It all starts with a custom blueprint design for YOUR pool and spa project. Upon your approval, we’ll proceed in a timely manner.
You’ve taken that first big step toward having a Ferrari Gunite Swimming Pool of your very own…you’ve signed the contract and taken the plunge!
For the most part, a pool is a dream. For you, it’s about to become reality – and we’re glad you chose us to make it happen. We’ll do our best for you!
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?
We would like to give you the exact day when you can expect to be splashing around your pool, but each pool is different. And there are variables such as soil conditions and weather to consider.
But don’t despair! On the average, normal installation runs about 30 to 40 working days after excavation is completed.
Remember, there will be time lags when our crews can’t be working because they – and you – will be waiting for inspections, curing of the concrete, gunite and the like.
We’ll get the job done as fast as possible – but give us the time to do it right!
Once you’ve decided on a pool plan, the best was to proceed is according to plan – that exact plan. It will cost you less if you can avoid making last minute changes or any alterations during the actual construction
Can you make changes? Of course, and we’ll help you, but most changes do cost money. If a change is made an addendum is created which is why our pool planning specialists work closely with you before your pool is started. It saves time, trouble and money.
WE’LL NEED YOUR OK
Any change from your original contract requires your written approval. This is called an addendum – and it requires your signature. It also requires us to notify you of any price variation resulting from this change. This practice is for your protection as a buyer.
As further protection, you must approve, in writing, the formed LAYOUT, LOCATION and ELEVATION of your pool on excavation day. And if you want any excavated soil to remain on site, that quantity must also be specified.
Mark the spot where equipment is to be located with a stake and a marker stating FILTER LOCATION. This makes the crews’ job easier and it ensures you that they will put the equipment in the right place. Please be sure of the correct filter location, because if you change your mind, it will cost you money to move the equipment or the plumbing lines after they have been installed.
PROGRESS INVOICE PAYMENT
Now let’s talk about money. As your pool gets under way and at various stages of its construction, we’ll require “progress payments.” Prompt payment as we proceed, helps our scheduling process and the logistics involved in creating a fine pool.
These payments are due prior to the specified construction phases. (Check the bottom of your contract for when these progress payments are due.) Any delay in payment could prolong the time until you’re enjoying your pool.
Building a pool is an engineering feat that takes place right in your own backyard. If you ignore it, you’re missing one of the greatest shows on earth. Instead, take interest in what’s going on. It will help you understand how a pool operates… any delays or problems that me be encountered… and you’ll have a front row seat watching some of the most skilled artisans busy at their craft.
Here’s a step-by-step preview of what you can expect…
How soon your permit is issued depends on how many plan checks are ahead of your permit and is any other town department needs to be notified (such as conservation committee, health department, etc.) And if there is a question about grading or if you are in a “critical soil” area, a building engineer may be required to visit the site. This might also add to the waiting period.
It is also your responsibility to provide suitable access to the pool area (the removal of walls, fences, shrubs, etc.). This access must be large enough to accommodate our construction equipment (at least 10 feet wide). This is a preventative measure to protect you and your property from damage. Please note: If access is over your lawn, some damage is inevitable. Be prepared to do some lawn repair.
And now is the time to caution you about two things:
- Don’t let anyone touch or move the wood stakes, strings, or other markers forming the layout of your pool. These markers are critical to the shape , elevation and placement of the pool. Any tampering with them could cause pool measurement discrepancies or extra work, translating it into extra costs.
- Once the hole is dug, keep your distance from it, and especially be mindful that your children remain at a safe distance. The pool sides may have a tendency to crumble and could present a safety hazard, unless you are vigilant.
Back to the digging. Unless your pool requires digging by hand – and you’ll know that before you sign the contract – excavation will be handled quickly by an excavator. In normal soil, this takes about a day (8 hours).
If we encounter any obstacles at this time (such as rock formations, stumps, etc.), our staff will want to consult with you, as this will result in some additional charges to you. (But that’s understandable, isn’t it?) If you cannot stay around during the excavation process, we will need to get in touch with you to approve any additional costs, if applicable.
An average size pool means we will dig out about 2 dozen truckloads of dirt. That’s a lot of soil! It is either hauled away, kept for back-filling as necessary for later phases of construction, or you may retain some of the soil for use elsewhere on your property. If so, tell our foreman. However, once you’ve decided to keep some of the dirt, it is yours. We will not remove or return any dirt after the initial day of excavation. Your foreman will let you know if the materials would be good for backfilling, in case you need some when the time comes.
