Fiberglass pools are pre-made pool shapes that can be easily dropped into the ground to create a seamless pool surface. Unlike concrete (gunite) pools, they aren't likely to crack when the ground freezes and thaws. In addition, fiberglass pools don't have a liner that needs to be replaced periodically, like vinyl pools do. However, as attractive and easy to install as a fiberglass pool is, it's important to weigh the pros and cons of this type of pool carefully before making a final choice.
Advantages of a fiberglass pool.
1. Easy Installation. Since a fiberglass pool is pre-formed in a single piece, it is much easier to install than a concrete pool, which has to be poured, or a vinyl pool, which requires sides to be put up and a liner to be fitted.
2. Seamlessness. A fiberglass pool has no rough seams or edges like other types of pools can have.
3. Variety. While a vinyl pool is limited to round and oval shapes, fiberglass pools come in a variety of sizes and shapes.
4. Low maintenance. A fiberglass pool is much more resistant to cracks and tears than a concrete or vinyl pool. Plus, you don't have to replace a liner every few years as you do with a vinyl pool. Fiberglass pool shells also resist algae growth, a big advantage in colder climates where the pool sits dormant for months at a time.
5. Durability. Not only do fiberglass pools require little maintenance, they are made to last. The average lifespan for a fiberglass pool (without having to replace the shell) is around 30 years or even longer.
Things to consider when deciding on a fiberglass pool.
1. Expense. A fiberglass pool is generally quite a bit more expensive than a vinyl or a concrete pool. While the exact cost of a fiberglass pool will vary with the size and depth, the average is around $40,000 installed.
2. Potential for heaving or shifting in extreme weather. Although this is rare, a fiberglass pool can sometimes be shifted due to moving soil in very wet weather or can be actually heaved up from the ground during an extremely frigid period.
While a fiberglass pool may not be the right choice for every family looking to add a backyard pool, this type of pool is durable, attractive, easy to have installed and very versatile. It's certainly worth considering fiberglass when you are shopping for a pool design. Contact a pool designer, like those at Mannix Pools, for more information.