Fiberglass Pools: Guide to Install Costs, Maintenance, & More

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New modern fiberglass plastic swimming pool and wooden pool decking


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If you are planning on putting in a pool, there are many different options for you to choose from. However, one of the most popular materials is fiberglass. But is this option right for you?

This could depend on how much you will have to pay and the additional costs. So, how much does an average fiberglass pool cost?

A fiberglass swimming pool will have an average cost of around $45,000. For a bigger, deeper model, you could easily end up paying over $85,000. However, the exact price will often depend on your chosen layout. Typically, things like square foot size, features, and location can impact the pool’s cost.

If you’re spending so much on your pool project, you want to ensure it’s a good fit for your family and is your dream pool.

Let’s look at everything you need to know about fiberglass swimming pools, so you can be sure that this option is right for you.

New modern fiberglass plastic swimming pool and wooden pool decking

Is Fiberglass the Right Choice for You?

Before we look deeper into the costs associated with fiberglass residential pools, you need to figure out whether or not this is the best pool option for you.

With several different types of pool materials on the market, is fiberglass the right choice for you?

There are several pros and cons when deciding if you want to install a fiberglass pool. For example, they tend to be very easy to install.

However, you might be limited by fiberglass pool shells as to the sizes and shapes that you can choose from.

To help you make this choice, let’s look at some of the biggest benefits and drawbacks of installing this pool.

What are the Pros of a Fiberglass Pool?

There are many reasons why you might want to consider installing a pool. So, what are the pros of a fiberglass swimming pool?

  • They are very easy to install. Because the molds are pre-fabricated, you will just need to dig out the hole and lay the mold in the ground. As a result, you can install a fiberglass pool within a week.
  • They come with everything that you will need already built in. For example, the ladder or sun shelf will already be included in the pool. This might save you money, as you won’t need to install these elements separately.
  • There are multiple ways that you will be able to customize the pool area to suit you better. For example, you will have the option of installing elements like fountains. You’ll also be able to match the colors used in the pool, so it works stylistically with the rest of the outdoor area.
  • There are multiple pool sizes to choose from. This will give you more flexibility when designing your pool space.
  • There aren’t as many chemical substances used to manufacture fiberglass pools. This makes choosing a fiberglass pool a more environmentally sustainable option.
  • They are fairly easy to maintain. This will let you spend more time enjoying the pool.
  • They are very durable. As we’ll discuss later, most fiberglass pools can last for around50 years.
pool water - crystal clear water

What are the Cons of a Fiberglass Pool?

While there are several positive reasons to consider using fiberglass to make a pool, there are also a few potential downsides that you might want to think about.

So, what are the cons of fiberglass swimming pools?

  • Because they are made from a mold, you might be limited in the types of sizes of shapes that you will be able to choose from. Often, if you want to create a new mold, you could pay thousands more.
  • Though the installation tends to be relatively fast, getting the mold into your backyard can present several challenges. One of the biggest difficulties is that you will need a crane to lift the pool into position.
  • If you’re not in an area that will be able to accommodate a crane, it might not be possible to install a fiberglass pool. However, you should discuss this further with your pool builder. They might be able to suggest an alternative method.
  • You might find it harder to find someone who can help you install a fiberglass pool, as most installers will be more familiar with working with other types of pools.

Hopefully, you know a little more about some of the general pros and cons of owning this pool. Now we can turn our attention to more specific areas of pool construction .

This can also help you indicate whether or not a fiberglass pool is a right choice for you.

Can Fiberglass Pools be Heated?

On a colder day, the last thing that you want to do is get into the freezing water to go for a swim.

For this reason, many pool owners like to have a way to keep the water warm. This makes swimming a more pleasant experience.

It will also allow you to use your pool throughout the year. So, can fiberglass pools be heated?

Yes, you will be able to heat your fiberglass pool. This will allow you to control the water temperature, so you always feel comfortable swimming in the pool.

There are a few ways that you can do this. First, you might want to wait until the outside temperature increases.

