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Pools: concrete or fibreglass?


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#1 *maddierose*

Posted 16 September 2014 - 09:58 PM

What would your choice be and why?

Also does anyone have a mineral pool? If so thoughts?

#2 Ruf~Feral~es

Posted 16 September 2014 - 10:07 PM

We have had a concrete pool for the past 18 years.  It was probably about 30 years old and still going strong, although it was needing to be repainted/resurfaced.

It was in full sunlight most of the day, (In Perth) but  was generally very cold. It was a big, deep pool, and stayed cold for all but the end of summer - Feb/march was the only time I found it bearable, but still cold.  The kids and DH swam in it a fair bit though.

We have just demolished that house, and are replacing it with a fibreglass pool.  Much cheaper, and warmer.  It won't last as long though - but I can't see us being in the same house for another 30-odd years.

Concrete pools can be a lot more versatile though - you can have any shape, design, location etc.  Options are more limited with fibreglass.

We are having a salt water pool this time - the concrete one was chlorine. I don't know anything about mineral pools.

#3 *maddierose*

Posted 16 September 2014 - 10:23 PM

Thankyou. Whichever way we go it will be heated with a newer electric heating so we can have it any temp we choose.

We are leaning toward concrete because we can have it shaped to our yard rather than just the square fibreglass that will fit.

I posted because I thought with either options there may have been things we hadn't considered. Your post was very helpful.

Need to decide ASAP because our pool man is coming to finalise tomorrow night.

#4 klr70

Posted 16 September 2014 - 11:48 PM

We'll probably put in a fibreglass pool when we build our new house - partly because it's cheaper & partly because the pool will be built up out of the ground a bit to be level with a deck (so not completely inground).

Fibreglass pools come in many shapes - not just squares & rectangles! A quick Google should give you some ideas. :smile:

We'll probably go Mineral, as well - was talking to someone at the Pool show about it (we were there to get ideas). Sounds like it's better than salt water - milder on skin & eyes.

#5 yabbadabbadoo

Posted 16 September 2014 - 11:57 PM

We originally planned on fibreglass due to it being cheaper.  We got half a dozen quotes and the last guy expressed more concern that the others about the crane access, so he sent his crane guy around to have a look.  Turns out the crane fees were going to be around $10,000!!!!  This was so much more than any of the other companies had quoted, as an indication only.  So whilst we thought it would be cheaper, it would have worked out about the same and we wouldn't have known until we had already signed on the dotted line and the process had started.

We ended up going with concrete.  Just be sure to be aware of all the variable fees, whichever you decide on.

#6 SeaPrincess

Posted 17 September 2014 - 12:01 AM

Before having a fibreglass pool, I would have said concrete, but we had fibreglass in a house a few years ago and it was great. We're in the process of putting in a fibreglass pool at the moment, and it is much cheaper than concrete - for the price of a concrete pool with no extras, we will have the pool, solar heating and all the paving/fencing/landscaping done as well. We're doing salt, but we've had chlorine and salt before.

#7 *maddierose*

Posted 17 September 2014 - 05:50 AM

 klr70, on 16 September 2014 - 11:48 PM, said:

We'll probably put in a fibreglass pool when we build our new house - partly because it's cheaper & partly because the pool will be built up out of the ground a bit to be level with a deck (so not completely inground).

Fibreglass pools come in many shapes - not just squares & rectangles! A quick Google should give you some ideas. :smile:

We'll probably go Mineral, as well - was talking to someone at the Pool show about it (we were there to get ideas). Sounds like it's better than salt water - milder on skin & eyes.

Oh I know they come in many shapes but for our yard the square was the best fit whereas with concrete it was going to be made around a retaining wal which is sloped.

Edited by *maddierose*, 17 September 2014 - 05:54 AM.


#8 *maddierose*

Posted 17 September 2014 - 05:53 AM

 SeaPrincess, on 17 September 2014 - 12:01 AM, said:

Before having a fibreglass pool, I would have said concrete, but we had fibreglass in a house a few years ago and it was great. We're in the process of putting in a fibreglass pool at the moment, and it is much cheaper than concrete - for the price of a concrete pool with no extras, we will have the pool, solar heating and all the paving/fencing/landscaping done as well. We're doing salt, but we've had chlorine and salt before.

See I thought fibreglass would be cheaper too but after factoring in the crane out quote for concrete is 5k more on a fixed price contract that's with mineral, electric heating and a few other extras we hadn't chose with the fibreglass.

#9 Hands Up

Posted 17 September 2014 - 07:04 AM

Crane access is a big consideration. Also fibreglass pool surfaces still fade even though they are a lot better than they used to be...... we ended up going with concrete due to the crane fees making the price difference negligible.

#10 mards

Posted 17 September 2014 - 07:05 AM

we got fiberglass - TOOK 7 days to install from digging the hole to tiling round the edges - i have heard of concrete taking a very long time - very weather dependent etc.

Anyway - 4 years on love our pool - whatever you get will be the best thing you have ever done to your house

#11 Julie3Girls

Posted 17 September 2014 - 07:28 AM

We did fibreglass .. Love our pool. When we were planning , we did look into concrete. One consideration was that concrete pools do tend to be colder, and take much more to heat/maintain the heat.

And for us, fibreglass was cheaper .. Didn't have any crane issues etc as we are on a 1/2 acre with very easy access. So no additional costs in that respect.

#12 capper

Posted 17 September 2014 - 08:06 AM

We put in a fibreglass pool 3 months ago.  We had a concrete pool at our old house for 14 years.  

The fibreglass pool is much warmer.  Our heater has already topped out at 26c.  We would only get that tempetrature in the old pool in December.  We are already swimming every day.

