Warning about Cowboy Pool 'Experts'

My post from yesterday seems to have disappeared - but as we can share photos I thought I’d share mine, which shows our pool, installed at vast expense and now - after numerous other faults - has obviously got a leak in the pipes as the water level dropped by nearly two feet when the pumps were turned on. Unfortunately we will not get any of the 100,000€ that the Court awarded to us as the individual concerned put his company into liquidation, has no assets in his name and had no Decceniale Assurance. Hopefully he will receive a prison sentence soin for the latter offence. Amazingly he is still purporting to be an ‘expert’ concerning popls, solar heating, etc.

Hopefully this post will ensure others don’t get taken in too!!

Hi Jeannie,

So sorry to hear your swimming pool woes.

We too have had a disastrous time of it with our pool builder - a supposed expert. It would be interesting to know if he is the same one that you used. My wife and I would like to have more details of your story if you are willing - my email address is: mel.anthony@wanadoo.fr


Mel Anthony

We are an Engish speaking pool leak detection and repair company, feel free to contact me for a no obligation chat about your pool



Opening up this thread again to put over a couple of points that people are not necessarily aware of regarding pools. For a private pool you can do pretty much what you want regarding water flow treatments etc. That is to say no ones bothered what you swim in but if your pool is for use by more than one family there are regulations to take notice of. Now it is true you don't get an army of french Civil servants covering the 1000's of pools being used by Gite complexes, camp sites and Chambres d'hotes but they do exist and they can come knocking and some of the points are:

The turnover rate for the water should be 4 hours for pools over 1.5m deep and by the book 1.5 hours if less (which is quite ridiculous) they do go a bit easier for pools of less than 240m3.

There should be sufficient number of skimmers to clear the pool of debris and one skimmer per 25m3 of water.

If you use a sand filter the flow rate through the sand filter should be between 10-20m3h per metre of filter area for a good filtration but there are other classes such as medium rate 20-40m3/h/m and high rate +40m3/h/m but there isn't really a high rate filter just a high rate strainer.

This is echoed by the 2 NTU's water clarity allowed which is really a bit hazy, the more dirt in the pool the more chlorine etc it will consume.

If you use diatome filter the filtration rate is 5m3/h/m.

If you use a cartridge filter the rate is 1-5m3/h/m.

Disinfection must be by direct chlorine dosing and not by hand or from salt chlorine generation unless it's a bulk chlorine generator and then directly dosed.

The levels are 0.6 - 1.5 ppm if you are not using cyanuric acid stabiliser and 2.5-3.0 ppm if you are, with a maximum level of 60ppm for the cyanuric acid

Bromine likewise has to be dosed and between 1-2 ppm

I will leave out Ozone as it's unlikely to be in use because it requires water to pass very slowly through a separate soaking tank for 2 minutes and de ozonising equipment.

Testing should be with DPD tablets via a comparator or photometer and pH via phenol red in the same equipment. Dip strips and OTO (yellow liquid 5 drops etc) are not allowed.

Chemicals should be locked away from access by guests and should have the relevant labels showing the hazard codes for each product.

There should be a 30litre per day per bather of fresh water into the pool and pools are supposed to be drained once a year for cleaning.

It is a pretty good bet that the 3 largest pool companies do not follow France's own rules and are still building pools that do not meet the specification in anyway. With the quite high cost of a pool please be sure it fits the standards as with anything if someone gets ill then inspectors will appear from everywhere and Cryptosporidium is one of the chlorine resistant bugs that is small enough to pass through a filter so requiring flocculation to remove it which again leaves out Desjoyaux, Magiline and Waterair as flocculation cannot be used on their setups.

How awful for you. I do so hope that you manage to retrieve your pool in time for the summer, say October time at this rate.

Unfortunately Internet Experts are not confined to pools, a local joke is that many ex pat artisans gained their experience and qualifications on the P & O ferry.

Several of the ex-pat fora seem to have resident 'Experts' the names change but the style doesn't, and I certainly take a jaundiced view of their activities, they ( or is it the same person under different pseud's ) post backward and forward, confirming each others advice and naturally rubbishing others views, often either suggesting a person (each other) who can be 'trusted' or offering to 'obtain' a specialised item not available elsewhere.

I do hope that Catherine takes note because if she allowed this type of activity it would soon debase the trust we all place in 'Survive France'