How much does an above ground pool cost? This is one salient question that an intending above ground pool owner is bound to ask. Well, the answer to the question is that several factors come into play when it comes to the cost of an above ground pool.
This guide provides relevant information about some of the factors that help determine above ground pool costs and also compares above ground and inground pools.
What factors determine the cost of above ground pools?
The following are some factors to consider before purchasing an above ground pool.
- The size and shape of your pool
- Preparation of the site
- The material to be used
- Items in the pool kit
- Local permits
- Labor cost
- Pool deck
The size and shape of the pool
The larger the size of the above ground pool, the higher the cost because more materials will be needed for large-sized above ground pools and their installation cost may also go up depending on the material (e.g. you will need to use a bigger crane). The average depth of a typical above ground pool is 3 to 4.5 feet.
A small-sized above ground pool designed for 3 to 4 persons should cost less than one made for around 6 persons. Typically you would consider most of the above ground pools as plunge pools as they are usually of compact size. When it comes to above ground pool shape, there tends to be a price difference between round pools, oval pools and rectangular pools; however, it’s mostly because the latter are usually made of quality materials.
The costs tend to rise further with the addition of accessories. For example, if you wish to add decking around your rectangular above ground pool, then then your aggregate cost can increase significantly.
Preparation of the site
If it is not an inflatable pool that you want to install, then some site preparation is necessary before mounting your above ground pool. Be sure that the ground area is not only level but also cleared of dirt, debris, agricultural plants, weed, and other vegetation.
You may need to bring in heavy equipment if the landscaping or dirt to be moved is substantial. In some cases, it may be necessary to further solidify and layer the soil with a base such as sand. Alternatively, you can erect a concrete slab.
Some folks may fancy mounting their above ground pool atop a deck. However, this is not very ideal because the pool might collapse as a result of the weight of the water. Hence, the best option is to mount your pool on the ground.
The material to be used
The three main materials used to construct small above ground pools are vinyl liner, concrete, and fiberglass. They are also the major materials used to build full-sized swimming pools. Concrete is the most expensive while vinyl liner is the most affordable. Below are some characteristics of the three materials along with the indicative cost.
Vinyl liner above ground pool cost
- The cheapest swimming pools you can buy – typically these pools can cost anywhere between $600 and $8,000
- Quick and cost-effective solution
- Can be a convenient option, as they are often the easiest pools to pack up and take with you if you decide to move home.
- The lining will need replacing from time to time
- Vinyl liners are not as hard wearing as other swimming pool interiors
- You may have to plumb them in yourself, which should never be attempted unless you are highly experienced
Fiberglass above ground pool cost
- More expensive than vinyl liner yet of higher quality and still affordable with a typical cost between $25,000 and $45,000, depending on the size and optional extras chosen
- Fiberglass is the ideal material for above ground pools, making them both lightweight and durable
- Easier and faster to install when compared to conventional inground pools which can take several weeks before completion
- More long-lasting since the fiberglass raw material exhibits greater resistance to cracks, chips, and other kinds of damage
- Requires minimal maintenance in comparison with vinyl liner and concrete pools that require liner replacement and regular resurfacing
- Has a non-abrasive surface that significantly minimizes the chances of skin irritation for a smoother and more comfortable swimming experience
- Available in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, making it easier to find one that meets your unique needs and aesthetic preferences
- Pool customization options are available with some manufacturers
Concrete above ground pool cost
- The most expensive out of these 3 materials, with a prefab above ground concrete pool costing typically between $30,000 and $55,000
- Tough and hardwearing – concrete is the most tried and tested material for swimming pools
- Has been used in swimming pool construction for many decades.
- Strong enough to provide a solid long-lasting structure for above ground concrete pools
- More easily customizable than any other type of pool
- The most expensive to buy and deliver/install
- Carries a number of other additional costs which consumers do not always think about when choosing a pool
- A notoriously cold material, so the costs of heating your pool are likely to be higher
Items in the pool kit
It is necessary to examine your above ground tool kit during purchase to determine what is included and otherwise. Some pool kits usually include a pool cover, filter, ladder, and other basic accessories. If you are not satisfied with the number of items included in your proposed tool kit, you can decline the offer until you find one that suits your needs.
Otherwise, you will have to incur extra costs to purchase items that do not come with the kit or items in the kit that do not appeal to you.
