The Ultimate Pros and Cons of Buying an Above Ground Pool – 2024

Ultimate Pros and Cons for above ground pool

August 5, 2021

So, you want to swim?

Who doesn’t?

But now you are stuck at the one major decision.

Do I go Inground or Above Ground?

Massive decision. And one you should take your time to consider in 2024. Things are financially tougher than it was a few years ago. So take your time…we will wait.

Budget, space, safety, and maintenance are just a few questions popping through our head.

Ok, we are biased towards above ground pools, however, the below pros and cons list should guide you in your decision.

Pros of an above ground swimming pool

Above ground pools are less expensive than in-ground swimming pools

Above ground pools are less expensive than in-ground pools. They cost less because they don’t take as much work to build.

And the less work it takes to build your pool, the more likely you are to actually have one.

Studies show that only 23 percent of Americans who want a swimming pool actually have one installed in their yard. This is because building an in-ground pool requires a large initial investment and quite a bit of time and effort to install.

With an above ground pool, you don’t need digging or heavy equipment. Just level the area you want your pool to be, set up poles and drop in the pool liner.

Most pools come with all necessary accessories like ladders, deck boxes, filter systems and ladder covers that take little time to assemble. In most cases, the whole installation process takes two people about three days from start to finish (if they work hard).

Above ground pools are easy to set up

It is a DYI system. No, extra labor is needed. Period. What a swimming pleasure.

Above Ground Pools are easy to install because you level an area, follow the setup instructions and add water.

In fact, you can be swimming in an hour.

A lot of people find this very convenient because they don’t have to mess around with digging out their backyard, as well as there are also no limitations on placement.

You could move them from one spot to another if you wanted to, though most people would keep the same pool in the same spot for convenience’s sake.

Above ground pools can be placed on any flat surface, including a deck or patio 

You can place an above ground pool on any flat surface, including your deck or patio. They’re easy to set up and take down, so you don’t have to worry about them taking up space in your yard all year round.

Just keep in mind, the best location for your new pool is in full sun all day long; however if that’s not possible at least six hours of included sunlight should be available every day.

It is best to place the pool where there is little or no wind, which can cause excessive wave action and keep you from swimming comfortably. Excessive rain can also result in water quality problems, so if you have a leaky roof, poor drainage or surface runoff you may want to consider moving your inground pool indoors

Above ground swimming pools offer plenty of space

Since above ground pools come in various sizes.

Perfect for recreation, exercise and relaxation. Whether you’re looking for a pool to keep the kids entertained or planning a fun get-together with friends, an above ground swimming pool can provide hours of summertime enjoyment.

Above ground pools are easier to drain

It is simple.

Turn a nozzle.

Watch the water drain

enough said…

In general above ground pools are safer for children

With no deep shallow or deep end, above ground pools makes it a lot safer for children.

Of course, no child should EVER be left swimming unsupervised.

Since above ground pools are also more difficult to climb/fall into it does provide a safer environment for children. Add to it a simple cover or perhaps a safety fence (as we explain in this article about the best things to have around your pool).

But again….no child should EVER be left swimming alone!

Easier to Maintain

Above ground pools are easier to maintain because of water mass. This is better explained in this article.

What’s more, you don’t need to spend much time cleaning it, unless you want to scrub the sides yourself and add some chemicals – which is always advisable.

Also, when water is running low in your above ground pool; all you need to do is just refill it with a hose pipe.

Inground pools on the other hand require regular cleaning as well as adding chemicals so that there will be crystal clear water during use. It takes more time to clean because of….


Water mass.

Protable and and easily moveable

Above ground pools are also easier to move if you need too.

It goes without saying that fixed in-ground pools are…well…fixed.

An above ground pool can be disassembled and moved with relative ease. It’s best that you have help doing so, but it is still possible for one person to move your pool this way.

Here’s how:

1. Decide exactly where you want the pool to go and purchase a new base there. The old base will need to be leveled and cleaned by hand before it’s re-used for your new location.

