A house with a pool is a luxury we cannot rave enough about!
With it, the weekends will be a lot more entertaining and your life a little less dull. Now, while the urge to take matters into your hands and go the DIY route might be strong, we are here to warn of the perils this can lead to.
Pool construction is an intricate process, so it’s best to let experienced professionals handle it. One wrong step and all your efforts go down the drain. Trust us when we tell you that the savings are not worth the risk.
If you are here, installing a swimming pool is already on your mind, but apprehensions about the building process might be a deterrent. But, do not worry! We are here to help you with our complete guide on the pool construction process.
So, with no further delay, let’s dive right into it!
Pool Construction Process
Given below is a step-by-step guide to constructing your pool. To simplify things further, we’ve followed it with a brief section that’ll help you choose the right builder. Let’s take a look!
Step 1: Inspection
The first step in pool construction is to decide where you want to locate the pool. Often, people choose a flat terrain to minimise excavation costs. Once you select the location, the builder carries out a proper inspection of this site. They do this to get an insight into the landscape, area requirements and limitations.
Besides, they also inspect the plumbing, electrical and structural requirements, as per the guidelines set by the Government. After the inspection, the builder asks you a few questions regarding your budget, design requirements and reason for construction.
It is essential to advise of your list of considerations and be open to new ideas and suggestions. Choose a builder with a prolific work portfolio, and they’ll be able to nudge you in the right direction.
We’d suggest you opt for a design that blends with your house and is minimalist for easy maintenance.
Step 2: Paperwork
Once the inspection is complete, the engineer will make a formal proposal. They will organise all the paperwork, including the design requirements, budget, scope, concrete laying plans and a few rough sketches. The builder will then submit the proposal to the Local Council to gain Development Application (DA) approval and receive a Construction Certificate.
As per the Local Council regulations, only a licensed engineer should draft the plan. They should include their name, the company they’re associated with, along with necessary ID proof in the contract. This is a detailed and time-consuming process and can take anywhere between 3 to 4 weeks.
Lastly, the builder should neatly present all the sketches, plans, permission requirements, etc, to the Council for quick approval.
Step 3: Excavation
Once you receive the required approval, it’s time to prepare the area for excavation. However, we recommend letting a surveyor do this task for you, as they’ll mark out the perimeter with the utmost consideration using wooden shafts.
The excavator then uses earth-removing equipment such as a backhoe or trencher to dig the pool. They pay special attention to making precise, straight cuts, as per the original design plan.
If the area is rugged or waterlogged, then there might be some additional requirements. So, remember to ask your builder about the same when they’re inspecting the area to avoid unexpected costs later.
Usually, the excavation process takes a maximum of three days. However, it largely depends on the weather, type of ground and ease of access. The workers then remove the excavated material from the area.
Step 4: Steel Fixing
After the excavation is complete, the next step is fixing the steel. In this, the fixers make a criss-cross steel design around the excavated area. This cage-like structure also covers the pool steps, ledges and other features of the original design. The purpose of this is to enhance the structural integrity of the pool and allow the smooth laying of the concrete.
Moving on, once the steel reinforcement is in place, it’s time to pre-plumb the interior. Professional plumbers take charge of fitting the required pipelines, drainage lines, electric lines and lights. They then cap these lines to prevent the construction material from entering the pipes and damaging them.
Besides, they connect the pipes to the filter system and main water line. However, the pipes can run only when the entire pool construction process is complete.
Steel fixing doesn’t take longer than two days to finish. However, remember not to let kids or pets near the pool during this time, as the exposed steel can be pretty sharp and lead to accidents.
Step 5: Pouring Concrete
The next step is the pouring of concrete, and there are two ways of doing so - shotcreting and concrete formworks.
Spraying concrete through shotcreting is the most commonly followed method. In this, a mixture of rock, sand and cement is poured or ‘shot’ using a high-pressure hose onto the steel reinforcement frame.
Generally, the thicker the concrete layer of the pool walls and base is, the more durable the structure is. Thinner layers may be vulnerable to fissures and cracks.
Once the concrete has been sprayed, there is a ‘curing’ period observed to enhance the pool’s structural integrity and prevent any chances of cracking. You have to do this by keeping the pool shell moist and lightly spraying water over it at least twice a day for two weeks.
Step 6: Finishing The Pool Interior
By now, you should see your dream project coming to life!
Once the concrete shell has cured completely, the workers must meticulously remove any debris, twigs, or leaves in it. Then, with the help of a shovel, they scrape the surface to remove any unevenness or sharp protruding parts.
With the help of a sealing agent, the pipes and drains are made waterproof. Usually, popular waterproofing choices include tiles, ceramic or Pebblecrete.
The builders do this before applying the interior finish to make the pool watertight. The first step is to spread out the adhesive over the cured concrete surface evenly. This is followed by spraying the waterproofing membrane of your choice.
