Should I not waste time getting bids from TX pool builders who are against SWCG?

rebll

Member
May 28, 2020
17
The Woodlands, TX
Pool Size
15500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Howdy,

After starting the lengthy bidding process for a new pool with builders earlier in the summer, we decided to take a break until the building season slowed down a bit (or maybe it hasn't) due to the high demands and delays brought on by COVID. From all the valuable information learned on TFP, we know that we want a pool with a SWCG. I'm starting to contact builders again and true to form, many are discouraging the SWCG. One builder said that if they install one, we will have to sign a waiver of liability if any damage occurs from the salt water.

So my question is, should I not waste my time getting bids from builders who discourage it? Did most pool owners on TFP with a SWCG use a builder that was okay with a SWCG or at the least not make you sign any waiver to install it? I don't want any warranty issues to be invalidated by adding a SWCG. Any advice is appreciated. Or if any north Houston pool owners with a SWCG recommends their builder, that would also be welcomed.

Thank you.
 

spd500

Well-known member
Jul 20, 2020
564
Houston, TX
Welcome Neighbor! We are North East Houston in Summerwood over by Lake Houston and are just finishing up our new build.

We were also told by almost every builder that they did not suggest the SWCG and when we finally decided that this was what we wanted we just told the builder that we would be using SWCG. We didn't have anyone mention signing a waiver, but that would have been a deal breaker for us. If they want to try to talk you out of it you can just stand your ground and not change your mind. A waiver against something that has become almost an industry standard is unacceptable.
 
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Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
20,890
Bedford, TX
R,

Just ask them what equipment they sell.. Let's say the use Pentair.. Then ask them if it makes any logical sense the Pentair would sell something that would damage their customer's pools.???

Rightly or wrongly, I believe they worry about the cheap stone they use. So I would start by asking what coping and decking materials do they recommend for Saltwater pools and see what they say..

I would look at pool builders that do not like saltwater pools, but would never consider one that wanted some kind of warranty wavier.

I'm in the DFW area and we had no trouble at all with getting a saltwater pool.. Our pool builder never mentioned a word about it.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 
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JJ_Tex

Gold Supporter
Bronze Supporter
Jul 17, 2019
2,296
Prosper, TX (DFW)
Pool Size
13000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
When we were getting bids, I inquired about salt water and was discouraged by all builders I asked to the point I just stopped asking. This was before my pre-TFP days, so I didnt really question and just assumed they were the experts since that is their field.

After we signed (for non-salt pool) I found TFP. After a few weeks of research and convincing by members, coupled by a much less than budgeted excavation, I told my builder I wanted to put that found money towards more decking and a SWCG. He was good and just asked me to look at all options, including AOP the "latest and greatest" in sanitization. After a few more days of research, I said SWCG and that is what he did without hesitation.

So, based on my experience, I wouldn't expect to get a PB around here who is in love with salt but I would only avoid the ones that say they wont do salt or do something stupid like having you sign a waiver.
 
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rebll

Member
May 28, 2020
17
The Woodlands, TX
Pool Size
15500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
@spd500, @Jimrahbe, & @JJ_Tex
Thanks for your feedback. I knew most builders would not recommend it, but hadn’t heard about having to sign a waiver to add it.

@Jbrillo
Good to know there is a builder nearby that doesn’t discourage it. I may PM you for info.
 
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red-beard

Gold Supporter
May 27, 2019
800
Houston, TX
As you will find as you dig into the site, all residential pools which use chlorine are salt water. One of the people here who is considering converting to a SWG just tested their water and it was 4700 ppm salt. My SWG prefers around 3000 ppm! If they say they will not install SWG and especially if they require a "waiver", run don't walk.

Also, if they suggest "Flagstone" this is really sandstone. It continuously disintegrates. I have had my pool for 13 years and when I have the money, the "Flagstone" coping is going to go. I would prefer a standard bullnose concrete coping over the "flagstone".

Also, do not install ozone generators. And especially do not install "mineral" reservoirs (aka Pool Frog).

If your pool will have full sun everyday, you might consider a pool chiller (evaporative aka Glacier). I plan to install one at some point. My pool can get to 92F in the summer.

Also any concrete should be coated with something that keeps it cool.

Finally, listen to the people here. They really know what keeps a pool clean and sanitary!
 
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rebll

Member
May 28, 2020
17
The Woodlands, TX
Pool Size
15500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
As you will find as you dig into the site, all residential pools which use chlorine are salt water. One of the people here who is considering converting to a SWG just tested their water and it was 4700 ppm salt. My SWG prefers around 3000 ppm! If they say they will not install SWG and especially if they require a "waiver", run don't walk.

Also, if they suggest "Flagstone" this is really sandstone. It continuously disintegrates. I have had my pool for 13 years and when I have the money, the "Flagstone" coping is going to go. I would prefer a standard bullnose concrete coping over the "flagstone".

