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Tales of our miserable Modpools journey
I’ve created this website to share my story of Modpools misery so that hopefully, you will not have to suffer the way our family has. Our Modpools was delivered to us in January 2018 and from the moment it arrived we had issues with both the product and the professionalism of the company. I will just start at the beginning:
*****website update. since posting this site, I’ve received many emails from recent customers to share their very recent miserable stories. One email details a customer’s Modpool rusting out and having a toxic pump that doesn’t work, all within 2 months of its’ arrival this summer (2021). Another recent message said that their pool was such a mess(liner completely coming part and rusting all over) that ModPools DID offer to take the pool back on the condition that the customer sign an NDA. That is horrifying. Modpools has such a poorly made product but instead of trying to improve it they are trying to shut customers up. Please don’t let this be you. Avoid the headache and get a quality container pool from Trek Pools, or Tangle Pools, or someone else that knows what they are doing. Finally, if you still think this is a rare complaint from one customer, check out this facebook group below, and this report from another disgruntled customer.
now please, continue to read my story…..
January 2018 delivery
When we ordered our 40′ modpool in October of 2017, the company was less than a year old. We were told it was “plug and play”. We just had to prep the pad (8″ concrete slab), have a dedicated circuit, and have the crane drop it in. We were also told that it would arrive in time for Thanksgiving. Every time we wanted a response from Modpools we had to call twice for any call back. The pool was finally delivered in January. We were told that the pool was 12,500 lbs so we could order our crane. When the crane lifted the pool off the truck it stalled, and nearly dropped the pool. Our crane operator said the pool was measuring 16,000 lbs. We got on the phone with Paul Rathnam (owner of Modpools) and asked him how much the pool weighed when it left the shop and his response was “we didn’t weigh it”. This was the beginning of the end, really. We learned that the specs were from one 40′ pool they had made. They had entirely forgotten to account for any of the custom enhancements (jetswim, etc-which by the way has never worked). We had to leave the pool on the side of the road overnight and reorder a larger crane. The following day the pool went in.
On November 12, 2018 our pool cleaner noticed a rusty leak on the outside of the pool. I sent a picture and asked for help from customer service. I received an email back 4 days later (from a different service rep-they only had one at the time and each time I called it was someone new) telling me it was an easy repair and they could send me materials so I could do it myself. The instructions involved “sanding down the rust spot with a scratch pad, applying clear epoxy, and spray painting”. I didn’t like that they weren’t arranging to repair it but at this point I realized that they were slow to respond if at all so it was best to just do things myself.
Four days later I received this email from our pool cleaners:
when I reached out to Modpools they replied that the filter is not their responsibility and to call the company that made the filter. I started to get a lot of responses like this. When the heater broke and liner bubbled and started to peel 2 weeks later, they said they weren’t responsible for the heater (I had to call the company that manufactured the heater) and they offered to replace the liner…in the spring. So we had a pool for 10 months that we were going to have to drain and wait several more months to repair. Note the date of the email (12/18).
The date continued to get pushed back because it was not convenient for them to come all the way to California from Canada but they ultimately came out to repair the liner in April of 2019. I was told that Paul the owner came to the property. Our family was away at the time and we just gave him instructions to get in to work on the pool. Much later after we filed a complaint with the Canadian Better Business Bureau about the company, they responded by saying they could not send service providers to our home because they would be “verbally abused” which was interesting/infuriating given that we never ever met anyone from Modpools in person, nor did anyone from Modpools ever step on our property when anyone was there. But I will get into that later.
Pool cover failure
In January 2020 the pumps were on the closed pool cover (to remove water from the rain) and when we arrived at the house for the weekend the cover had collapsed at the hot tub end. Some brackets had come loose and railing fell off of a loose bracket and it gauged the pool wall liner.(see photos)
When I sent Paul the photos, after several phone calls and emails I got him on the phone. He claimed that it was our fault for not using the cover properly and not having enough water in the pool (though when the cover collapsed the pump started pumping all the water off the hot tub end so the level came down by a few inches after the cover collapsed). I asked if there were instructions regarding the cover when the pool was delivered and his reply was, “no”. When I pressed him to honor the warranty and told him that we didn’t do anything different than we had been doing since the beginning he told me that I was lying and that he didn’t believe me. This was the extent of Modpools customer service. It was at this point that I realized I would get no help from Modpools for anything so I needed to make sure I had experts lined up to help me. I reached out to Coverstar and spoke with their service representative who kindly sent over a rep to see if the cover could be repaired. He informed me that Modpools had altered their cover so it couldn’t be warranted and that when they (Modpools) installed the cover they did it incorrectly so as to not allow any room for fixes. Coverstar walked me through repairing it myself and provided help to “patch up” problems so that the cover might last a few more years and they gave me specific instructions how to use it properly. A friend of mine took some marine epoxy and patched up the hole in the liner since Modpools refused to be accountable for anything, so I had to fix the liner that had a hole in it from the rail, by myself.
