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Keeping a swimming pool

Last post Thu, Mar 21 2013 10:34 AM by Adam8100. 15 replies.
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  • Thu, Jul 16 2009 11:35 AM

    • Pat
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Tue, Mar 6 2007
    • Colorado
    • Posts 14,463

    Keeping a swimming pool

    A question from a reader: 

    Several years ago, we bought a house with an inground swimming pool surrounded by a very large back yard.  We barely use the pool, but to keep it from turning into a cesspool, we are spending around a thousand dollars a year on water treatment. We’d like to make the pool disappear. Is there anybody out there with any experience with unwanted inground pools?

    Can you help? 

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  • Thu, Jul 16 2009 11:43 AM In reply to

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    I don't have a swimming pool. People in my area do have pools.

    One person got rid of their pool. I don't know why they got rid of it. They turned it into a tennis court.

    I do not know why they did this or how they did it.

    I understand that pools are very expensive to maintain because of treating the water, cleaning it, and the insurance.

  • Thu, Jul 16 2009 11:50 AM In reply to

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    Our old neighbors had their pool filled in. I don't know if they actually "removed" the lining etc. or just dumped dirt over the top of everything.  They said the filling in was expensive (having dump trucks of dirt brought in and tamping it down) but not as much as maintenance and extra insurance to have the pool operational.

  • Thu, Jul 16 2009 11:56 AM In reply to

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    My in-laws next door neighbors had their inground pool filled in, I don't remember how much she said it was but it was comparable to putting in a pool.  It was very expensive, they had to remove part of their gate so the dirt truck could back in and also to allow for a bobcat to get in the backyard.  However they were thrilled to get rid of it and redid the backyard and loved the final product.

    Heather in CA
  • Thu, Jul 16 2009 4:02 PM In reply to

    • Deana
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Sun, Sep 2 2007
    • Posts 44

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    We have a pool but don't spend anywhere near $1000 a year to keep it going.  Are you paying a service to clean it??  Typically, I buy one LARGE bucket of chlorine tablets (about $75 or so) and that lasts me the whole swim season.  Then I buy a case of shock - about $40 if I recall - but may buy more if we have a high use or high algae year.  We do pay a service to open and close it, but even adding those fees (probably about $500 for both together) we still aren't close to $1000. 

    We did think about filling it in... knew we had to do something as the concrete was a mess and the vinyl needed replacing,  but instead we did a remodel/redesign for big bucks.  I know we put a lot of money into it, but we felt that it added to the house value since we want to sell in the next five years or so, and this way we get to enjoy the "new" pool area.  And it looks awesome!

  • Thu, Jul 16 2009 8:20 PM In reply to

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    I hope to get a pool someday!  I have an above ground one now which is certainly a lot smaller than an inground but for water maintenance we don't spend a lot at all, a shock/oxidizer/algaecide solution that costs about $8/bottle and lasts 4-6 weeks.  Filter costs about $5/month.

    I have several friends with pools and from what I have read with regards to the above ground pool and talking to friends that have the inground pools, the ones who maintain the pool themselves do spend significantly less.  If there is a pool service and supply store near you, such as Leslie's, talk to them as they will test your water for free and tell you exactly what to you need to add to maintain the water yourself.  One of my friends with an inground pool spends about $15 per month and does it herself.

    The other option could be to drain it and leave it empty.  I too have heard that filling in the pool can be very expensive, leaving it empty would prevent it from turning into a cesspool . . .

  • Thu, Jul 16 2009 10:18 PM In reply to

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    Half of the garage at our house is built over a filled in pool.  My guess, since my FIL did it, is that he had it filled with dirt and put his wife's shop over it; the shop was an add-on to the single-car garage.  There's also an office on the back of the shop and small shed added on the far end of the garage.  Altogether it's close to 750-800 square feet for the whole garage.  He filled it in b/c they didn't use the pool and didn't want to pay to put a fence around it and for the extra home-owner's insurance.
    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in the General forum
  • Fri, Jul 17 2009 7:17 AM In reply to

    • alexss
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Mon, Jun 23 2008
    • Posts 134

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    The problem with draining it and letting it stay empty is that it takes a lot of work to keep it empty.  Either a very good  water proof cover would have to be added permanently, which still won't assure rodents, etc won't get into it, or the homeowner will have to deal with removing leaves and whatever the wind blows in as well as dealing with rain and snow leaving a little water in the bottom (with the leaves=bog).  Even if it has a bottom drain, keeping that from becoming clogged with leaves, etc if there is no cover is a pain, from the places with unused pools I saw while we were looking at houses.  

  • Fri, Jul 17 2009 7:54 AM In reply to

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    We have a small inground and it doesn't cost us anywhere near $1000 a year to maintain.  Like Deana, I just buy a large bucket of tabs and I also buy a bucket of granular shock and that does a full season (March-October); it's not "swimmable" that full time because of temp, but we uncover early and get the chemicals circulating to head off algae.  I use about 12# of baking soda at opening to balance the water, spend around $15 on stabilizer, and about $30 on algaecide to close it down. We open and close it ourselves, but  we have a flow-thru safety cover which fastens to the concrete with steel anchors and looks like a large trampoline when it's on; that makes it easier than having to pump standing water off a solid cover. The filter does run our power bill up around $20/month, though, so that's another expense. 

    Ours was installed in 1991, so a lot of the original equipment is starting to go now; I've already replaced the filter, pump motor and chlorinator for about $500 total and we will need a new vinyl liner within the next couple of years and that's a big expense. They told us at the beginning that the life expectancy of a liner is around 10 years and we've already gotten nearly twice that, so I guess we're due.  Our concrete has a few cracks and needs a good cleaning.  Overall, it's worth it for us because the grandkids enjoy it, but I probably wouldn't put another one in if we ever move.

    western NC
  • Mon, Jul 27 2009 5:33 AM In reply to

    Re: Keeping a swimming pool

    When we've house hunted a number of homes we like had pools but we didn't choose them for that reason but through that process I've read of those who have converted their pools to a koi fish pond I must admit it seems pretty complex and relatively expensive

     If you're in a larger metro area I'd look on Craigslist to see if anyone is offering free fill dirt, there are listings like that frequently where I live.  Usually they offer to deliver for free within a certain radius and sometimes further for a nominal fee.  As another example a neighbor down the street had her basement flood and for remediating that they had to excavate all around her foundation and that dirt had to go somewhere...can't hurt to ask, right?  Finally, I would guess companies that install pools probably aren't getting much business these days in many areas, why not talk to one for advice on filling in and see if they want to do the work for you for a reasonable fee... if they really need revenue, who knows/  Also, I'd definately negotiate for a reasonable price for anyone doing the work on fence removal or any associated products.  Alot of smaller contractors need work and might be willing to take the project on at a reasonable cost.

    Hope to read your solution on Stretcher at some point down the road!

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