For many people in the country a swimming pool is a dream item, one that adorns the homes of movie stars and multi-millionaires. The thought of saving to excavate the backyard for this slice of Heaven is beyond comprehension. However, a swimming pool does not cost as much as these people fear and for less than $3,000 U.S. they can be doing laps in their own back yard.
The early swimming pools were solid concrete before a gunite came into vogue. Gunite stands for dry gunned concrete. For swimming pool builders, these pools and spas are very labor intensive to build but many are still made this way.
A preferred way of building a gunite pool for a swimming pool contractor is to first have the excavation done. Then forms are built with wood lined with a sealer like tarpaper or plastic. After the forms are up a thick mat of reinforced concrete is tied into the form to the shape of the swimming pool. The gunite process is now initiated.
To start the gunite procedure the operator points the nozzle at the wall and a mixture of sand and cement is powered by an airstream to the nozzle where it is mixed with a spray of water and both are delivered to the walls and floors of the pool. This separation of dry and wet makes the operation easier than trying to push a heavy sludge through the nozzle. After the concrete dries the walls and floors are plastered.
Most commercial pools are gunite but many homeowners choose them as they can be built in many shapes and sizes. In addition, they can choose from finishes, pebble applications or tile while allowing for water features like waterfalls and jungle-style rock spas. A swimming pool builder will take an average of 8-10 weeks to complete a gunite pool with a minimum cost of $37,000 for a 16' x 32' pool.
Vinyl Changes the Industry
Putting a vinyl liner on the surface of the pool walls and floor changed the way a pool was made. Pool builders could now make in the ground swimming pools with supporting materials like fiberglass, concrete block and steel and then covered with a vinyl liner. In addition old, leaky gunite pools could be resurfaced with vinyl instead of repairing them. Vinyl surfaces are easier to clean and there are fewer injuries from scrapes with the material. A 16' x 32' vinyl pool with steel walls would start at about $17,000.
The nice thing about a vinyl liner is that repairs can be accomplished with a patching kit. However, if the liner gets too tattered then it can be replaced for about $1,000. So even if you replaced a vinyl liner every 5 years you would rarely get up to the price of a gunite pool. And a gunite pool may need resurfacing as well.
Above Ground Pool
If a vinyl liner put the in-ground swimming pool into the backyards of middle-class America then above-ground pools gave everyone the chance. At around $3,000 for a 16' x 32' pool and much less for smaller ones almost everyone can have a soak after a hot day at work or throw a pool party. In addition, these are a do-it-yourself project for installation and each kit has a DVD to show step-by-step instructions for the setup. In addition, many include the filter system, cover and a skimmer in the kit as well as a 20-year limited warranty. Because of the price and versatility the above-ground pool is definitely one of the biggest growth areas of the swimming pool industry.
A relative newcomer to the pool world the lap pool is a way to add a pool to the home for workouts and and pleasure without the expense of a full size swimming pool. Lap pools can be as narrow as 5' wide but can be as long as 75 feet or as short as 40 feet. In addition, even the long lap pools can be easily place indoors or be a part of the regular-sized swimming pool.
The compact current pools can fit in almost any indoor application that can support the weight. At around 8 feet x 14 feet x 3 1/3 feet deep they are quite compact. How they work is that the swimmer turns on a water flow that emanates from the front of the swim tank and pushes against the swimmer. He or she adjusts the flow from a floating controller, making it go fast or slow depending on the workout that is required. When not being in use as an exerciser it is a nice, small pool to have a relaxing dip.
For more information on how to get a swimming pool contractor consult our Contractor Directory or post your project online.Posted by: TrustedPros