The Big Finish
In late May of 2020 I noticed some cracks on the pool window. When I ran my fingers on the outside and inside of the cracks I couldn’t feel them-they were inside the acrylic. I also noticed rust building on the window encasement. I took pictures (see below) and sent them to Modpools.
This was very concerning as a) I was worried they would once again claim no responsibility and where would I find another shipping container pool to help fix a window? and b) I was worried that a crack might be just enough to make the window give and cause harm to anyone nearby. In addition to all of these concerns the costs were piling up. we had already spent thousands of dollars on a pool that was often unusable. I sent the photos and called for 4 days until I received the email below:
This email arrived without any conversation as to how we found the damage, what the circumstances were, or what we could see; there was absolutely no assessment done. Simply “not our problem”. So I called the service rep and asked to speak directly to Paul who, though he was standing in the room would not get on the phone. I was told repeatedly that the windows “were engineered” and therefor it was impossible that this is ModPools fault. They told me that I had hit it, as though I had forgotten that I had picked up a sledge hammer and swung it with all of my might at the window. I was incredulous. After that I scrambled to find experts in acrylic windows (found another shipping container pool designer and talked to makers of large aquariums) who talked me through my window ordeal. I taped the crack with marine grade gorilla tape to hold it “just in case”, kept measuring the cracks and searched for an expert to help me fix this disaster in the middle of a pandemic. In October 2020 the window cracked right through the middle and spilled out onto our firepit. When we pulled it apart we saw that screws holding the frame together were never sealed and were already so rusted through that they snapped off, and we saw that the window was 1″ thick, not nearly thick enough to hold the force from 10,000 gallons of water in the pool. My experts who repaired the window told me they don’t use anything less than 1 3/4″. (see pictures)
At this point we realized Modpools would never take responsibility. I was also learning that I wasn’t the only dissatisfied customer. I found a website called container pools reviews and discovered pictures and tales from other customer, as well as from old employees of Modpools. (see screenshots below).
Then I filed a complaint with the BBB of Canada. I was not alone in my complaints. Curiously, in the month of March this year they had a curious uptick in positive reviews. Coincidentally, March was right around the time they settled a legal dispute with a customer who had posted their own website with serious, and familiar concerns. Turns out Modpools only paid attention to this customer once they posted a website and went public with their complaints. The site went down in March but here are screenshots.(see attached photos of the website).
This is the link to reviews of Modpools. Scroll to the reviews prior to March 2021 (2018-2021)and you’ll see a realistic and brutally honest portrait.
Given that Modpools refused to accept responsibility and refused to honor their warranty with our pool window, I hoped to at least warn others. After much back and forth to the BBB with Modpools denying everything, they finally stated that their service providers were verbally abused at our home which made sending anyone over impossible. This was a complete and total fabrication as I mentioned earlier, we live in California and the only time someone from Modpools stepped foot on our property we weren’t even home. The fact that Modpools would rather lie to the Better Business Bureau than simply fix their product (or even send someone to inspect it is just so egregious. here is a copy of part of their response.
This kind of behavior from Modpools is highly unethical and potentially defamatory. We also hired a lawyer to compel them to honor their warranty but because they are located in Canada, we would have to go to them to fight it (it’s stated in the contract). The most we got from Modpools was an offer to send us a new piece of acrylic glass (the same 1′ thick piece that failed the first time) and the installation and shipping would be up to us(for cost and knowhow), and of course any work that we did on the pool would void the warranty.
***This is an update to our Modpools misery. Modpools continues to make the ridiculous claim that their windows are “engineered” so they can’t possibly fail. When we sent them the results from our professional engineering tests as proof that the way they build pools is not structurally sound, they took the report, have not responded to us, and have done nothing to change their product. So even with engineering tests that prove their 1″ windows will fail, they continue to build what will ultimately be a defective product. Buyer Beware
An expensive ending, but at least we’re swimming
We were determined to have a product that we could swim in so after many months of talking to experts, we located a fantastic, ethical, professional shipping container pool company (www.trekpools.com). They flew out to our home, designed an entirely new window encasement, manufactured it, and just installed it last weekend. If you are interested in a shipping container pool, these are your guys! Please email me at email@example.com for pics of the result.
I hope you benefit from my cautionary tale. We had to spend close to an additional $50,000.00 to get a working pool (on top of the 45k for the original product). Once a Modpools leaves the shop, you’re on your own. Do not let this happen to you. We sincerely hope you can avoid the headaches and hassles that ModPools has given us and find a good, quality product.
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