Depending on your local municipality, you may need an official permit before proceeding with your above ground pool project. Be sure to make adequate inquiries with respect to a permit before you purchase and install your pool to avoid any fallout with the law. Permits often require that the pool be fenced.
Installation cost constitutes a significant component of the overall costs of owning an above ground pool. The installation fee is either included in the pool’s total price or as a separate charge that can cost a few thousand US dollars, depending on the pool, company, site conditions, etc.
One way to save money on installation cost is to mount your pool during the off-season. You may get a discount from some installers if you choose to install your pool in cold weather rather than during intense heat from the sun. Some people may prefer DIY installation because of the relative ease of installing an above ground pool. But professional installation is highly recommended – with Little Pools, you will need to get a licensed electrical contractor to connect your pool.
You may be wondering how geographic location impacts the cost of building an above ground pool. Well, costs such as those of pool materials, transportation, and even labor tend to differ from one location to another. This is why costs are often discussed in terms of the national average.
Costs are especially higher in urbanized locations where pools are used in higher numbers as well as in locations experiencing significant residential and commercial construction activities which often imply increased demand and, therefore, higher prices.
Unlike mounting your above ground pool on top of a deck which can lead to its collapse, building a deck around the pool comes with pecks that include extra space and an opportunity for adults to have an enhanced view of swimming kids.
A deck is also a nice poolside entertainment venue that can hold umbrellas and seats. But it comes with an added cost that will depend on the deck materials and the size of the above ground pool.
You’ll need a way to have access to your above ground pool if you decide against installing a deck. Some good deck alternatives include a ladder and steps. While slides are also an even nicer way of accessing your pool, they are more expensive than ladders and steps.
You can enhance your pool with decorative lighting and custom water features such as fountains or a waterfall You can also install a pool compatible with a saltwater chlorine generator.
Filters, pumps, and heating
Most above ground tool kits often include pumps and filters but no heaters. Heaters are especially ideal for those living in colder areas. A lot of the filters and pumps you’ll find in DIY kits do not last very long and will need to be replaced soon.
A high-end diatomaceous earth filter and pump combo for large pools will attract a higher cost than other varieties.
Above ground pools vs inground pools
An above ground swimming pool is an easier and more affordable way to own a pool without all the stress and expenses associated with inground pools.
With inground pools, ease of access to the construction site is also a concern since the contractor and builders have to access the site on a daily basis, most times wide a variety of heavy equipment and other construction tools. The contractor may decide to charge additional fees in cases where it is difficult to gain access to the site. To avoid this access problem scenario, some folks building a brand new home often decide to build their inground pool simultaneously.
In contrast, above ground pools can easily be transported to a home and even craned to your yard over your house. Another significant merit of above ground pools is the ease with which they can transported from an old residence to a new one where they can be installed very easily. This is only true if you did not deck or landscaped around the pool.
Inground pools are immovable and permanent once constructed. This is not a disadvantage though, because adding an inground pool to a home increases the home’s value. But the pool must be constantly maintained, even if you no longer use it, unlike an above ground pool that can easily moved when no longer needed.
Maintaining your above ground pool
If you have weathered all the costs and managed to install your above ground pool, you should also set aside some funds to maintain and repair it from to time. Maintenance activities include cleaning the pool, keeping the filters and pump clean and functional, as well as taking care of the chemicals, among others.
You may be wondering which above ground pool material you should settle for. Well, you would have noticed above that fiberglass pools are considered the best kind of above ground pools (especially the smaller ones). This is why reputable firms such as the Little Pool Co not only recommends them very highly but are also pioneering fiberglass innovation with respect to above ground pools.
Modern technology has made it easy to build an above ground pool from fiberglass just like from concrete. Fiberglass above ground pools can now be installed in a wide variety of ways. Some homeowners prefer to purchase shipping containers with fiberglass pool shells inserted, however, more and more consumers are choosing Little Pools as a great looking, durable and lightweight alternative to shipping container pools and prefabricated concrete pools.
The Little Pool Co has taken the fiberglass concept one step further by creating small fiberglass above ground pools that could be sold as a complete unit that suits a wide variety of backyards with limited space. Coming in two different shapes, Little Pool offers the convenience of a small above ground pool without having to compromise on quality.
So what is the cost of above ground pools by Little Pool Co? You can get some of these stylish and exquisitely designed backyard pools from about USD 25,000). A standard package includes a pump, skimmer filter, chlorinator, LED light, skimmer box, and a basic pool maintenance kit. Request your free Little Pool Co quote now!