If you have ever wondered how long it takes to build a new swimming pool, and what are the steps for a successful installation, you are in the right place! This page explains the entire process of gunite swimming pool construction, follow along below!
“Gunite” is a Pneumatically applied concrete mixture reinforced with steel rebar. This is the most effective way of creating a swimming pool from concrete. Gunite is superior to alternative pool construction techniques such as vinyl liner or fiberglass pools in terms of structural strength and design options.
Approximate Completion Time: 6 to 8 weeks
Gunite Curing Strength: 3800 – 4500 psi
Gunite is a porous concrete mixture that allows for better expansion / contraction tolerance and is less prone to cracking, shifting, translating or sinking (if applied properly).
Use this page to discover the swimming pool construction process and all of the selections, upgrades, and features available for implementation into your project design. As we take you on a step by step tour of swimming pool construction of gunite swimming pools which are most common in Texas.
Our construction expertise includes inground custom gunite swimming pools. You will learn about the swimming pool building process timeline which will give you insight into planning your life around the construction.
Pool Construction Overview, Let’s Dig In!
There are a few steps in order to start your pool project off on a successful path. Assuming that you have vetted the pool contractor for quality assurance and you are comfortable with your design consultant and your means of funding the project you are ready to start building! Here you will find the most important steps involved with a swimming pool construction / installation project.
PHASE 1 – DESIGN CONSULTATION & PROPOSAL
It all begins with an in-home consultation. You will have access to a dedicated and passionate pool design professional. Our pool designers have experience in creating pool designs that blend and compliment the surrounding natural elements. You can expect your pool designer to fully understand your vision, scope, and detail. Allowing room for improvements, upgrades, and the features that will make your pool the perfect compliment to your lifestyle.
Our pool design advantages:
Our pools are never duplicated, although you may borrow design aspects from our previous designs.
Fast turnaround time, we know you are serious about getting a pool, so we turnover your initial design in less than 48hrs.
Revisions, you can have up to 4 design variations to fully conceptualize your pool design options.
Always free at no obligation
While providing the elegance and functionality of your pool design, our engineers will also make sure that the project layout will satisfy all local municipal ordinances, HOA deed restrictions, and utility set-backs. You will be hand delivered a fully personalized swimming pool design proposal package for your family to review at no obligation to you. Our pool design consultant will work personally with you to achieve the perfect combination of your pool budget and design.
PHASE 2 – PERMITTING, LAYOUT & LINE MARKING
Based upon your approval of the final pool design and budget details our design specialist will meet with you once more to complete the agreement. After 72 hours have passed it will be time to submit the properly scaled and rendered drawings to your neighborhood association or architectural committee and the local city permitting office for approval before any work may begin. In some cases you may not be under local restrictions to build a swimming pool, in which case we can get started a little sooner than waiting for approvals from homeowners associations and the city.
Our pool permitting advantages:
No wasted time, while awaiting approvals your pool will be ready to start yesterday!
Experienced with local authorities, in some cases we can influence faster approval turnarounds.
Delivered for you, professionally. It’s our job.
This time-frame also allows for our project management team to make the proper calls to underground line location services to mark the utility lines that may obstruct the pool installation. We will also prepare the layout of the swimming pool in the exact location to be installed as a final check and assurance that no further variants will be needed before construction begins.
PHASE 3 – SCHEDULING & TAKEOFF
One of the most popular questions that we are asked is “how long does it take to build a pool?”. In a perfect world we could complete a custom gunite swimming pool, for example (which is the more complicated of the 3 most common type of swimming pools) in 3 weeks.
That may sound lightning fast, but in reality that is just not the case for 99.9% of projects, no matter who is managing the work. Providing allowance for weather delays, and that many skilled tradesmen do not perform labor on Sundays you can usually expect a pool construction project to take about (4) four weeks to (8) weeks.
Our construction scheduling advantages:
Formatted for your convenience, using Google Calendar, Outlook, and desktop notification push.
Updated throughout the process, if changes are made you are the first to know.
There are aspects of a project that might require subsequent steps, such as an outdoor kitchen or living area. These additions to the pool project may add 1 to 2 weeks to a 6 week pool project depending on the scope and included features. We provide you with an open line of communication to your project schedule, as handled by your dedicated project manager. You will know what steps are needed and when they are needed.
PHASE 4 – FORMS & EXCAVATION
Now here is where the real fun begins, breaking ground with the heavy excavation equipment. All has gone well, the weather is perfect and we are ready to carefully open the ground in the exact outer shape of the swimming pool. Following the forms we set from the pool layout in the previous steps, we will have the perfect template to follow.
Our team of swimming pool excavation experts and heavy equipment operators will amaze you with their professional abilities. It takes approximately one full day to properly excavate a swimming pool in preparation for the structural reinforcement stage.
Our excavation advantages:
Over excavated for strength, up to 10″ standard pool floor thickness.
Soil reclamation, when applicable conserved for adjusting the topography of your yard for drainage purposes.
Haul away excess, included when saving spoils is not applicable.
Re-sod, front or side yard up to 2 pallets of sod included!
Whether you are installing a gunite, vinyl, or fiberglass swimming pool the excavation process might differ just slightly, but remains as the most important factor to starting the project correctly. When excavating a gunite pool, the procedure is exact, and precision of the forms is the first priority.
When excavating for a vinyl liner or fiberglass pool the digging procedure may require just a little less precision as these installations are over-dug to accommodate the working room for assembly.
