Welcome back everyone! Spring has finally arrived and for those in the Northeast and Midwest we welcome the sunshine and warmer temperatures to come with robust gratitude.
Undoubtedly we remember last year when it was nearly 80 degrees by the end of March. Ice had left the lakes and streams and the flowers, bugs and birds were strutting their beauty and energy all over the place. This year has been the total opposite with the past two days being in the lower 20’s. Burrr! Stop that!
The weatherman has promised a warm up for today and through the weekend so we are ready to start work again. I just wanted to put out a few short items for your consideration. Yesterday the crew opened my pool and we had put a new safety cover on last year, the kind with the sun or UV protection and I have to tell you Holy Cow! It was the cleanest I have ever opened my pool before. I just have to throw the automatic vacuum in to pick up a few leaves and Shazam we are good to go!
Next, we have revamped our website and I have been working hard getting the message out there about consumer choices and what quality building means to us. Check out our site at www.prospectpoosllc.com or check videos out on You Tube there are two fantastic videos showing completed projects and the construction of a liner pool from start to finish. Send me your thoughts and comments, I always appreciate constructive feedback!
In keeping with education I thought I would quickly go over the types of swimming pools out there. For many who are thinking about making a purchase this year the vast array of options can be confusing so I will first start this blog giving some answers on Above Ground Pools. Above Ground pools have had a few changes in the last 10 or so years. Previously these pools came only in a 48inch wall height and limited round sizes and today you can purchase wall heights up to 54 inches and the sizes have come to include rounds, ovals and rectangles. Liner choices are now over the wall and have updated to beaded liners where the liner hangs from the pools edge. The liner patterns have also increased in options from plain blue to different patterns giving the consumer an array of options to customize. The accessory market has also increased to include LED lighting, fountains and I have even seen pools with spas in them. Of course when something becomes hot or a “fad” you can be sure that there are caveats to pay attention to. The first is to buy from a reputable dealer of course and the second is to have the pool installed by a fully licensed and insured installer with references!
Above Ground pools also come in an array of materials and that is where you will find the varying price differences so compare apples to apples when shopping those showrooms. These pools are now made in steel, steel and resin, aluminum and polymer/resin. Steel Walled pools being the cheapest and aluminum likely the priciest. This time of year packages will include the pool, filter and pump, ladder and other accessories. When you are comparing pricing don’t get pulled into that mindset of look at all you get but instead keep in mind the quality of what you are going to get. Stick to products that if necessary you can find parts to from other sources. In other words stick with quality and name brand equipment. Ask yourself if the seller is a reputable business and will they be there in the long term.
Moving on to the In the Ground pool category there has been so many positive changes in the building materials, safety and design features to list them all. Most in the ground pool builders will meet with you at your home and give you a free estimate at which time they will go over all of your options for design and features.
Plaster surfaced pools are predominant in the warmer climates and were very popular previously because of the custom designs that could be done with the form and shape of the pool. Plaster surfaces are subject to cracking or chipping and in general require more maintenance in the way of painting, acid washing and chemicals.
Fiberglass pools became a more affordable option in the past few years, however you are not able to customize a fiberglass pool and they cannot exceed 16 feet wide. Another limitation is that you should not drain a fiberglass pool as the weight of the water holds the pool in place. Also the surface when in need of repair can be difficult to resurface and match the color of original pool.
Lastly, the vinyl liner pool will usually be the least expensive when compared to plaster. Liner pools today can also be customized to meet your shape and design qualifications. You can now add Brazilian Benches, custom steps and have an array of liner patterns and deck finishes that can make the pool area look like a concrete pool with half the cost. The smoother feel of a liner can be more children friendly as they won’t feel any roughness and can avoid the scrapes and scratches often caused by concrete or plaster pools.
As with Above Ground pools the same caveats apply, reputation and referrals are key to due diligence when hiring a contractor. Check back frequently to our website as I will be publishing “How To Hire A Contractor” in the next few weeks!
What you decide to choose for your backyard oasis is an important decision. As with any major purchase you want to be aware of the entire picture so do your homework. Don’t be afraid to ask for references and actually follow up with those given. Price should be only one factor in your swimming pool purchase decision, in addition you want to feel that you are dealing with a reputable builder/installer and dealer who will be able to service you and your pool for years to come.