The name “vinyl pool” is slightly misleading as the swimming pool is not actually made of vinyl, but is in fact a concrete, composite plastic, or steel-sided pool which has a vinyl lining. This lining can vary in thickness, where obviously the better liners are thicker liners, and sport some very brilliant and diverse patterns. There are so many patterns that it would be fair to say that they are adequate enough to satisfy virtually any taste, whether you desire an elaborate tile look or a simple earthy one.
Vinyl pools and gunite pools (or shotcrete pools) are similar in that they take a little while longer to construct. You can loosely estimate that you need 4-6 weeks to do the swimming pool construction, and this will be impacted by weather conditions. Much like when building a house, this swimming pool requires that the ground be allowed to settle prior to construction completion. Obviously, this is to prevent cracking and shifting from any ground settling which occurs after the swimming pool is built.
The beauty of a vinyl pool is not only the fact that there are many pattern choices to use for your liner, but also the fact that it can be shaped into almost anything you can imagine. Unlike a fiberglass pool, where you are restricted to shapes that the factory produces, a vinyl pool is built with a series of walls, which can be combined to make curves, corners, indents, half circles… you name it. You could even make yourself an inground swimming pool in the shape of a star and you can include steps, benches, sun-bathing decks, vanishing edges, spas, a variety of wall heights, and other custom features.
These walls may be made from concrete steel, composite plastic or a combination of both, and upon completion are lined with a vinyl liner. The liner will be smooth to the touch, although not as smooth as a fiberglass pool and will resist algea moreso than a concrete pool. Estimated life of the liner is several years approximately and depends on how the pool is maintained, but can be torn sooner in a variety of ways making them less popular than years ago. The warranty only covers the welded seams and not cuts. So, read the warranty very carefully! Depending on the size of your swimming pool, a replacement liner will run in the $1200-$1800 range, PLUS the cost of reshaping the bottom which may be considerable.
Author – Michael Ciaccio, Chairman, Arista Pool & Spa Inc
Arista Pool & Spa, Inc., Collegeville, PA, is an award-winning pool builder serving Southeastern and Central Pennsylvania. Arista is easily among the best of the pool builders, designing and creating quality, custom pools on time with the best craftsmen using state-of-the-art equipment. Contact swimming pool contractor Arista Pool & Spa at 610-489-6000 for a free consultation.
- A Pool Builder’s Take on Vinyl Pools (poolsbuilder.com)
- Cutting swimming pool energy consumption (poolfiltration.net)