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Pool on a steep slope? Vinyl liner's an answer.

Pool on a steep slope? Vinyl liner's an answer

The high cost of building a standard reinforced-concrete swimming pool often deters potential pool owners, but there are cheaper ways to build one. In our article on lap pools (page 74 of the July 1983 Sunset), the low cost of a vinyl-lined pool sparked hundreds of reader inquires.

Here's how Holly and George Crawford of Beverly Hills, California, installed a similar 4-foot-deep, 8- by 40-foot vinyl-lined lap pool on their hillside.

The pool's liner presses against a short perimeter wall of wood and the packed-sand sides of an excavated hole--part of a system designed by Michael Zukose of Accent on Pools in San Diego.

Pools aren't limited to this shape and depth. One like the Crawfords' could be installed in as little as three days for about $6,000, including a pump, filter, solar pool cover, and surface skimmer. (A similar-size pool of reinforced concrete could cost up to $20,000.) Options include a heater, extra skimmer, automatic pool cleaner, and bottom drain. To find vinyl pool builders, look in the yellow pages under Swimming Pool Contractors.

Installing a vinyl-lined pool

A small tractor first levels the site and digs a hole slightly less than the pool's final width and length. Workers then build an 18- to 24-inch-high perimeter collar of redwood 2-by-4s and 2-by-6s attached to 4-by-6 posts. To shape the side walls, soil is cut away by hand, then damp sand is troweled onto the soil to make the sides and bottom smooth.

Before installing the liner, Zukose adds a thin layer of polyethlene foam insulation; this helps reduce heat loss to the surrounding earth and bridges the break between wood and sand.

Made of cut-resistant 20- to 30-mil vinyl and sold in a variety of colors and textures, most liners are heavy and awkward enough to require at least three strong people to pull into place. The liner clips into a plastic track running around the top of the wooden collar. Seams are sealed by special heat guns or lasers.

Around the Crawfords' pool, Greg Stephan and Robert Sage of Santa Monica designed and built a multilevel deck that steps down the steep site.

Photo: Lap pool sits on steep hillside; deck surrounds pool and spa. Earlier (above), tractor cut and graded the slope, backfilled behind wood collar

Photo: In typical installation, pool walls have wood collar above grade, hand-troweled damp sand below. Vinyl liner snaps into track. Water will stretch liner to fit cavity
COPYRIGHT 1984 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1984 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Aug 1, 1984
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