by | Apr 18, 2024


When it comes to choosing the right material for your inground swimming pool, concrete, fiberglass, and vinyl offer distinct advantages and considerations. If you’re exploring options for a durable and fully customizable choice, a concrete swimming pool might be the ideal fit for your backyard oasis.

Concrete pools, renowned for their longevity and flexibility in design, allow you to tailor every aspect of the pool to match your vision—from unique shapes and sizes to bespoke features like infinity edges or integrated spas. Unlike fiberglass and vinyl that come pre-formed and offer limited shapes and customization, concrete pools give you the freedom to think outside the box.

However, it’s crucial to weigh these benefits against those offered by fiberglass and vinyl options. Fiberglass pools boast a quicker installation process and reduced maintenance needs due to their smooth, non-porous surface that resists algae growth. On the other hand, vinyl pools are often the most cost-effective option, offering a softer surface with a comparatively fast installation timeline but requiring more frequent liner replacements.

Choosing between concrete, fiberglass, and vinyl pools depends largely on your priorities, whether it’s customization, cost, maintenance, or installation speed. Check out the infographic below to get a quick comparison of these materials to help make your decision easier.

Detailed infographic comparing concrete, fiberglass, and vinyl swimming pools, highlighting factors such as cost, installation time, maintenance requirements, customization options, and longevity - concrete swimming pool infographic comparison-2-items-formal

Understanding Concrete Swimming Pools

When it comes to building a durable and customizable swimming pool, concrete is often the material of choice. Below, we delve into the specifics of concrete swimming pools, focusing on the materials used, and the processes involved such as gunite and shotcrete application, as well as the curing process.


Concrete swimming pools are chiefly constructed using cement, sand, water, and aggregate. This blend ensures the structural strength and longevity that concrete pools are known for. The versatility of concrete also allows for an array of design possibilities, from simple geometric shapes to more complex custom designs that can include features like vanishing edges or integrated waterfalls.


Gunite is a popular method for constructing concrete pools. It involves spraying a mixture of cement, sand, and water onto a reinforced steel framework. This method is highly favored for its adaptability in forming various shapes and depths, making it ideal for bespoke pool designs. Gunite pools are renowned for their robustness and longevity.


Similar to gunite, shotcrete is another method used in building concrete pools but involves premixing the concrete before it is pneumatically sprayed onto the framework. This method ensures more consistent mixture and can be applied more quickly than traditional poured concrete. Shotcrete is equally durable and versatile, providing a solid choice for those seeking a long-lasting swimming pool.

Curing Process

The curing process is critical in achieving the full strength and durability of a concrete swimming pool. After the concrete (gunite or shotcrete) is applied, it requires about 28 days to cure fully. During this time, the concrete must be kept moist to ensure proper hydration of the cement particles, which helps in avoiding cracks and structural weaknesses. This phase is crucial as it determines the overall quality and durability of the pool.

Understanding these components and processes is essential for anyone considering a concrete swimming pool. Each step, from choosing the right materials to ensuring a proper curing process, plays a significant role in the pool’s final quality and durability. Concrete pools offer unparalleled durability and customization options, making them a preferred choice for many homeowners.

In the next section, we will explore the pros and cons of opting for a concrete swimming pool, helping you make an informed decision based on factors such as maintenance, cost, and the ability to customize.

Pros and Cons of Concrete Swimming Pools

When considering a concrete swimming pool, it’s important to weigh the advantages and disadvantages. This will help you determine if it’s the right choice for your backyard oasis.


Built to Last: Concrete pools are known for their strength and longevity. They can handle the wear and tear of weather, water, and constant use without significant damage.
Resistant to Damage: Unlike other pool types, concrete is resistant to punctures from sharp objects or the stress from heavy use.

Susceptible to Cracking: Concrete is strong but not very flexible. It can develop cracks due to ground movement or long-term exposure to water and chemicals.


Highly Customizable: One of the biggest advantages of concrete pools is their adaptability in design. You can choose any shape, depth, and size, making it easy to fit any backyard layout or personal preference.
Unique Features: Options like built-in steps, tanning ledges, and custom water features are easily incorporated into the design.

