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Turn Your Backyard Into Your Own Private Paradise By Installing Your Own Pool! (Sneak peak)
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Turn Your Backyard Into Your Own Private Paradise By Installing Your Own Pool! (Sneak peak)

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The Home Swimming Pools eBook is a complete system for choosing a pool and having it installed. …

The Home Swimming Pools eBook is a complete system for choosing a pool and having it installed.

You’re going to learn everything you need to know to get an awesome pool installed affordably.

First you’ll learn about the basics of swimming pools as well as the different types available for your yard.

You’ll also learn how to choose the best pool type for your particular lifestyle and your property type.

Also covered are all the tips you need to maintain your pool quickly and without spending a fortune.

Using the tips in Home Swimming Pools, you don’t need to hire a pool boy saving you thousands of dollars a year!

You’ll also learn about water quality and installation of your pool so that you know what to expect and when to expect it.

These are just a few of the things covered in Home Swimming Pools. If you’ve been considering installing a pool, you need this book!

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  • 1. Building Your Own Home Swimming Pool or Spa
  • 2. TABLE OF CONTENTSINTRODUCTION .......................................................... 41 THE TYPES OF POOLS .............................................. 5 FIBERGLASS POOLS ............................................................... 6 CONCRETE POOLS .................................................................. 8 VINYL POOLS ......................................................................... 9 ABOVE-GROUND POOLS ....................................................... 10 WHICH POOL IS RIGHT? ...................................................... 112 HOW POOLS WORK ................................................ 13 DRAINS ................................................................................ 13 SKIMMERS ........................................................................... 14 PUMP SYSTEMS .......................ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. FILTRATION SYSTEMS ............ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. RETURN VALVES .....................ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. OTHER NEEDED FIXTURES ......ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. BELLS AND WHISTLES ............ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED.3 WATER QUALITY...... ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. CHLORINE POOLS ...................ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. SALINE POOLS ........................ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. ALTERNATIVE WATER DISINFECTING METHODSERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DE -2-
  • 3. 4 TIPS FOR INSTALLATIONERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. TIP #1: DONT INSTALL YOUR POOL YOURSELFERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEF5 REGULAR MAINTENANCEERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. FILTER MAINTENANCE AND BACKWASHINGERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINE WATER QUALITY .....................ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. SUMMARY: REGULAR MAINTENANCE SCHEDULEERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEF6 SPA MAINTENANCE . ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED.7 WINTERIZING AND WEATHERERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED.8 LONG-TERM MAINTENANCE: THE HORRORSTORIES ..................... ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. "POPPING OUT" ......................ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. VINYL TEARS ..........................ERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. ITS NOT ALL THAT HORRIFYINGERROR! BOOKMARK NOT DEFINED. -3-
  • 4. INTRODUCTIONA swimming pool is one of the classic signs of the easy life. From thetheme song of the Beverly Hillbillies to the closing scene of F. ScottFitzgeralds "The Great Gatsby", swimming pools are associated with therich, the leisurely, and the easy-going in life.Which is why its terrible when we learn, after weve spent a great deal ofmoney and time selecting and installing a swimming pool, that thats noeasy way to get an easy life. Maintaining a swimming pool can be amassive amount of work, one that makes even the best of us sometimesthrow up our hands and say "What was I even thinking, digging this holein my backyard and filling it up with expensive water?"In this book, well talk about swimming pools. Well talk about thedifferent kinds of swimming pools available and how each is installed.Well talk about the maintenance issues associated with each and what weneed to do about different pools in different climates. And well talk abouta few horror stories--not to frighten you so much as to make you awarethat when the worst happens, you still have options--even if they areexpensive.As the modern poets say: the simple life is not so simple. The easy lifeisnt always easy. But with a firm grasp on some of these principles ofyear-round pool maintenance, youll find it much easier than youotherwise would--and youll have that much more time to enjoy the fruitsof all your long efforts and labors. -4-
