Are thinking about getting a pool but don’t know which one? Perhaps you have heard about fibreglass pools and how amazing they are. Long story short, they are worth all the hype they are receiving; gorgeous to look at with a flawless finish, these pools are not just every aesthetics lover’s dream, but also highly durable.
If you have already narrowed down your options to an inground pool or other types, make sure that you read this blog first. Most pool purchasers begin their hunt for award-winning pool builders knowing close to nothing about how their pools are made and why it is important to understand the process. If you’ve come this far, you’re already a step ahead of the herd, congratulations!
This blog will tell you all you have to know regarding the process so that when the time comes, you will be able to ask the right questions to the manufacturers.
What Makes a Fiberglass Pool Special?
The primary structure of pools consists of a single structure made completely using fibreglass.
Other kinds of pools are constructed using smaller and multiple components.
For instance, a vinyl pool has a metal or plastic wall panel to provide side-wall support, a bottom made of grout or vermiculite for stability, and a vinyl liner on the swimming pool walls and floor. Concrete swimming pools are generally made from an external cage of steel bars on the walls and floor. The pool’s rebar is covered with sprayed concrete and then layered with plaster for aesthetics and durability.
These pools are much lighter and simple to install, once they are manufactured. While the other two pools can be made or installed partly or wholly at your location, these ones come in a single piece and have to be installed at your location.
How are Fiberglass Pools Built?
The answer to this query is, “with a lot of caution and care.”
The pool shells need to be created in factories, so pool buyers can’t check out their pool until they arrive at the installation location.
No matter the size of your pool or the location, you have to interview the builders and clarify their process and the following:
- Understanding the pool’s structure
- Finding out whether their technicians are well-experienced
- Vet skilled pool manufacturers
Great quality pool shells are generally about three-eighths of an inch in thickness. When compared with concrete pools that are five to six inches thick including their rebar, or vinyl liner pools which are four inches thick walls, these pool shells may be thinner but also highly durable. If you’re wondering which will last the test of time, fibreglass pools are it!
The Mold of a Fiberglass Pool
Fibreglass pools are manufactured using moulds, which puts a crimp on the bandwidth of sizes and shapes that are available for the project. You will have to simply choose from what your manufacturer can provide.
High-quality pool moulds made for fibreglass are reinforced with steel bars. Some manufacturers apply every layer of the fibreglass pool shell on the mould’s top, which means these pool shells are developed from the inside out.
If you’re interviewing builders, make sure that ask them these three important questions regarding the mould they have used to make your pool shell:
- Are the fibreglass pool mould level and true to fit snugly with the ground when installed?
- Is their pool mould reinforced using steel and is durable?
- How is the pool maintained to stay defect-free?
- Do their pools adhere to your home aesthetic ideas?
Interior Gel Coating
The internal finish of a shell is something one can touch once it is appropriately installed and ready for use. This layer is known as the gel coat, which needs to be free of any cracks, dents, or bubbles to have a premium finish.
Good quality gel coats are highly durable and smooth in texture. All fibreglass gel coats are algae-resistant by default. This gives fibreglass a huge advantage in terms of lower maintenance costs than other kinds of pools in the long run.
Every time a manufacturer adds chopped fibreglass to the pool shells, it is first mixed with polyester resin or vinyl ester resin. Resins combine adhesive properties to fibreglass, which helps it to bond or stick together to any additional layers of the pool shell. Try getting vinyl ester resin for your pool as the first layer since it is waterproof.
A layer of vinyl ester resin will repel water from the polyester resin panels. If pool shells were not made like this, there is a chance for the interior layers of fibreglass to absorb water and form bubbles in the gel coat, known as osmotic blisters. Vinyl ester resin does not break down upon exposure to pool water, unlike polyester resin.
Using vinyl ester can offer a protective layer to help your pool look pristine.
By adding 100% vinyl ester resin to the primary layer of chopped fibreglass, the gel coat is sealed off from the interior layers. Once done, no water can get into and mix with the polyester resin layers. Not only does this provide an aesthetic finish, but also avoids the formation of bubbles that can spoil the finish of your pool shell.
When you’re talking to pool manufacturers, inquire if the warranty covers their gel coat if osmotic blisters appear. A good builder will be confident enough in their quality to provide a warranty.
Once the manufacturers apply all the important layers to produce a durable shell, it is popped off from the mould. The pool shell then goes through a thorough quality check where they inspect every square inch for any signs of damage, cracks, or inconsistent structure on the fibreglass.
Different manufacturers have different processes. However, when you’re the one buying a fibreglass swimming pool, make sure that you’re absolutely clear on the quality, cost, delivery, and process. Any compromises will result in bubbles, poor finish, cracks, and ultimately a waste of your money. We hope that our guide helped you, stay tuned for more such blogs!