Kimberley and Richard White had always liked the idea of relaxing in an outdoor spa, so there was great excitement in the White household when they finally settled on the one they wanted, and put in their order.
It was only with the delivery date locked in that the Auckland couple realised that installation was going to be a little more complicated than they had envisaged.
“We had planned to put it on our concrete patio,” Kimberley explains.
“I did some research and discovered the base had to be exactly level. If the site slopes, it puts pressure on one end of the spa and the warranty is void. And of course the patio had to drain away from the house.”
Rising to the challenge
Enter Plan B. They would have to construct a level base for the spa. It had to be close to the house so the spa could be hard-wired, blend in with their existing patio, and be simple and cost-effective. As keen DIYers, these two Kennards Hire team members wanted to do it themselves.
With the spa due to be delivered the following week, the pressure was on.
Kimberley found a design she liked on Pinterest, incorporating a concrete slab for the spa, surrounded by pebbles, pavers and big sleepers.
“At that stage I handed over to Richard. He makes it happen. Of course I have to help. I’m the labourer.”
Richard drew up the plans.
“We’d done a few projects at this property but this was the biggest,” he says.
Loading up on equipment from Kennards Hire
The first step was to get the tools they needed. Kimberley and Richard both work for the Kennards Hire support office. They headed to the Henderson branch where they picked up a turf lifter, wheelbarrow, small compactor and concrete mixer.
And of course, for no extra, they received a bucket-load of good advice from the Kennards Hire staff about how to approach the project!
Richard says the hardest parts of the job were getting the base level and estimating how much material – aggregate and concrete – was required.
“Once we’d poured the concrete, we realised we didn’t have quite enough,”
Kimberley says. “I had to make an emergency dash to get more before it set.”
Richard finished off levelling in the dark.
The next day, when the concrete was dry, they brought out the spirit level to see how they had done. Bingo! Whichever way they put the level, the bubble was in the middle.
“We felt very proud,” Kimberley says.
Bubbling away in bliss
The project was finished in October, when the nights were still cool, and it got plenty of use. The couple’s three young children – Kiera, 10, Ricco, 8, Brody, 4 – love it.
“After a busy day at work, the spa is magic,” Kimberley says.
She says doing the work themselves gave them an extra sense of satisfaction.
“We get a real kick out of it. Of course you run into problems but you just soldier on and work away together. It’s such a good learning experience.”
As for the next project, they’re looking at replacing some of the lawn. Richard ticks off what they’ll need for the project: “We’ll need a turf lifter, corer, a grass edger …”
All from Kennards Hire, naturally!