Pool Liner Guide: Don’t Get the Wrong Pool Liner



A must for above-ground pools, pool liners are necessities with a decorative touch. If you are a first-time pool owner, you might be wondering how to choose a pool liner. Continue reading to learn more about benefits and features so that you may choose the best pool liner for your needs.

>> What type of pool do you own?

There are two kinds of pools: in ground and above ground. In ground pools are permanent structures that can be built a few ways. Gunite pools, more commonly known as concrete pools, are those that are built within an excavated area. Fiberglass pools are preformed shells that are placed into the ground. These types of pools are generally made with materials that perform the duty of a liner, but there are times when liners may still be necessary.

Above ground pools are those that are constructed on solid ground. While many of these pools will stay in place long term, there are those that are made to be moved whenever necessary. These types of pools definitely require pool liners. There are three types of liners from which you can choose. You will know how to choose a pool liner based on existing construction; that is, pools are made to accommodate one type of liner or the other.

• Overlap: As the name implies, overlap liners are those that fold over the top of the pool. To install, the pool's top rail is removed, the liner folded over edge and the rail replaced. Any excess material on the outside of the pool can be trimmed away to create clean lines.
• Beaded: Beaded liners are made with a groove on the edges of the liner. These grooves connect with a track located under the pool's railing. After the liner has been snapped in place, the railing is reapplied.
• Hook: Similar to overlap liners, hook liners go over the edge of the pool. These liners are held in place by hooks that attach to the outside of the pool. These liners are known as J-hook, uni-bead or hung-hook liners.

In addition to the various installation methods, there are a variety of pool liner sizes. The easiest way to find out which size you need is to consult the manufacturer of your pool. Otherwise, you will need to measure the pool. For simple shapes, such as square and circular pools, you only need to know the length and width or diameter. Custom pools or those that are unique shapes will need more precise measurements. Once you have your pool shape and measurements noted, you will simply buy a pool liner of the correct shape and size; if you have an oval pool, for example, you will browse oval pool liners to find the right size.

>> What liner thickness do you prefer?

The next step in how to choose a pool liner is determining which thickness you prefer. When looking for the best pool liner, you need to consider the benefits of both 20 mil and 30 mil liners.

Thickness Cost level Lifespan Durability 20 mil Less Expensive Under 7 years Good -20 mil is the industry standard. These types of pool liners are ideal for above-ground pools. Though they are not as thick as 30 mil liners, these pool vinyl liners are made to last and are more budget friendly. 30 mil More Expensive More than 10 years Great -30 mil liners are as widely available as thinner liners. Due to their thickness, these liners are usually utilized in in ground applications, but they also make wonderful above ground pool liners. As these liners are thicker than their counterpart, they are often considered the best pool liner. They will last longer and are better able to resist damage from pool chemicals, roughhousing and sunlight. >> What color liner do you prefer?

Color is an important factor in how to choose a pool liner. You will have the opportunity to opt for either light or dark color liners.

If you live in a hot environment and would like to keep your pool as cool as possible, your new pool liner should be light in color. Lighter liners reflect sunlight, which helps prevent pool water from warming. Light-colored liners also offer better visibility for swimmers. Dropped eyeglasses, debris, toys and pool supplies are more easily located in light-colored pools than dark ones. Lastly, light swimming pool liners serve to create a warmer, more tropical atmosphere by mimicking the lighter colors associated with the sand and water of beaches.
Darker colored liners are the types of pool liners you should consider if you want to achieve a more elegant look. Darker liners are used to create the appearance of a larger, deeper pool. As dark colors attract sunlight, these types of pool liners will help warm pools so that you can swim in comfort. Another benefit of a dark liner is that imperfections such as wrinkles, patches or stains will be less noticeable.
>> What style of liner would you like to own?

Now that you know more about how important installation type and thickness are in determining how to choose a pool liner, you can get to the fun part: pool liner designs. You have plenty of choices when it comes to liners, including various pool liner brands, patterns, borders and colors. If you prefer to keep things simple, you can choose a liner that's a single, solid color. However, if you are looking to score cool pool liners, you can elect to install one of many unique pool liners that are adorned with elegant borders, fun designs or decorative touches.

The easiest way to add a little style to your pool is to pick a liner with a decorative border. The majority of your liner will be a single color, but the border will consist of a nice pattern or design. Borders can mimic tile squares, textured concrete or even pebbled stone. Another basic liner that definitely falls into the category of cool pool liners is water reflection liners.
Lastly, you have the option to buy a pool liner that is a cross between simple and artistic. Liners with center designs or scattered patterns, for example, are eye-pleasing without being overwhelming.

