Fiberglass Pools Are The Most Durable And Damage Resistant
Concrete pools look beautiful, and they can take a myriad of shapes. But theyre susceptible to one very pesky problem: cracks.
Eventually, the plaster on the walls of a concrete pool will begin to crack from years of chemical exposure, ground movement, and general wear and tear.
But with fiberglass pools, none of that is a problem. And its all thanks to their unique 6 layer structure that we mentioned earlier.
Fiberglass pools are flexible compared to concrete pools, and because of this, theyre nearly immune to cracking. Any cracks that do show up are just surface cracks on the gel coat. All of which are cheap to repair and usually only appear every 10 years or so.
And since the gel coat of fiberglass pools is also nonporous, it offers more protection against chemical and water damage.
Disadvantages Of Fiberglass Pools
- Because of transportation and the install process, it will generally not come any larger than 16 feet wide. However, being molded at the factory, it still manages to be a significant length.
- The extent of customization, as well as the range of sizes, is minimal if you choose from prefab pools in stock.
- If the backfill is not correctly packed in around the pool shell, the shell can bend, affecting plumbing pipes and drains.
Fiberglass Pools Vs Gunite
With these potential problems in mind, youre probably wondering what your best option might be. We believe that gunite is by far the superior option for some of the very reasons that weve mentioned.
The differences between the two start right from the very beginning, including how they are installed.
Gunite pools use a rebar framework grid that is then sprayed with the gunite mixture . The gunite will be smoothed out and then set to completely dry before a smooth finish is applied to the rough surface.
Whereas gunite pool construction takes place on-site, a fiberglass pool is constructed in a factory or warehouse. The process utilizes a mold in which the fiberglass is shaped. It will then be shipped on a truck to your home and installed in the excavated hole.
The fact that your gunite pool is constructed on-site opens up the design possibilities. Instead of having a cookie-cutter molded pool, you can create anything that you desire. That means you can get incredibly creative with the shape and any features that you decide to include such as built-in rock formations or waterfalls. You can add a bench or a sun shelf anywhere that you want it. You are also not limited in colors of finishes.
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Fiberglass Vs Vinyl Liner Vs Concrete Pool: An Unbiased Review
Theres lots of information online about the various types of swimming pools available. If you plan to install an inground pool, you really only have three options: vinyl liner, fiberglass, and concrete. Each type of pool has advantages and disadvantages. Unfortunately, an unbiased review of all three is almost impossible to find. Thats because virtually every comparison out there is written by a pool company that sells and installs only one type of pool. Thats like going to a Toyota dealer and asking for a fair comparison between Toyota, Chevy, and Ford pickup trucks. Even if they are trying to be honest, you know they have a motive. So before you trust any of these comparisons, take a look at the rest of the website and see what type of pool they sell. We guarantee that the pool they sell will be the cheapest, easiest pool to install and own.
Fiberglass Pool Costs Vs Other Pool Types
Overall, your fiberglass pool will be about 10% cheaper than a concrete or gunite pool but about 20% more expensive than a vinyl pool. However, over ten years of upkeep costs, fiberglass is the clear winner, costing 50% less to maintain than a vinyl pool and 75% less than a concrete pool.
|Replace liner every 10 years
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Fiberglass Pools Have The Shortest Installation Time
Typically, installing a pool takes months and involves several steps. And usually, its building the pool itself that takes the longest amount of time.
But since fiberglass pools cut that step right out of the equation, their install time is drastically shorter than other options.
How much shorter?
Well, while concrete pools take 3-6 months to install, a fiberglass pool takes just 3-6 weeks.
So when youre ready to install a pool, rest easy knowing that choosing fiberglass means more time in the pool, and sooner.
What type of swimming pool is the strongest?
I’m Going With A Concrete Pool Over Fiberglass Because The Concrete Pool Costs A Little Less
I’ve written various articles regarding this statement, but the simple reality is that fiberglass pools will almost ALWAYS cost less than a concrete pool over the course of the pool’s lifetime. This is because the chemical costs on a yearly basis, and the resurfacing costs will undoubtedly more than make up for a few thousand dollars on the front end.
To close this article, I want to reiterate my point that there are certainly times when concrete is the better solution for a pool shopper. Just don’t let the reason for such a decision be based on one of the five listed above.
