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Pool sinking...insurance wont cover repair, what would you do?

Pool sinking...insurance wont cover repair, what would you do?

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  #1  
Old 03-03-10, 12:21 PM
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Pool sinking...insurance wont cover repair, what would you do?

My girlfriend and I bought a house 3 years ago, the first winter we had it a small crack formed in deck of the pool, the second year the filter cracked. The third year a crack formed around the light, the lining pulled away from the sides and the pool would no longer hold water. We didn't realize till the third year what was causing the problem, the far side of the pool was actually sinking. (We had thought that the cold weather had compacted and expanded the soil enough to cause the cracks)

We contacted the insurance company and the people who installed the pool. The pool installers filled out a report to give to the insurance company, the insurance company sent a specialist of some sort and we were then notified that the insurance company would not cover repairs. Its fairly extensive and costly repairs. They have to bring in a backhoe dig the far side out re-level the pool add preventative support back-fill and redo the landscaping.

Anyone have any suggestions on what we should do next?
 
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  #2  
Old 03-03-10, 06:27 PM
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If you want the pool, you will have to foot the bill. If not, fill it in and plant grass or flowers.
 
  #3  
Old 03-05-10, 03:37 PM
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Sounds like it could be a construction issue. If pool is settling that much it had to be built on fill dirt and not properly packed by contractor. I would try to hold them liable. What state are you in? Sandy soil?
 
  #4  
Old 03-06-10, 10:35 AM
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hey Tod, it is a townhouse development with VERY sandy soil. were in New York. Pool was put in by a local company maybe 1 or 2 owners before us. Ill check what year it was put in.
 
  #5  
Old 03-06-10, 04:27 PM
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Sandy soil is rough but the contractor should be aware and build properly. Do you have pictures?
 
  #6  
Old 05-26-10, 10:04 AM
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Hey Todrut, sorry for not getting back to you. Were just getting around to actually dealing with this mess. Here are a few pictures and then I'll detail the quote given to us to fix it.

In this picture the pool is sinking towards the stair area which is closest in the picture.



This is where the ground has sunk, to the right of the stairs.


You can see the height difference on the other side of the pool.



The age of the pool is less than 10 years. The quote to fix it is $8,900 that was from one of the head builders for the company, but he is doing the work solo with one or two other workers. They will being doing the work as private contractors not as part of the company(The company has full knowledge what they are doing) They said this would save on the cost of the repairs.

The quote is $5000 up front, $3,000 when the liner goes in and $900 when the deck is poured.

I'm going to type out the full quote now.

"Reconstruction of in-ground pool walls shifting due to inherent ground construction. Removal of infected decking, pressure check and repair all plumbing of return lines and skimmer. Including and removal of main drain from system if bad. Hard(metal) plumbing to replace old plumbing (he said the the original leaks could have been caused by termites eating through the plastic plumbing) Repair of concrete floor (which has cracked)Installation of new lining with factory warranty. (We can pick any liner from the catalog at cost) Repour of concrete"

All work would be done by hand, hand digging around the half the pool, backfilled, grading of landscape to ensure proper water flow away from the house, support pins and linking with concrete to ensure the pool doesn't shift again.

Well that was a mouthful, any advice before we proceed?
 
  #7  
Old 05-26-10, 10:27 AM
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Just a comment or 2...(or 3)..

"Termites eating through plastic plumbing"? Was he serious? That would be the first time I ever heard of such a thing. Termites eat wood fibers...not plastic.

Also...I think the payment schedule is bad. How long does he estimate this job to last? Why would he need almost 60% up front? Doesn't look like material cost would be all that great at the beginning...more labor than anything else. This is from another source...but it's closer to what I would want. "For large projects a typical payment schedule is as follows: 10% at contract signing; 3 payments of 25% spaced evenly over the project's duration; the final 15% when the job is TOTALLY completed."

Maybe 25%, 35%, 30%, 10%...or similar would be ok...but it would depend on material ordering schedule. I imagine he might need to order the liner ahead of time...but I would think he would need to do the excavation first and really find out the issues.

And maybe our pool expert can answer...but "metal plumbing"? Underground?

And finally...if the quote you typed was verbatim what he wrote....I'd be concerned.

What is infected decking? Inherent ground construction? Is he replacing all the visible concrete? Will you be OK with patches that don't match in texture or color?

Personally, I would want much more detail than what you have. I got a more complete quote for a $2000 retaining wall and block fence than what you have for a more complicated job.

If he is doing this on his own...make sure his license, insurance and workmans comp is valid when he is not doing a company job.. What kind of warranty is he giving?

OK...I guess thats enough for you to chew on...lol.
 
  #8  
Old 05-26-10, 11:55 AM
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Hey Gunguy, thanks for the reply, this was exactly the kind of info I was looking for. I've never really had to deal with home repair/contractors before and my girlfriend is a first time home owner, so were still just figuring all of this stuff out.
 
  #9  
Old 05-26-10, 12:11 PM
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Do a search on "paying a contractor"....plenty of good info. If he balks...I would bail unless he can show you IN WRITING..why he would need the larger payments.

btw..on my fence job... I didn't pay anything until it was done completely. And this was a guy that didn't know me from Adam. I had 4 quotes before I chose. A real contractor has accounts and credit with suppliers...normally 30 days or more w/no interest or anything.

Also..is this guy a pool contractor or a home builder?

I've NEVER heard of a company that would OK an employee doing large projects like that. Minor weekend side jobs maybe...but how will he be able to leave the company to get this done? Is he only working weekends? Do you have a timetable?
 
  #10  
Old 05-26-10, 03:29 PM
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Can't tell alot from pics, is the pool sinking or is it just the deck that is settling? And is it actually settleing or is it washed out from under the deck? Are there cracks in the deck?
I agree with gunguy on the terms of this so called contract. The most I have ever asked of a job is 25% upfront. I don't understand exacly what they are doing as I can mot tell the extent of the problems. Concrete looks to be 3 feet around, are they replacing it all? To me your second picture looks as though the earth is settling under deck but deck is holding its own. Is there a problem with the walls? Is the wall itself out of level around the pool? There is alot to be known here and I would not commit to this contract till we get more info.
 
  #11  
Old 05-26-10, 04:27 PM
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Hey todruts right. My pool was settling unevenly and that means big cracks and very uneven deck surface. The coping, which is the edge that holds the liner up top is uneven and stretching the liner in places and letting it sag in others. The water line compared to the top edge really told the story. Then theres was the leaks in the plumbing.

Look at his post again and see if your deck is even and it's not just the surrounding grade.

Also never completely leave an in ground pool drained of water since ground water will disturb it regardless of soil conditions.
 
  #12  
Old 05-26-10, 10:43 PM
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Most definitely the whole side of the pool has sunken down. If you look across the deck it has dropped 6-8 inches on the side near the stairs. The fiberglass panels have distorted and popped out of position, the corner near the skimmer the deck has cracked and that same corner where the panels meet the has popped out of place pushing the liner away from the walls. The housing of the skimmer has cracked. We don't know for sure yet, but the concrete floor to the pool could also be cracked. We think but are not totally sure that the plumbing on the sunken side has snapped away from the walls.

Ill see if i can figure out a way to get some more telling pictures.
 
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