|ArticleTitle Ė Swimming Pool D.I.Y. in 10 Easy Stages |
Copyright © Lee Coleman CEO of
Property Services France
Article Author: Lee Coleman.
Article Copyright: 2005
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This article was written by Lee Coleman CEO of
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Swimming Pool D.I.Y. in 10 Easy Steps
Copyright © 2005 Lee Coleman
Brief description Ė
Swimming Pool D.I.Y. in 10 Easy Stages
Full Description Ė
Installing your own swimming pool can be very rewarding and certainly save you a packet. Follow these 10 easy stages and you wonít go far wrong.
Swimming Pool D.I.Y. in 10 Easy Stages
Before doing any type of installation itís going save you a lot of time and hassle if you do as much preparation as possible.
Decide where you want to have your pool, ideally put it somewhere itís going to have the sun on it all day. Consider things like access for a digger or lorries delivering materials, (the easier you make it, the cheaper itís likely to be). Also decide if you want to remove the spoil that comes from the hole or use it to landscape the surrounding garden. Itís worth remembering that there is a huge amount of spoil from the average excavation so often itís better to just get shot of it, especially if you have stony ground.
Make sure you leave yourself enough room around your proposed pool area to install whatever type of terracing you decide to have and if youíre going to fit a security fence in France make sure you have room to leave the minimum of 1 mtr all the way around the pool.
The only other thing to make sure of before you start is that you have the relevant planning permission to install your pool. In France check with your local Marie first then fill out a ďdeclaration de travauxĒ if you donít hear anything from the D.D.E. within 45 days of them receiving your declaration and your Marie sayís itís o.k. you can fit your pool.
Make sure you buy a good quality D.I.Y. pool kit. Thereís hundreds of different D.I.Y. pool kits available so try to find one which comes with a set of good installation instructions and someone you can contact if you have any problems. When it arrives check the contents of the kit to make sure itís all there before you start.
Mark out the hole. Most good kit pools only need a maximum of 50cm (500mm) room all the way around them to be able to build them, so if your pool is going to be 4 x 8 mtrs your hole will be marked at 4.5 x 8.5 mtrs. Easy so far, right? Also make sure you mark two centre lines, one down the length and one across the width. These two lines should be staked at either end well out side the area of the hole. If you keep these markers you can always check your measurements if you need to.
TIP. By keeping the hole as small as possible it will mean you have less to backfill.
Dig the hole. If you hire a good digger driver he will usually have his own laser level, if not, hire one. For the best results check the depth of the hole regularly and also make sure that the sides of the hole are vertical, if not, once the digger leaves you will have to shave the sides of the hole by hand, not fun. You may have to allow extra depth for under-pool drainage but remember to measure leaving at least 100mm sticking out of the ground so you have enough depth to lay any terracing.
Building the pool structure. When you get to the stage of putting your pool kit together, pay real attention to all levels and measurements. MEASURE TWICE, DO ONCE, check all dimensions are what they are supposed to be, horizontally, vertically and diagonally. If something doesnít look right, it probably isnít. This bit may take anything from a day to three or four depending on the type of kit used and how much concrete is needed to support the structure.
Preparing the base. Most D.I.Y. pool kits have liners, most of which be installed on a base of compact sand or, a weak sand and cement screed. A cement base can be smoother than sand and makes for a more professional finish so ask your supplier to see what they recommend.
For a sand base, wet the sand and use a 45kg compactor or hand garden type roller to flatten the base. If concrete is preferred use a semi dry mix, reinforced with metal or fibre, draw a screed rail over the surface to make around a 6cm thickness then smooth off with a ďtalocheĒ or board type float.
Preparing the pool interior. Some liners need around a 4-5Ē fillet all the way around the base of the pool between the walls and the floor at 45 degrees so that they are less stressed at the seams. Check the walls of your pool for any sharp edges and either cover them with duct tape or silicone sealent. Sweep the base of the pool if itís a cement base, any holes or digs in the base can be covered with a thin layer of just dry cement powder smoothed out.
Extra protection for the liner can be provided by a felt or foam under lining placed on the floor and walls.
Fitting White Goods. Itís normally at this stage that the skimmers, jets, lights, plumbing and any other fittings needed, are cut and fitted into the structure of your pool. Skimmers are usually placed at the opposite side to the inlet jets, take care to measure their positions accurately. Pay attention to all seals and use a suitable sealing compound if required.
TIP: Donít fit an underwater projector facing a house as they can be far too bright at night.
Installing the liner. Ensure all fittings are well sealed and check one last time for any sharp edges. Feel all over the floor and if a stone or clump of sand can be felt a quick thump from a hammer will get rid of them. Youíll be surprised how large the smallest grains can feel when they are under a piece of felt. Try to fit your liner when itís a hot day, unfold the liner and it will become supple enough to get any creases or folds out.
Secure the liner at the top of the pool and place the tube of a vacuum cleaner between the liner and pool wall in a central position. Seal off all other gaps and as you begin to add water, smooth out the wrinkles in the base of the pool with your feet. At the same time switch on the vacuum and the liner will sit back against the walls of the pool getting rid of wrinkles and creases.
TIP: Cut your toenails before you start, long nails can puncture a liner easily when itís being installed.
Cutting the liner. If you have to cut the liner in a pool for the skimmers, jets, roman end or whatever, always fill the pool to just below the level of the fitting before cutting it out, this way the liner will already be stretched into position and will not tear. Pay special attention and make absolutely certain of where you need to cut the liner. A hole in the wrong place at this stage would not be ideal.
You can normally clamp the liner into place around whatever you are fitting, then cut out the liner, donít try to cut (by eye) before the liner is in place, no-ones free hand is that good!
Finishing off. Backfilling any pool is one of the most laborious jobs to do, especially if you donít have a digger at hand. Continue to fill the pool and backfill at the same time. Some pools will need a backfill of dry sand and cement, others use stone for better drainage or just the spoil from the hole, consult your kit supplier.
Connect your pump and filtration system and fit any marjelles (coping) if required. Any stone marjelles (coping) should be fitted using white cement mixed with a water proofing compound such as hydro-fuge.
Thatís it. Your pool is now ready for use, once you have added either salt or chlorine to treat the water. Even if you still have to build a terrace you can taste the fruits of your labour. Go on dive in!
For more information regarding in-ground pool
kits and swimming pool security systems for pools
in France contact us today. Visit our website:
About the Author
Lee is currently residing in the South of France running several successfull business ventures which include swimming pools, spa's, sauna's mini diggers and property maintenance.
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