Steps to Adding a Swimming Pool
First Step - Determine If You Need a Permit
Whether you decide on a concrete in ground pool or a portable above ground pool, the larger the project, the more guidelines will apply when installing a swimming pool. These requirements exist for your protection. Building Permits are required for all pools.
Portables pools that are less than 42 inches deep, do not need to be permitted; however, for your safety all above ground pools should be installed per manufacturers specifications. Putting in an above ground pool with a depth of 42 inches or greater, requires a permit, which the homeowner can obtain.
For in-ground concrete pools, a state licensed Pool Contractor must be obtained. The contractor will pull the building permit and obtain the engineering expertise, as well as provide necessary paperwork to ensure Florida Building and Swimming Pool Codes are met.
Considering Electric? Consider This...
Probably not surprising, when electric is desired near a swimming pool, the project must meet the National Electric Code, Section 680. The following restrictions would apply:
- One electric GFCI outlet must be placed between 10' and 20' from the pool.
- All metal within 5' of the pool must be bonded.
- All portable pool wiring must not be closer than 10' and have a twist lock plug.
- No pool can be within ten feet of an overhead electric service.
- All electric to swimming pools must be in non-metallic piping from the service panel to the pool disconnect. Piping must be buried not less than 18" deep.
- All pool equipment must have a weather proof disconnect.
- Extension cords CANNOT be used as power for any pool.
- Any decking built around the pool will require a Building Permit.
Safety Barrier Needs
Did you know that from an insurance standpoint, a pool is considered a visual nuisance? It beckons all types of animals, including humans, to try it out. Therefore, for your safety and the safety of others, all in-ground pools and all above ground pools 42" deep or more must have the following barriers:
- All in ground pools must either be contained within a locked screen enclosure or be secured by a fence of 4 feet high or more.
- Above ground pools that are 42" deep must either have a removable ladder or, contained by a locked screen or fence like in- ground pools.
- All doors opening into an enclosed pool area must have an approved alarm.
Accompanying Documents When Pulling a Permit
If the size of the swimming pool warrants the pulling of a permit additional documents to further explain the project and how it will meet the various state, city and trade codes, will be required.
- If the property owner pulls the permit, an Owner/Building Disclosure must also be completed, which explains and acknowledges the responsibilities of the property owner acting as the contractor.
- Along with a permit, a site plan of the property showing the location of all existing structures (sheds, house, detached garage, etc.) must be provided, with the size and location of the proposed improvement, as well as the perimeter property lines.
- For in ground pools, construction plans need to be designed, signed and sealed by an architect or engineer registered in Florida, certifying compliance with the Florida Building and Swimming Pool Codes.
- As building permit fees are calculated on the cost of the job, a copy of the sales contract or work contract needs to be submitted with the permit package. While permits and inspections might be thought as unnecessary, the peace of mind knowing your new pool complies with code and will provide years of safe enjoyment is worth it!