At River Pools, we manufacture world-class fiberglass pools for customers across North America. If you’d like to explore your inground pool options, you can browse our pool models, visit our video library, or request custom pricing using the button below.
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Common Inground Pool Sizes
The larger pool sizes require a bigger property, so as not to dwarf the home, and not to take up your entire back yard. If you plan to swim laps, you will need a larger, rectangular pool. Keep in mind that fiberglass pools come in specific shapes and sizes, while concrete pools can be just about any custom shape and size you would want.
For fiberglass pools, we install San Juan Pools. They are an industry leader in fiberglass pools. You can browse their selection of pool shapes and sizes. Each pool description includes information on size specifications, measurements, features, water turnover rate, and more.
In general, the most common inground pool sizes are:
- 5-10 ft long
- 10-15 ft. long
- 20-25 ft. long
- 25-30 ft. long
- 35-40 ft. long
- 40-45 ft. long
The idea is to choose a pool size and shape that is attractive to you, and big enough for your use. You dont want to get a pool that is way too big for your needs, as it costs more to keep a big pool clean and in working order. Remember the bigger the pool, the higher the associated utility bills.
That being said, you also dont want to choose a pool that is too small. You want to be able to fit your whole family in comfortably, as well as some extended family or friends for a pool party.
Common Mistakes To Avoid
- Choosing the Wrong Size and Depth Decide what you want the pool for before you add on all the possible features available. You wont be happy with a family pool, deep end, and diving board if you only want to do laps.
- Poor Pool Maintenance Choose your maintenance plan and expenses in advance.
- Picking the Cheapest Options Uninsured or unbonded pool installers might save you thousands up front but cost you much more than that when the pool starts showing problems from a bad installation job. Check online ratings for contractors on any bids you get, and ask to see their insurance certificate.
- Buying a Pool with No Warranty on Labor or Parts Youll have no way to get any repair or replacement costs covered if something wasnt installed properly.
- Inexperienced DIY Work – You can avoid the angst of having an off-kilter pool if you level the ground properly to begin with, and keep it perfectly straight while adding backfill.
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What Kind Of Paint Should You Use For A Fiberglass Pool
Fiberglass is a very picky type of material, especially when you are working with pool fiberglass. You need to seek out epoxy paint as its literally the ONLY paint that is decent for this project. If you want to get the best possible results, go for epoxy swimming pool paint. This will have a great level of waterproofing, which bolsters your quality of workmanship.
Fiberglass Pool Color Options
Along with the pool shape and water features, choosing a color for your fiberglass pool is an enjoyable way to make your pool a stunning expression of your personal aesthetic. From cool blues to warm sand tones, pearlescent to prismatic, theres a pool color and style for every home. Turn your backyard into a crystal clear Caribbean sea with one color style or an elegant Greek revival aquatic enclave with another. While most customers opt for a shade of blue , theres no limit to what you can achieve with so many color options for fiberglass pools!
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Lets Talk About Vinyl Liner Pools
In the northeast, the vinyl liner inground pools is amongst the most popular. There are three different varieties of vinyl liner pools. One is the steel wall vinyl liner, which is most commonly made with galvanized or stainless steel panels. The next is the polymer/composite wall vinyl liner pool. The last type is the cement wall vinyl liner pool. Out of all the vinyl liner pools, the most popular are the steel wall and cement wall pools. The biggest advantage to these types of pools is that you can do just about any shape or style with these two materials. This is because steel is structurally sound and can be cut and molded into any size, shape, dimension, look, or feel. Just about anything a future pool owner is looking for can be created. The same can be said for the cement vinyl liner pools. After that, a liner can be cut to fit any shape or size pool. The biggest downfall of the steel wall vinyl liner walled pool is it can eventually corrode and oxidize. It is generally not the pool to get if you live in an area with a high water table or an area that is not for soil that holds water. The polymer/composite pool is more limited due to the pinning or locking system used to assemble the panels. This gives a bit more restriction in terms of how structurally sound they are although as a result of its material make up it has a long lifespan compared to a steel wall vinyl pool.
The Havana By Sun Pools
The dimensions of the Havana are as follows:
- Width: 16
- Length: 40
- Depth: 3 graduated to 8
The great thing about the Havana is the depth in the deep end. While most of the pools on this list hover around 6 feet deep in the deep end, this one has about an extra 2 feet. Therefore, this pool is great if you have kids who want to dive into the water since there is a few more feet of insurance in the deep end.