The fiberglass material is designed to conserve heat. So, as the temperature rises, the pool will also start to get warmer.

Fiberglass pools have also been designed to conserve heat for a long time. This ensures that the water will stay warm throughout the day.

If you want to speed up this process, you can use a pool heater, which can vary in price, costing between $300 and $5,000(1), depending on your chosen model.

Because of the way the pool conserves heat, fiberglass pools will need a smaller heater when compared with other types of pool materials.

As a result, you will be able to save money on heating costs compared to other types of pools. The power of the heater will depend on the size of the pool. In most cases, you might only need a 150,000 BTU heater.

Can a Fiberglass Pool be Saltwater?

There are generally two ways to maintain the chemical balance in a pool. You can use either chlorine or salt. Most people are familiar with chlorine.

However, many people might prefer to use salt. So, can a fiberglass pool be saltwater?

Fiberglass is very compatible with a saltwater system. Unlike other types of pool material, there won’t be any elements that can be corroded or damaged by the salt. This makes it perfect for people who want to install a saltwater pool.

However, it will also be compatible with a chlorine system. This will give the owners more choice, letting you choose which model you want to install.

What Are The Benefits Of A Saltwater Pool?

Though you can use both a chlorine and salt system, many people would prefer salt. It’s estimated that around 80 percent of Australians(2) have installed this pool system.

So, what are the benefits of a saltwater pool?

The main reason why people choose to install saltwater pools is that they are believed to be kinder on your skin. Generally, people are less likely to report skin irritation(3) when swimming in a saltwater pool than in a chlorine one .

A saltwater pool might benefit those with sensitive eyes, who might find them growing puffy or red after swimming in a chlorine pool.

Also, having a saltwater pool will ensure that the water doesn’t taste like chloride or develop an unpleasant chemical smell.

However, you should be aware that saltwater pools come with a few drawbacks. They tend to take more time and effort to maintain properly, as you will need to get used to checking the salinity levels regularly.

how much does an average fiberglass pool cost - quality construction

How Deep can you get Fiberglass Pools?

If you’re planning on installing a fiberglass pool, you want to ensure everyone is kept safe. Often, this means considering the pool depth. So, how deep can you get a fiberglass pool?

The depth of the pool will vary depending on the model you choose. In most cases, the deeper the pool, the longer it will be. Generally, if you choose a 44-foot pool, it should be around eight and a half feet deep

If you want a more family-friendly pool, you might be able to get a shallower option that is around three and a half feet deep.

As we mentioned, creating a custom fiberglass pool design to suit your needs might be possible, but this also means they will need to build their mold.

For this reason, it tends to be a very expensive option, but nearly all fiberglass pool owners prefer this customization to a more standard rectangular pool or lap pool.

How Deep Does a Fiberglass Pool Need to be?

The minimum and maximum depths might vary depending on the manufacturer that you are looking at. To ensure you find the right pool, you should know what you are looking for.

So, how deep does a Fiberglass pool need to be?

The ideal depth will often depend on how you intend to use the pool. For example, do you want to install a diving board or jumping rocks?

You might also need to consider legal requirements to ensure that your pool complies with council regulations.

If you want to dive into the pool from a diving board, you will need plenty of water to break your fall. This will ensure that you don’t hit your head on the bottom. In this case, you need a pool that’s at least 8 feet deep

If you want to install a jumping rock, you can get away with a slightly shallower option, as you won’t be placing your body under the same forces. As a result, you will need a depth of around 3 to 5 feet

The government often mandates these depths, so you should check your local regulations. If you don’t have the right depth, you might face fines.

How Long do Fiberglass Pools Last?

If you choose a backyard pool, you want to ensure it’s durable. This will ensure that you can continue using it for many years. So, how long do fiberglass pools last?

How long the pool will last often depends on how you use it. Generally, a fiberglass pool can last for around 30 to 50 years when done well by a professional pool builder.

How to Maintain Your Fiberglass Pool?

