It's very strong – The material has a high strength-to-weight ratio, so it's resistant to damage. It's very flexible – Compared to other pool materials, it's incredibly flexible. So while the soil around the pool moves as it freezes and thaws, a fiberglass pool handles the pressure with ease.
The cons associated with fiberglass pools are primarily related to cost and installation issues. Contrary to popular belief, fiberglass pools aren't cheaper than traditional options like concrete (we'll provide more details in the “Costs” section later on).
In contrast to vinyl and concrete pools, which have little to no ability to retain warmth, fiberglass is an insulator so it holds heat in your pool. Fiberglass pools heat up much faster than other kinds of pools and hold onto that heat for much longer.
While some pool owners opt not to have a winter pool cover, properly covering your pool for the winter season is a smart idea. Leaves and other contaminants can fall in the pool if it's not properly protected over the winter. As leaves break down they can stain your pool and also cause changes in the water.
Because fibreglass pools weigh the least, as compared to concrete or gunite, the danger of lifting is greater. Never empty a fibreglass pool during the rainy season unless the pool has a built-in system for relieving the underground water pressure (which most do).
Fiberglass pools tend to be the least problematic in freezing conditions. This is because the materials used in the surface and structure of the pool are flexible and can withstand both high and low temperatures.
Most fiberglass pools are known to last 25-30 years, but we take that to the next level. Our manufacturer, Narellan Pools, makes the best fiberglass pools around. Their unique fiberglass formula results in a pool that can last as long as 50 years! Plus, these pools are notoriously easy to maintain.
Fiberglass pools are extremely easy to maintain, can be installed quickly, are very durable, and can be beautifully designed. However, their initial cost can be higher than vinyl liner pools, and the shapes and sizes are not as customizable.
Fiberglass pools are durable
Both the structure and the surface of a high-quality fiberglass pool can last as long as you want them to, provided you take good care of it. A well-made fiberglass pool can last at least 50 years, with less maintenance required to keep it useful and enjoyable decade after decade.
Fiberglass swimming pools are very compatible with salt water systems. If you are using a vinyl liner pool, you must be careful as those pools tend to have metal parts or connections which salt will eat through and corrode.
Yes, they can freeze solid. If temperatures reach below zero, swimming pools that are not circulating can freeze solid within a few days. If those low temperatures continue for several days, the ice sheet can increase in thickness by up to ¼” per day.
When the pool surface freezes solid, it won't weigh any more than the water that it is displacing. But if your pool cover is not pumped off, and the ice starts spilling over the top rail of your aboveground pool, that could cause some problems! Be sure to keep your pool cover clean and mostly pumped off during winter.
Add Winter Chemicals
Specialty Pool Products offers several chlorine-free pool closing kits with all the essentials: pool shock, algaecide, stain and scale preventer, a winter float with oxidizer and an oil-absorbing sponge. Some kits even include a WinterPill for maximum winterizing power.
Fibreglass shells rely on the water pressure in the pool to exert force against the soil around them in order to maintain their structure. If there is no water pressure in the pool, the soil around the pool can push against the fibreglass shell and cause it to crack.
A Common Gripe About Fiberglass Pools
One of the biggest gripes that we see have to do with the slippery surface of a fiberglass pool. The fact is, this material can be so slick that pool users can actually slip and fall. This can be a real problem for pool steps, where a slip-and-fall accident can be dangerous.
While they are easier to install, fiberglass pools are nowhere near as durable as a gunite inground pool. The inside surface of this type pool is a gel coat on which the fiberglass has been laminated. The walls of the pool are only ½ to ⅜ inch thick compared to the 8 to 10 inch thickness of a gunite pool.
You should have a freeze protection device that will automatically turn the pump on when the temperature drops to around 34 degrees. A freeze protector will keep your pool running as long as the temperature remains close to freezing.
Concrete pools tend to be the strongest of all the inground swimming pools. Since they are rebar and concrete they can't oxidize or corrode. Like every other form of concrete, they get stronger as time passes. They are at the upper echelon of price points and have a higher end product reputation.
This autumn, consider pool maintenance to make sure that your pool tile will be safe from freezing temperatures. This way, when swimmers return, the pool will be ready to go. Pool tiles can crack during wintertime. Cracked pool tiles can result from pressure caused by incorrect water levels.
Once water is removed (and subsequently, the interior hydrostatic pressure), if there's an influx of groundwater, it will push the pool up and out of place. As a general rule, you shouldn't keep any pool empty for longer than it needs to be. Get the work done that you needed to do and refill it as soon as possible.
While there are many myths about fiberglass pools, the one thing you should NEVER EVER do is DRAIN your fiberglass pool without professional help. Let me say that again, NEVER drain your fiberglass pool for any reason. In fact, we recommend NEVER letting the water level drop more than 2-3 inches below the skimmer!
The weight of ice or snow are common culprits of pool collapse. Draining your pool too much. An older inground pool may not be able to withstand the weight of dirt against it once it is empty or if the water levels are too low. Groundwater can also push against the pool walls and cause it to collapse.