Winter is the best time to plan out an inground pool project - which can take 20-40 hours of work just to plan out all of the steps correctly. Before you rush out and buy an inground pool kit, there is a lot of preparation to be done. Fortunately, this is the perfect time of year to contact suppliers and contractors and county officials, to make a plan to build your own inground pool. Get all your ducks in a row, so to speak. The perfect time to do some Inground Pool Research for a summer 2015 inground pool!
Plans & Permits
Visiting your local building and zoning department for information on self-installed inground pool construction is a great first step. The department of building and zoning in your town is likely located in the government center for larger cities and in city hall for smaller towns. In the winter, the lines of people that you may see in spring and summer have disappeared from the Building and Zoning department, and it's much easier to meet with an official to ask any questions particular to your pool installation.
Most county or city offices have an "Inground Pool Packet", or at least a brochure on applying for an inground pool permit. In the early information gathering stages, you may need the following information:
- Plans and Permits required for inground pool construction.
- Inspections required and how and when to schedule them.
- Temporary and permanent pool fencing requirements.
- Setbacks, easements or other non-usable area on your property.
Contractor Price Quotes
The next bit of research should begin on local contractors and tradesmen that will be needed to assist you with the pool project. When you build your own inground pool, you will act as the "General Contractor", hiring some "sub-contractors". You can be totally hands-off, and hire others to do the entire job - or be down in the trenches, doing most of the work yourself.
You can't do it all however - you will need to hire one or more companies or individuals to do some parts of the pool project. Winter is the perfect time to get price quotes from contractors, most of whom are in their offices, hibernating until early spring weather arrives. If you can, always get 2-3 competing quotes, to be sure that you do not pay too much. Most price quotes are good for 6 months with most contractors; ask if not printed on the quotation.
- Electrician to wire the equipment pad and pool lights, and bond and ground it all.
- Contact your gas supplier if you are installing a gas pool heater.
- Excavator to dig the pool, and earth movers to backfill the pool. Trucks to remove excess dirt.
- Concrete delivery for the concrete collar and pool deck and patio areas.
- Delivery of pool floor materials and gravel, mulch and landscape supply.
Most of our customers who build their own pool will do their own plumbing, below ground and on the equipment pad. They also do the bulk of the work installing the pool and liner.
Rent-a-Randy is our professional pool installation assistance program, in which Randy Wilcox comes to your town for 4-5 days, to help install the pool. This exclusive SPP service is a great value for the pool installer that wants to have 25 years of experience on-site, and who also wants to fast track the construction process.
The third bit of winter research is shopping or buying your inground pool kit. By this time, you should have the size of your pool in mind, based on your particular property. Once you know an approximate size, you can decide on shape. Do you want a modified rectangle or something curvy and freeform? Rectangular shapes will give you the most surface or swimming area, but sometimes a more natural shape fits better into your backyard.
- Pool shape and size?
- Pool heater or salt chlorinator?
- Pool slide or diving board?
- Landscaping around the pool?
The hardest part, if you've never owned a pool before - is knowing what features or options would be most beneficial to explore in more detail. There is so much to learn about pool systems and water chemistry, etc - but one step at a time. The good thing is that most upgrades to the pool equipment can be easily added at a later date - but pool size and shape, that's a hard thing to change. Most people decide after the first season that they need a pool heater; it's the number one upgrade that my customers make after building their own pool.
Finally, plan the landscaping around your pool. After all of the heavy equipment leaves the site, how are you going to reconstruct the backyard? Planning a pool landscape should be done carefully, with plants that provide shade or beauty, without a lot of leaf litter or maintenance required. Keep grading in mind, so that the pool is always 4-6" above surrounding planters and grass areas, and that pool decks slope away from the pool, at least 1/4" per foot.
Spring is coming and it's time to start planning to build your own inground pool. You'll find the people that you need to talk to are more accessible before March, than they are afterwards, when they spend much of their day outside the office. Even here at SPP, it's kinda quiet in early January!
At SPP, our customers enjoy start-to-finish support, unlimited hand-holding - as much as you need. Call or email any one of the SPP Pool Experts today to begin planning your self-installed inground pool! 800-983-76665
SPP Pool Expert