Also, do not install ozone generators. And especially do not install "mineral" reservoirs (aka Pool Frog).

If your pool will have full sun everyday, you might consider a pool chiller (evaporative aka Glacier). I plan to install one at some point. My pool can get to 92F in the summer.

Also any concrete should be coated with something that keeps it cool.

Finally, listen to the people here. They really know what keeps a pool clean and sanitary!
Thanks for the great advice! I currently have flagstone as part of a stone column on my outdoor patio and it has chipped apart...and that’s without a pool. So I know to stay away from flagstone.

We do plan to leave room on the equipment pad to add a chiller later on if the need for it arises.
 

hosseisemi

Active member
Oct 20, 2020
29
Montgomery, TX
I just signed a contract last night and did a ton of research (or so I thought prior to this forum). I vetted 4 contractors and at the time I was firm on Chlorine. I randomly ask my PB after researching this forum about SWG and he asked me what I know before he answered. I told him I've heard most PB's discourage it but independent research doesn't support their claims. He smiled and said that it was all BS and he is a big supporter of SWG. Nevertheless, I decided to go for it. Good luck. Anxious to see your build.
 
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rebll

Member
May 28, 2020
17
The Woodlands, TX
Pool Size
15500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Where are you in the Woodlands? I'm just north of the Energy Corridor.
I am in Creekside Park. It’s the south part of The Woodlands which is located in Harris County. Glad to see a lot of fellow Houstonians on this forum.
 

HtownPool08

Member
May 8, 2020
20
Houston, TX
My pool build is just finishing and no issues at all with my contractor. He did what I wanted. Start up guy actually said I was smart to go with the SWCG as it's easier to maintain. Feel free to shoot me a message if you want my PB's contact info.

Note: Forgot to add I'm probably a 10 minute drive East of you in Spring.
 
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rebll

Member
May 28, 2020
17
The Woodlands, TX
Pool Size
15500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
I just signed a contract last night and did a ton of research (or so I thought prior to this forum). I vetted 4 contractors and at the time I was firm on Chlorine. I randomly ask my PB after researching this forum about SWG and he asked me what I know before he answered. I told him I've heard most PB's discourage it but independent research doesn't support their claims. He smiled and said that it was all BS and he is a big supporter of SWG. Nevertheless, I decided to go for it. Good luck. Anxious to see your build.
Encouraging to hear a PB actually support a SWCG. You are just north of me. I saw the Pool Questions sheet you put together. Thanks for putting all those details in an organized format. It will be useful. Let us know how your build goes.
 

rebll

Member
May 28, 2020
17
The Woodlands, TX
Pool Size
15500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
My pool build is just finishing and no issues at all with my contractor. He did what I wanted. Start up guy actually said I was smart to go with the SWCG as it's easier to maintain. Feel free to shoot me a message if you want my PB's contact info.

Note: Forgot to add I'm probably a 10 minute drive East of you in Spring.
Thanks! I must be contacting the wrong builders. I will definitely send you a PM.
 

JMSMommy

Bronze Supporter
Sep 26, 2020
82
Houston, TX
We just signed with a builder after looking at 5 contractors. Narrowed down to two; one wanted us to sign an waiver and the other didn't. The other (which is who we signed with) didn't have an issue at all with a SWCG. He was like, salt water pool, no problem! =) I was expecting them to go on and on about how it destroys travertine, etc and he said, it will all be fine, just maintain your pool, brush your wall and water line tile, keep the pool clean- all will be fine!

We are in southwest Houston. =)
 
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rebll

Member
May 28, 2020
17
The Woodlands, TX
Pool Size
15500
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
We just signed with a builder after looking at 5 contractors. Narrowed down to two; one wanted us to sign an waiver and the other didn't. The other (which is who we signed with) didn't have an issue at all with a SWCG. He was like, salt water pool, no problem! =) I was expecting them to go on and on about how it destroys travertine, etc and he said, it will all be fine, just maintain your pool, brush your wall and water line tile, keep the pool clean- all will be fine!

We are in southwest Houston. =)
Thank you! As I’m getting all this helpful feedback, I think I will steer away from any PB that mentions a waiver. Good luck on your build!
 
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melteye

Member
Apr 9, 2020
9
DFW
Yep, definitely stay away from any PB that is making you sign a waiver. There are plenty of builders, you don't need to restrict yourself.

We're in norht Texas and most of the builders repeated the same lines about salt pools -- corrosion, stone issues blah blah. However, only 1-2 said they wouldn't install or would require a waiver. A vast majority said they'll install whatever we want and there are definitely pros/cons to salt. The new "trend" seems to be UV/Ozone, it's what they push incessently. It must be so common with our builder that the office ordered the UV/Ozone units as part of standard practice and the plumbers installed that + the salt. Luckily, I only paid for the salt, so I guess the UV is a bonus.
 
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