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Vinyl Pool Liners: The Pros and Cons

This list will give a quick breakdown of the pros and cons of using vinyl pool liners versus concrete, tile or fiberglass. Cost, installation, customization, replacement, resell value and maintenance upkeep should all be considered as you move through the purchasing process. Vinyl liners have become the most popular choice due to their low cost, quick instillation time and customizability. However, maintenance, durability and resale value should be considered when choosing.

The Pros

  1. Price
    Vinyl pool liners are extremely cost effective. Generally, vinyl liners have a lower installation and purchasing cost than fiberglass and concrete pools – this is due to lower materials costs, as well as labor. They are a perfect option for those who have a budget between $25k and $35k.
  2. Quick Installation
    Compared to other pools, vinyl liners usually have quicker installation time – granting you the maximum amount of time to enjoy your pool. Vinyl liners are available in ready-to-assemble kits for installation by homeowners or professional installers.
  3. Customization
    As mentioned above, vinyl liners have several customizable options. Not only can they be used in a wide variety of different shaped pools, but they are available in different thicknesses as well. As far as the appearance, most distributors offer as many as 30 different patterns or tiles to fit whatever theme there might have in the pool area. While concrete pools offer the ability to choose the shape of the pool, it is often costly.

The Cons

  1. Maintenance
    Overall, vinyl liner maintenance is fairly simple. However, with the instillation of pool accessories such as steps, ladders or lights, the metal components can cause permanent rust stains on the liner. Improper water balance can also cause the liner to become extremely slippery. Along with water balance, chlorine staining is also frequent in vinyl liners. This can occur when powdered chlorine is not properly circulated in the pool, and dissolves in one area. Weekly vacuuming, chemical adjusting and skimming is required to keep the liner in top-notch condition.
  2. Durability
    Despite long warranties, the average vinyl liner lasts anywhere between 8 and 10 years. Keep in mind that these are estimates. If the liner is taken care of it is not uncommon for it to last upwards of 15 years. Replacement costs are usually between $3,500 and $5,000.
  3. Resell Value
    Generally speaking, pools with a vinyl liner have a lower resale value than fiberglass or concrete pools. Fiberglass and concrete pools are viewed as long term structures, while vinyl lined pools (in-ground or above-ground) are considered more short term. In addition, many prospecting home owners are hesitant about vinyl liners because of the inevitable upkeep costs down the road.

Have a swimming pool or hot tub related question?  Contact Zagers Pool & Spa by email or phone at 616.896.1717 today!

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