Blue Haven Pools of Indianapolis: Building Our Pool

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juno1996
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Blue Haven Pools of Indianapolis: Building Our Pool

Postby juno1996 » Sat 15 Dec, 2007 00:25

DO NOT HIRE BLUE HAVEN POOLS OF INDIANA TO BUILD YOUR POOL!!! The following is a series of posts that I wrote between December, 2007 to August, 2009. My pool now has collapsing tile work and loose, separated coping even though it's been open for barely a year. Blue Haven Pools (which is by no means a true "national" pool company) is not even returning my warranty-related calls. To say Blue Haven Pools of Indianapolis sells more than they deliver is a HUGE understatement. A reputable pool company owner put it best when he recently asked me, why would a contractor REQUIRE FULL PAYMENT BEFORE THE WORK IS COMPLETE? Buyer beware! Read the contract carefully - the DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS.

Hi. I'm from the Indianapolis area & just thought I'd share my experiences [updated as of 8/28/09: NIGHTMARE EXPERIENCES] :evil: with hiring Blue Haven Pools of Indianapolis to build my family's new gunite pool and track the progress (whether good or bad) from start to finish. I know how frustrating it was to find resources for researching pool contractors so maybe you'll find our experience helpful in your pool contracting decision.

We signed a contract with Blue Haven Pools on September 6. Tony was our salesperson. Tom Hale was assigned as our project manager. Our pool was dug on October 25. By the end of October, their subcontractors had excavated our back yard and shot the gunite. It's a very exciting process to watch! By mid-november the coping and tiling was completed. They got a little sloppy with the grout but I'm sure Blue Haven Pools will make sure it's cleaned up.

As of mid-December, we just need to have the the deck, electric, auto pool cover and plaster completed. We went ahead and paid Blue Haven Pools >90% of the contract price but I'm trusting they'll to be good for finishing up to our satisfaction. The plaster will have to wait until warm warmer.

We did have one "issue" thus far - the layout or dig was not done right and several sections of our steel fence will need to be moved. However, last week Tom informed me that Mike Rutherford, BHP General Manager, agreed to have it relocated at their expense. As long as they do it right, no complaints.

Yes, it's been a mess, had the pool location issue and taken longer than expected but I think we're on the right track for seeing the project soon.

I'll be sure to report back on the progress each week. :)


juno1996
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Update on pool construction by BHP of Indianapolis

Postby juno1996 » Fri 28 Dec, 2007 22:29

The work continues on the pool. As of 12/28/07, BHP’s concrete subcontractor, J&S Concrete, provided a layout of the deck. Although I wanted a minimal-size deck (just big enough to accommodate the pool cover), the subcontractor calculated a square footage of 677 square feet – or 77 square feet over the amount included in the contract. Naturally, the extra square footage requires an add’l load of stone base so I’m on the hook for that as well...to the tune of just under $900. I find it disappointing that BHP underestimated the square footage when it knew both the layout of the pool and my request for minimal deck size. The subcontractor also infomed me that BHP’s proposal to simply move a section of our fence will not work. The deck will require some shrubs and a stone walkway to be moved – this has to do with the original layout of the pool. BHP is aware that this error will result in add’l landscaping work to resolve the issue. One would expect that they will provide a credit for the add’l cost.

The good news is that Tom Hale (BHP’s project manager) returned last week to install more of the electrical and he assured me that he will not hold up any of the deck work. He’ll also be out next Wednesday to look at the layout done by the subcontractor.
juno1996
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Postby juno1996 » Sun 06 Jan, 2008 14:44

http://cid-af9adea4a06b12db.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/.res/AF9ADEA4A06B12DB!107/AF9ADEA4A06B12DB!108
The above is a link to our pool photos. The first 2 were taken today, January 6, 2008 (70 days after excavation was started). I'll add photos as the project progresses. As you can see we just need the plaster, deck, and auto-cover installed.
Pool Toyz

Postby Pool Toyz » Sun 06 Jan, 2008 16:28

Why does it seem like too much calcium coming out of the shotcrete shell? Do they use lime in the mix or could it the water or cement used?

Maybe it's quite normal, just curious.

Cheers
juno1996
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Lime

Postby juno1996 » Tue 08 Jan, 2008 00:26

That's a great question. Blue Haven Pools of Indianapolis tells me that there's nothing to worry about in regard to the staining (weeping).
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Larry
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My Pool: Pool Pro
Exclusively tiled concrete pools

Shotcrete shell

Postby Larry » Tue 08 Jan, 2008 16:39

Any reputable firm will insulate the shell with a proprietary sealant before the final plaster/ marcite/ pebblecrete stage. I'm sure there's no real need to worry.
juno1996
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BLUE HAVEN OF INDY POOL

Postby juno1996 » Fri 11 Jan, 2008 12:32

Thanks, Larry. I'll see if BHP plans to do that.

UPDATE [3/31/08]: According to Tom Hale, our pool construction supervisor, he's not aware of any sealant that's needed.
juno1996
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1/27/08 Update.

Postby juno1996 » Sun 27 Jan, 2008 12:43

Update: 100 days after excavation...