2. Take down all posts, steps and ladders from the original position. Remove all fittings and place them aside in boxes that are marked appropriately (i.e., filter system or ladder hinges).

3. The pool liner can be folded up and placed in a box of it’s own that is then placed inside the pool shell to keep dry during transport (i.e., doughnut ring, metal frame and bottom section).

4. Move and reassemble.

And that’s it!

Move, clean and re-assemble. The hardest part is definitely taking it apart, but if you are patient and careful it can be done!

Far less hidden costs

Yes, we have said that an above ground pool is less expensive.

However, that is for outlay cost.

In the long run, since you would have less maintenance and water mass, you will also be saving on:

  • electricity – no need to run a pool pump for days on end
  • water – less fillup than an in-ground pool
  • less chemicals required due to water mass
  • In some states or countries a new pool will increase your property value thus increase your property rates and taxes….talk about hidden costs.

You Can Resell your Above Ground Pool

Let’s face it, it would be difficult to dig up an inground pool and sell it.

Well, with an above ground pool, in good condition, of course, you can resell it to upgrade.

And yes there is a market for it.

Adjustable sizes

So, we have touched on this one, but it is a massively important pro for anyone considering purchasing an above ground pool.

Facts are, you only have so much space for a pool and so much budget to go with that space.

With various sizes to choose from you can litterlay fill what is needed at a cost you can afford.

This seems like the perfect pro, wonder why we added this one last?

Of course, there would be more pros to owning an above ground pool. And please if you have a good one please do not hesitate to let us know. We would love to expand to this list.

So, now that we have covered the pros, lets look at the cons…yup we don’t like them either, but the aim of this is to inform you of everything. The good and the bad. So lets go….

Cons of an above ground swimming pool

Above Ground Pools can get damaged easily

In most cases, an above ground pool are made of vinyl and plastic which means they can be damaged easily in comparison to in-ground fixed pools.

Form debris, rocks, or kids playing, the structure can get punctred or damages easily.

They normally last for about 8-10 years, which is subjected to a view variables as we explained in this article.

Added to this, the liner of above ground pools is not easy to replace and in most instances, you would need to purchase a new pool.

Limited space for exercise and fun

It goes without saying that if you want to swim laps, then an above ground pool might not be your cup of tea.

Although a safety pro the fact that an above ground pool is elevated and more difficult to enter, also hampers fun that especially kids would have around the pool.

All of this said, there is no reason why you cannot enjoy fun activities in your above ground pool. And Yes you can exercise in one!

Above ground pools do not increase the value of your property

It goes without saying that a portable pool, will not increase the value of your home like a fixed in-ground pool would.

So by how much does an in-ground swimming pool increase your property value? There is unfortunately not a current consensus between property valuation experts. In general, it could be anything between 5-8 percent. That said it would also be highly dependable on size, area, and state or country legislation.

All of the above said, there is no reason why you can’t create permanent features around your above ground pool. Decks for example can also increase your property value.

Above ground pools can look cheap

We hate this one.

Bet yes, it is not as easy on the eye than in-ground pools.

Then again this is in the eye of the beholder and taste do differ, also you can create an environment around your pool that is super pleasing to the yes.

Did we mention we hate this con?

Again we want to open this up for some comment discussion. Let us know if we missed a clear con and we would find you…

Of course, we are just joking. Above ground, pools are far from perfect and we want you to make the most informed decision.

So it all boils down to…

Is an above ground pool worth it? In general, if you are looking for an affordable pool option, require less maintenance, and want something quick and easy to set up, then you should seriously conder an above ground pool. Add to this the fact that they are easy to drain, are safer for kids, and comes in various shapes and sizes, you and your family will enjoy swimming in one of these.

To Conlcude

Buying anything in life comes with its own risks, pros and cons.

Deciding between an above ground or in-ground pool is no different.

Do your due diligence and soon you would enjoy your swim….

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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