Central NJ Pool company and type

erikyFebruary 11, 2012

I live in Monmouth county NJ, and am looking into an inground pool.

Currently looking at both gunite and vinyl pools, undecided on which at the moment.

The companies I am considering are:

Pooltown (vinyl only)

seasonalworld(vinyl or gunite)

anthony & sylvan (gunite)

Can anyone give me any feedback on any of the 3 companies in the area?

Also, my heart says gunite as I really want a beach entry or at least a sun deck, but my wallet says vinyl.

The A&S sales guy basically said vinyl would fall apart, just a matter of time. I take that with a grain of salt, as they only sell gunite.

seasonalworld says vinyl is the way to go, even though they do both, but vinyl is their specialty. They even say they can do a sun deck in vinyl, but their prices are not far off from gunite for vinyl when you get into customizations.

Pooltown seems to have some very good prices on super deluxe packages for vinyl.

Can anyone tell me if it's really worthwhile to go to the gunite?

Any opinions would be appreciated, I have paralysis analysis right now.

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eriky

I just found a post very similar to this commenting about pool companies in my area. poolguynj recommended both swim-more and east coast concepts for gunite.

So, would be curious to hear anyones take on gunite vs. vinyl and if vinyl, the vinyl companies I mentioned.
Thx!

    Bookmark   February 11, 2012 at 3:21PM
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poolguynj

Pool Town is cheap for a reason and it isn't exactly a benefit for you. I don't like their pools and practices.

Seasonal World also does fiberglass shells. They had their bumps but have since ironed them for the most part, AFAIK.

A&S subs everything for construction. The guys in the local retail store have been around for a number of years. They know me. We get along well.

I own a liner pool. It's over 20 years old, had a couple liner changes and is still holding water, providing memories and entertainment, and helps me know where my kids are.

I haven't seen too many liner pools need to be filled in or ripped out. Usually, they are neglected, wood walled liner pools that were left too long in a sorry state or a floated, non-liner pool.

Gunite pools are the most customizable but there are few things that a liner pool can't do too.

Whether you put a liner in or replaster, the cost is similar, year over year but the liner is usually less $$. That being said, liners and high water tables can be a problem.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 11, 2012 at 5:05PM
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eriky

Scott, thanks much for your post. Appreciate it.

Probably would stay away from fiberglass just because I feel like too many limitations.

So to be sure I understand:

Gunite: either swim-more or east coast concepts

vinyl: Seasonal World

Any others I should consider?

Thx again!

    Bookmark   February 11, 2012 at 8:11PM
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jerseypool

We used Seasonal World last year. They did great work and we were completely happy with their final product. We went with fiberglass because we were able to get it in a larger size, and for the low maintenance (Hardly had to put in any chemicals at all last year). We also never want to be bothered with replacing a vinyl liner. Hope this helps, and best of luck!

    Bookmark   February 11, 2012 at 8:45PM
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poolguynj

Add Seasonal World to your short list for gunite.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 12, 2012 at 1:12PM
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eriky

Scott, thanks appreciate it.

Jerseypool, thanks, glad to hear SW was good!

    Bookmark   February 12, 2012 at 3:44PM
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burned

Stay away from topfiftybuilder has a shady past with BHP.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 3:56PM
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poolguynj

Interesting. I've know him for a number of years and never heard anything like that. You sign up today and say what you said and nothing to back it make me go Hmmm.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 13, 2012 at 11:09PM
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eriky

What company is topfiftybuilder? I have never heard of them?

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 5:54AM
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poolguynj

TFB is a user. He used to work for BHP. He left them. As a person, he is a nice enough man, having met him on numerous occasions, traded texts and emails often, and seen his contributory posts here. Hence, my hesitation towards the user burned for the comments he made.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 6:37AM
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burned

Yes I joined yesterday, this forum hopefully will provide folks some needed truths. I invited TFB into my home and thought he was a nice enough guy too. It appears dishonesty has many faces. Talking to someone, reading their posts and texting with them doesn't always reflect who you are dealing with. My experience with BHP starting with TFB was filled with lies and deceit. Does that mean yours and other relationships with them is the same, no. Will it make people think twice when choosing a company?

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 10:42AM
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poolguynj

Where in NJ?

Is there a legal reason you can't be specific?

This is totally unlike the TFB I have known over the years.

Bear understand I have never directly worked for BHP, TFB, or any of their subs so there is no conflict. That situation is still the case. I am independent.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 11:46AM
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topfiftybuilder

Hmmmm... It's a little funny you would jump in a post that doesn't even mention BHP and post this.... My identity has always been in the open on this board , it would be nice if you post yours so we can discuss your project openly and honestly. Having built hundreds of pools with BHP with many , many happy customers and plenty on this board Id love to know who this is. It's very easy to point fingers .... :)

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 11:54AM
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burned

I never said it was in NJ.
My reason for jumping into this post was because SW was referenced and TFB is now affiliated with them. I have nothing negative to say about SW. However, I would be concerned with their choice of employee.
TFB you should be cautious of the wake you leave.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 6:02PM
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topfiftybuilder

My Mom told me don't talk to strangers ... Unless you want to be honest in who you are and what your issue is I don't have any time for you. If you had a poor experience with myself and/ or BHP you are the exception not the rule. Best wishes .... Burned ;)

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 6:30PM
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ritab64

