Pool Design Trends for 2013

by Phillip Veno, aquamagazine.com

Much like the latest trends in fashion, car design and the flavor of the month at the coffee shop, pool design trends are constantly changing. But it's a little funny how it works: Trends often develop out of a need to stray from a common theme. However, when someone comes up with an innovative idea, it's only a matter of time until everyone jumps onboard. And once again, the cycle continues as we look for what's new and different in the world.

With this in mind, we can take a look at what was up and coming in 2012 to see where the industry is headed in 2013. Based on my experience working with clients, this is what I think will make a splash in 2013's pool design.


Fire has been a source of wonder and amazement for the human spirit for thousands and thousands of years. We naturally gravitate towards its warmth and love the mood that its subtle glow offers in the evening. Over the last few years, companies like Grand Effects and Bobe have developed fire bowls that make fire features affordable and easy to operate with a simple push of a button. Burners can now be set among rock groupings or on pedestals around the pool — away from foot traffic, of course.

When juxtaposed with water, a fire feature provides a beautiful contrast, not to mention a beautiful reflection after dark. And until only recently, fire features haven't been widely used as a common design element; they were seen as unaffordable to the average consumer; a hassle to operate with frequent blowouts in windy conditions and costly, as those blowouts led to hundreds of dollars in wasted gas. Thanks to the new technology found on most manufactured units these days, you get automatic relights after a detected blowout, making worries of wasted gas and possible accidental detonation a thing of the past.

Visually, fire offers the consumer a feature you won't find on the average pool and can be attractively utilized on a freeform or a geometric pool. Expect to see a lot of it next year.

Energy-Saving Pool Equipment Choices

While the pump is usually the center of conversations about pool equipment energy savings, other equipment choices also play important roles.

By Jeff Farlow

Program Manager - Energy Initiatives

Excerpt from an article that appeared in The Edge., via pentairpool.com

Filter types, for example, have an impact on energy consumption because they place different levels of resistance on the system. Resistance is related to energy efficiency because of its impact on flow. Of the three types of filters (cartridge, DE and sand), cartridge filtration offers the least (i.e., most favorable) resistance to flow. This is partially because cartridge filters do not require a valve, while filters that are routinely backwashed do need them. Multiport valves create so much resistance to flow that California's Title 24 has banned 1.5-inch multiport valves. (Newer backwash valves have been designed to add less resistance to the system.) On a related note, backwashing consumes water, so using a filter that does not require backwashing conserves water and the chemicals in that water.