You’re living in Palm Beach County and you’re thinking about building the swimming pool of your dreams. One thing you perhaps haven’t considered is that it’s absolutely necessary to hire a reliable electrical contractor as part of your plans. Why? In short, a good electrical contractor will make sure the installation is safe and will save you a ton of headaches throughout the entire process. In this article, we’ll get into the details and explain exactly why hiring a pool electrician is an absolute must.
What Does Swimming Pool Wiring Include?
Properly installing swimming pool wiring is a multi-step process and involves a number of aspects, including above-ground pool wiring, inground pool wiring, and pulling the necessary permits. Below, we’ll look at the full step-by-step process for installing swimming pool wiring.
Getting Electrical Permit
A good pool electrician will be able to easily pull the permit for installing the electrical components of your pool. This is incredibly important for avoiding enormous penalties and fines in the long run.
Once the electrician applies for your permit, officials will come on-site and inspect your property to see if there are any potential underground obstacles to building your pool. Don’t try to get the permit yourself unless you really have experience with this specific task, as it will take you much longer to do it than an experienced pool electrician.
Sub Panel Installation & Wiring
Sub panels are the breaker boxes that contain enough power (usually about 100 amps) to power all of your pool equipment. You should definitely make sure that the main breaker box in your house has enough power to spare, or else this will usually result in added costs.
When planning this out, the location of the pool equipment is very important to consider. All of the equipment needs to be 10-20 feet away from the pool but close enough to the house so that you can access it conveniently. Costs can add up if the sub panel is too far from the house, like the added costs of digging a long trench. Get in touch with an electrician and get them working on having an inspector come to assess the property. That way, you won’t be in a huge rush to get the project done when you really want it!
Better Than a Reference Can Be a Better Reference!
When hiring a pool electrician, you want to make sure that anyone you hire has solid references. Additionally, a great idea is to ask other people you know who have done pool projects in the past to see if they have any recommendations. You can also ask other electricians you know if they have any recommendations for swimming pool electrical contractors. Hiring someone without any reliable references can be an extremely dicey proposition.
Money Always Matters!
We don’t need to tell you this, but there are likely significant differences in price when working with different companies, depending on their approach. So make sure you shop around a bit and get a few price quotes before hiring a pool electrician. In addition to the cost of the electricians themselves, various factors can affect the cost of your pool projects such as the location of the pool equipment and any other additional equipment you want to have installed.
Passing Your Pool Electrical Inspection
There’s little to no chance of failing your pool electrical inspection if you’ve done the right thing and hired a pool electrical contractor. However, don’t just rely on the swimming pool electricians’ knowledge. It’s always best to know a little bit about pool electrical installation and swimming pool wiring so you can ask smart questions. Here are the basics that you’ll need to know.
Contact Your Inspector Ahead of Time!
Don’t just wait until the last minute. Make sure you contact your inspector with about a week of lead time so you’re not just waiting around when the job is ready for the inspector visit. If the swimming pool electrical wiring is taking a bit longer than anticipated and you need to reschedule, that’s not a problem. It’s always better to have a visit scheduled than just be waiting around and delaying your pool project completion.
There is some variation in regulations that you’ll need to be aware of, and some inspectors themselves have different requirements. Again, if you hired a swimming pool electrical contractor who already knows the inspector, your pool electrician will know what the inspector typically is looking for.
Nonetheless, bonding requirements tend to vary by locale, and some inspectors require only 6 panels to be bonded, while others say that every wall panel needs to be bonded. Trenches are another possible stumbling block, so make sure you leave the trenches open until both the plumbing and electrical inspections are complete.
Never Argue With an Inspector!
Let’s say the worst-case scenario arises and the inspection fails. Whatever you do, don’t argue with the inspector! Simply follow the instructions and have your electrician take care of the requirements. This is actually a very important aspect of finding a good pool electrical contractor. The best pool electricians will allow you to stipulate that if the inspection fails, they will complete the extra work at no added cost to you.
And What About My Electrician?
If you’ve hired a pool electrician, they are there to take the burden off your shoulders and act as a buffer between you and any problems that arise. Obviously, water and electricity do not mix, so it’s extremely important to get things done correctly. And trying to do it yourself, or hiring an improper electrician, can lead to issues. That’s the last thing you need with a project of this magnitude.
So we’ve now established how absolutely critical it is to hire a pool electrician to get your swimming pool electrical wiring job done correctly. Unless you’re a swimming pool electrical contractor yourself, there’s simply no good reason to try to do this all on your own. The experience, knowledge, expertise, and inspector relationships that the swimming pool electrician brings to the table will be more than worth the cost.
If you’re in the Broward County or West Palm Beach area and looking for an excellent pool electrician to make the whole process go as smoothly as possible, contact us at high voltage electric for a free estimate. So this needs to be planned carefully!
Bonding a Swimming Pool
Pool bonding is different from grounding, and it uses a #8 bare copper wire to carry away any stray voltage from all of the metal components of the pool. This wire is connected to all the metal components, including the pool wall panels, pool light niche, pool ladder anchor sockets, and any other metal pool equipment (such as pumps, heaters, and filters).
In some cases, the deck itself may need bonding as well. This wire runs mostly underground but is visible at the connection to the pool equipment pad.
Finding a Reliable & Qualified Electrician for Your Pool Project
So now you know the basics of the necessary steps to construct your dream swimming pool. Convinced you need an electrical contractor to do the work? We thought so. In fact, you’re probably Googling “pool electrician near me” as you read this. But there’s no need to jump off this page. Read on below and we’ll show you how to find the perfect swimming pool electrician for your inground pool electrical wiring.
Just like you’d be best served knowing a little bit about cars before turning your vehicle over to a mechanic, it’s important to read up a little bit on the ins and outs of pool electrical wiring before you hire a pool electrician. Make sure you know a little bit about Article 680 of the National Electrical Code (NEC). If the electrician you’re speaking with is not familiar with the NEC and Article 680, you need to find another electrical contractor with more pool-specific experience.
Not a Qualified Electrician, Pool Qualified!
To further emphasize the issue above, it’s absolutely imperative that you find a pool-qualified electrician. An electrician with plenty of experience with pools likely already knows the ins and outs of Article 680 and probably already has a good relationship with inspectors. This can make a smooth process without unnecessary delays a lot more likely.
So when you’re looking for your electrical contractor - make sure they list “swimming pools” as an area of practice. Otherwise, you may end up hiring someone who makes unnecessary mistakes and will cost you a lot of extra money and time in the long run.
Mind the “Traffic”!
In other words, make sure you’re planning ahead. You want to be able to hire a good pool electrician, but most of them will be busier during the warmer months because that is when the construction of pools tends to happen. So make sure you have this all planned out well in advance.
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