Longer Construction Time: The flexibility in design means that these pools often take longer to construct, as each is a custom project.


Robust Construction: The solid construction of concrete pools means less frequent need for repairs compared to other types of pools.
Long-Term Investment: Properly maintained, a concrete pool can continue to look great and function well for many years, often more than 20 years.

Regular Cleaning Required: Concrete’s porous nature means it can harbor algae and bacteria, requiring more frequent cleaning and chemical treatments to keep the water healthy and clear.
Resurfacing Needs: Over time, the interior surface may need to be resurfaced to maintain its appearance and functionality.


Increases Property Value: A well-designed concrete pool can significantly increase your home’s market value and appeal.

Higher Initial Cost: Concrete pools are generally more expensive to install due to the materials and labor involved in their construction.
Ongoing Expenses: Maintenance, repairs, and potential resurfacing add to the lifetime cost of owning a concrete pool.

In conclusion, while concrete swimming pools offer remarkable durability and the ability to fully customize the design, they do require a significant initial investment and ongoing maintenance. The decision to choose a concrete pool should consider these factors, balancing the upfront costs against the long-term benefits of owning a robust, fully customized pool. In the next section, we will delve into the construction process of a concrete swimming pool, outlining each critical step to ensure quality and durability.

The Construction Process of a Concrete Swimming Pool

Constructing a concrete swimming pool is a detailed process that involves several critical steps. Each stage is crucial to ensure the longevity and quality of the pool. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how this process unfolds:

1. Excavation

The first step is to dig the ground where the pool will be located. This involves removing the soil to create a hole that matches the desired shape and size of the pool. It’s essential that the excavation is done accurately, as it sets the foundation for all subsequent steps.

2. Steel Placement

Once the hole is excavated, steel rebar is installed to form a grid that provides structural strength to the concrete pool shell. This steel framework is crucial as it helps prevent cracking and supports the pool’s integrity over time.

3. Plumbing

Before the concrete is poured, plumbing lines are laid out and installed. These pipes will handle the water circulation, filtration, and drainage systems of the pool. It’s important that this step is done correctly to avoid leaks and ensure efficient water flow.

4. Concrete Shell Placement

The concrete, typically either gunite or shotcrete, is then sprayed over the steel framework to form the pool shell. This method allows for a highly durable and watertight shell. The concrete must be applied evenly and skillfully to avoid weak spots.

5. Curing

After the shell is in place, the concrete needs to cure for about 28 days. During this time, the concrete gradually hardens and reaches its required strength. It’s a critical phase where the shell must not be disturbed.

6. Waterproofing

Once cured, the concrete shell is waterproofed to prevent any water seepage that could damage the pool structure. This step often involves applying a waterproof coating or membrane over the concrete.

7. Tile and Coping

Tiles are installed at the waterline to prevent staining and provide a clean, finished look. Coping, which is the material around the edge of the pool, is also installed. This not only enhances the pool’s appearance but also serves as a structural component.

8. Patio Installation

The area around the pool is also prepared and developed, often involving the installation of a patio. This can include laying down stones or concrete to provide a stable and aesthetically pleasing surround.

9. Plaster

The interior of the pool is finished with plaster, which provides a smooth surface. This layer also acts as an additional waterproofing barrier and comes in various colors to enhance the visual appeal of the pool.

10. Start-Up

The final step involves filling the pool with water and starting up the equipment. The water chemistry is balanced, and the pool systems are tested to ensure everything is functioning properly. This phase also includes brushing the pool to remove any plaster dust.

This detailed construction process ensures that every concrete swimming pool is robust, efficient, and ready to provide years of enjoyment. Each step, from excavation to start-up, is crucial and requires skilled professionals to ensure the highest quality outcome. In the next section, we’ll explore the maintenance and longevity of concrete swimming pools, providing you with the necessary knowledge to keep your pool in top condition.