I think it was January 7th when Tom Hale was out to see the pool and take pictures (not sure what for). He told me he'd have guys on call that week to pump out the water (both the pool and trench). Nobody showed up. Now its all frozen over...very disappointing. The concrete sub-contractor can't prep for the deck or lay stone until the water/ice has been removed from the trench. I've asked Blue Haven Pools of Indianapolis for a very reasonable credit on the relocation of my garden because of the mislocated pool but still haven't heard an aswer after 2+ weeks. I'm still hopeful these issues will be addressed satisfactorily. More updates to follow.
juno1996
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Postby juno1996 » Sun 03 Feb, 2008 12:25

According to Ida at BHP, Tom (Supervisor) was going to be out on January 30 to pump the water out of the trench and pool. The temperature, of course, dropped below freezing on the night of the 29th and he had to cancel.

I left a message on the 2nd of February, asking if he could PLEASE pump out the water on the 4th as the temperature will be in the 50's. We'll see.

No word yet on the requested credit for the pool/deck intrusion into our garden area.
juno1996
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Day 116: February 10th Update

Postby juno1996 » Sun 10 Feb, 2008 17:24

Some good news. Tom Hale (Blue Haven's Indianapolis pool construction supervisor) was out last Wednesday to pump the pool water into our backyard. We can once again see the bottom of the shell. The trench was also pumped but BHP hasn't filled it in yet so it's full of water again.

I noticed the soil was eroding away from under their equipment (concrete) pad so I filled in a small part of the trench in order to stop the erosion.

Also, after leaving a message with BHP, asking them for a new deck subcontractor, I received a call from the concrete contractor himself (Scott Brown) - looks like he's still interested in the work but doesn't think he'll be able to do any excavation until March. I'm glad he called me back - Scott Brown seems like a straight shooter.

For those who are interested, you can see February 10th's photos at:

http://cid-af9adea4a06b12db.skydrive.live.com/browse.aspx/February%2010

Any chance that brown stuff is from the clay soil?? Sure glad BHP guarantees their pools.




[url][/url]
juno1996
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UPDATE...sort of...

Postby juno1996 » Sun 02 Mar, 2008 16:50

http://cid-af9adea4a06b12db.skydrive.live.com/browse.aspx/March%2002

Above is a link to today's pictures (March 2, 2008). Excavation started October 25, 2007.

Just need the deck, plaster & retractable pool cover installed.

To view, cut and paste the above to your address bar and remove the "[URL]" at the front and end.
k. tayor

blue haveb pool

Postby k. tayor » Tue 04 Mar, 2008 10:18

we are interested in putting in a bhp this spring 2008, we live in greenwood, in. and would like to know how your overall experience has been thus far. would you recommend them to build your pool again.
juno1996
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Recommendation

Postby juno1996 » Tue 04 Mar, 2008 15:23

Well, let me put it this way - I've paid over 90% of the contract price & it has taken WAY longer than I was told and, like my posts state, the pool layout (or dig) was so far off from where we were told it should go that the concrete deck is going to encroach on a fenced in formal garden area...causing it to be oddly shaped (instead of square).

I've asked Mike & Denise Rutherford for a reasonable credit for the garden reconfiguration but it's been a month & haven't received an answer.
juno1996
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Pool Deck Update

Postby juno1996 » Sun 30 Mar, 2008 21:20

With Spring & warm weather returning, we're finally seeing some real work done on the pool. J&S Concrete has done a rough excavation & completed the concrete pool deck.

Photos can be seen at [http://cid-af9adea4a06b12db.spaces.live.com/default.aspx]

Overall, we're quite pleased with the pool deck itself - nice job J&S Concrete.

I was a bit ticked that our contract had specified pumped concrete (typically an add'l $500-$700 charge by a concrete supplier). (Well, at the time, Tony said it was a $1,200 charge but look, he's a sales guy.) Anyway, the subcontractor carted it in with his bobcat and saved the money...well, my money. However, when I spoke with Denise Rutherford of Blue Haven Pools of Indianapolis, she said I will receive the credit since they didn't have to pay the add'l cost.

UPDATE (April 7, 2008): We were credited $400 for the pumped concrete.

Our pool supervisor, Tom Hale, said J&S will install perforated drainage lines around a section of the pool (required because of the pool mislocation) but when it came time to do the work, the contractor didn't have the necessary stone, landscape fabric nor had he been paid to do the work...not wanting him to simply bury perforated drain pipe in the mud, I told him to let me handle it - jeez.

The relocation/reconfiguration remains an open item. I'm scheduling landscape designers to come out the week after next to figure out what to do - we've gone from a very square English garden with square sections to, well, a somewhat mishapen one. I have yet to see how this will be resolved.

Thanks for those who have contacted me - I appreciate your comments. I'll continue to provide updates.
rougy

blue haven pools

Postby rougy » Mon 14 Apr, 2008 17:26

I am also getting ready to install a spa in my yard. Blue haven has been selected by my landscape architect. I am concerned, as I have heard mixed reviews, and have been told to check BBB. I would appreciate any info/comments. Also any other pool contractors that are reputable, with good references would be greatly appreciated.

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