The best thing when we were looking around was finding friends or friends of friends who had good experiences with a pool builder. Like most building projects, getting a skilled builder who is reliable and committed to a high quality job is crucial.
We went with a fibreglass pool. We’ve had three friends all install fibreglass pools in the past few years and are happy. They look great. Don’t worry about what other people think. Just get the pool that suits your needs and location. And, of course, your budget.
We ended up tossing up between Compass and Leisure Pools. Both seemed great and came recommended. We ended up with Leisure because the builder was fantastic and they had a shape that really suited the spot.
Some more nuggets that we picked up along the way. It seems a lot of companies quote cartridge filters which apparently require regular cleaning and can be a pain in the long-term. A sand filter is a much better option for ease of cleaning and long-term maintenance. There’s usually not that much price difference – probably only a few hundred dollars. Pool builders prefer the ease of a cartridge because they don't have to plumb a waste line. If you do end up going with a cartridge, make sure they make provision to empty (reduce the water level) of the pool somehow. I've talked to a pool guy who has seen heaps of pools with no provision to reduce the water level and with lots of rain you can end up with a pool that overflows which can be problematic.
And be wary of those self-cleaning systems. They sound great but pool cleaning robots are now really cheap and efficient, and easily replaced if needed. If you have problems with a self-cleaning system it could be really difficult and expensive to fix. - Kermit
Go with a reputable supplier/installer. This is what I did and still had some issues so it just shows how important it really is.
Be a hustler like me, get that price down because they have plenty of room to move on their listed prices. I bought my pool direct from the manufacturer which immediately saved about $2,000 off the likes of Buccaneer Pools, etc who he supplies to.
A heater is a winner. I went electric rather than solar so I could use it year round. Yes it adds a bit of cost up front but it's well worth it. They can be installed later but the install cost will be slightly higher.
If you can do some of the labour on your own, go for it! It saves you a fair bit of cash and you have something to be very proud of at the end.
The only reason I would've gone concrete is for a custom design, otherwise there's really no advantage in my opinion.
I got the shape I wanted, a great colour, simple install and a great price. I found there's more room to hustle a better price with fibreglass because there's less labour involved. - ProjectPete
I was in the fibreglass industry for 45 years. Concrete or fibreglass. I have over the years heard this maybe a thousand times and my answer is this. Get the design and price that suits you best if it's concrete fine and same with fibreglass.
If the concrete one does develop minute cracks after a few years in the ground don't worry have it skinned with fibreglass. No more cracks etc. If it's done properly it will last you many many years to come. - John1
I just wanted to add some info regarding self cleaning pools. We have a 27K litre pool - fibreglass with the in floor cleaner and are very happy with it. No connecting up a robot in bad weather and no emergency cleaning at the last minute. I find it fantastic. Runs during the day off the solar.
Regarding landscaping, I tried plants but they died. Wanted something with minimal shedding, we have plastic plants which are fantastic, we haven't killed them yet. We also have the heater which extends our season. - stewiesnr