New member
Jul 5, 2010
This will be our first pool.

After several bids we are about to embark on the task of selecting a builder and getting started. Our location is in the deep south, and our inground gunite sports pool selection is a 3x5x4 (18'xi36'), Jandy 1.5 H.P. filter pump w/CV460 SF cartridge, Jandy chlorine generator (salt system), 2 skimmers, a light or two, a Polaris 280 auto cleaner w/3/4 H.P. booster pump, 2 anti-vortex 8" main drains,6 returns with adj. JetFlow eyeballs in pool, a few hundred SF of decking, white plaster, coping 12" flagstone, tile,

My apologies for not reading all the postings relating to the aforementioned equipt.

After having dealt with the BBB several years ago, it appeared this service is not very efficient when problems arise (letter writing contest) as we are a little worried about choosing the right folks. It is our understanding the mark-up on pools is significant, with most local builders using the same sub.s for the gunite, plaster, and concrete work.

Our plans include visiting a few new pool owners from each contractor (if possible) before our selection.

I guess my biggest fears are the structural integrity of the gunite (leaks) and the appropriate matching of equipment to our of skimmers, sizing of pump, pool cleaning equipt. adequacy etc.

Any comments would be greatly appreciated.


Congrats on making the decision to build a new pool :cheers:

Couple of quick comments (I'll try to explain more later, just tight on time right now :oops: ):

1. The pump is too big for the pool. I would consider a smaller pump, and/or a multi speed pump. The 1.5 HP Pump will not be as efficient on electrical consumption, and really serves no purpose in being that large for your pool.

2. You might also consider a suction side pool cleaner. That would allow you to forgo the second pump for the Polaris cleaner. If you like Polaris, they make suction side cleaners also, so you could stick with the brand.

3. Two skimmers are only required for pools over 800 square feet. Is there a reason for the extra skimmer?

4. You might consider making your shallow ends both the same depth (3'6"). If you play volleyball and decide to "rotate", those in the 3'6" end will be in the 4'0" after rotating; that can sometimes be a "problem" if you have shorter folks that can't accommodate the additional 6" (I know it sounds trivial, but I speak from experience!).

5. The gunite will absolutely leak, which is why they apply plaster over it :lol: Seriously, the gunite will be part of the structural component of the pool, but it is not a leak proof membrane, nor is it meant to be. It is a special mix that is applied to swimming pools, so there is not a lot of variance there, except in application practices. Since it is part of the structural component of the pool, it should be covered by the PB.

Welcome to the 'page, and keep the questions coming! There are a lot of great folks on here that are more than willing to help and provide guidance, so you are in great hands!


Feb 3, 2011
This applied to me since I'm trying to finalize my jandy configuration.

I'm building a 20x41 pool Hopper profile with an 8 foot deep end.

I'm trying to get the proper size jandy heater , cartridge, swcg and variable/two speed pump.

I will have an auto cover and I want a robot cleaner like polaris or aquabot


Well-known member
Feb 11, 2010
Here is some advice based on my experience last year building a pool. It was a miserable experience.

BBB - Don’t rely on BBB ratings to pick a pool builder. I would not use a PB with a poor rating, however don’t assume that just because a builder has an A or A+ rating you will not have issues. I used one with a rating of A+ and we had hundreds of issues during the build.

References - Make the PB give you the names for the last 5 - 10 pools he built. I got a hand selected list of what seemed like his friends. Also get some references for builds he did years ago.

Visit - Go visit pools your PB has recently built. I only visited one and did not give it a thorough review. Spend some time looking at all the details before you make a selection. If they won't let you see pools they built, question them.

Contract - get EVERYTHING in writing. Don’t believe a word the PB says unless you have it in writing on a contract. I was quoted variable speed pumps, and they tried to install single speed pumps.

Subcontracting - I would lean towards a PB that does not subcontract everything out. If you pick a PB that subs, get the names of the subs they use and do your own research on each sub.

Contract - If I did it again I would try to have more money held until completion and make sure I did not make the final payment on day of plaster. The progress in the first few weeks is very fast.  But as soon as they get your money it slows down and nothing happens. Expect to have a ton of issues after plaster.