After that, they use a trowel to smooth out the exterior and quickly wash it to bring out the finished surface. Then, it is left to dry for a few days.
Lastly, the pool surface is acid washed to remove any residual adhesive before giving it a final polish.
Step 7: Coping And Landscaping
The next step is to lay the coping material and waterline tiles. As a novice, you might not be familiar with these terms, so here’s a quick overview. Coping is the capping that you install around the pool edge. It forms a barrier between the concrete pool shell and the surface.
This capping material can be concrete, tiles, stone, or marble. Any pool owner will tell you about the importance of Installing a capping like this. However, it doesn’t have to look dull. You can experiment with various tile options and choose one that adds to the pool’s aesthetic appeal.
Ideally, coping can take a few days or a few weeks, depending on the pool size and the tiles selected. If done right, you’ll have a non-pervious and highly durable surface.
Now, we come to the waterline tile. Experienced technicians install them around the pool’s perimeter to give the area a luminous look and reduce the chances of calcium buildup. Also, it prevents pollen and other materials that go into the pool from creating a white line around it and permanently damaging the surface.
After installing coping and waterline tile, the builders install any water features that you might’ve specified to them. These include jets, wall sprays, fountains, etc. Also, if you have opted for a landscape design, this will begin to happen at this stage.
Step 8: Check Plumbing Lines
Now, it’s time to install certain pieces of equipment that’ll make your overall swimming experience more delightful. However, before that, the technicians will check all plumbing lines to ensure there’s been no damage during construction.
There are a few essential devices that your pool cannot do without. A robust, water-saving pump, pool filters and saltwater chlorinator are a few of them. Some pool owners also like other fancy devices such as heating lines, wireless remote controls and spa equipment. Whatever you want, convey it to the builder before they begin the work.
Here’s some sound advice that’ll serve you well: never compromise on the quality of the pool products. Although durable equipment may increase your overall cost initially and prove to be quite a pocket-pinch, they’ll last for a very long time. Thus, it’ll prove to be quite economical in the long run with lower repair and maintenance costs.
Step 9: Handover
With that, the construction process is complete, and the pool is ready to be your new playground!
Once the technician conducts a quick run-through of the entire system to ensure that it’s fully operational, they’ll help you understand all the details involved in maintaining the pool. This includes explaining all the features, addressing any queries you might have and explaining periodic upkeep, cleaning and maintenance requirements.
You must scrutinise the pool in the weeks following the handover. If you notice the appearance of any stains or chipped surfaces, contact the builder immediately.
How To Find The Right Pool Builder?
Pool construction is an expensive investment. Therefore, hiring the right builder is of the utmost importance to get a sparkling and durable pool.
Given below are a few tips on finding the perfect builder. So, let’s take a look.
Tip 1: Verify Their Credentials
The first step would be to verify your builder’s credentials, check the company they’re associated with and look up the company online. Inquire about their work experience and how many pools they’ve installed on average.
Ask for their certifications and licensing right at the very outset to avoid any confusion or disputes later on.
Tip 2: Assess Work Portfolio
You don’t want an inexperienced builder on the job. Therefore, it becomes essential to look into their work portfolio and determine whether they can handle the task at hand. You can ask relevant questions like how they take payments or how long the construction takes and so on.
Besides, you can also ask for referrals and contact people whose pools the builder has built in the last few years for honest feedback.
Tip 3: Ask About Insurance
Usually, a renowned company will not compromise on worker safety. So, the best way to know that you’re dealing with professionals is by asking whether the workers have adequate insurance. You can even ask to see a copy of their insurance papers. Builders and subcontractors are covered under Liability Insurance or Worker’s Compensation.
This step is also essential to protect yourself from a messy legal battle in case of unfortunate accidents.
Tip 4: Warranty Services
While looking for a pool builder, always ask about the insurance and after-construction services they offer. You don’t want to work with a company that doesn’t provide a workmanship warranty. Without it, you’ll have to bear the expenses of defective installation, plumbing leaks, chipped surfaces, etc.
Usually, most companies offer a warranty of one year. However, most of the problems prop up after that period. So, look for builders who provide long-term warranty coverage.
Constructing Your New Pool
With that, we come to the end of this guide. We hope we’ve simplified the pool construction process for you and answered all possible queries.
Selecting the location and the right pool builder is only the first step in the construction process. After that, you will have to choose the tiling material, the features you wish to incorporate in the pool and finance the construction.
While a builder can help you build the pool of your dreams, a home equity loan can help pay for it! Remember that this construction will also add to the value of your property. So, make a solid investment to reap benefits in the long run.
That’s all the time we have for you today. Do reach out to us in the comments below if you have any queries.
Till then, stay safe and happy swimming!