River Pools has put together a unique fiberglass pool installation methodology that incorporates a series of ground-breaking best practices. Often this process is referred to as “The River Pools Way Advanced Fiberglass Pool Installation” following this process in the Installation eliminates the most common problems in fiberglass pool installations.
What is backfill material?
It is simply the material that we place under the pool and around the outside of the pool shell after it is set in the excavated hole.
The use of clean, crushed stone backfill is imperative to the long-term success of a fiberglass pool installation.
Sand is the traditional material used in the industry, and it works well in areas with pure sandy soils. But it doesn’t take a soil specialist to understand what happens to sand when it becomes saturated with water: it liquifies.
When installing a pool, there are basically two types of plumbing pipe to choose from: hard pipe or flexible pipe.
Installing pools The River Pools Way, we only use hard pipe.
Because it does not flex and bend with the contours of the pool, it does require more effort to install. But because flexible pipe is actually not rated for underground use, we don’t feel it’s worth the risk.
One of the major causes of pool plumbing leaks is movement.
When pipes shift, this sets in motion a chain reaction that puts undue stress on the pipe, plumbing connections, and the attached components of the pool such as return jets, skimmers, and drains.
In The River Pools Way, we secure the plumbing by fastening the pipes to the pool shell using a strap system. This ensures no stress is placed on any component of the plumbing system.
Unlike sand, the right stone backfill will not move or settle. This creates a condition for long-term plumbing success.
One area of concern is where the pool shell and patio join.
The Rhino Rod is used to fuse the fiberglass pool shell and patio together to prevent shifting, settlement, or movement of any kind that could result in structural failure.
The Rhino Rod is a 12-inch-long composite rod that we install into the top of the pool shell. It becomes encased in the concrete bond beam that we pour around the perimeter of the pool.
All inground fiberglass pools require some concrete to be poured around their perimeter to stabilize the pool shell.
With The River Pools Way, this concrete bond beam is poured extra thick and flows under the lip of the fiberglass pool shell and encases the Rhino-Rod.
As this concrete “bites” around the Rhino-Rod and the lip of the pool, it “locks” everything into place, ensuring the pool and patio will be structurally secure for many, many years.
Eventually, all fiberglass pools will need to be drained.
You must be able to inspect and remove any ground water around the outside of the pool shell to prevent damage.
Because we think long-term, The River Pools Way includes a sump pipe so you can do just that.
Put simply, Cross-Lynx is a collection of innovative materials and manufacturing processes that ensure the strongest and most durable fiberglass pools possible. At the core of this technology is polymerization, a process in which polymer molecules form strong webs within each layer of the pool shell structure. The result is a long-lasting and corrosion-resistant shell.
The entire surface of a pool with Cross-Lynx technology is a thin layer of gelcoat. This layer, which is the first in the manufacturing process, is spray applied and provides the smooth finish and striking color that make fiberglass pools so attractive.
One of the main reasons fiberglass pools are so easy to maintain is the fact that the gelcoat surface is less porous than concrete. This means it’s more resistant to algae and doesn’t require the regular scrubbing and acid washing demanded by other pool surfaces. Cross-Lynx technology ensures maximum strength of this gelcoat surface (and every layer of the pool shell) by linking as many polymer chains as possible.
Vinyl ester resin is the second layer of the fiberglass pool manufacturing process. This is a premium-grade resin made especially to prevent osmotic blistering, which can occur when water travels through the gelcoat and mixes with other contaminants. Vinyl ester resin forms a water-tight barrier that prevents blisters from forming on the gelcoat surface.
Chopped fiberglass is the next layer, and it’s all about adding strength to the pool shell. It’s applied with a “chopper gun” that cuts fiberglass and sprays resin and catalyst onto the mold. The end result is a durable and long-lasting shell.
A layer of woven roving fiberglass comes next. This reinforcing layer is applied in areas of higher flexural stress, including tanning ledges, steps, and where the pool floor meets the walls.
Although fiberglass is naturally flexible, there are times when it needs to stay put. That’s why the next layer is made of structural comb ribs to add support throughout the pool shell. These strengthening supports are used along the side walls of the pool and under all steps, benches, and tanning ledges.
The final layer involves additional chopped fiberglass, which gives even more strength to the shell. When this layer is added, it acts as a heat blanket that keeps the cross-linking process going through all layers of the shell.