Maintenance and Longevity of Concrete Swimming Pools

Maintaining a concrete swimming pool is key to ensuring its longevity and keeping it looking great year after year. Here, we’ll dive into crucial aspects like algae prevention, chemical balance, refinishing needs, and overall lifespan.

Algae Prevention

Algae can be a common issue in concrete pools due to their porous nature. Preventing algae starts with regular maintenance:

  • Brush the Walls and Floor Weekly: Use a stiff pool brush to scrub the surfaces. This prevents algae from settling into the pores of the concrete.
  • Maintain Proper Circulation: Ensure your pool’s pump and filtration system are running efficiently. Good water circulation helps prevent algae growth.
  • Shock the Pool Regularly: Shocking involves adding a large dose of chlorine to the pool to kill algae and other bacteria.

Chemical Balance

Keeping the water chemistry in balance is critical for both the health of the swimmers and the condition of the pool:

  • pH Levels: Concrete pools tend to increase the pH of the pool water due to their alkaline nature. Regularly test and adjust the pH to keep it between 7.2 and 7.8.
  • Alkalinity and Calcium Levels: Maintain alkalinity between 80-120 ppm and calcium hardness around 200-250 ppm to protect the pool surface and ensure effective sanitization.

Refinishing Needs

Over time, the interior finish of a concrete pool may wear down or become stained, necessitating refinishing:

  • Plaster: The most common type of finish, plaster needs to be redone approximately every 10-15 years.
  • Pebble or Tile Finishes: These may last longer but also require periodic professional cleaning and occasional repairs.

Refinishing is a significant part of maintaining a concrete pool’s aesthetic and structural integrity.


Concrete swimming pools are known for their durability:

  • Structural Longevity: With proper maintenance, a concrete pool can last several decades. The structural shell itself can last indefinitely if well-cared-for.
  • Overall Cost-Effectiveness: While the upfront and maintenance costs might be higher compared to other pool types, the long lifespan of concrete pools can make them a cost-effective choice in the long run.

In summary, while concrete swimming pools require a significant amount of maintenance, their robustness and longevity make them a worthy investment. Regular care, such as maintaining chemical balance and preventing algae, along with periodic refinishing, will keep your pool in prime condition for years to come. With Creative Edge Pools, you have a partner who understands the intricacies of concrete pool maintenance and can help you maximize the lifespan of your investment.

Cost Analysis of Concrete Swimming Pools

When considering the installation of a concrete swimming pool, understand the financial commitment involved. This section breaks down the costs into initial investment, ongoing maintenance expenses, and the long-term value of owning a concrete pool.

Initial Investment

The upfront cost of a concrete swimming pool is typically higher than other types of pools. On average, homeowners spend between $39,000 and $75,000 to install an in-ground concrete pool. Factors influencing this cost include the size of the pool, design complexity, and geographic location. Concrete pools are custom-built and require skilled labor, which can drive up the initial costs.

Maintenance Costs

Concrete pools require more maintenance than fiberglass or vinyl pools due to their porous nature, which can lead to algae buildup. Regular maintenance tasks include:

  • Weekly Cleaning: Essential to prevent algae and maintain water clarity.
  • Chemical Balancing: Necessary to keep the pool safe for swimming.
  • Acid Washing: Typically needed every 3-5 years to remove stains and build-up.
  • Replastering: Required every 10-15 years, depending on pool usage and chemical balance.

The average pool professional charges $50 to $100 per hour for labor, not including the cost of materials. These ongoing maintenance needs can add up, making concrete pools more expensive in the long run compared to other pool types.

Long-Term Value

Despite the higher initial and maintenance costs, concrete pools offer significant long-term value. They are incredibly durable, with a lifespan of up to 75 years if properly maintained. This durability makes concrete pools a permanent addition to your home, potentially increasing your property’s value. Their customizable nature allows for unique designs that can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your property, further boosting its marketability should you decide to sell.

