fiberglass pool
An interesting little fiberglass swimming pool adds interest to a small backyard

Swimming Pool Construction Methods for your First Pool

A swimming pool is high on the wish list of most new homeowners, even though building a pool can be a daunting task. And that’s not really a bad thing since building a swimming pool can present a real minefield for somebody who has never had a pool before. Not only will you need to identify the best location for the pool, but you will also need to decide which pool construction method you would like to use.

Assuming you are going to employ a swimming pool construction company to do the job for you, you will also need to find a reliable pool company that you can trust. But get quotations from two or three companies that offer advice on what sort of swimming pool construction method to use, and will construct or install your new pool for you.

Best Construction Method for Building a Pool

There are many factors you will need to consider before you decide on a suitable pool construction method. These include the initial price of the pool as well as ongoing maintenance costs, and both advantages and disadvantages of the different swimming pool construction procedures. Don’t let anyone tell you that there isn’t a pool building method that doesn’t have its disadvantages. They all do. Unfortunately none is perfect.

First of all you will also need to decide whether you want an inground pool or one that is constructed above the ground.

Here are some examples of the most common swimming pool construction methods used by professional swimming pool builders.

Fiberglass swimming pools

The best fiberglass pools are factory molded and they come in many shapes and sizes. They are relatively quick to install and may be sited above, in, or partially in the ground. Because the pool shell is ultra-smooth, it is easy to clean.

Perhaps the biggest disadvantage of a fiberglass pool is that you are limited by the shapes and sizes available. You must also be sure you are buying a shell that has been manufactured to regulated quality control standards otherwise it could buckle under the weight of the water.

Gunite swimming pools

Gunite pools are usually constructed in the ground. This swimming pool construction method involves lining the excavated hole – which can be any shape or size – with reinforced steel (sometimes with panels around the outside for additional reinforcement) and then blasting a strong cement-sand mixture onto the pool wall.

A gunite pool must be given some sort of finish – usually marble plaster – to make the shell smooth and waterproof. If not maintained correctly, the surface can roughen allowing algae to take root. This will increase your chemical needs and costs.

Handpacked and poured concrete pools

Pools made with concrete are generally considerably more expensive, but these swimming pool construction methods are ideal for any custom swimming pool, especially those designed for a difficult site. Poured concrete pools are ideal for above ground construction.

Like a gunite pool, concrete pools must be given a waterproof finish – usually either marble plaster or fibreglass that is applied to the surface on site.

Vinyl-lined swimming pools

Liner pools are without a doubt the easiest to install and the least expensive option. This is why most kit pools for DIY enthusiasts are of this type. But liners have a limited lifespan.

Vinyl-lined swimming pools may be installed above ground and in-ground, and depending on the panels that support the pool, they may be constructed in a wide variety of shapes and sizes.

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