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Installing Swimming Pools Right

Installing A Swimming Pool

By Mike Holmes

Mike’s Advice / Exterior Renovation & Landscape Construction

Friday, June 15th, 2018 @ 2:08pm
Installing a pool is an expensive project that will require ongoing maintenance, as well as extra utility costs and other expenses. Before jumping in with both feet it’s important that homeowners determine the real value of a swimming pool, and whether or not it makes sense to add one to their home.


If you think a swimming pool will automatically increase the selling price of your home, think again.

What’s the Building Envelope?

A home’s building envelope is everything that separates (and protects) the interior environment from the exterior environment, which includes the roof, foundation, exterior walls, windows and doors. Upgrades and repairs made to the building envelope usually help reduce drafts, save energy, lower monthly heating and cooling costs, prevent moisture intrusion, and most importantly, protect the entire home…

Swimming pools require extra maintenance and expenses, including ongoing heating and possibly additional lighting. For budget-conscious homebuyers, a house with a swimming pool is often a hard sell.

If it’s a smart investment you’re after you will be better off spending your money on your home’s building envelope, upgrading the electrical wiring or plumbing, finishing the basement or renovating the kitchen – these are things that all homebuyers can appreciate, especially if it can help save them money in the long run.

The real value of a swimming pool is in how much it can improve your family’s everyday life – the longer you stay in the home the more value you will get from a swimming pool. Therefore, it’s an investment that only those homeowners planning on living in the same house should consider.

Swimming pool Construction

Electrical Upgrades

Most new homes have 100-amp service, whereas older homes typically have as little as 60 amps. If you are considering installing a pool on your property there is a good chance that your home’s electrical will need to be upgraded to 200-amps. Make sure you speak to a licensed electrical contractor first to help you determine the electrical upgrades your home may require.

Pool Liners

If your pool liner gets a leak call a swimming pool professional as soon as possible.

When a pool liner leaks the water will get in behind the lining and can start to rust the pool wall. In that case, the entire lining has to be removed and replaced. If the rust is bad enough, the entire pool wall will have to be grinded and then pre-galvanized paint primer or rust-inhibiting paint is applied to protect the walls from future rust.

Replacing a Pool Liner

Replacing a pool liner is usually a 2-4 week job – 3-4 weeks during peak season, which is spring and summer. If a pool’s liner needs replacing it’s best to get it done by October to prevent more damage caused by winter conditions. For example, freezing and thawing cycles can put enough pressure against the pool wall causing it to crack and fail even further.

What’s Coping?

Different professionals might have slightly different definitions, but pool coping is the cap on the pool’s edge or lip, which covers the concrete edge. Sometimes the track that the liner clips into is also part of the coping.

To replace a pool liner a professional swimming pool service provider will remove the old liner, check out the pool, make any necessary repairs, take measurements and then send those off to the pool liner manufacturer, because all pool liners are custom.

Before installing the new liner, final prep can include sweeping the pool, duct taping all seams in the pool, around the skimmer and around the new coping, so it doesn’t protrude through the liner.

After the new liner is clipped in, a blower vacuums or sucks all the air in between the new liner and the pool wall out, which pulls the liner into place. Then the pool is filled with water and the weight of the water holds the liner in securely.

Pool Decking

When it comes to pool deck materials there are plenty of options, such as interlocking brick, cement, wood or an engineered wood product. A homeowners’ choice should be based on budget and maintenance. There are also new, innovative products being introduced that can be a very good solution for worn pool decks.

For example, Duraroc has a rubber surfacing material that is mould-resistant, mildew-resistant and it can go right over the coping or plastic lip of the pool. It can pretty much cover everything but bare metal.

Tip from a Pro

If you are replacing your pool liner it’s best to get all landscaping projects around the pool done before replacing it to avoid debris from falling in and possibly damaging the new liner. This also helps keep the pool clean and garbage-free!

After 24-48 hours, the product is completely solid and because it’s rubber, it moves with the concrete underneath it, so you don’t have to worry about cracking. (Remember: concrete shifts and heaves thanks to freezing and thawing cycles.)


The best time to start thinking about pool maintenance is at the end of the summer season. So if you have a pool, have a professional swimming pool service provider inspect the pool at the end of summer.

This gives you enough time to plan ahead and budget for any repairs your pool might need next year, rather than be blindsided by pool maintenance costs come next summer. This also gives you more options in terms of materials and scheduling.

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