In conclusion, while the initial and maintenance costs of concrete swimming pools are higher, their durability and potential to increase property value provide substantial long-term benefits. With Creative Edge Pools, you can expect a meticulous installation process and expert guidance on maintaining your pool to ensure it remains a valuable part of your home for decades.

Creative Edge Pools

Custom Gunite Swimming Pools

At Creative Edge Pools, we specialize in the design and installation of custom gunite swimming pools. Gunite, a mixture of cement, sand, and water applied through a high-pressure hose, offers unparalleled durability and flexibility in design. This allows us to create pools of any shape, size, or depth tailored to fit the unique contours of your backyard and your personal style preferences.

Why Choose Gunite?
Durability: Gunite pools are known for their robustness and longevity.
Customizable Shapes: Whether you desire a classic rectangle or an intricate freeform design, gunite can accommodate.
Aesthetic Flexibility: Gunite pools can be finished with a variety of materials such as tiles, stones, or plaster, allowing for a fully customized look that complements your home’s architecture.

Backyard Development

Developing your backyard goes beyond just installing a pool. It’s about transforming your outdoor space into a functional and inviting retreat. Creative Edge Pools offers comprehensive backyard development services including:
Site Planning: We assess your space and design a layout that maximizes its potential.
Excavation and Site Work: Our team handles all aspects of site preparation, ensuring a solid foundation for the construction work.
Retaining Walls and Water Features: From practical retaining walls to enchanting waterfalls and fountains, these features add both functionality and visual appeal to your backyard.

Landscaping and Masonry

A pool is just one element of your backyard oasis. At Creative Edge Pools, we integrate landscaping and masonry to create a cohesive and stunning outdoor environment. Our services include:
Patio and Deck Installation: Choose from a variety of materials and designs for a patio or deck that suits your lifestyle and enhances your pool area.
Outdoor Kitchens and Entertainment Areas: Extend your home’s living space with an outdoor kitchen, perfect for entertaining guests or enjoying quiet family dinners in the open air.
Custom Masonry Work: Our skilled masons can craft custom walkways, steps, and other stone structures that enhance the beauty and functionality of your outdoor spaces.

By choosing Creative Edge Pools, you are not just getting a swimming pool; you are investing in a meticulously crafted extension of your home that enhances your lifestyle and increases your property’s value. Let us bring your vision to life with our expertise in gunite pool installation and backyard transformation.

In the next section, we will explore the maintenance and longevity of concrete swimming pools, ensuring you understand how to care for your investment effectively.



At Creative Edge Pools, we understand that sustainability is as important as the beauty of your swimming pool. Our concrete swimming pools are designed with longevity in mind, reducing the need for frequent renovations or replacements. The materials we use are selected not only for their durability but also for their environmental impact. By choosing high-quality, sustainable materials, we help minimize waste and reduce the ecological footprint of each project.

Aesthetic Appeal

The aesthetic appeal of a concrete swimming pool is unmatched. With the ability to customize shapes, sizes, and finishes, your pool can truly become a unique piece of art. Whether you envision a classic rectangle or a freeform design that mimics a natural lagoon, we can bring your dream to life. Our pools are not just places to swim; they are the centerpiece of your backyard, enhancing the overall beauty of your outdoor living space.

Creative Edge Pools Difference

What sets Creative Edge Pools apart is our commitment to excellence and our comprehensive approach to pool design and installation. From the initial design consultation to the final touches of landscaping, our team ensures every detail is perfect. Our expertise in gunite pool construction allows for a level of customization and durability that is simply not possible with other materials. With over a hundred years of combined experience, our family-owned business takes pride in creating pools that are as beautiful as they are functional.

By choosing us, you’re not just building a pool; you’re creating a lasting addition to your home that will bring joy and relaxation for years to come. Discover the difference with Creative Edge Pools by exploring our custom gunite swimming pools.

In conclusion, a concrete swimming pool from Creative Edge Pools is a sustainable, aesthetically pleasing investment that enhances the beauty and functionality of your property. Let us help you transform your backyard into a stunning oasis that reflects your style and meets your needs.


Everything You Need to Know About Concrete Swimming Pools

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