  • 5. 1 THE TYPES OF POOLSIn talking about the different types of pools, its important to rememberthree common-sense qualities that all pools have in common.  All pools are gigantic holes in the ground.  All pools are filled with water.  The water in all pools needs to be filtered or purified in some way to make it safe for personal use.There are some exceptions to these rules, in particular the first--there aretemporary inflatable pools, for example, or above-ground "tank" stylepools--but these tend not to have the same maintenance issues asclassical swimming pools, nor are they as difficult to maintain, nor arethey usually as satisfying. Well cover some specific issues about above-ground pools at the end of this chapter, for those who opt for that often-simpler solution.But for the most part, theres one crucial distinction between the differenttypes of swimming pools available to the consumer: the type of liningused.All pools more complicated than an "ol swimming hole" need to be lined.To understand why, think about how much space in your home insurancepolicy is devoted to the topic of "water damage." Water is an inherentlydestructive force. It naturally erodes any container into which its placedand it weakens stone moldings and the bonds between different -5-
  • 6. construction elements. Generally speaking, it shortens the lifespan of anyconstruction project by at least half. Your pool is no exception.The key to pool maintenance is to think of your pool as a sustained battlebetween water and container. If you think of your pool in this way, youllnaturally think of the containers attributes designed to defend againstwater damage and to preserve its structure over time, and youllunderstand intuitively what you need to do in order to keep your poolworking safely and consistently over the years.The fundamental choice that determines how easy or how difficult itll beto maintain your pool is the choice of lining material used to make up the"container."FIBERGLASS POOLSFiberglass pools are simply molded housings set into a pool excavation,otherwise known as "the giant hole in your backyard." Sand is applied tothe concrete housing in order to allow the fiberglass mold to settle andshift while remaining fairly closely packed to the actual earth. Onceyouve chosen a fiberglass mold style, theres no possibility of shifting orrevising it; youre stuck with what youve got.Fiberglass is one of the most popular materials for a number of reasons.For one, its very easy to mold into a variety of shapes. There arefactories that do nothing but dream up different pool shapes and moldfiberglass pools to fit them. On the "minus side", all of this factory designwork carries with it a certain overhead, and fiberglass pools can be moredifficult to install for this reason.The difficulty of designing fiberglass pools also means that although youhave a great number of options for how your pool will be shapes and howit will behave, you dont have any freedom to customize within thoseoptions. If none of the factory standard fiberglass pools appeal to you,you dont have any way to design and build a fiberglass pool that you do -6-
  • 7. like (without spending a great deal of money to retain a factory and adedicated team of pool engineers of your own, that is.)Fiberglass also has the advantage of being flexible. That doesnt soundlike a huge advantage in pool design, but remember what we said aboutour basic principle: pool maintenance is about managing the war betweenthe water and its container.Fundamentally, all pools are holes in the ground--and the ground can andwill shift over time. The added flexibility of fiberglass pools means thatthe pool body is more resistant to cracks and warping caused by changesin the earth surrounding the pool. On the minus side, if your fiberglasspool does crack, it can be very difficult to repair the crack in a way thatwont cause you additional headaches down the years.There are other advantages to fiberglass pools, in particular safetyadvantages. Fiberglass pool surfaces are smooth, making it more difficultfor kids or other swimmers to get scraped or injured by brushing againstrough concrete. Its also easy to install fiberglass pools, especially whencompared to the undertaking that is putting a concrete pool in yourbackyard--a process that can involve weeks of waiting for concrete to dryand a seriously low margin for error if anything goes awry during theconstruction process. -7-