Be sure to read up on individual pool liners you are considering. Read up on user reviews and expert opinions as you search for the best pool liner to meet your needs. As you think about how to buy a pool liner, keep in mind that if you are unsure about installation, there are many professionals who would be happy to help.
Pool Pump Guide: Don't Get the Wrong Pool Pump


Swimming pools provide outdoor play and exercise for many people. Pool pumps are just one of the pool supplies that are required to operate a clean and inviting pool. With so many different pool pumps available, you might have questions on how to buy a pool pump or which pool pump is best for you. Read through the following guying guide to help you find the best pool pump to meet your needs.

>> Think about your pool
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The first step you must take before selecting pool pumps is to evaluate your pool. Conditions and features of your pool will dictate the particular pool pump that will work for it. Just as pool covers and pool cover pumps must be properly sized, so must a pool pump. The size of the pool pump is determined by a couple of factors. The first factor to consider when you buy a pool pump is your pool's capacity. Your pool's capacity is the amount of water it holds in gallons. The second factor is the pool pump's flow turnover rate for your pool. The turnover rate is how fast the entire body of water in the pool is processed. This information is important because an efficient pool pump will process all of the water in the pool within 8-10 hours and thus maintain pool cleanliness. So if you had a 10,000 gallon pool, you would want a pump that can process 10,000 gallons in 10 hours, or 1,000 gallons every hour (about 17 gallons per minute). Pumps are usually rated in GPM (gallons per minute) but pool pump brands will often also tell you how many gallons the pump can process each hour to help you with the math. As a final note, pool pumps are also rated in horsepower. While horsepower can and does influence how many gallons per minute the pump can process, the ultimate thing you need to know is how much water the pool can pump.

>> Types of pool pumps

The next thing involved in learning how to choose pool pumps is what type of pool pumps are best suited to meet your needs. There are three different types of pool pumps, and the top rated pool pumps on the market are available in all three types. Single speed motors operate at one constant speed and always process water at that rate. They can only be turned on or off, and are sometimes put on automatic timers. Two-speed pumps operate at two speeds. The pump can be set at the low setting for a longer period during the day, but it can also be operated on the high setting for maintenance tasks or if a temporary increase of power is needed. Variable speed pool pumps operate on a wide variety of speeds. Variable speed pool pumps can be digitally controlled and programmed for specific times. The speed can be changed if the need arises. As a rule of thumb, single speed pumps cost less upfront, while variable speed pumps often save more on the monthly electric bill.

>> Pool pump features

One final factor in determining how to choose pool pumps is what pool pump features are needed for your unique situation. Pool pumps are manufactured by a variety of pool pump brands and have different features. One factor that is important when you buy pool pumps is efficiency. An efficient pool pump utilizes the fewest resources during operation. An efficient pool pump also moves water efficiently through the pool. When evaluating different pool pump models and pool pump brands, it is important to determine how efficient you require the pool pump to be.

Another important consideration in how to choose a pool pump is noise control. Some pool pumps are quieter than others. Considering the acceptable level of noise you are comfortable with is important when you buy a pool pump.

Some pool pump designs are intended for indoor, outdoor or indoor/outdoor operation. The demands on pool pumps are different if they are operated indoor or outdoor. It then becomes very important to select the pool pump that is designed for your location.

Another main consideration is energy efficiency. Energy efficiency features allow the pool pump to minimize energy consumption. New pool pumps may be rated as ENERGY STAR appliances and are thus more energy efficient than other models. Many types of pool pumps also designate the cost of operation, thus allowing you to determine how energy efficient the pool pump is while operating.

Finally, it is important to select a salt water pump if the pool uses salt water. The demands on the pool pump are different depending on whether salt or fresh water is processed. And many pool pump designs cannot be operated in both environments. Utilizing the proper pool pump is thus essential to proper pool operation. Identifying the pool pump features that you prefer is an important step in determining how to choose pool pumps and is vital to finding the best pool pump for your needs.

In the end, be sure to research individual pool pumps as much as you feel is necessary in order to make an informed decision. This research should also include the opinions of owners of that particular pool pump brand and model, as well as expert reviews. By giving yourself this knowledge, you'll be able to select the best pool pump for your situation and help keep your pool in good shape so that you, your family and friends can enjoy it for a long time.