We went through a similar experience when we put our pool in and decided on Holiday Pools in freehold. We were looking at the gunite from A&S, went to seasonal world, pool town, central jersey pools. At central jersey we were looking at the models and said we wanted to talk to a sales person and no one ever came out, we left. We didn't like seasonal world, the guy was kinda schlocky and the aluminum frame he was pushing did not impress us. Holiday pools did a concrete walled pool wit a foam backed liner. At least that is my understanding. We are very happy with the final outcome and the installation process as well.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2012 at 12:30PM
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eriky

Thanks for the info. I actually decided on East Coast Concepts. All 3 were great, and I would have been happy with any of the 3. However in the end, I just really loved the look of ECC natural style pools and their waterfalls. I plan on putting up a thread to chronicle the build once we get started. I just signed the contract this weekend, and it's going to the township for permits this week.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2012 at 9:48PM
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billy_c

Hi eriky,

Sorry I got here too late! lol

We had a pool built by Pooltown 5 years ago.

Best of luck with your build.

Bill

    Bookmark   March 14, 2012 at 10:37AM
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VKap

HI Bill,

I'm currently working with Pooltown on a quote for an inground. How was your experience? How is your pool now?

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 1:08PM
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DGMGE

The following is an account of our experience with a company called "Offshore Pools" based in Brick, NJ. We hired them to install a large in ground pool about 8 years ago. Please see my review from about 9 months ago posted elsewhere(and see the update following the review)I will post pictures if possible:

"We hired Offshore to build our higher-end pool. They acted like our best friends until they made the sale....after that we were just a number to them. Despite all the proper maintenance, within just a few months the liner began pulling out of the corners. They said it was "normal". We believe the liner was incorrectly installed. A stone "waterfall" from the hot tub section to the main pool developed leaks that caused excessive water loss. The outer wall tiles of the hot tub portion fell off. Worst of all, the concrete patio they constructed developed deep, full-thickness cracks requiring removal and re-pouring of an entire section (at our cost). Now, two other sections have also developed similar large cracks. Three years after they built the pool, the township called us and informed us that Offshore never obtained a permit and we were threatened with a fine. We had to call Offshore and demand that they remedy the situation. No explanation or apology was forthcoming. The last straw was calling them several times in the spring of 2011 to schedule repairs and an opening. No call-back. No response. No service. I will never give them my business again and would strongly recommend that others avoid this company as well. There are other, better pool companies out there. It just takes some research and face-to-face discussion with the owners to weed out the incompetent and the negligent ones. Good luck. See my other reviews for my recommendation."

UPDATE 6/16/2012

We are currently in the process of having the concrete repaired by a more reliable pool company. When the new contractor removed the concrete poured by Offshore no reinforcing wire mesh to strengthen the material. As a result, according to our new contractor, the concrete developed horrendous full-thickness fractures and heaved so much that there are now areas where the concrete is cracked and lifted 2 or more inches and others where the concrete has sunken. In addition, the paver coping was found to have no significant concrete footing (see photo)and as a result the coping pavers became undermined and had absolutely no support and sunk down. The cement joints between the coping pavers separated and the pavers began to slant downward and then to sink. Thirdly, Offshore failed to construct or to even recommend a French drain that should have been placed in order to divert ground water away from the pool area. The current contractor tells us that such a drain would have likely prevented the above problems to a large degree.

In summary, our current contractor told us that the structural problems we are experiencing are a direct result of the failure to use reinforcing wire mesh, failure to place a concrete footing under the coping and failure to construct(or to recommend)a French drain to divert ground water away from the pool area. As noted above, several prior attempts to get Offshore to respond to this situation were unsuccessful. Our calls were not returned. The repair to our pool is costing us $10,000. We would advise avoiding Offshore Pools at all costs.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 4:35PM
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DGMGE

Here is a photo of the concrete. Note the complete absence any reinforcing wire inside the concrete.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 4:42PM
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billy_c

Hi VKap,

I have to correct my above post, noting that this is our 6th pool season. We have/are experiencing some issues regarding Pooltown. One of our issues is location. It seems they only come out to the Burlington area on Wed. Therefore any assistance that you need, must wait until wed. If it rains, next wed...and so on. It also seems like there is some turnaround going on in their service area. Not really sure what is happening, but you can tell something is up.

I can give you some more pro's / con's if you like, I just did not want to type everything here as a "Pooltown bashing". I guess every company has there faults, I am just relaying my thoughts on what I have encountered.

Bill

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 1:26PM
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VKap

Hi Bill, can you contact me at agraves96@aol.com so I can pick your brain a little regarding pooltown. thank you!

vk

    Bookmark   June 18, 2012 at 11:01PM
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DGMGE

Just a follow-up on the $10,000 in repairs now needed due to the poor workmanship by Offshore Pools: the new contractor is having a mason install a proper concrete footing for the new coping and is utilizing iron mesh to reinforce the concrete, things that Offshore Pools FAILED to do. See pics.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 1:25AM
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DGMGE

Here's a pic of the new footing...

    Bookmark   June 19, 2012 at 1:27AM
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VKap

Hi Guys,

I was hoping to get your thoughts on the following decision. I'm currently deciding between a purchase of a vinyl pool with a sun deck or a gunite pool(quartz finish) with a sun deck. Both pools are the same size. Same decking (except the gunite will have a brick coping the vinyl cantelever), electric heater cover, etc.

The gunite pool is coming in about $7000 more than the vinyl pool. Over say 20 years, which pool is generally more costly to maintain ? Liners are cheap, plastering is expensive with possible tiles popping off?

Vkap.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2012 at 10:47AM
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