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Cabana located on the side of a lush hill is centered in the photo with a long clear pool in front of it as a dog lies peacefully in the corner.

The Only Pool Renovations Guide You’ll Ever Need

Tips and Industry Advice on How to Prepare for In-Ground Pool Repairs & Swimming Pool Restorations

Pool renovation season is underway in Ottawa. And if you’re planning to build or repair a pool this summer, you are probably eager to have it completed asap.

Like all home renovations, pool renovations can be quite overwhelming. Along with budgeting, there are many things to consider in the planning process that will ensure your renovations are completed on time and within budget.

To help you get through the pool planning process, we’ve built the ultimate pool renovations guide just for you.

Let’s get started!

Set Your Budget

Pools are often seen as a poor investment that could potentially devalue your home. However, if done correctly, renovating your pool could actually add more value to your home. Before you can make any definitive decisions for your pool renovations, you need to create a realistic budget. This budget will guide you throughout the planning process since you will have to base your decisions on what you can afford.

Examine your finances and determine how much you’re willing to set aside for pool renovations. Also, include at least a 20% buffer in case unexpected costs bring you over budget.

Get the Professionals in to Inspect the Area

Before starting any swimming pool restorations, hire a professional to inspect your backyard and the existing pool structure (if you have one).

Many factors can affect your pool’s structural integrity, such as the slope of the land. For this reason, it’s important to know what you can do with your pool before starting the project.

Know Your Must-Haves and Needs

To build the best pool that suits you and your family, create a list of all the reasons why you want pool renovations in the first place. Think about the functional aspect of your pool first before going into specifics.

Will you use your pool for fitness, family fun, entertaining, relaxing, all or some of the above? Do you want to turn your backyard into an oasis?

You should have a list of priority features your pool must have, and a list of extra features that are secondary. Budget permitting, you may be able to include some or all of the secondary features. But make sure you cover the most important features first. From replacing pool liners to installing water features, there are many pool renovation ideas available; you just have to figure out what suits your needs best.

Other pool renovation ideas include:

  • Pool decks;
  • Walk-in entry;
  • Infinity ledges;
  • Swim-up bars;
  • Ladders, slides, and diving boards;
  • A pool fence;
  • A swimming pool safety cover;
  • Automatic safety pool cover;
  • Water features;
  • Waterfalls;
  • Fire features;
  • Pool lighting;
  • Tanning ledges; and,
  • Jets.
  • Deck Jets and luminar jets.

Research the Latest Pool Technology

To make pool ownership convenient and even more enjoyable, look up pool technology that might improve your pool experience.

There are many types of pool technology available on the market today.

These include:

  • Automatic pool equipment, such as vacuums, pumps, and heaters;
  • Saltwater chlorinators to sanitize your pool and maintain water quality without all the added chemicals;
  • LED lighting systems; and,
  • Home automation systems. These sync up your pool functions and outdoor equipment such as music and lighting. And these can be controlled by voice, tablet, or smartphone.

Choosing Your Pool Shape

The shape of your new pool will depend on the size and shape of your backyard, how much space you want to take up, and your planned use for the pool.

If you plan to swim laps and enjoy plenty of activities in the pool with a slide and diving board, you will want a rectangular pool with a deep end. But if you only want to cool off and relax in your pool, a smaller circular or irregular-shaped pool will do.

How to Convert your Pool to Salt Water

A saltwater pool system involves adding salt to the water and installing a saltwater chlorinator. The amount of salt in a pool is about 90% less than the salt in oceans, so you don’t have to worry about getting a mouthful of salt or being covered in it when you get out of the pool.

How it Works

A salt cell (electrode) is installed in the pool plumbing. As the saltwater from your pool passes through the salt cell, the salt has an electrical reaction with the cell, which creates chlorine.

Like regular pools, the chlorine is used to sanitize the pool water. The difference is that you don’t need to buy and add chlorine to a saltwater pool since the system generates its own chlorine. And you won’t need to store chlorine products either.

Saltwater systems also have a super-chlorination feature to shock your pool water.

The chlorine produced by salt cells is a higher quality chlorine that doesn’t smell, burn your eyes, or irritate your skin.

What to Watch

Saltwater chlorinators cost about $600 to $1600 and will need replacement or maintenance every three to seven years. These systems also have more parts that might need replacing over time. So you will have to weigh the costs of saltwater chlorinators and equipment against the costs of adding chlorine, which in the long run isn’t that much different.

You will have to keep a close eye on your water’s chlorine and pH levels weekly and make sure to balance your water monthly for the equipment to properly work and the water to stay crystal clear.

For those concerned about pool equipment corrosion, install a zinc anode during your conversion to a saltwater system. (also known as anti electrolysis zinc anode)

When choosing a saltwater system for your new pool, look for one that is rated for pools at least 30% larger than your own pool. This will ensure your system doesn’t have to work at maximum capacity at all times.

To measure the volume of your pool, multiply the length, by the width, by the average depth, by 7.5. Your pool repair experts can help you find the right system for your pool volume if you don’t know the exact dimensions. They will also install the new system and give you maintenance tips.

Get Energy-Efficient Lights and Equipment

One way to ensure energy savings with your new pool is with energy-efficient pool lighting and equipment. Consider solar lighting for around your pool and LED pool lights.

You can also use variable speed automatic pumps that won’t be left running and sucking up your home energy. There are also pool equipment systems that can be controlled with an app on your phone so that you can turn the equipment on an off from anywhere.

No matter what renovations you decide on, an upgrade will add value to your home, especially if the upgrades save you money in the long run.

Once you’ve decided on features for your pool renovations, contact the Ottawa pool repair experts for a quote. You can then compare this to your budget and see which features will be added to create your new, pristine pool.

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