The Edge - Q1, 2014 - (Page 41)

Technical Feature Add Profits to the Job with Artificial Rock Waterfalls by Kathryn Varden WHEN A BACKYARD has a swimming pool, the pool is usually the focal point. But what happens when it is a "Plain Jane" pool? What should a homeowner do to spice up the environment? It's easy - add an artificial rock waterfall to create a new backyard oasis. he use of artificial rock waterfall features, also called faux rock, is not a huge market because many pool dealers don't understand the concept of the product, how to install it or how to sell it. However, those who do understand it realize that it can separate them from their competitors and help them to make thousands of extra dollars on each pool sale while only adding minimal time or labor to the project. Artificial rock waterfalls can be used with new or existing pools. They can be added to fiberglass, vinyl liner or shotcrete pools, and sometimes even to an above ground pool. T FAUX ROCK MATERIALS Faux rock waterfalls are made in a variety of materials. Some of the industry options include fiberglass, concrete, concrete GFRC (glass fiber reinforced concrete) or a polyurea/foam. The waterfalls come in a variety of shapes and sizes to fit any budget or backyard. Many waterfalls can tie into other kit accessories completing the entire pool. ADVANTAGES OVER REAL ROCKS Faux rock features are easy to install because they are modular, durable and generally lightweight designs. Just take them out of the box, plumb them and put in place. This gives installers the peace of mind that they can be easily duplicated on every job. The customer will also know what they look like before they purchase them (except if they chose a different color). They are compatible for vinyl liner pools and affordable for most homeowners. Faux rock can be easily blended with real rock. For most artificial rock waterfalls, no extra deck support is required, which makes them easy to use on a remodeling project. HOW ARE THE WATERFALLS MADE? Most artificial rock waterfalls are shot into molds made from impressions of real rocks. The molds are carefully handcrafted to achieve a certain look and designed to ensure that the water flows in the right spot. Some waterfalls are designed for straight edges, while others fit a certain pool radius. After each waterfall is built, it can be tested to ensure there are no leaks. INSTALLATION TIPS For a new construction, the waterfall area can act as another "return" to the pool. Most pool builders will use the same size pipe to the waterfall as the rest of the pool. The pipe generally used is 1.5-inch to 2-inch rigid schedule 40 PVC. If the plumbing provided by the waterfall manufacturer is smaller in size, a reducer bushing can be used. Most manufacturers suggest using flexible spa hose to connect to the waterfall fitting. A ball valve or three-way valve is recommended to turn the water feature on and off. The valve will also help control the flow and sound of the water. Often, pool owners want the waterfall to mask nearby traffic noise or they prefer the sound of heavier water flow, while others want a softer sound. The valve offers that flexibility. Tip: When winterizing a pool or using a winter cover, place a union at the stub-up location to the flex hose to the waterfall. This will allow for the waterfall to be winterized or removed for placement of the winter cover. Use extra flexible spa hose so that the waterfall can be easily lifted for removal. The typical waterfall is an on-deck mount application. Pour concrete footings or position it onto an existing deck space, THE EDGE 41

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Edge - Q1, 2014

The President’s Message
Taking Your Business to the Next Level
Don’t Hire ‘Deadbeats’ – Use Talent-Based Interviews
Three Routes to Increased Profitability
The Latest and Greatest Online Marketing Tools
The Outdoor Room Boom
Successful Collaboration Between Landscape Architect and Pool Builder
Project Focus: Cipriano Custom Swimming Pools and Landscaping
Add Profits to the Job with Artificial Rock Waterfalls
Safely Operating the Service Truck
Selling Energy Savings
Service Award Winner Honored
Moving Beyond the Basics of Water Chemistry
Index of Advertisers

The Edge - Q1, 2014