The decision to add a pool to your backyard may have been an easy one. But now what? Are you in a dilemma as to what type of pool will best suit your needs? Pick a pool, any pool: comparing fiberglass and vinyl liner swimming pools may seem like a daunting task. Aqua Pools has decades of experience installing both types of pools and can give you an unbiased comparison. Let’s take a look at the differences and similarities between these two options. We might just be able to help you make the right choice for your family.
Pool Installation Time
If you want to start using your pool right away, a fiberglass pool is the best option. It can be installed in a matter of days. Once the hole is dug, the factory-made pool can be dropped into place and the filtration system installed; all that remains is your poolside landscaping. A vinyl liner pool is also built by first digging a large hole, then building either steel or polymer walls, which are finally lined with the vinyl liner. This process can take a few weeks to complete.
Pool Design Options
Fiberglass pools consist of a pre-engineered factory-made shape that is transported to your home in one piece and dropped into place. There are numerous sizes and shapes to choose from, but you are limited to the choices provided by the manufacturer. Vinyl liner pools offer far more customized designs, as the steel or polymer walls can be built to any shape that can be covered with a vinyl liner. The most unique pool designs are nearly always vinyl liner pools.
Initial and Long-Term Cost of Pool
A vinyl liner pool is initially the least expensive option for an inground pool, costing around $10,000 less than a fiberglass pool. That being said, you will have to replace the vinyl liner approximately every 10 years at a cost of $4,000 or more. Over time, the more-expensive-to-install fiberglass pool could end up costing you less money.
Both fiberglass and vinyl liner swimming pools can be customized with various add-ons. Obviously, the type and number of add-ons will add to the cost of the pool. Tanning ledges, bubblers, LED lighting, and custom pool covers are options for both types of pools.
Swimming Pool Maintenance
Fiberglass pools may have the edge when it comes to lower costs for long-term general maintenance. The gel coating is durable and easy to clean and is also algae resistant. Fiberglass pools will also use less chlorine than other types of swimming pools. The liner in a vinyl liner pool does require some careful handling. While the liner is thick, pet claws or tree branches that fall in the pool could cause damage to it, necessitating repairs. Also, a vinyl liner will require replacement every 10 years, give or take. Both types of pools require less energy to operate than a concrete pool. In addition, both fiberglass and vinyl liner pools can be set up with saltwater sanitation systems.
Both fiberglass and vinyl liner swimming pools can last the lifetime of your home. With regular care and the periodic replacement of the vinyl liner, you can expect either option to be with you long term. In our area of Illinois, we find that fiberglass pools are a popular choice due to the fact that they withstand the frequent freezing and thawing cycles of our Midwest weather.
Pick a pool, any pool: comparing fiberglass and vinyl liner swimming pools. We hope the information we have provided has helped you narrow down your choice! There are definite benefits to be had with either type of swimming pool. You will have to factor in installation time, design and customization options, general maintenance, and initial vs. long-term costs while making your decision. Whatever type of pool you choose, Aqua Pools is your number one choice when it comes to pool building. We know your needs and preferences are unique, and our goal is to help you determine the perfect swimming pool for you.