The excavating is one of the two “dirty and noisy” phases of construction. We attempt to keep the dust down to a minimum, but it is hard to keep the noise of heavy equipment down. Before excavation, we also ask that you keep your eyes and ears open for a site that may be in need of “fill” in your neighborhood. We suggest you keep all windows and doors closed during this stage, Thanks for your cooperation!
This next step is less exciting, but just as essential. Our crews will be taking long, round steel reinforcing rods – an absolute necessity to the structural strength of your pool – and bend and shape them to conform to the walls and the floor of the excavation. Extra steel is used at points of high stress. (No steel is necessary for the steps & benches.) After the rods are firmly tied into position – Viola! – You’ll see your pool starting to shape up.
Just prior to the quitting process the steel rods are blocked up off the ground so the entire “basket” will be surrounded by gunite when finished. The steel placement phase will take about 1 day.
Our plumbers will install and test the underground plumbing also at this time. The filter, pump, and any other equipment that is included in your contract will be installed later, prior to the finishing step.
If the natural gas, propane, and/or electrical underground lines are to be located under the deck area, they should be laid at this time. You must have licensed plumbers and electricians at this time.
This brings up an important point – the Inspection card, Either you will receive this in the mail or your salesperson will bring it out on the day of excavation, Do not let anyone remove this inspection card. It must remain on-site for inspector sign-offs as they are required until the final inspection is okayed.
Be prepared for some commotion and watch your children.
This stage is also one of the most exciting to watch because you actually see your pool taking shape before your eyes.
During this phase the pool fittings, inlets, main drains, light niches, etc. will be set in place and secured.
The easiest way to wet down the shell is either to spray water from the nozzle of your garden hose or to place an oscillating sprinkler onto the gunite shell. Do not worry about any water that may gather at the bottom of your pool. We’ll pump it out later. Please, wet the shell down completely for at least 1 hour to ensure proper curing.
During this curing process we can’t do much construction. The next step will be awhile, since there may be a delay after this process, but do not worry, we will be back to continue.
Depending on how much soil (fill) was left or taken away during excavation and if that soil is a good base for the deck this will decide on how much fill must be brought in or taken away. This fill is your responsibility and will cost you some money. It is hard to judge just how much fill you may need in the beginning of the project (remember, you signed off on the excavation which included an agreement on how much fill was left there); this is the time that you will know exactly how much fill you will need.
If you are ordering the fill, please ask for Crush Bank gravel, “Crusher Run” or something comparable that compacts well. If you have any questions please call us at the office.
Don’t forget that the diving board supports ladder and grab rail anchors (if you have ordered any) must be installed in the decking. We can’t afford to be responsible for any damage to the plumbing work. Have your company pressure test the lines.
The decking is usually done in two steps 1. forming and 2. pouring. During the forming, the deck crew will form the deck with wood and stakes in the shape that was agreed upon the contract. If you don’t have a deck contract yet and would like to see the options and prices please notify us before this time so your pool will move along more smoothly and you will have more time to look over the deck options.
The deck crew will install the wire mesh throughout the deck area. The concrete will be poured, which will take about day. Once the concrete sets, it’s there to stay. Please do not walk on the deck for at least three days after this step has been completed. If you chose stamped concrete decking, please do not walk on the deck until after the sealer has been applied and has dried. The concrete on any type of deck needs time to cure. The pouring of your deck takes approximately a full day.
The tile also has a useful benefit of easy cleaning at the water line. Please make sure that water and electricity will be available for the crew’s use.
All of this fancy tile work takes about 1 full working day depending on how
complicated the job is. If you have ordered some type of coping, this installation will also take approximately a day depending on the type of coping and how many cuts need to be made.
An inspection may be required at this point – please let us know when the inspector signs of the work.
Inspection, inspection, inspection. It’s a nuisance to some people but it’s for your own safety and the protection of your pool investment. So grin and bear it! (The plumber is responsible the trenching for gas lines.)
Your fencing undoubtedly will have to be completed and inspected before the pool is filled. You or your fence company must call for this inspection. It can be installed from this time on,but please do not schedule it to be installed the same day we are going to be doing work on the pool. Both crews will just get in each other’s way. You may want to ask your fence contractor to put up a temporary fence from the beginning of construction to the time of the permanent fence installation. Again, this is not supplied by us. In fact, many towns require a temporary fence around the pool during construction.