There is also a safety edge that extends around the perimeter of the pool, adding an extra safety measure.
Probably the most noticeable feature about this pool is its size. Extending 40 feet long and 16 feet wide, this is one of the largest fiberglass pools youll see. There is sure to be fun for everyone in this pool with enough space for diving, casual swimming, and watersports!
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Ok So What Pool Should I Get
Each type of pool has its own pros and cons. The choice of what type of pool to get is contingent on what the prospective buyer finds is the most important. At the end of the day, what you want the finished product to look like, and what you want to spend in terms of project total will dictate what type of pool you choose to get. All in all, an inground pool no matter what type will provide a platform of family fun for a lifetime!
Fiberglass Pools Come With Excellent Warranties
In terms of how long itll last you, fiberglass pools are the LEAST risky. But you already know that if youve read up to this point.
So lets talk about money.
A few years ago, fiberglass pools WERE considered risky from a financial standpoint.
Initially, they didnt have as much market share as concrete pools. So when you would install a fiberglass poll, it wouldnt increase your homes value anywhere near as much as a concrete pool did.
But fast-forward to present, and fiberglass pools continue increasing in value every year. And they getting closer to the property value increasing status of their concrete and vinyl counterparts.
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Surface Coating Debris And Contaminants
Youll find that fiberglass pools require a lot less maintenance than concrete or vinyl thanks to the surface coating that creates a non-porous layer and protects the pool from micro debris. This non-porous surface makes it very challenging for contaminants to get through or for algae to latch on, but some cleaning of the surface is required.
You wont have to brush the sides nearly as often as you would in a concrete or vinyl pool, and there will also be less debris forming on the top layer that needs skimming. The non-porous surface also means you dont need to add as many chemicals to your water to keep it clean and balanced because nothing is seeping through the walls as it would in a concrete or vinyl pool.
Also, keep in mind that a fiberglass pool features several layers of material that make it extremely durable wherever you install it on your property, even if thats near trees or in full sun. Concrete and vinyl require patching and resurfacing much more often than fiberglass, and vinyl is increasingly prone to punctures and leakage over time. You can read my article on resurfacing costs for more information.
What Are The Colours Of Your Leisure Lifestyle
It can be a hard decision to make given so many choices, but you are sure to find a gelcoat colour that will match the style of your pool space with the smart Leisure Pools AquaGuard range of gelcoat colours. This smart colour range also has UV, blister, and chemical resistance to prevent any type of damage that may occur.
For more information about the science of our gelcoat colour and supplier, visit our page on our Swimming Pool Technology Advancements and Innovations.
To see even more examples of our beautiful color system, visit our Colours page.
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Fiberglass Vs Concrete Pools
However, before you decide to move forward with the installation, youll need to decide between fiberglass vs concrete pool. These are two very different styles, and each has pros and cons you need to consider.
Lets breakdown the qualities of each.
What Does All Of This Mean For Me
Fiberglass pools have advanced and evolved since their earliest iterations in the 1950s. Today’s fiberglass pools are cutting-edge high-end products installed in backyards around the world.
Some fiberglass pools installed in the 1960s are in use today… but they’re not anywhere near as stylish as a fiberglass pool you might have installed in your yard this year.
We expect our fiberglass pools to last for decades. In fact, River Pools provides a lifetime structural warranty for all the fiberglass pools we manufacture and install.
If you want keep researching fiberglass pools for your family, please reach out and contact us to request pricing and dial in the specific details of your project. We also have a comprehensive learning center to support your self-directed research. You can also post any questions you may have below in the comments on this article.
We’ve collected all the best and most up-to-date information on fiberglass pools in one detailed ebook, which you can download by clicking the banner below:
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Most Expensive Pool To Own
After viewing the fiberglass vs. concrete pool 10-year comparison chart, you will see that concrete pools are by far the most expensive pools to build and own. They cost significantly more to construct and maintain. Concrete pools require the most maintenance vs. vinyl liner or fiberglass pools. They are prone to staining on the bottom and sides if you do not maintain and balance the water chemistry. The cost of acid washing and resurfacing are exceptionally high priced, thus costing significantly more over time.
How To Paint A Fiberglass Pool
Fiberglass painting is not something that you can just apply willy-nilly. You need to follow a procedure, ideally, one that will not make your pool look like a dumpster fire. Heres how to do it: