Swimming Pools versus Fiberglass Swimming Pools: Which is
the debate rages on. Which is better? Are concrete pools the
best choice? Or has fiberglass taken over as the preferred
pool of the 21st century? I'm sure you've heard arguments
for both. And what you've likely heard has been quite biased.
You see, most installers only install one type of pool. If
they install fiberglass, then they say fiberglass is the ONLY
way to go. If they install concrete, then they say such statements
as, "A pool is not a pool unless it's concrete" or "Why would
you ever even consider fiberglass?" or "All of your friends
have gotten concrete, you're not going to get something different
are you?" or "You'll never find a shape you want." Etc, etc,
etc… And if you talk to a friend that owns a concrete pool,
then they'll likely tell you to choose concrete. Likewise
for the friend that owns a fiberglass pool.
let me clarify a few points for you now:
Fiberglass may or may not be the right pool for you. It
is NOT for everybody.
(gunite) may or may not be the right pool for you. It is
NOT for everybody.
for your TRUE guide to picking the right pool for you.
You should choose a concrete pool if:
are looking for a VERY customized shape or size not offered
in the fiberglass line. (An example of this would be an
"L" shaped pool or a pool wider than 16')
are looking for a pool DEEPER than 8'. This would be because
you've decided on a very springy diving board and you want
to be able to do many tricks and unique dives off of said
are not concerned with expensive repairs down the road.
are not concerned with the maintenance time you spend with
the pool on a weekly basis.
are trying to create a complete naturescape. In other words,
you want the pool to have many natural rock features, grottos,
possibly a 'pond' appearance, etc. (Although one may argue
fiberglass pools can look very natural, I still have yet
to see a natural masterpiece as I have seen many times with
some very high-end gunite projects.
are looking for a beach entry. (There are a few fiberglass
pools with something similar to a beach entry, but it's
still not quite the same design you'll find in a concrete
are NOT concerned with concrete's roughness on your feet.
(I've had second time pool owners choose fiberglass simply
because their concrete pool tore up their children's feet
too much. This is pretty standard with most concrete/gunite
choose a fiberglass pool if:
are looking for the LEAST amount of swimming pool maintenance
possible on a daily/weekly basis.
are looking for a swimming pool that will likely have no
major repairs/expenses (structurally speaking) down the
are looking for a quick pool install.
are looking for a pool on the smaller end of large. In other
words, you are looking for a size that is roughly 16'x40'
or less. " You are looking for a pool that will have 'flex'
strength if need be. (For example, let's say you live next
to a rock quarry where there is constant ground vibration.)
you have it. See which list fits your needs the best and that's
what you should go with. (Yes, I am a 'Fiberglass Pool Guy'
and I did just say that there are times when you should absolutely
choose concrete. Isn't it nice to actually get some professional,
unbiased advice? ;-) And if you want to listen to the counsel
of your friends, listen to the ones that have owned BOTH types
of pools, not just one or the other. For example, of the 500+
fiberglass pools our company has installed, roughly 10 of
the customers owned a concrete pool previously. Because of
the drawbacks of concrete, they chose to take a different
route the second time around. These people are the true pool
also that I have not mentioned the pool's appearance on this
concrete vs fiberglass page. This is because I have seen absolutely
stunning concrete AND fiberglass pools. It's all about the
builder's capabilities as well as the buyer's budget. In fact,
when our company presents at a home show, many onlookers see
our pool photos and assume we do concrete. Of course, this
is not the case but it just so happens that both pools can
be very beautiful and elegant, or very boring and cheap, depending
on a variety of project factors and decisions.