Renovating your pool

The quick answer:

Want to repair or update your pool? Add on some cool features? Switch up your pool's shape?

Here's what's trending in pool renovations today:

1) Water features
2) Backyard landscaping including knee walls, patios, decks, roof structures, cabanas, sprinkler systems, and night lighting
3) Auto-levellers
4) Automatic pool cleaners
5) Automatic covers
6) Whirlpools
7) Diving rocks

Whatever you decide to do, do it with a reputable company that knows the materials and methods needed to ensure the work withstands all seasons.

Still here? Great! Read on to learn more about pool renovation.

How's your pool doing?

In need of a little repair? Time to update that tired old coping, tile, or marbelite?

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This pool had a total makeover: new plumbing lines and equipment, painted interior replaced with marbelite, new flagstone coping, stamped concrete deck, ledgerock knee wall, landscaping and cedar fence. It's one of three Betz pools for the same customer.

Maybe you've seen some of the amazing add-ons available today. Upgrades like water features, knee walls, cabanas, and whirlpools.

Or perhaps you're considering a change to the size or shape of your pool.

"A lot of people don't realize the major changes you can do to a pool besides resurfacing or prettying up what's already there. You can change the shape, the look, the dimensions. It's surprising how much can be done," explains Frank Blanchet of Betz Pools.

Altering the shape or size of your pool is one of the biggest changes you can make to get the pool you want. Changes to shape and size often involve ripping out part or all of the the pool and starting over. Random or kidney-shaped pools with lots of curves were very popular 15 or 20 years ago. Today, the trend is more toward the elegance of rectangular or multi-angular pools with ultramodern linear lines.

More commonly, people replace tiles, refresh coping, and resurface to keep their pools in good repair and looking great.

"It's like refreshing a room in your house," Frank says. "Over time, materials can deteriorate or people may just want to switch up material choices or colours to keep the pool looking up to date."

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This old rectangular pool had its corner whirlpool replaced with one indoors. The space was transformed into a natural stone grotto with soothing water feature.

People also look for features that improve the enjoyment they get out of their pool and make pool maintenance easier:

1) Water features with sheer descents

2) Backyard landscaping, including knee walls, patios, decks, roof structures, cabanas, sprinkler systems, and night lighting

3) Auto-levellers to eliminate the chore of manual filling

4) Automatic pool cleaners, particularly for older pools that aren’t suitable for pressurized pool cleaners

5) Automatic covers for rectangular pools that can be rolled on and off in about a minute to provide a safety barrier for kids, retain the pool's heat, keep the pool cleaner, and reduce consumption of chemicals

6) Whirlpools as luxury leisure additions to any pool

7) Diving rocks to replace diving boards

If you're planning on having work done on your pool, it's important to keep in mind the amount of time needed. Getting an idea and expecting the work to start two weeks later is overly optimistic. Do your planning well in advance and schedule the work for later in the season or the following spring.

It's also important to pay attention to the timing of each project if you're getting a lot of work done. You don't want to do the landscaping work first only to have to rip it out to accommodate deck, sprinkler, or lighting projects.

"At Betz, we like to put together a plan for big projects. So we'll design the whole backyard and then work on the timing of everything," Frank says.

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Some pool renovations become part of a complete backyard makeover including outdoor dining and living rooms complete with fire feature.

Whatever work you plan for your pool, make sure you get a guarantee on labour and materials. The industry standard guarantee is one year but Frank maintains you need at least three years to really test out what you've got.

"Sometimes we'll get a mild winter or even two in a row. So three years is a good indication that you've got a quality installation and a quality product. We offer a three-year guarantee on labour and materials and I've never had to go back and redo tile, coping, or marbelite in that time," he says.

But he has been called in to redo the work of other companies.

"That's really unfortunate because some of these companies actually think they know the materials that can stand up to our winters and how to apply them, but often they don't."

Whether you're looking to spruce up your pool or make major changes, make sure to work with people who’ve had years of experience doing pool renovation and make sure they can provide numerous references.

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Everything was replaced on this graceful 50-foot countryside pool. High efficiency geothermal and solar heating systems ensure there is no impact on the environment.

Looking for reliable information on renovating your pool? Feel free to get in touch.

Surfing the Internet is a good start. But your single most important step for pool information is to contact a certified pool professional to make sure you get the custom advice you need.

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Frank Blanchet
Betz Pools

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