The life of your pool will often depend on how it’s been looked after. Keeping your pool in good condition will give you the longest possible lifespan. So, how to maintain your fiberglass pool?

You will be able to take care of the pool in multiple ways, which include:

  • Maintaining a chemical balance
  • Keeping the pool clean
  • Controlling the water level

Let’s take a closer look at each of these elements, so you can be confident that you are caring for your pool properly.

Maintain The Chemical Balance

First, you need to control the chemical balance in your pool. This can be measured through the pH level.

To do this, you should test your pool frequently. This is very simple, put the pH stick into the water and wait for it to dry off. As it does, you should notice that it starts to change color.

The color on the paper will indicate the pH level in the pool. Ideally, you should have a pH of 7, which is neutral.

Too acidic or too basic, the fiberglass might start to get affected. These levels can also create the perfect environment to breed bacteria, which can start to take their toll on your health.

Bacteria might also start to eat into the lining of the pool. For this reason, stains on the pool might indicate that you have a chemical problem(4) that needs to be addressed.

Often you will need to add substances like chlorine or salt to help you control the chemical levels in the pool.

Keep the Pool Clean

Next, you must ensure that you keep the pool clean, if this is new to you there is an excellent video series here for sale, and well worth the purchase.

Though the fiberglass coating is durable, you will need to have it repaired if scratched.

For this reason, you should keep sticks, rocks, and other hard objects out of the pool area.

There are a few other ways to keep the pool clean. First, you might want to avoid installing the pool in an area surrounded by trees. This will reduce the amount of debris that can fall into the pool.

You also want to be vigilant about cleaning the pool. For example, you should have a pool net to help you catch and remove things like leaves or animal droppings. You should also make sure to check and regularly empty the pool filters.

Sometimes, you might want to invest in a pool-cleaning vacuum, and many choose a pool robot to do this automatically. This will add an extra layer of protection and help you ensure the water is safe to swim in.

Control the Water Level

Finally, you might want to ensure that you control the water level in your pool. The optimum level is about a third up the skimmer box, the rectangular section on the poolside that captures the debris. There are a few reasons why you should be doing this.

First, you want to ensure there might be groundwater under the pool. This places upwards pressure on the fiberglass. As a result, if it gets too low, the groundwater might come through the pool, damaging it.

For this reason, you should never drain the pool without consulting a professional first.

Instead, use an automatic pool cover at the end of each season. This will prevent debris from falling into the pool and causing problems.

Overfilling can be just as dangerous as emptying the pool. This can increase the risk that the pool area will flood.

If and when this happens, you could be facing serious property damage.

What Are the Installation Costs for Fiberglass Pools Compared to Above Ground Pools?

The installation costs for fiberglass pools differ from above ground pool installation costs. While fiberglass pools require professional installation, above ground pools are more DIY-friendly, resulting in lower installation costs. However, factors like site preparation, pool size, and additional features can influence the overall expenses for both types of pools.

How Much Does it Cost to Put in a Fiberglass Pool?

Hopefully, you will know whether a fiberglass pool is a good option for you. If you decide to install one, you need to understand how much you can expect to pay. So, how much does it cost to put in a fiberglass pool?

You might expect to pay between $45,000 and $80,000 to install the pool. This will vary greatly depending on the type of pool that you want to install.

Though this can seem like a lot of money, it’s important to compare this figure to other types of pools on the market(5).

While a concrete pool, also known as a gunite pool, offers more customization options, they are expensive and cost between $35,000 to $100,000.

The other popular option is vinyl pools. These are more affordable, costing between $3,500 and $6,500.

However, this material isn’t as durable as fiberglass pools and will often have higher maintenance costs . They will also need to be replaced more frequently.

To help you get a better understanding of how much you can expect to pay, let’s look at some factors that might influence the costs involved with installing a fiberglass pool.

Size And Shape Of The Pool

The size and shape of the pool will have a big impact on the price. As we’ve seen, there are multiple different options on the market. The one that’s right for you will often depend on what you are looking for.