Our new pool is a mineral pool.  MineralChlor.  So far it is really good.  You dont need a shower when you get out, but the chlorine is too high in ours.  We need to turn it down a bit.  We are still getting used to it.  

A warning about the quote.  We have spent about $20,000 over the quote price.  We hit rock $1000
Fencing has been $7000 (We didnt have a boundary fence)
Electrician $1500 we needed a new circuit
Removing the dirt $1800
Plans and approvals about $2500
Cover and roller $500
The rest was pavers and landscaping.  

The new pool took 10 days from start of the dig to finish and able to be swum in.  The paving and landscaping was after that though.  We are still finishing up the gardening,

#13 capper

Posted 17 September 2014 - 08:08 AM

As for the crane.  It was included in our costing from the pool company.  We live in a complex with a shared driveway.  There was one crane to take it off the truck and carry it down the driveway and the other to lift it over next door house into our yard.  It took about 25 minutes from truck to hole.

#14 MarciaB

Posted 17 September 2014 - 08:44 AM

We have fibreglass and have had for 5 years,  it was roughly the same price as the quotes we got for concrete BUT we got in floor cleaning ( LOVE) and the automatic chlorinator ( love). This pool is so low maintenance compared to the concrete we had in the last house,  I would never do concrete again.  PS we have travertine paving all around it and glass fencing, it looks amazing, like a fully tiled concrete pool.

#15 *maddierose*

Posted 17 September 2014 - 12:45 PM

 capper, on 17 September 2014 - 08:06 AM, said:

We put in a fibreglass pool 3 months ago.  We had a concrete pool at our old house for 14 years.  

The fibreglass pool is much warmer.  Our heater has already topped out at 26c.  We would only get that tempetrature in the old pool in December.  We are already swimming every day.

Our new pool is a mineral pool.  MineralChlor.  So far it is really good.  You dont need a shower when you get out, but the chlorine is too high in ours.  We need to turn it down a bit.  We are still getting used to it.  

A warning about the quote.  We have spent about $20,000 over the quote price.  We hit rock $1000
Fencing has been $7000 (We didnt have a boundary fence)
Electrician $1500 we needed a new circuit
Removing the dirt $1800
Plans and approvals about $2500
Cover and roller $500
The rest was pavers and landscaping.  

The new pool took 10 days from start of the dig to finish and able to be swum in.  The paving and landscaping was after that though.  We are still finishing up the gardening,

Thankyou. Our quote covers all you have mentioned except the electrician Which my bil is.

Anyone else that got extra costs they weren't expecting?

#16 qak

Posted 17 September 2014 - 01:05 PM

We got hit with a couple of extra costs - we hit rock too, that cost $660 - and for some reason we needed "extra reinforcing" - $3980! We got ripped off big time on that, there's more to that story ... these prices were 15 years ago.

We have found our concrete (salt water) pool to be quite low maintenance - especially since new neighbours cut down some trees. Very low running costs, compared to a couple of times when the chlorinator wasn't working and we had to manually chlorinate the pool ($$$ ouch).

The other thing we got a surprise was the extra cost for cutting the coping tiles - short answer there is to get big pavers so less cuts are required.

I had never thought of concrete pools being colder, but that does seem logical. If you live in warmer parts if that could be an advantage?

Fencing and paving costs can be huge based on what you pick.

#17 MrsLexiK

Posted 17 September 2014 - 03:44 PM

It depends on what you are after too. Personally I would prefer a fibreglass as I love my SIL's one I would swim in it much more as I prefer the heat however I remember on a hot day DH jumping in and couldn't stand it. However we both went away for the same period of time over various times through summer the last 3 years and and everytime they got home it was green whereas ours wasn't because even though it was hot the pool stayed cooler whereas my SIL's retained the heat. Being short I also much prefer the shorter height but the taller people in our family have to be careful. Our neighbours had to go remove their back fence to get the fibre glass one in.

#18 MrsLexiK

Posted 17 September 2014 - 03:46 PM

Oh and the last two people I know who installed a fibreglass had the wholes both collapse and need reinforcing. One had it happen twice!

#19 capper

Posted 17 September 2014 - 04:27 PM

Our fibreglass pool has a constant depth of 1.65m.  except for the steps.  We found a company that did it like that because we preferred the depth.  

I expect we will be turning our heating off in the winter in our new pool and leaving the cover off.  We never did that with our concrete pool.  Without the heating in the concrete pool, it rarely got above 22c.  Way too cold to swim in.

#20 MarciaB

Posted 17 September 2014 - 04:38 PM

I have never heard of holes collapsing specifically with a fibreglass pool, but I have heard of it happening with a concrete pool!  I think that very much depends on the soil you have - ours is clay - the one that I know collapsed was very sandy soil.  Maybe ask that question.

We also hit rock (sandstone) which we had factored in as we suspected it may happen as it had done with neighbours.

We did however have an unexpected cost with them finding asbestos (in the form of an old shed or something that had been buried in the back yard).  So additional costs for its proper and safe removal and it delayed things a week or so.

We are in Sydney and just turned on the solar heating this week.  The pool is 26 degrees.  Our neighbours concrete pool is 21 with solar heating turned on a week ago - so they are warmer.  That may not matter to you depending on where you live. :)

Whatever kind you get - definitely get the automatic chorinator - and look into infloor cleaning.  We don't need any kind of vacuum or creepy crawly - which is great.  Our pool is narrow (12m x 2m) so a creepy crawly would have been annoying.  We also don't have a lot of space to store a vacuum out of the pool, so we are very glad of the infloor system.

#21 *maddierose*

Posted 17 September 2014 - 10:04 PM

Thankyou. We signed contracts, very exciting.

We went concrete, electric heating, in floor cleaning, and mineral.

I really appreciate everyone taking the time to respond.

If all goes to plan we will be swimming by Christmas.




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