Please keep the filter as close to the pool as practical. To get optimum performance from your pool equipment, the location should be near the deep end of the pool, no more than 20 feet away on level ground. The location should also be a well drained area; one that will not flood when it rains. If you are locating the filter indoors, be sure to allow a top clearance of at least 16″. If you ordered a heater, it must be located at least 4 feet away from any house window and needs at least 3 feet clearance above it. If the heater is going indoors. It must be vented by your plumber. (There are exceptions to this, but we really like to keep within these limits). If you need the equipment located outside of the above perimeters, please consult our office to see if it can be done.
Your electrician will also be responsible for installing the electric service to the filtering and cleaning equipment, and to furnish and connect any underwater or area lighting. This work should be done after the equipment has been installed and before the interior finish has been applied. Again, this work requires an inspection. The electrician is responsible for supplying their own trenching for their conduit
CAUTION: Do not turn the light on unless the pool is full with water, as it is a water-cooled fixture and may blow out if left on without water surrounding it.
Please give the following information to your electrician. He will be asking for it.
This stage will take a couple of hours depending on how filthy the pool surface area is. This is done before the interior finish is applied.
Any other projects around the pool which create dirt dust, smoke, or any other debris must be completed before plastering or postponed until after the pool is filled with water.
If you have chosen a plaster finish, our crews will put two coats of finish on the pool surface and trowel it until it is smooth. The interior finish sets up quickly and uses water to help it cure.
As soon as the surface is completed, our foreman will place a garden hose to the drain at the bottom of the pool and start the water (only if you are using the tap water) If you are having the water trucked in, inform the scheduling office of this fact and the water company you are going to use (the scheduling office can help you with locating a water company that will deliver to your area) and we will assist in coordinating the water delivery with the interior finish application.
If you have chosen a Pebble Tec finish, there is one more step prior to filling of the pool. Our crew will acid wash the pebble finish shortly after its application. This process removes the plaster film that’s covering pebbles. Now it’s time to fill with water. (Tap water is acceptable to use, since Pebble Tec will not stain).
And don’t be surprised or upset if your pool water appears murky or green. It will be sparking clean in a few days.
If more than one hose is used, the additional hoses should be placed over the deck at the deep end and should be weighted down so the water will project into the deep end of the pool. These hoses should be turned on only after the pool contains 3 to 4 feet of water. (Please adjust the volume on the hose so that the water doesn’t come in contact with the plaster.) Do not fill the pool using softened water.
When the pool is full (meaning the water level should be halfway up the tile or 3″ below the top edge of the pool) please notify us. There is no harm in not having the filter on, for up to a week after filling. There is also no harm done to the pool or you if you would like to go for a swim before the filter is started. If you have the water trucked in, please wait a day before jumping into the pool.
At this time, start brushing the pool with the pole & 18″ nylon brush provided. It is your responsibility to brush your pool twice a day, side walls. floors, steps. & benches for 10-14 days. This is a maintenance required to assure the beauty and smoothness of your plaster finish. This is not required with the Pebble Tec plaster finish.
We will later provide a manual for reference on any operations and maintenance. There is plenty of room to take notes in this manual during the instruction and the demonstration. We know this is a lot of information to take in at once, so be patient and our start-up person will go over things. Please feel free to ask questions if you do not understand. If you have a video camera, please by all means tape the instructions so you have that to refer back to for assistance.
Once you get the hang of it, the pool will be a cinch to take care of. With the start-up instructions, comes all your maintenance equipment; hand skimmer, brush, pole, test kit, thermometer, vacuum head, vacuum hose and safety rope.
Depending on when the deck was installed, the ladder, grab rails handrails, diving board or any other special equipment that you ordered be installed after the start up. We just want to ensure that the deck is completely cured before any of the above are installed. Of course, if you did not have a deck installed prior to start up, we regret that we will not be able to install these features. If have contracted for a diving board, you must supply us with the deck or a poured pad to hold the diving board supports.
Don’t worry, we don’t abandon you at this point. Any time you have an emergency or a situation you can’t handle, or even if just have a question – call us. We’ll be glad to help you.
All set? Get ready to splash! INSTALLATION IS COMPLETE!! That long awaited day us here!! And one final word – ENJOY!!