The Drawing

The pool drawing. You can draw your pool yourself it is not hard but if you are not use to draw drawing and count scale it will probably take awhile. Do not count on getting it right the first time. The easiest way to draw the pool is probably to use a CAD program on the computer, if you are not comfortable with computers you can draw it by hand. Remember the scale has to be 1: 8.00 which means 1 inch on your drawing is 8 feet in real life. Mark diameter and distance to wall and house on the drawing. When the pool is going to be drawn on the ground, it is drawn 6 inch wider then on your drawings because of the shell. Make sure you have that in mind so there are no inch missing. Those small inches made the difference of a big or a small grotto for us. So maybe it is a good idea to draw them in one of your drawing, the one that you keep for yourself just to make sure everything is going to fit and still have the distance. Mark where North are and the scale. Do also attach a drawing on how you want your pool depth to be.


 Measure your backyard and draw it. If you using your lot drawing observer that the walls around the yard might decrease the "actual" area of your yard, so to be on the safe side start with measure your yard by yourself. If you have a patio draw that and if it has columns you need to draw those too. I was told that if our pool was going to be closer then 5 feet to the patio columns the pool where going to need extra steel reinforcement, which means a special engineering drawing and more steel. Mark where the entrance are and how wide the access gate is. Is there something that narrows the way down like AC draw them in too and put out the distance.


Look into pool stores and go online to look on different shapes. You can find a lot of websites for inspiration on my websites page. When you drawing your own pool it can have the most strangest shape but if you are going to sell the house in the future it's maybe a good idea to not go too extreme. The easiest way is to buy a circle temples and draw circles in different shapes next to each other and then connect them to an all over shape.


There are a lot of distances you need to take in consider when you draw your pool. The distance between the pool and the wall, the distance between the pool and the house, if you are going to have a gas heater the distance between the wall and the exhaust pipe. Different cities can have different regulation on this and even your HOA can have some regulations that you have to take in consider when you draw your pool. If you want to have a slide maybe your HOA has regulation on how high it can be and how close to the wall. Gilbert has a 3 feet to any building limit. If you have a slide, the pool has to be 14 feet where the slide ends.


How many steps you should have depends on how deep your pool is going to be at the end where the step is. A step should be 12 inch. If you want one of the steps to be bigger for you to sit on, a depth of 18 inch is good. The depth is usually measured from the water level so the first step could be - 6 inch, the next one -18 inch and so on.


Most builders have a certain amount of linear feet of bench and step included in the price. How much varies and this is probably one of those thing that you can get more of for free. The benches are usually -18 inch below waterline. If you are planning to have a deep pool, a bench can help swimmers to get out of the pool more easy, to rest on when they swim, or just have somewhere to wait for a friend coming down the slide.


This was the hardest part of the drawing. I had no clue how to draw the slide. And I had no clue how big it was going to be. I talked to my neighbors, and measured theirs. But it wasn't before I talked to the company that builds the slides and caves I really understood how big the water feature was. If a slide/grotto/waterfall is higher then 8 feet it has to have special engineering. The best way to draw it is to contact a couple of companies that builds water features and explain what you want and they will send you drawings and measurements on the features.

If you go with a regular pool building company it seems that you can choose between 40 or 50 square feet grotto/slide/waterfall but if you talk to a rockwork company their standard work seems to be 50 or 60 square feet. The 60 square feet grotto has a bench with a shape of a half circle and the smaller 50 square feet grotto has a rectangular bench. A small grotto/slide is about 13 to 15 feet wide, 6,5 feet deep and about 5,5 feet high.  A bigger grotto/slide can be about 15 to 16 feet wide, 8 to 9 feet deep and 5,5 to 7 feet high. Make sure your HOA don't have any regulations about heights of the slide and how close to the neighbor wall it can be. Gilbert town has a 3 feet limit for all kind of building.


How narrow you can do the decking differ between the decking company. Some say they can do between 12 and 18 inch other say 18.

Sleeves and Aerator

Mark out the aerator and what kind of sleeves you want. If you wonder where you need to put the umbrella sleeves, you can hold an umbrella at different places at different times during the day to figure out how to get shade on the area you want. Just remember that the sun is also moving throughout the year.


Engineering drawings

This is the second step and if this will go quick and cheap or take a couple of days and be a lot more expensive is up to what kind of pool you want. We built a standard pool, just a lot longer than usually, with a standard slide/grotto.
I found a company that sold me a standard engineering drawings for 40 dollars. And it was ready to pick up as soon the engineer had a look at my drawings and decide it was a standard pool. For the price you get two of all your drawings. When you apply for a permit to build the pool you have to bring two of everything but you will get one of them back when you get your permit.
To be able to use a standard engineering drawing the slide have to be lower then 8 feet and the pool have to be 5 feet from not only the house, but from about everything, like patio columns.