The two most common materials to construct pools are concrete and fiberglass. Concrete pools can initially be more expensive and time taking than fiberglass pools. However, you can cut down on maintenance costs with concrete pools, while fiberglass pools are more prone to damage.
Fiberglass and Concrete Pools
Fiberglass pools are built offsite and need to be installed into the ground with other elements such as lighting, filtration and pump systems, etc. The installation price can be expensive adding the pool transportation costs to it as well. There are limited designs to choose from as they are built in factories and then installed into the land. In addition, the pools can only be 4-6 feet in depth and 16 feet in size. If the pool is not installed properly, bulges can form causing the pool to tear which can be costly to fix. Moreover, fiberglass pools can be costly to maintain in case of a loose soil base as any movement in the ground can cause cracks. They can be expensive to fix as well.
Concrete pools are customizable according to the client’s preference as they are built on-site. When forming the base for the pool, builders ensure that the base is compact and solid by using gravel or natural soil to fill up space. This helps create a solid base to pour concrete over. In case of terrain movement, the solid ground helps prevent cracking and wearing of the pool base. Once the pool base is laid, steel cage reinforcements provide extra strength to the pool interior and help strengthen the durability. It also helps make the pool watertight and prevent seepage into the ground that can further damage the surrounding area.
Furthermore, fiberglass pools have a smooth finish and tend to be slippery underfoot. Concrete pools on the other hand tend to be firm and provide a better grip as they are either tiled or plastered which is always a better option as it can prevent serious swimming accidents.
Fiberglass pools tend to heat up quicker and remain heated for longer, this can be a major con for a region like Kansas City where the summers tend to be extremely warm. To maintain cool water temperature, you might need to install jets or other water features to keep the water flowing. Furthermore, the maintenance costs of the pump system will be more expensive as it will continuously need to work to maintain the water temperature.
Concrete pools are seen as a more permanent and durable design and you can accommodate various types of features. Therefore, concrete pools add more value to the property which means the resale price increases.
Another material used to construct swimming pools is Vinyl Liner pools. The initial cost of vinyl liner pools is low just like fiberglass pools. However, unlike fiberglass pools, vinyl liner pools can be constructed in any shape, depth, or size. They also are known to prevent algae and have a smooth surface.
Vinyl pools take less installation time, unlike concrete pools. The pool walls are initially panels that are made from plastic, steel, or aluminum. Once the ground is excavated and the base of the pool is formed, the panels are joined with bolts, and braces are added for support purposes. Steps leading into the pool or underwater seating are also installed. These are typically made of some sort of plastic or fiberglass. Once the walls are in place, concrete is poured on the outside of the walls to hold them in place, before any plumbing or pool features can be installed.
One thing to note is that the maintenance costs for vinyl liner pools can be high. Vinyl liner pools have 5-10 years of a lifetime depending on the usage. Replacing costs and water filling costs can make the vinyl liner pools become costly to maintain. The thickness of vinyl lines is smaller in comparison to both fiberglass and concrete, therefore vinyl pools require a lot more careful while being used. Vinyl pools can not add a lot of value to the property as one of the first questions asked about the pool is how long ago it was installed.