  • 8. CONCRETE POOLSConcrete pools are the most classic swimming pool option, but bring withthem a host of serious disadvantages.Once you have your hole in the ground, the process of building a concretepool starts with the steel framework. Crossbars of rebar steel are insertedinto the ground to provide the pool with a "cage" of support thatsresistant to earth movements.After this, gunite or other sprayable concrete mixtures are applied to thesteel framework, allowed to dry, and then recoated in order to smooth theeventual pool as much as possible. Different finishes can then be appliedto the pool, depending on price. Tiles, paint, plaster, and pebbles are themost popular finishes, but different options are also available once thebasic concrete is put in.One major advantage of concrete pools is their customizability. As wevesaid, the number of different fiberglass pools available to you is limited bythe pre-fabricated options on the market. The number of differentconcrete pools available to you is limited by nothing other than yourbudget, your imagination, and the technical competence of the contractorsyou choose to install your pool--in other words, you have more choice inhow your pool will look and behave.Another major advantage of concrete pools is their resistance to hottemperatures. Fiberglass pools are good at stretching to resist changes inthe earth itself, but can be damaged by extreme, prolonged heat of thetype most often found in southern or equatorial regions--in other words,the kind of climate where youd most often want a swimming pool tobegin with. Concrete pools can expand to some extent in order to resistthe heat, giving your pool a longer lifetime in extreme temperatures.However, you have a bit more to worry about when it comes to changes inthe soil itself. This is the major disadvantage of concrete pools: the -8-
  • 9. difficulty of doing anything if worst comes to worst and your pool doescrack or break under the strain of above-average movement in the earth.Most of the time, concrete pools are a good, safe, flexible option. But insome extreme situations theyre not as good at holding up to naturalstresses as fiberglass.As far as other disadvantages go, theres construction time to consider.Concrete pools take substantially longer to install and longer still tobecome usable--expect a minimum of about three weeks. This ultimatelyleaves you with a more stable and customizable pool, but requiressubstantially more planning in order to take advantage of a pool before ahot summer begins, and also causes more damage to your yard andlandscaping while the pool is lying there half-finished. If you have smallchildren or pets, youll also have to be very careful to keep them out ofthe pool area while its under construction. This can turn into a nuisancevery quickly.VINYL POOLSVinyl pools are one of the cheapest and simplest options for in-groundpool installation. Vinyl pools start like any other pool: a massive hole inyour backyard. The excavation is packed with sand and the walls of thepool are created by placing pre-fabricated "panels" into the earth.The vinyl liner is placed in on top of this and attached to the top of thepool walls, sealing the places where the panels join (obvious weak pointsin the war between water and container.) The contractor will cut holes toallow for the placement of skimmers, drains, and other plumbing/drainagefeatures, and then the space between the vinyl lining and the pool walls isstuffed with "backfill" in order to ensure that the lining wont shift toomuch.Vinyl have the distinct advantage of being very good for cold-weatherclimates, since they make it very easy to winterize your pool by simplydraining the water. Concrete and fiberglass pools are designed to hold -9-
  • 10. water constantly, and they can suffer some major problems if allowed todrain for too long. As well see in our chapter on winterizing, a lot of extrawork is needed to allow these pools to remain full over the cold monthswithout letting the water freeze and damage the plumbing. Vinyl poolsavoid these problems by simply letting you drain the whole thing easily forthe winter.But despite their basic simplicity, vinyl pools bring with them a host ofmaintenance issues. The vinyl covering is very sensitive to scratches,holes, and other such damage, which requires you to place some extrasafety guidelines on kids or pets who use the pool, and eliminates certainkinds of sharp metal toys from use in a vinyl pool altogether. The vinylcovering will also need to be replaced from time to time due to age andwear.If youre lucky, this will happen only once or twice over a multi-decadepool lifetime; if youre unlucky you can expect to shell this out every yearor two. The need to replace the vinyl lining of a pool adds an ongoingconstruction expense (to the tune of a few thousand dollars) and somemeasure of headache to the whole situation. A failure to do this leads toserious leaks which can damage the underlying rock/soil behind the vinyllining. If the leaks are serious enough it can actually cause damage toyour entire house foundation.ABOVE-GROUND POOLSAbove-ground pools carry with them a host of problems, but have oneoverpowering advantage: you dont need to excavate your yard in orderto install one. Above-ground pools can usually be installed by using apre-fab kit, assembled in a backyard, and allowed to stand for severalmonths without significant maintenance issues. Above-ground pools arealso portable, which is in and of itself a reason to choose them if you dontown your own home or dont have a stable career which allows you toremain in one place for the foreseeable future. - 10 -
