Thursday, July 17, 2014

Mike Holmes: Staying Cool in the Pool

An in-ground pool is a luxury I've never had in my own backyard, despite living in a very hot arid climate where average summer temperatures range between 110 and 115 degrees Fahrenheit. I've always heard pools are a lot of work, and are quite expensive to maintain, a sentiment that Mike Holmes confirms in the article below. Love 'em or hate 'em, spending money on a pool should always come second to maintaining home essentials, such as your roof or foundation. If you do decide to put a pool in your backyard, be prepared to invest some time and money into maintaining it.. Pools are anything but maintenance free. Cracked concrete and leaks are issues that warrant immediate attention to prevent major costly damage. Bottom line -- know what you're getting into and do your homework before investing in a pool.
From the Montreal Gazette:

Mike Holmes: Are pools more pain than pleasure?

 Depends on the state of your home and your budget

Duraroc has a rubber-surfacing material that is resistant to mould and mildew.

I love pools.
But they’re expensive, and that’s not just the installation but also maintenance and heating costs. Not to mention your home’s electrical will need to be upgraded to 200 amps. (Most new homes have 100-amp service, and older homes typically have as little as 60 amps.)
That’s why there aren’t too many homebuyers out there falling over themselves trying to buy a house with a pool.
If it’s a smart investment you want you will be better off putting that money toward a new roof, windows, upgrading the electrical wiring, finishing the basement or renovating the kitchen — these are things that all homebuyers can appreciate, especially if it can save them money in the long run.
In fact, pools are often a limiting factor in selling your home. Don’t install one thinking it will increase your home’s value.
And I will always recommend taking care of the essentials — such as the foundation or building envelope — first before thinking about getting extras like a pool. Any money spent on a pool is a huge waste if your house is falling apart or your energy bills are through the roof
However, if you’ve done your homework, kept up with your home’s maintenance and you have the budget, a pool can make sense — especially if the plan is to stay in the same house for many years.
But like I said, a pool requires maintenance. You can’t put one in and forget about it. If the concrete on the pool deck starts to crack or the lining has a leak it’s time to call a swimming pool professional.
When a pool liner leaks, the water has to go somewhere, and it will get in behind the lining and start to rust the pool wall. If that happens, the entire lining has to be removed and replaced, and if the rust is bad enough your contractor will have to grind the entire wall. A pro will then use a pre-galvanized paint primer or rust-inhibiting paint and paint the whole pool to protect the walls from future rust.
Replacing a pool liner is usually a two- to four-week job — three to four weeks during peak season, which is spring and summer.
A professional swimming pool service provider will come in, remove the liner, check out the pool, make any necessary repairs, and take measurements to send to the pool liner manufacturer because all pool liners are custom. It can take a minimum of four to five days before the new vinyl liner gets delivered.
When it comes to the pool deck you have options. Duraroc has a rubber surfacing material that is a very good solution for worn pool decks. It’s resistant to mould and mildew and can go right over the coping or plastic lip of the pool. It can pretty much cover everything but bare metal.
After 24 to 48 hours this product is so solid you will need a jackhammer to remove it. And because it’s rubber, it moves with the concrete underneath it, so you don’t have to worry about cracking. Remember: concrete shifts and heaves thanks to freezing and thawing cycles.
For anyone who has a pool, the best time to start thinking about maintenance is at the end of the season. Get a pro to take a look at your pool at the end of summer so they can talk to you about your options and budget. That way you can start planning ahead instead of being blindsided by maintenance costs come next summer.
Watch Mike Holmes on Holmes Makes It Right on HGTV. For more information visit

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