Have you ever wondered what it would be like to own your very own in ground swimming pool?  Are you aware that there are several types of in ground swimming pools available?  How do you decide which type is best for you?  In the world of in ground swimming pools you have some decisions to make.  Where to start?

First you will have to decide if owning an in ground swimming pool is right for you.  Many people who want an in ground swimming pool are those who are either looking for a place to relax throughout the summer, or they are looking for something to enrich the lives of their family as a whole.

Most people are already aware that an in ground swimming pool represents a significant investment and should not be taken lightly.  Regardless of which type of in ground pool you decide on, you will have to put some of your hard earned money into it.  Obviously with that hard earned money in your backyard, you will want your pool to stay the best it can be for many years to come.  This is where the different types of pools come into play.

There are basically three types of in ground pools on the market today, and they are all very different from one another as far as the structure and the building of them go.  To begin lets start with the concrete pools.

Concrete Pool

This is the “high” end pool in the industry.  Likewise you will be paying the “high” end price for it.  This pool is constructed entirely in the backyard.  That being said, it will have no manufacturer warranties with it.  This means if something does go wrong, the cost to repair it will come directly from your pocket.  I am not sure how much you know about concrete but there is an understanding among those who work with it everyday, and that is that concrete will crack and it is just a matter of where it will crack.  Have you ever noticed how a sidewalk is divided into sections.  The lines that run through a sidewalk are put there for a purpose, and that is in an effort to control where the concrete will crack.  Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t.  Imagine having a brand new pool and suddenly a crack appears at the bottom of it.  Imagine that the crack is deep enough, and now your pool is losing water.  Now what?  You have to have the pool drained and the crack repaired.  Now you have the expenses of having the crack repaired, refilling the pool, re-treating the water with chemicals, and re-heating the water.  On top of all that you now have an area at the bottom of the pool where the repair has been made and is visible to all.  You spent all of that money on your pool to have an eyesore smack dab in the middle of it.

Another thing that I think you should know about concrete is that it is not the most forgiving material.  It is abrasive and never hesitates to remind you of that fact.  Don’t believe me, well skinned knees and elbows don’t lie.

The majority of people that get this type of pool typically get it for the symbol of social status that accompanies it.  In my opinion there is nothing better about this pool than any other type of pool.  In the end you have water in your backyard, you just paid more for it to be there, and you will likely continue to pay for it.  This brings me to the next type of pool on the list.

One Piece Fiber Glass

This is a type of pool that I think is fairly new to the industry.  It is supposedly a quality product that will compliment your backyard quite well.  To me that is a little misleading.  This type of pool is molded in a factory and brought to the location where it will be installed.  This means that the size and shape are predetermined by the manufacturer.  There is not a lot of room for customization, and if your backyard is not suitable for the sizes and shapes that are offered then you don’t get one.  If you can’t get one it will be difficult for it to compliment your backyard won’t it.  Another downside to this aspect is that they are not representative of your personal style.  You might get one and then the next summer, Bob from down the street gets the exact same pool.  As far as them being a quality product, that is up for debate as well.  This type of pool is not exactly structurally sound.  It is not made to support itself.  This becomes apparent during the build when the pool has to be filled at the same rate as it is being backfilled.  This means that the the water level inside the pool has to be the same as the backfill around the pool.  This is to keep the pool from collapsing in on itself or from blowing out.  There is another well known issue with these pools that you should be aware of.  Being that they are a solid impermeable shell, they are capable of floating, and popping out of the ground.  This happens when pressure from water in the ground exceeds that of the pressure in the pool itself.  Typically this is only an issue when the pool is drained for one reason or another.  Manufacturers of this type of pool will argue that there is no reason for draining the pool.  That begs the question, how is someone to do a surface repair under water.  For instance, when fading occurs, or if the shell cracks.  Certainly these types of repairs would need to be done above the water level.  Or what happens when the plumbing fails overnight and your pump continues to run.  You wake up with a flooded backyard and an empty pool, or worse case scenario, you wake up with a flooded backyard and a pool that has popped out of the ground.  Now you have a huge expense you need to make to repair everything.  You can find examples of this by searching the internet.  So what type of pool is left?

Vinyl Liner

Vinyl liner in ground pools are in my opinion the best bang for your buck.  There are a couple types of material that they can be made from to offer the best possible pool for your needs.  In addition to that, they are entirely self supportive.  They do not need to be backfilled and filled with water at the same rate.  Another benefit is that the building material is manufactured in a controlled setting, so most manufacturers will offer several warranties for their products.  This means that if something does fail, it will likely be taken care of at little or no cost to the homeowner.  The fact that they are made up of individual components also means that repairs are often quick and easy.  A huge benefit is that they are entirely customizable.  Regardless of your backyard needs, a pool can be designed to accommodate them.  Do you need a small but elegant pool, or do you need a large unique shape to fill up a huge backyard?  Either way a pool can be designed to fit your needs.  Some might argue that the liner would need to be replaced every few years or so.  This is somewhat true, however if the pool is well taken care of the liner can last anywhere from 7 to 12 years.  In addition to that changing the liner allows the homeowner a chance to change the look of their pool by simply changing the design of the liner.  The liner itself is vinyl, so there is no abrasion associated with it.  Say good bye to skinned knees and elbows.

These are just some of the differences between the three main types of in ground pools.  Obviously you can make your own decision on what is best for you.  However I hope this post sheds some light on the subject.  For more information on vinyl liner in ground pools, or general swimming pool information please feel free to check out the rest of my blog as I have written about just about every topic related to swimming pools.  As always feel free post a question or comment and I will do my very best to address them.

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