Help - problems with new liner

Liner issues and problems installing or
maintaining above ground swimming pools.
Jenwren
Pool Newbie
Pool Newbie
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed 13 Aug, 2014 13:21

Help - problems with new liner

Postby Jenwren » Wed 13 Aug, 2014 13:33

We have recently had a new liner fitted to our 24' x 12' x 4' deep below ground pool together with new coping stones. The work was held up during the winter because our installers attempted to fit a liner which was the wrong size - they say it was the manufacturers fault. A second liner was fitted in May this year. Prior to fitting the liner a felt pad was put in the bottom of the pool and foam lining attached to the walls. All was ok until a couple of days ago when I rolled back the cover to discover that the liner had come out of its tracking all along one of the long sides of the pool - the side where the skimmer opening is and the foam liner has come away from the lower part of the pool wall and has doubled back between the pool liner and the pool wall and the bottom of the foam has come out of the top of the pool where the liner has come out of the tracking. I am not sure if you will understand what I am trying to describe but basically the whole of the foam on one complete side of the pool has folded in half leaving the bottom 2' of wall with no foam on it and the top 2' of wall with a double layer of foam which is now protruding through the gap between the liner and the tracking. Our Installer is blaming this on ground water but why should it only have happened on one side of the pool and why has the foam come away from the wall of the pool? Please help because we are at our wits end and the whole saga of having a new liner has turned into a nightmare.


TSH Tech

Help - problems with new liner

Postby TSH Tech » Sat 16 Aug, 2014 01:53

Jenwren,

Sorry you are having an unpleasant pool experience this year. I believe once these problems become sorted out, your pool should back to normal. I have installed a number of in-ground vinyl liners and above ground vinyl liners, so based on your description, I still do not have enough information to go on.

I can affirm to you:
Vinyl liners do come off their track rails from time to time. This is the nature of the beast, as they say. Typically liner shims can cure that problem, or the new track-lok(TM) rail system that locks the liner in place to prevent it from popping out.
Foam lining on the walls will occasionally shift during the fill if not secured with tape that is moisture resistant. Common hardware store duct tape is useless on pool installs.

No information:
Photographs always help when trying to see what the problem is and what is going on. There's no photographs to go on here.
Ground water situation, the installers say ground water may be a fault? This could possibly be the case if your home is located in valley, Florida, Louisiana or the South in general. No general location was given.
If you say the foam has folded in half, and come away from the wall, this could very well be a ground water problem as foam floats in water! Or will become buoyant and movable.

As much as I'd like to help solve the problem, there isn't much for me to go on here in internet land. However, not all hope is lost here. Either get with your installers or experienced pool techs, drain the pool and restart all over again with the pool liner and resetting the foam. If there is a ground water problem, that will have to be addressed. This must be completed in the warm days so the liner is flexible and pliable. Cold weather is a huge no-no for liner installation. You just don't want to go there. Once the liner is reset again, then the necessary repairs, liner shims can be added so your liner does not give you further problems. It's probably not the answer you wanted to hear, but it can be done.
Jenwren
Pool Newbie
Pool Newbie
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed 13 Aug, 2014 13:21

Help - problems with new liner

Postby Jenwren » Sat 16 Aug, 2014 06:53

TSH Tech

Many thanks for your very detailed reply. I will try to post a photo in a min (fingers crossed)

The pool liner installation had in fact been finished and we had a couple of good months use before the problem occured.

The foam popped out through the liner vitually over night and has doubled up between the side of the pool and the liner. The situation has got no worse and we understand that it may have been caused by ground water. Really what we need to know is whether the foam, which we have never had before, should have been more securely fixed to the swimming pool wall so that it wasn't affected by the ground water or whether this will happen every time we have a ground water problem.

The problem has only occurred in one wall and the other three walls of the pool are perfectly ok with no wrinkles or signs of fom movement.

We are worried that perhaps the foam had not been correctly installed and in view of this our installer is attending with the technical expert from the suppliers of the foam next Wednesday.

Our questions really are (a) whether it is normal to glue the foam to the sides of the swimming pool walls and if this was done correctly would it have prevented the foam from moving and (b) why are the other walls not affected and (c) what would the best course of action be now.

We think that if ground water is the cause then we are going to have to install a sump pump although I would add that before we had foam in our pool although we had occasional wrinkles in our liner these were easily removed. With foam in between the liner and the walls this will make the whole situation a lot more difficult to deal with.

We are situated in Essex, UK in a heavy clay soil area.

Thank you once again for replying and perhaps you could let me know if you have any further observations which could help us.

Image
TSH Tech

Help - problems with new liner

Postby TSH Tech » Sat 16 Aug, 2014 18:42

Jenwren, this was a helpful photo reply, thank you.

Given that it is only one wall that is problematic, it simplifies the repair. It does appear an alternative solution to foam may be needed in this case.

Foam is used in vinyl liner pools as a padding between the liner and the metal/wood wall of the pool. This padding helps keep abrasion or punctures from occurring preserving the life of your liner.
A water saturated side of the ground appears to cause the foam to shift from its installed position. There's no amount of glue, heavy purpose tape that will secure foam in this instance. An alternative padding may have to be used that is not buoyant, such as a thin rubber padding, thin sheets or roll of playable plastic that will protect the liner from any wall sharp edges or fasteners. Any moisture/water in the ground will not have an affect with these materials and you should be back to enjoying your pool.

Lastly, observing your liner rail tracks from your photo, I can see the lifting foam put enough 'slack' in the liner to cause it to pop out of its railing. This can be remedied by adding shims between the liner track and the liner bead. These shims are available at most pool supply stores and online.

Hope this is helpful!
Jenwren
Pool Newbie
Pool Newbie
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed 13 Aug, 2014 13:21

Help - problems with new liner

Postby Jenwren » Sun 17 Aug, 2014 03:20

Thank you so so much, at long last we have an answer which is probably going to stop us making the wrong decision as to how to proceed with this problem. We are now thinking that possibly all the foam should be removed once and for all and we should just have the liner without anything (other than the felt on the bottom) - which is how we have had our previous liners and which have all lasted a good period without any punctures etc. Unfortunately we got talked into having the foam without being advised of any potential ground water problems.

Just one quick question, if all the foam comes out will it affect the size of the liner, ie will it baggy without the foam?

Many thanks
TSH Tech

Help - problems with new liner

Postby TSH Tech » Sun 17 Aug, 2014 23:52

Excellent!

Removing the foam will not affect the pool liner. You can do so.
I only advise to take caution and ensure the wall sides do not have any sharp edges or protruding items. Other than that, enjoy your pool!

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