this with my build, with all of the rain we got in SoCal this last winter, I quickly realized that we left out one important thing, DRAINS. The pool builders who are only concerned about about quantity over quality will never mention things outside of the pool itself unfortunately. Mine could guarantee that water would not get into the pool but did not care about the surrounding area. Ultimately we ended up busting up all decking, built a retaining wall and added numerous drains. I’m fortunate enough to be on 2 acres with a lot of slope. Is there any way you can make a concrete swale and then fill it with river rock? I have one that runs around one side of my house and it does a great job moving water. This way you also wouldn’t have to worry about water seeping under the coping/pool walls.
Oh man, that sounds so familiar! There was no mention of a possible drainage issue until the deck was poured and I noticed it and asked the PB about it. I guess i should have done better at researching things to watch out for but I missed that one.

I'm considering all options and I will put a concrete swale on the list , thank you!

Did your pool builder help at all financially to fix the problem? I guessing no and I see in my contract that I am responsible for assuring proper drainage. The biggest issue I have is that it wasn't brought up before signing the contract so we would be better informed of the added work and money involved...
 

Chris Guzman

Active member
Apr 30, 2018
39
California
Oh man, that sounds so familiar! There was no mention of a possible drainage issue until the deck was poured and I noticed it and asked the PB about it. I guess i should have done better at researching things to watch out for but I missed that one.

I'm considering all options and I will put a concrete swale on the list , thank you!

Did your pool builder help at all financially to fix the problem? I guessing no and I see in my contract that I am responsible for assuring proper drainage. The biggest issue I have is that it wasn't brought up before signing the contract so we would be better informed of the added work and money involved...
No, I ate the majority of the cost, we had other issues with cracks in the coping and pop outs in the concrete decking. So long story short, I started dealing with the concrete sub because the pool builder was no help. We came to an agreement that they remove all concrete and supply me with new foam forms to repour the coping. He was willing to redo what they removed but I didn’t want to be disappointed a second time, plus we knew that we’d be needing drains and additional concrete after the rains that we had this winter. A stressful year later, and we are finally set for concrete decking Thursday, so should be able to use the pool a few times before Fall. Try to remain positive, it’ll all work itself out. I honestly feel like I’ve been living in the movie “The Money Pit” for the past year, my yard has been tore up, pool with no coping surrounded by dirt plus desert winds makes up keep a pain. Everything was supposed to be completed by June, but the coping held them up, all his guys were booked solid and he didn’t want just anyone doing it due to my previous experience. Hang in there and try not to let the stress get to you, you will drive yourself crazy and take years off your life.
 

Oscar G.

Well-known member
No, I ate the majority of the cost, we had other issues with cracks in the coping and pop outs in the concrete decking. So long story short, I started dealing with the concrete sub because the pool builder was no help. We came to an agreement that they remove all concrete and supply me with new foam forms to repour the coping. He was willing to redo what they removed but I didn’t want to be disappointed a second time, plus we knew that we’d be needing drains and additional concrete after the rains that we had this winter. A stressful year later, and we are finally set for concrete decking Thursday, so should be able to use the pool a few times before Fall. Try to remain positive, it’ll all work itself out. I honestly feel like I’ve been living in the movie “The Money Pit” for the past year, my yard has been tore up, pool with no coping surrounded by dirt plus desert winds makes up keep a pain. Everything was supposed to be completed by June, but the coping held them up, all his guys were booked solid and he didn’t want just anyone doing it due to my previous experience. Hang in there and try not to let the stress get to you, you will drive yourself crazy and take years off your life.
Wow, thankfully you are seeing some light at the end of the tunnel! I'm not gonna lie, this has been more than a little stressful. I really don't trust the pool builder on their recommendation but how could they not know how to fix this? Its quite the quandary...
 

Rich D

Bronze Supporter
Aug 3, 2018
582
MA
. I really don't trust the pool builder on their recommendation but how could they not know how to fix this? Its quite the quandary...
His recommendation of creating a "retention" pond around your pool and hoping it will drain into the soil faster than Mother nature can deliver it is ridiculous. You have the ability to pitch it to the street so that is where it should go.

Try not to stress to much over this. Try getting a few more more estimates and or ideas from other companies. It has been proved you can survive a storm so cutting a trench to the street in the mean time will ensure you do not get flooded out. You also need to consider any gutters you will be adding. If you go with the pipe idea these can tie into the pipe an keep everything neatly underground.
 

Oscar G.

Well-known member
His recommendation of creating a "retention" pond around your pool and hoping it will drain into the soil faster than Mother nature can deliver it is ridiculous. You have the ability to pitch it to the street so that is where it should go.

Try not to stress to much over this. Try getting a few more more estimates and or ideas from other companies. It has been proved you can survive a storm so cutting a trench to the street in the mean time will ensure you do not get flooded out. You also need to consider any gutters you will be adding. If you go with the pipe idea these can tie into the pipe an keep everything neatly underground.
Thanks Rich! I am definitely looking for companies to get estimates/ideas. Part of me wants to take it on myself but I'll most likely hire a contractor. There are a few companies here that specialize in drainage systems so I may go that route vs a general landscaping company. I just want to be 100% certain they know what they are doing.
 

Oscar G.

Well-known member
I was curious what my neighbors thought about my situation and posted this issue to NextDoor. Since homes in my subdivision have the same sloping yard I wanted to see how other builders dealt with this issue. A lot of the responses blame the PB and they are encouraging me to get the PB to make it right.

I know some of you have already stated that it's probably not the PBs "fault" but because of the responses I am getting from my neighbors I wanted make sure. Should I be putting this on the PB and pursue a resolution that requires them the fix this issue?

How do I find out if they violated some building code or something that would have required them to account for the slope?

I had pretty much accepted that the PB had really only failed to communicate options but now I'm not 100% sure so I'm doing my due diligence...