  • 11. Above-ground pools do require two significant pieces of maintenance. Forone, you need to have a level yard. In many suburban areas, this wontbe a problem since the land is already fairly level. If your yard geographyis a little bit more unorthodox, however, youre going to need to get youryard leveled in order to install an above-ground pool, which can be aconsiderable expense.The other significant piece of maintenance is essentially the same as anypool would require: weekly chemical treatments performed to ensurewater quality, appropriate cleaning and scrubbing, and careful vigilance.Think of above-ground pools as "training pools": theyll get you in thehabit of caring for a pool on a regular basis without requiring you to makecostly land modifications or without requiring you to dive into the murkywaters of foundation maintenance and drainage optimization. Just build,install, swim, and enjoy.WHICH POOL IS RIGHT?In general, heres a good rubric for making your decision:  If safety is your primary concern, OR if you live in an area known for weak soil or tectonic activity, go with fiberglass.  If customizability is your primary concern, OR if you live in an area known for extreme summertime heat, go with concrete.  If cost is your primary concern, OR if you live in an area with continually low/freezing temperatures, go with vinyl. - 11 -
  • 12.  If youve never owned a pool before, youre planning to move soon, or you simply dont want to make a major financial commitment or house modification, go with above-ground--but keep your options open for the future. - 12 -
  • 13. 2 HOW POOLS WORKAs we said before, pools are essentially gigantic holes in the ground, filledwith water. But we were being somewhat disingenuous in saying this,because the water in your pool is doing much more than just sittingaround waiting for swimmers to enjoy it. In reality, the water in aswimming pool is constantly active, flowing into and out of the poolthrough a complex system of pipes and filters. A good understanding ofexactly how the water in your pool works is essential to understandingwhy certain maintenance steps are essential to the health and lifetime ofyour pool.DRAINSA pool without a drain is going to turn unsafe (and frankly disgusting)very quickly. Typically, a swimming pool has one or two main drains inaddition to the other more specialized drains well be talking about justbelow.The main drains in a pool need to be placed at the lowest point in the poolbasin. Their job is to get rid of all the heavy debris that collects in a pool--and youd better believe that there will be plenty of heavy debris thatcollects in a pool. The debris exits the pool through the main drains andpasses through the pipe systems to the pool filter. - 13 -
  • 14. So you may have asked yourself: why two drains? The reason to installtwo main drains rather than just one is to avoid serious safety issues. Asanyone with a bathtub knows, water tends to form a vortex when it drainsquickly from a basin through a small opening. In a typical swimming pool,the amount of water being channeled through a drain is so high that thevortex created can actually trap a child against the bottom of the pool,rendering them unable to escape and quickly drowning them. This isobviously not the intended use for a pool drain. So a second drain isusually installed (along with all of the other types of drains in a typicalswimming pool) in order to reduce the total amount of water that needs todrain from a single opening in the pool basin. Drains should also beoutfitted with "antivortex coverings", which help to regulate pool drainageand prevent dangerous vortexes from forming.SKIMMERSMain drains help to clear all of the heavy debris from a pool. Skimmerdrains help to clear all of the light debris that floats on the surface of apool. This may seem like a minor or simply cosmetic problem, but evenover the space of one day a serious amount of debris can form on thesurface of the water in your pool, from fallen leaves to summer insects toworse. The skimmer drain allows water to sluice cleanly from the top ofthe pool through the skimmer basket, filtering out large amounts of debrisbefore it can enter the filtration system.Skimmer drains are usually equipped with a "floating weir", which is atype of door that swings open and shut depending on the amount of waterpressing against it. When operating correctly, the floating weir will swingopen and admit only as much water as the drainage system can handleinto the pools pipes.Skimmer drains also have a secondary access pipe in addition to the drainleading to the filtration system. This is called the "equalizer line", and itconnects to the main basin of the pool somewhere below the water line.If the water level in the pool drops below the level of the floating weir dueto extra heat, regular maintenance, or for any other cause, this allows the - 14 -
  • 15. pool to continue to draw only water through the skimmer basket line andavoids any air being pulled into the filtration system (which causesobvious problems.) The equalizer line needs to be outfitted with anantivortex covering, just like the main drains.Want to read the full version?? Check it here - 15 -