How Safe is an Above Ground Pool for Babies?

How Safe is an Above Ground Pool for Babies?

May 4, 2022

In this article, we are going to discuss how safe is an above ground pool for babies. So it goes without saying that this would be a perfect 2-3 minute read if you are a new parent with or considering an above ground pool (Also very relevant if you own a normal in ground pool)

For us at Small Pool Owner – and as parents – the number one priority is safety. So please excuse me if you might end up on an article with some repeating topics. That said, we do believe that there can never be enough content on how to safely enjoy your above ground pool.

Especially when it comes to the most vulnerable family members.


So what would be the best answer to the question – Are Above Ground Pools Safe for Babies? In general, due to their height, most above ground pools are safer for babies. Most babies can’t, stand up and will not be able to accidentally roll into the water. However, smaller inflatable pools or sunk above ground pools offer the exact same risks as any normal in ground pool.

So although above ground pools seem to be overall safer, there are still a few considerations to take. Also if you need more detail on all the measures to childproof your pool then read this article.

Best Size Above Ground Pool the Safest for Babies

We have covered pool sizes in various articles before. However, we are talking above ground pool safety here.

In normal instances, it will depend on the available yard area and budget.

Wen adding baby safety into the mix, you can add the following consideration

Is the above ground pool only for the baby only or the whole family? In short, if you only want your baby to cool down then a small inflatable would be perfect, but it does come with a risk as covered before. Due to their low-height older babies might be able to crawl and drag themselves over the edge and into the water. Therefore if money and space allow it, purchase a stainless steel-framed above ground pool.

At the time of writing this article, these options are available on Amazon on special. Be sure to check them out!

Tips to Baby Proof your Above Ground Pool

It goes without saying and has been mentioned before (so sincerest apologies if we are repeating ourselves) but safety and babies or children should be your highest priority with your above ground pool – or any pool for that matter.

So here are some tips to baby-proof your above ground pool.

  1. The most important tip would always be to prevent your baby near any water without an adult present
  2. If you use an inflatable pool, drain and deflate it after each swim
  3. Invest in a good pool cover. Even on low inflatable pools a good cover should hold most babies’ weight. At the time of writing these covers were on special at Amazon
  4. For framed -semi-permanent above ground pools add a fence. Of course changes of a baby crawling over the edge of an above ground pool is almost impossible, however, do you really want to take the chance? Also, there might be other small children around.
  5. Take down the pool ladder after each swim. As mentioned before, with above ground pools erecting from the ground upwards, chances for a baby climbing over the edge are limited. However, crawling babies can still find their way up a ladder and over the edge.
  6. Even for babies, dress them up in some protective inflatable clothing. At time of writing these are great options available on Amazon.
  7. Often overlooked as a safety concern is chemicals. This can be extremely hazardous for babies, so keep all pool cleaner and chemicals locked away.
  8. Take your baby to a reputable swimming coach to teach them to float (better known as infant self rescue classes) when they fall in the water.
Infant self rescue video

Rules to Follow When Swimming with Your Baby

In the good old – or is it bad old 80’s we were taught that rules are meant to be broken. However when it comes to answering the question how safe is an above ground pool for babies, then rules might be the thing that will keep your precious baby swimming safely.

Of course these rules should be your own so please see the following as a guideline

  1. Never leave your baby unattended when in an above ground pool – or any water for that matter
  2. Always ensure they have adequate sun protection
  3. Ensure they wear inflatable clothing.
  4. Keep the swims to only up to 15 minutes. There are plenty of studies suggesting that any longer, especially in chemical maintained water could become dangerous for babies.
  5. Once done swimming implement all necessary safety measures as discussed above.


The safety of your baby and children should be the most important consideration when considering an above ground or inground pool.

In this article we established that overall above ground pools is in general safer than in ground pools for babies, apart from small inflatable pools.

We also discussed some safety tips to keep your baby safe when using an above ground pool.

Lastly we looked at some rules that you might consider when swimming with your baby.

About Us

We're Wynand and Len and we're both passionate about our small above ground pools. This website is as much for us learning new things and sharing our findings and experiments.

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