Fiberglass Pools And Hot Tubs

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Installing and Building Spas and Pools

Spas and pools require specialized installation, including the use of heavy machinery to dig swimming pool holes and licensed electricians to wire spas or hot tubs. Successful installation and building of spas and pools requires careful planning by both homeowners and contractors.

Swimming Pool Considerations

You should plan the location for spas and pools carefully. Choose a spot without any overhead power lines, and verify the location of underground utility and sewer lines.

Try to avoid placing swimming pools under overhanging trees. Falling leaves and branches will make cleaning more difficult, and over time tree roots could damage pool walls.

Other factors to consider include the position of the sun, which can affect pool temperature, and proximity to restrooms. Safety features such as fences, locked gates and pool covers also need to be considered.

Installing Fiberglass Pools

Fiberglass pools are factory-built pool shells that are dug into the ground during installation. Fiberglass pools come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, and can be custom-built to fit the buyer's needs.

Fiberglass swimming pools require more complex installation than above ground spas and pools. The pool shell is delivered to the house by truck, and lowered into a pre-dug hole. The pool must be leveled and plumbing added, after which the hole is back-filled. A poolside deck or walkway is usually added.

Unlike above ground pools, fiberglass pools are intended to contain water at all times. Improperly draining fiberglass pools can cause ground pressure that cracks or buckles the pool shell.

Spa and Hot Tub Installation

Many of the same considerations for positioning and installing swimming pools apply to spas. Boardwalks or decks help prevent debris on people's feet from entering spas, and like swimming pools, spas need safety fences or covers.

Spas installed on existing decks or patios require special attention. A gallon of water weighs 8.35 pounds. A fully-sized spa, when filled with water and occupants, can weigh more than 5,000 pounds. Existing decks may not possess the structural strength to support such large weights. Always consult with a structural engineer or building contractor before installing spas on decks.

Indoor spas raise other issues. Steam and moisture from indoor spas must be removed, so adequate ventilation is important. A floor drain makes it easier to clean up splashes from an indoor spa.

Indoors or out, most spas must be hardwired into 240 volt/50 amp circuits. Electrical wiring must be performed by a qualified electrician, who must also install a manual power disconnector at least five feet away from the spa.

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