What to ask about swimming pool bylaws in Winnipeg

You do need a building permit to build a swimming pool in Winnipeg and there are bylaws to adhere to. Outside of Winnipeg a permit is needed as well with their own specific bylaws.
Some of the bylaws are the same in and outside of Winnipeg but one should always check with their local municipality. An experienced professional pool company will be well versed in the bylaws to avoid any unnecessary grief.

Inside Winnipeg there are five main areas of concern:

1- Engineered drawings with Province of Manitoba stamp.
The city of Winnipeg requires your pool to be engineered and stamped by a province of Manitoba Engineer.
Without this you’re stopped in your tracks at the Permit office.
Most manufacturers are from Ontario but their province’s engineer’s stamp won’t be adequate.
Professional pool companies have their stamps registered and updated.
If the pool company you choose has this as an extra in the fine print it will be a costly added expense.
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2- Distances to property lines and house structures.

The most common distance is 5’ from the property line to the water’s edge. (not the concrete apron edge)
However corner lots and rural lots are often 10’ for specific side yards.
The City of Winnipeg has a good booklet on line to review your specific lot requirements.
The City of Winnipeg does not have a minimum distance requirement to your house but some rural areas require 10’.
Planning your backyard resort with a professional experienced pool company can help so you don’t have to be a bylaw expert.
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3- Fences.

The City of Winnipeg requires a 5’ non scalable fence.
The City booklet on pools again has some good illustrations of what is acceptable.
A common myth is the rule is 6’ but 5’ is the requirement with some municipalities outside the City at 6’
An automatic pool cover is safer than a fence but it does not allow you to skirt the 5’ fence bylaw.
Even if your municipality did not have a swimming pool bylaw the Manitoba building code calls for a fence.
( No way out of this one)
Any body of water that holds more than 24” water requires a fence except a hot tub with a lockable cover.
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4- Hydro lines.

Hydro lines that are underground require certain clearance distances to the water’s edge.
The voltage in the particular line determines the distance.
Overhead hydro lines require clearances again depending on voltage.
Your professional pool contractor and Manitoba Hydro can assist you for your specific lot.
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5- Pool mechanical equipment location.

The City of Winnipeg requires 2’ to your lot line and 10’ to a neighbour’s window.
Also if you have a gas pool heater the exhaust vent must be 10’ to a dwelling opening.
Outside the City the lot line rule is often 10’ so checking with your local municipality is a requirement.

 

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I’ve only listed the top 5 common requirements but there are many others such as construction access to the backyard,
electrical outlets, gates, where can I drain my pool and underwater lights to name a few.
Pick a pool company with a very good reputation is the best general advice as we all can’t be experts at everything!
You need to be planning your first pool party and leave the bylaws up to the pool company.

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