We’ve decided to add ‘Pool Build Stories’ to our blog, with the goal of educating and inspiring other homeowners. To find our first batch of builds, we turned to our friends at Trouble Free Pool. TFP is the largest online forum of pool owners and enthusiasts.
Dave Linde and his family let us into their Florida backyard and told us the story of how they turned their backyard into a beautiful oasis.
Brick by brick, you can see how Dave and his family extended their home to make room for a covered porch and (mostly) covered swimming pool. Between landscapers, pool professionals, and inspectors, the Linde’s powered through hiccups and obstacles you wouldn’t fathom running into. At last, the dream was completed. To quote Dave, “Ain’t nothin’ ever easy”.
Originally from the Northeast, which has a much shorter swim season. Dave never thought he would own a pool.
“When we moved to Florida my wife decided she really wanted a pool so it got bumped up our list. I wanted the porch and the hot tub.
We have built a lot of other things over the years so we decided to manage our own construction of the pool too. I am very grateful to have a good friend in the business – his contacts were key for us.”
Dave and his family had an idea. They wanted to build a porch for a spa area. As the porch was built and the roof went up, they decided to turn their idea of a spa only into an entire pool.
This pool would be half in the porch and half outside. While this did cause their recently built wall to be reconstructed and taken down, the results were dreamy.
Digging a large oasis in the ground, you’re sure to come across a setback or two. The Linde’s found that the site of their pool was the site of a pool once before. So, they had to put a pool in a pool.
“That almost made us give up… but at the point we found it there was really no turning back.”
The layout was completed and they were able to choose pavers and coping, as well as finalize the electrical subs.
“The design was all from my wife. A key feature is the 9″ water depth, oversized wading area under the porch cover. All the pool builders wanted that to be shallow and smaller, but my wife got what she wanted and she was right. Adults will wade in or sit on the edge and kids will sit in the shallow water for hours playing in the fountain. My wife tells people she designed it for our grandkids… which is really planning ahead since our kids are still young…”
The Linde’s also faced issues with the grade in which water would incline towards. Originally they wanted the pitch to come away from the house, but both the layout and paver guys agreed that it should come towards the house because it could not pitch towards the pool. So, as a compromise the pitch would be 3″ toward the house. This was there as a fall to keep the water moving instead of pooling.
Before the paver subcontractor started paving, the County asked for termite poison to be applied to the soil underneath. So, that put off the pavers another week and when they finally finished another issue arose. There was no design or materials for the waterfall.
The designer was a bit stumped as to how to fit up this natural rocks to make a beautiful cascade. Along with the natural rocks, they needed a few hundred pounds of other stone to help create the structure and fit everything together. Getting the water tight and directing it appropriately is very important.
After finding out that the pool alarms had to pass an inspection before they could continue with this beautiful build, they failed their first inspection. Originally they had bought alarms installed with adhesive tape, come to find out they need epoxy to pass the inspection. Once those finally came in, they passed the alarm, electrical, and enclosure inspections! What a learning experience for the Linde family!
“I did get my hot tub, a separate standalone unit and I love it. Last weekend I installed a 55” flat panel so we can watch TV from the pool and hot tub.”
The Finished Product
Dave turned his lemons into lemonade on his journey to this porch oasis. His swimming pool is now a place of temperature-controlled relaxation. What a luxury to have in the humid state of Florida. Dave, his family, and his friends can now spend their free time enjoying this beautiful renovation. Remarking on his last thoughts of the project, Dave said, “I will claim success and say that being our own pool general contractor worked out OK.”
“I enjoy showing people the computer controlled lights and water features… fun to turn on the fountain and lights from my iPhone.”
“My favorite part is actually the landscaping and I’m glad I convinced my wife to spend the money to get it all in sooner not later. As it’s maturing the backyard is becoming more lush and sitting in the pool or tub or lounger seems that much better.”
Pool Equipment Specs:
Jandy i-Aqualink RS-8
Fafco Solar panels
Do you have a build story you’d like to share with the world? Send an email to [email protected], and you could end up being our next featured article!