PHASE 5 – STRUCTURAL & STUB-OUT
Water weighs 62.42lbs per cubic foot, and will apply pressure per cubic foot against the bottoms and sides of the pool of up to .050 lbs per square inch. As you would imagine, when the swimming pool is full of water there are tremendous outward forces against all points of the pool structure. It is imperative that the proper measures are taken to structurally reinforce the shell of your swimming pool.
For gunite pools this means a minimum requirement of 8″ on-center #3 rebar grid installation, and to ensure the integrity of the beam requires a 4x #4 or 1/2″ four bar boxed beam. The beam of the pool is what will help to connect the outer decking slabs to the flush pool level, while also allowing for expansion and contraction of both the decking slab and the pool beam.
Our structural advantages:
Supersede minimum industry standards, each pool is over-engineered for lasting results.
Once the structural steel has been installed into the excavated shape, it is time to install the stub-out plumbing. Referring to our detailed construction drawing for the proper placement of all water-return jets, water features, suction lines, and spa plumbing system these stub-out locations are precisely installed to maximize the performance and serviceability of your pool for the long term. Ensuring the proper amount of water flow and turn-over for each daily running cycle of your pool equipment.
It is now time to install the gunite structural shell of the swimming pool. If you have never seen this process before you might want to take off work for half the day to watch! Or check out this video of a gunite shoot on one of our pools to get an idea!
Once the gunite has been applied properly, at over 700 PSI and a curing strength of over 3500PSI it will be tie to start on the tile and coping. Usually the plumbing is the first item to be installed directly after completion of gunite. As you can see, our experienced gunite applicators are true perfectionists, and ensure total accuracy of the exact shape of your pool. Check out the video of finished gunite below.
PHASE 6 – PLUMBING & EQUIPMENT
Referred to as the “Long Plumb” of the total pool plumbing system is the network of pipes that carry the water to and from the pool. It is absolutely imperative that this part of the pool plumbing system be engineered correctly. Just as you would not want poor circulation through your body, likewise you would not want a swimming pool with poor water circulation.
Taking into consideration every single component aspect from the swimming pool position, elevation, included water features, and the requirements for “turn-over” as according to the overall capacity of the pool. A typical pool & spa combination will feature a network of piping that may exceed 12 total pipes in the main trench.
Our pool plumbing advantages:
Supersede pool industry minimum plumbing standards
All pool plumbing leads to the source, your pool equipment. Much like the heart of your body, your pool equipment provides the life to your pool plumbing system and encompasses all the needed components to create silky, crystal clear water for your family to enjoy every day. Depending on the scope of your pool and spa features or amenities determines the requirements of the pool equipment components that will be installed.
This will also include the installation of all electrical components and accessories. You may choose to upgrade all or portions of your pool equipment to suit your specific needs. From standard pumps to variable speed energy saving pumps, and standard lights to full color LED pool lighting there are pool equipment components that fit every project or every budget.
PHASE 7 – TILE & COPING
At this point you will recall your material selections that you had previously made with our design consultant for several major portions of the project, including the pool waterline tiles and the pool beam coping materials. This is the stage that the pool will begin to look very interesting as our master tile installers will amaze you with their careful installation of all tiles and decorative stone materials.
Although it is hard work, especially in the heat of the summer the results of our masonry craftsmen will put your family in awe as you begin to see the formation of the beautiful natural elements.
Once this stage has reached completion it will be time to have a progress meeting with your project manager to ensure the overall quality of the work prior to moving along to the decking and final stages. This will include a progress job-site clean-up, detailed inspection of the installed tile and stone materials, and also including a layout of the decking position as per the design.
PHASE 8 – DECKING
It’s time to get out of the dirt and mud! Now roughly 3 weeks into the project you can really get a sense of the life and character your pool will have. Once the decking installation is in progress you will begin to see the flow of space and functionality. Depending on your previous choices of pool decking materials the installation procedure may differ slightly. For example, if your decking choice is natural stone pavers such as travertine, it will be standard protocol for us to install a concrete substrate foundation and inset the stones with stabilized sand.
We offer a complete line of pool decking types, some more common than others and some that are very special ranging from bare concrete slabs to hand crafted natural stone pavers. No matter what decking option you choose for your pool project, you can be assured that the very first step taken is on a quality foundation. There are too many “pool builders” who do not take into consideration the longevity of integrity and characteristics of the geographical location of your pool installation. We want your beautiful pool decking to last the test of time.
PHASE 9 – PLASTER & START-UP
We are now one step away from the results you have been waiting for. Approximately 4 or 5 weeks into the project you are all cleaned up, and yes that includes the front and side yards as well as the backyard! It’s time to fill up the pool and spa!
In many cases it may take up to 2 full days and night cycles to completely fill the pool prior to the start-up procedure. During this time our project manager will conduct another progress meeting with you for quality assurance, and we will also test the functionality of all installed components to make sure everything is ready.
A new pool is born, and a happy customer to go with it! During the time of filling after the plaster installation is complete, we will seek the best schedule opportunity to provide our informative session we like to call “Pool School”. In this one hour class we will provide you with all of the knowledge you need to know about your specific pool.
Since every pool is unique, no two Pool School classes are the same, but some general theories are consistent. We will guide you through daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly maintenance requirements specific to your pool only.
We deliver thoughtfully designed, bespoke aquatic environments that are reflective of the clients desires to create a pool that is seamlessly blended with the surrounding architecture.
Our promise to each client; to uphold the industry code of ethics, to produce quality custom pools at fair prices, never cut corners or look for a quick fix to any single solution, to offer the absolute best in quality pool products and equipment, and follow through beyond the completion of your pool project with continued support.
We build Pools in Montgomery County Texas
Check out the full list of areas we service in Texas. Building pools around TX for over 25 years!