Pool to Garage Transformation

Turning our rundown, indoor pool into a garage was not without its share of adventures. But this pool to garage transformation was worth the effort.

So, today I am answering the age old question, “What do you do with a 10 foot deep, 35 foot long pool in need of A LOT of repair?” Why… fill it in with concrete of course.

Ok, so this may not be your age old question, but it was one that we had to address shortly after moving into our new fixer upper. If you haven’t read how we purchased a 15 room house and started out by only living in 4 rooms of it, you can do that here.

When we moved into our new house we gave our four kids strict instructions to not set foot in the pool room. Not to even think about it. Under pain of eternal punishment! You get the picture. For us, getting rid of the pool was the first priority to making our house a safe environment for our kids.

Empty indoor pool

The few times I had to wander in there to get something (we temporarily stored a few of our garage type items out there) my stomach was in my throat. (I’m not great with heights). Ten feet down is a long way when there is no water to cushion the fall. Plus, there is always that fear that somehow one of the kids would find there way in there, threats and all. Yes. It was definitely first on our list of projects.

What To Do With An Old Pool Room

The house came with a one car garage shed that smelled of mold, mildew, and rot. Every time we opened the door to get in, big, black carpenter ants, centipedes, and pill bugs scurried away from the light, searching for a dark, dank space to hide again. We moved a few things around to make room for some of our stuff, but it definitely wasn’t a long term storage option.

Small, rundown attached garageWe knew exactly what we wanted to use the pool room for. What could be better than turning it into a three car garage? Plus, we figured out we could add a family room with a bathroom and laundry/mud room all in the same space that the pool room took up. And when I say we, I mean my husband, but when you are married the two become one, right? :)-

Renovations Begin

Paneling removed from rundown pool house

We had noticed, when we had first purchased the house, that there were big holes in the roof. We figured it was from the ground water that had been sitting in the pool and neglected roof repairs. Because of this, we had already replaced the plywood and shingles the previous fall.

Our next step was to take out the cracked windows and tear out all of the barn wood paneling on the inside of the pool room. We salvaged as much of the barn wood as we could for future use on projects, though a lot of it was rotten due to the moisture sitting in the bottom of the pool. I spent many long afternoons ripping the boards off the walls and hitting all of the rusty nails out of each piece.

You can be sure with any renovation you tackle, that there will be at least a few unforeseen issues that arise when you start tearing into walls.

We hit our first one!

Every single stud, piece of plywood, and top and bottom plate on the walls in the pool room were rotten! I mean, fall apart when you touch them, moldy, crumbly mess rotten. These walls were a bug’s dream home, and there were plenty of them. Carpenter ants, worms, spiders, bees, moths, pill bugs…. you name it, they lived in these boards.

Thus, the loooong, process began of slowly propping up the walls, replacing the top and bottom plates, putting in all new stud boards and putting on all new plywood. This was definitely an unexpected set back and it took most of the summer to re-do the walls.

Battle Scars

Walls open to the studs on outside of pool house

We were finally ready to call in the crew that was going to fill the pool with over a dozen dump truck loads of gravel.

Introducing set back number two!

My husband was cutting a couple of chunks of metal from the pool frame into smaller pieces so they could be recycled. He was on his last cut when the metal grinder seized, kicked back, and sliced his ankle open. I happened to walk up right as it occurred. It’s a good thing my husband had his hand clamped so tightly on his ankle, because I lost all sense of reason and was not much help besides calling for the ambulance.  My husband “got” to ride in it to the hospital where he received 10 staples. I’m not going to post a picture, because it honestly makes me queasy to look at it.

He was super lucky. It cut down to the bone, but didn’t damage it. It missed all of the nerves and arteries. He didn’t need any therapy or surgery. Just time to heal. One slice of the grinder and our project “ground” to a halt. Pun intended. Ha ha!

During my husband’s time of healing, we were able to call in the excavation crew to come and pull out the concrete for our new crawl space and fill in a portion of the pool with gravel. So, the time wasn’t a complete loss.

Concrete Results

Pouring concrete in old poolWhen hubby finally healed enough to resume work on the house, we were able to hire a concrete crew to pour concrete for our garage and driveway.

And it looks really nice!

New driveway concrete

Pool to Garage Transformation

I am so happy with the finished look of the concrete on both the driveway and garage!

My heart was a little sad to give up the grassy area by the pool, but…

Lawn in front of old pool house

it is so much more practical and usable now.

New three car garage and driveway

The kids love riding their bikes, coloring with chalk, and playing basketball, so the trade off was worth it.

How about you? What are your biggest remodel setbacks? What concrete projects have you tried?

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