There are four main type of outdoor swimming pool, inflatable, above ground, fiberglass in ground and concrete in-ground. Concrete and fiberglass in ground are the most expensive, but they also last the longest. A large part of the expense is the installation, especially if it is difficult to access your garden, you don't want to be digging out a pool by hand, so you're going to need to get a digger in there, and possibly a truck to take all the soil that has been excavated away.
We chose a steel above ground pool for the following reasons:
Security – we only had to fence around the ladder and not around the entire pool
It’s cleaner there is less chance of leaves and blossom blowing into the pool when it is above ground level.
We can eventually build a nice stone wall around it, fill the gap between the wall and the pool with concrete, and have a pool that will last forever.
Price – The cost was one 1/6th of the cost of an in-ground pool
When we decided to buy a pool we arranged for an expert to come around and give us a quote, I was expecting him to give us some advice on where to locate the pool, but he just said, “where do you want to put it?”.
After a lot of thought we decided to put it somewhere that we can’t see it in the winter because you don’t want to be looking at a swimming pool when there is snow on the ground, and away from all trees, because we don’t want it filling up with leaves.
I’d lay a concrete base, the installation instructions stated either a sand base or concrete, the sand base gets small indentations where people stand on it and these algae forms in these indentations. It’s not difficult to brush the algae off, but I suspect that with a completely smooth pool floor, the algae would just start to form around the edges.
Hire a mini-digger, I only had to remove the top 15cm of soil but this took about a week, there was a very shallow slope on the ground, and I couldn't get it completely level, which meant that I used a lot more sand.
Chemicals testing, after 3 years of wasting money on test kits, and copious amounts of chemicals, I have finally realized that if you get the PH right then it’s difficult to go wrong with the chlorine. The pool was fine in the first year the second year it went green and cloudy, but I was able to fix that with an enormous amount of shock. The year after I decided it would be cheaper to empty the pool and refill than to buy more chemicals. Since then the water has remained clear, largely because I bought a digital PH meter and also I calculated the exact amount of chlorine to add every week. I no longer check chlorine levels and the pool has been crystal clear for the last 18 months.
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