As a general rule, the bigger and deeper the pool, the more you can expect to pay. This is because it will take more materials to manufacture.

Shipping Costs

When estimating the costs associated with installing the pool, you need to consider the shipping costs.

You’ll have to find a way of getting the fiberglass mold to your house. Often, this means paying for the truck to transport it for you.

To reduce these expenses, you might want to try and purchase from a local pool supplier so the mold doesn’t have as far to travel.

Pool Filtration System

To ensure your pool stays in great condition, you must install a high-quality filter.

The costs associated with a pool filtration system can vary, depending on the type of system you choose.

Generally, you can expect to pay around $200 to $1,500.

Any Additional Features That You Include

As we mentioned earlier, you can customize your pool in plenty of ways. This can ensure that you are thrilled with your pool area.

You’ll need to factor in these costs when considering how much you will need to pay to install the pool.

For example, you might want to change the color of the fiberglass or add tiles to the pool. This ensures that the pool area matches the rest of the house.

You might also want to add features like a diving board, slide, or jumping rocks. These can give you more functionality, especially if you have children.

It’s also possible that you might want to change the rest of the pool area. Some common examples include adding tiles or putting them in a garden.

Depending on the scale of these changes, you might need to hire a landscaper or purchase a lot of materials.

Finally, another common way of customizing the pool area is adding a water feature, like bubble jets or a water fountain.

These will require additional plumbing and might require you to make some changes to the design of the pool.

Placement Of The Pool

The area that you are putting the pool in can also have an impact on the amount that you can expect to pay.

When deciding where to put the pool, you might want to think about how difficult it will be for construction workers to access the area.

Remember, they will need to bring in equipment to dig out the hole for the pool. Then, they will need to guide the fiberglass case into the area and connect the plumbing.

The harder this process is for them, the more time it will take for the pool to be installed. As a result, you will have to pay a bigger installation fee.

Builder Expenses

You must also remember that you need to pay the building team to help you install the pool. The bigger the pool, the more you can expect to pay.

Though hiring a less experienced, cheaper team can be tempting, this doesn’t work out in the long run. Their work might not hold up, causing you to pay for repairs.

For this reason, finding a builder with experience installing fiberglass pools is important.

Finally, you should ensure that the installation process goes as smoothly as possible. This will reduce the number of builder’s fees that you will be expected to pay.

Council Fees

You might also have to factor in the costs of getting the project approved by the council.

For example, you might need to hire someone to help you draw up plans, so the council can understand where the pool will go.

You should also be prepared to pay higher taxes as the value of your home has increased.

Fencing Costs

Once the pool has been installed, you must ensure that the area has been fenced properly. This will make sure that everyone is safe when using the area.

In most cases, you will need to use a secure fence and a lock that extends around the pool area. This ensures that children won’t be able to get into the pool area without adult supervision.

When designing your fence, you should consult with the local government. They will often have a set of regulations you must follow to ensure you comply. If you don’t do this, you could be facing a fine.

Maintenance Costs

Finally, you might want to factor in the costs of maintaining the pool, whether you pay someone else or learn how to clean and maintain your pool.

Thankfully, fiberglass pools are much easier to care for than other materials. As a result, you can reduce your costs over the long term.

Can Above Ground Pools Be as Low-Maintenance as Fiberglass Pools?

Yes, above ground pool installation costs are generally lower than fiberglass pools. However, in terms of maintenance, both types of pools can be low-maintenance if properly cared for. Regular cleaning, water testing, and proper chemical balance can help keep both above ground and fiberglass pools in good condition with minimal effort.

Final Thoughts

While the overall costs associated with installing an inground fiberglass pool or above-ground pool can vary, depending on the size and shape you select.

Generally, you can expect to pay $45,000 and $80,000 to install the pool. However, you might need to pay more to get the area set up properly.

Hopefully, you now have all the information you need to decide whether or not this is the right option for your home.