Monday, March 12, 2012

small rectangular gunite pool

 Home is in the greater Cincinnati area. Lot is one acre, wooded, with lots of space for pool and patio. Home values in our subdivision vary from about $250,000 on the low end, to about $500,000 on the upper end. Ours is near the upper end of that range. I include this information only to help gauge the level of investment in a pool a property such as ours warrants.

Wife wants to swim laps. I'm more interested in having enough width for multiple family members and guests to splash around in. Thought we'd look into fiberglass with a swim jet, but to be honest, after staking out a 16X40 space in the backyard adjacent to the house, it looks ridiculously small (I know...nice problem to have). It seems fiberglass is out of the equation as a result.

We plan to stay in this home for another ten to maybe twenty years.

We would like a rectangular shape, as low maintenance is a very high priority for us, and an automatic pool cover is mandatory to get me to sign off on this.

A couple of years ago we had a 20x60 vinyl pool quoted at about $75k with a large patio area, cover, etc. We were surprised at the cost, as we had expected it to come in at closer to $55k, so we let that plan lie dormant.

A month or so back, we got an estimate from a gunite builder for 18x50, with features comparable to the original 20x60. Excluding water features, the rough estimate came back at about $100k.

I've searched this and another pool forum to educate myself as best I can. I am concerned with throwing $100k into a project that may crack, may be more maintenance intensive (acid washing, re-plastering), rougher on the feet (?), and perhaps too large an investment for a property in our location (I'm not interested in owning the most expensive property in the area).

On the other hand, would a 20X60 pool in vinyl be "too cheap" for the property? I hope that makes sense.

It seems like fiberglass wins hands down in the maintenance aspect...assuming it is installed correctly...though we can't get the size we'd like in fiberglass. Vinyl seems to win in the "cost-effective" category if one can expect to get 7-10 years out of a liner, and assumning gunite needs to be replastered every ten years as well.

Given the above, and assuming cost isn't an obstacle, what are your thoughts on gunite vs. vinyl?

Do either construction method seem to do better with property resale value? It seems there may be more "prestige" with gunite, but I really don't care much about that.

The frost line here is about thirty inches deep. What is the probability a gunite pool will crack...and crack beyond economical repair?

I'd strongly prefer to not spend more than a few minutes each week maintaining the pool. Which of the two should I expect to be lower maintenance?

How often does this acid washing need to be done to a gunite pool on average assuming chemistries are reasonably well controlled?

Is ten years a reasonable expectation for lifespan of plaster on a gunite pool?

Once a gunite pool is replastered, will it look "brand new", as a vinyl pool with a new liner would?

I know there are a lot of questions there, but the more I read these forums, the more questions I have.

Thanks again in advance for any thoughts/opinions/suggestions you have to share. For those who own, or have owned either gunite or vinyl pools, I'd love to read about your experiences.
siege auto
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