Anthony Sylvan Pool Review from Washington, District Of Columbia

4 of 26 Anthony Sylvan reviews

We contracted Anthony & Sylvan in October 2014 to replaster our 24000 gallon inground pool that they had built for the previous owners of our home in 2005. We also had them re-tile the waterline and waterfall as well as reset all coping around the pool perimeter.

Work began in May of 2015, just after we opened the pool. The coping was reset no problem, and for the most part the tile work was done well. The plaster was done quickly and without allowing an overnight curing as recommended by CLI, the plaster manufacturers. The crew rushed the job, and the aggregate was not spread evenly, leaving bare patches of blank plaster and inconsistent color overall. We were told this is "normal" and it would look better the second season after the plaster cured for a season. To aid in "looking better," A&S also performed an acid bath at the end of summer in 2015 to bring out more aggregate...it didn't work. In addition to the acid bath, they promised to monitor ph levels during the winter months and add chemicals as needed to get a positive response when we opened in 2016. They failed to follow thru and did not monitor or add chemicals as promised all winter.

We opened the pool in March of 2016 to a solid white ring around our entire pool...the acid bath at the end of summer caused the permanent ring! A&S drained the pool and did a direct acid bath to the entire pool. The ring didn't go away and the rest of the pool now looked worse. They conceded to a replaster of the pool.

On the replaster day, the crew showed up at 7am (same crew that screwed it up the first time). By 8:30, rather than remove the bad plaster that was put on the prior year, they had scored slots in the pool surface with hammers and were beginning to add new plaster. By 1130, the new plaster was on, and they were adding water. The water truck was only able to add 21000 gallons because we had such a thick layer of new plaster in the pool. Our pool wall now stuck out by an inch in varying spots, from the tile water line. Our returns, main drains, pool light, and purge valves were now recessed by an inch to an inch and a half in essentially divots along our pool surface. Within 3-4 hours of the water being in the pool, the new plaster began to pop off in chunks like popcorn, leaving holes we could push fingers and toes into. A&S tried to say it was random and they would patch the holes.

We contacted CLI to have them check their plaster and explained the application process that had taken place. Seems the guidelines from CLI, the manufacturer, are a 2 day install not a four hour install. A&S sent a diver out to inspect the pool, who claimed our pool was screwed up and plaster needed to be replaced...a third time! It seems the plaster was shifting and popping off as well as it had air between the layers and bubbles came up when the inspector tapped the surface with a hammer.

We scheduled the third try within three weeks of the last inspection. Now we are in mid July of 2016 (remember this began in May 2014), when most people like to use their pool and not have hassles to deal with. Pool was to be taken down to the gunite over two days, one day for cleanup and two days for new application of plaster and refilling. Water truck to provide all water. On the first day the crew shows up to begin demo, but nobody brought a pump to drain the pool. Crew waits for 2.5 hrs and randomly leaves without any contact or explanation. Pump arrives about 15 minutes after the crew snuck away. Nobody knows where crew went and ultimately a story was made up about a missing cdl license that the crew needed to drive the commercial truck, but the crew was in a Chevy pick up, A&S lies a lot. Project manager drains pool on his own and begins breaking up pool with a hammer and a chisel. Steps to pool are demolished and no crew return for a day.

Only after many calls and voicemails to corporate office do we get a crew in the late afternoon of day 2 to begin demo. Crew works all day Wednesday and Thursday and should begin new plaster on Friday. Plaster is delivered, obtained from a sister company of A&S, and turns out to be expired and unusable. Pool was promised completed no later than Friday. Pool sits empty and a hazard from Thursday until Wednesday of the following week.

Crews arrive and begin plaster job. They plan to plaster and fill the same day. We again confirmed with CLI that their plaster is designed to be applied over two days, with the second day being an acid wash day, once the plaster has cured overnight. We had to convince the project manager to do it over two days because this is how it should be applied per the manufacturing company. They finally agreed and pool was filled on day two.

We negotiated two weeks of brushing and chemical maintenance for the pool as we had already done that the prior two times A&S did the screwed up plaster jobs, plus we wouldn't be home to do it due to a pre planned trip. Owen at A&S agreed in writing via email to this service. Amazingly the job stopped after one week. We called our contact who had been doing the brushing and chemicals and he told us he had been told the job was done after a week. We called Owen about them not honoring what they had promised in writing, and we were given a story of family members in hospitals and that was why the pool guy didn't show up...not at all what the actual guy told us! Again, A&S lies a lot.

During the renovation, the crew cracked our pool deck. A&S attempted a repair after the first plaster job but it didn't take and was unacceptable. They agreed to fix it once the pool was complete and send a professional concrete guy to do the work. Apparently a professional concrete guy looked at the problem and made a report, but the people at A&S decided to send the same guy who couldn't fix it the first time out to try again, after they promised a qualified concrete person would do the work.

A&S sent a different person to patch the crack, still not sure if it's done right.

As of September 2016, our newly renovated (for the third time) pool has a leak. A diver from A&S has been out and resealed the light and the main drains...hopefully that solved it, we are waiting to see.

A&S has offered us $2,000.00 for the inconvenience they've caused us over the last two swim seasons. They feel that is satisfactory given that they finally feel they have the pool surface corrected. Given the lies we were told, the schedules and promises that were not kept, the days of work that were missed by family members to be there and supervise pool work that wasn't done and crews that didn't show or left without working. This is not even close.

A&S won't keep to schedule unless you hound them. They don't return calls unless you call multiple times and work your way to the top. To date, the CEO still has two unanswered messages from me.

It was only after we went to social media and posted our dilemma that we got attention from corporate (Owen), because they don't want bad reviews.

A&S is horrible at project management, and their subcontractors will take shortcuts if you don't watch them closely. They make excuses for everything and are horrible to work with. Do not use this company unless you are willing to micromanage your project and stay on them for every detail. Get everything in writing and make copies of all notes you are given. If possible record conversations as they will change stories for their best interest of you don't have accurate records.

This review is a subjective opinion of a user.
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  • What I liked
    • Final product looks great
  • What I disliked
    • Poor project management
    • Constant excuses
    • Lack of responsiveness
    • Multiple times required to get the job right
    • Failed to keep promises

Reason of review:
See review
Product or service
In-Ground Pool
Review category
Home Construction and Repair
review #924229 by
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