Picture the backyard of your dreams. Does it contain a pool? Of course it does, having a pool in your backyard creates an outdoor oasis fit for the ultimate enjoyment. Your home will become the hub of “pool party” invites and you will be able to welcome summer in with a splash.
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What budget should I have in mind when installing a pool?
The answer to this question can fluctuate greatly with materials, but on average, installing a pool can cost anywhere from $30,000 to $50,000. This is not a whimsical project to take on, but one to sit down and seriously consider. Here a more specific breakdown of the different pool type costs.
The least expensive option for a pool is a vinyl liner pool. This sort of pool can cost anywhere from $36,000 to $64,000. Maintaining a vinyl liner pool costs roughly $1,100 a year.
The most expensive pool type is a concrete pool. Varying with the shape and size of the pool, this sort of pool can range in cost starting from $52,000 to $98,000. The maintenance of this pool type can also be very expensive. The maintenance of a concrete pool is roughly $2,700 a year.
On average, a 25 feet long fiberglass pool can cost $25,000. Additionally, expenses can add up with pool accessories and additional landscaping surrounding a pool, which can cost an extra $5,000 to $15,000. Overall, this sort of pool can cost anywhere from $45,000 to $85,000.
However, fiberglass pool annual cost of maintenance with cleaning and energy usage is an average of $500 per year.
How will building a pool affect the rest of my yard?
Expect your yard to need complete repair after the installation of a pool. Not only will a giant hole need to be dug, but cement and equipment will need to come in and out of your yard, so trucks and tire tracks can add to the process.
You should keep this in mind when preparing your budget that you might need to set aside extra money for redoing your landscaping surrounding your pool.
What pool type is best?
The options available for an inground pool are a vinyl liner pool, a concrete pool, or a fiberglass pool. Fiberglass pools come with the highest recommendation. However, a concrete pool can be built as large as you may like. In contrast, a fiberglass pool has a standard size.
The positive to a vinyl liner pool is that it has the lowest startup cost, which makes it an ideal option for homeowner who would like a pool but are lacking the funds for a large down payment.
Fiberglass pools are generally recommended because they are easy to maintain, they are smooth, and they are easy to install and can be installed during any season. Both concrete pools and vinyl liner pools are susceptible to algae and staining or scraping your feet should you touch the bottom.
What landscaping will I need around my pool?
Surrounding a pool, most people opt for a concrete patio on which to lounge, barbeque, or even dine. To ensure greater safety, some homeowners choose to fence in their pool area, protecting both children and adults from accidentally stumbling into the pool.
Large plants around your pool will increase the privacy of your space. Palm trees are an excellent option for this.
Outdoor lighting will enhance the look of your pool, allow for greater usage by creating the possibility of nighttime swimming, and make the area safer for those walking in your backyard at night.
How long will this project take?
The projected time frame for pool installation can vary depending on your selected pool type. A fiberglass pool has the quickest installation, taking only 3-6 weeks to fully install.
A concrete pool installation can last anywhere from 3 to 6 months. This is typically the longest pool installation a homeowner could face
A vinyl liner installation falls right in between concrete and fiberglass. This type of pool takes 4 to 8 weeks to install.
How can I prepare for pool installation?
Before you can begin construction, a permit needs to be obtained. If you are working through a company, they can guide you in how to get the right permit. Once that has been done, the land needs to be excavated and grading needs to be performed for all pool, patio, and planting areas. Once your area has been flattened, it is ready for the plumbing installation and the framing of the pool and for the installation process to begin.
Maintenance- Once you have installed your pool, you will have to commit yourself to the maintenance of your oasis. Skimming the pool should be a daily practice when the pool is open for the season. Once a week, you should scrub the walls of the pool to prevent algae from building up.
You will need to empty your pool’s filter basket once a week. About once a month, you should backwash the pipes you use in your filter system. Let the pump run in this mode until the waste pipe ejects clear water.
Test your chemical levels weekly. This is the piece of maintenance that is arguably the most important. The consequences of an imbalanced pool can lead to bacteria growing and irritation to your eyes or skin.
The main type of chemicals to test for are free chlorine, cyanuric acid, calcium hardness, total alkalinity, and acidity. There are testing kits you can purchase that explains the ideal range for the listed chemicals and what you may need to do in order to adjust them.
Shocking is a pool maintenance option that should only be done on rare occasions. The ideal number of times to shock a pool is twice a season. Shocking is when the chlorine levels are drastically raised in a pool for a short period of time to kill bacteria. This should be done if you have had a large party, but not too frequently, as it will damage the siding of the pool overtime.
Refilling- Over time, your pool will lose water through evaporation, spillage, or overflow in the event of rain. Make sure to keep refilling your pool to the appropriate height and recheck the chemicals once it has reached that height.
Oils- Oils can be left behind by any lotion, shampoo, conditioner, or natural body oil that comes in contact with your pool. One solution is to ask all pool goers to shower before usage, but if you would like to be less demanding on your guests (and yourself), you can just toss a tennis ball in to the pool.
The fibers on a tennis ball are able to absorb oil and prevent them from leaving a greasy luster on the surface of your pool.
Water heater- Pool heaters are a great investment if you want to extend the season of your pool usage. You can choose from a solar pool heater, gas pool heater, or a pool heat pump.
Solar power heats are the most expensive at installation, but provide energy savings over the years. You need to have access to direct sunlight.
Gas heaters are inexpensive to purchase and heat the water quickly. They tend to use a lot of gas, cost a lot to operate, and are a bit of an eye sore.
Heat pumps have a long life span and are cheap to run, but they cost a lot to buy upfront and they heat the water slowly. This option does not work well in cold temperatures.