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Thread: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

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    Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    Hey guys!

    We are on our 3rd season and are thinking of upgrading from our Intex to another type of permanent pool. We are considering an above ground like a Sharkline but also considering a brand of pool that is an above ground that can be partially buried or fully buried. What are the pro's and con's of the two? We would like a full inground but I'm not sure if I can justify the cost for swimming 5 months of the year. I know that the semi or a buried inground is cheaper but are there any pro's and con's other than the cost?

    Thanks!
    Matt
    41x25x18 Humpback Haven
    Graduated from 16ft Intex

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    Join Date
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    MA, USA
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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    Fencing requirements may come into play with the partial buried pool that would not with the full AG. Usually your Town's website will have the info you need on it.
    IG 20'x32' Free-Form Gunite/White Marcite Plaster
    ~18,000 gallons, Taylor K-2006C Test Kit
    Pentair MT400LP Heater, IntelliChlor Generator, Clean & Clear Filter
    My Build Thread

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    yostmatt's Avatar
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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    I am in the process of building a Radiant Pool. I am on a slope so the back half is almost at ground level. Over the weekend I saw some people at the other end of the development, putting in the same pool as me, but they buried it completely. I have it up and just waiting for the township to approve my install, then I can fill it up. Hopefully today or tomorrow.

    Anyways, since I live on a slope this fit me perfectly. I am in PA so swimming is about 4 month, so like you, it is hard to justify the expense of a full in-ground. I went to the local pool store and got a quote. Then I found it online at almost half the cost, so do your homework. One of the pros is the ease of how it went together, the panels fit nicely, and the beaded liner is great. Some of the cons for me were the excavation, and fencing requirements. It was so bad, I was losing sleep over it, just thinking about it all the time. I had to come back to work Monday when I had a vaca day scheduled, just so I could get away from it for a day. Anyways, it will be worth it when it is done, and I will have saved about 6k by DIYing and buying online

    Here is my build thread: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...Diary-w-Photos
    ~Matt~ Radiant Metric 24'x52" 14k- built into a slope. CircuPool Si-30 SWCG. Jandy 200 SqFt cartridge filter. Pentair Optiflow 2-speed 1HP pump. Wanda the Whale. TF-100 Test Kit. Hard Plumbed.
    My Build w/ lots of pics

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    Hi Matt, Thanks for the reply! I'll ask you a few questions about that make of pool later this evening. The Radiant is a brand that we were looking at.

    Cheers
    Matt
    41x25x18 Humpback Haven
    Graduated from 16ft Intex

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    I went with a semi inground. I buried mine about halfway in the ground.

    I will try to get a pic one of these days and I couldn't be happier. I went with a Hampton (Canadian company) 12' x 18' Oval.

    I had a defective liner than ripped at seam 1 month after filling it, and the only thing I would do differently is backfill with dirt mixed with concrete (I forget the term) because when I drained the pool for the new liner, the day it between we had a rain storm and it made the dirt collapse, which made for a messy install the second time around.

    Of course, you would only need to worry about this when you replace the liner and I feel that if it hadn't ripped 1 month in, the dirt would have been heavier and supported the 24 hours I needed to replace the liner.

    I have no regrets, really love my pool.
    12' x 18' Oval Above Ground Pool (buried 2')
    Manufacturer states ~5,000 gallons
    Pentair CC75 Cartridge Filter System 1-HP Opti-Flo Pump
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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    We did a Kayak pool. An in ground was going to be crazy expensive due to the slope. This was a much more cost effective option. I wish we had spent the extra on composite decking, but other than that we are really happy with it.





    With the deck going around the entire pool, we were able to add an auto cover. That has been a fantastic investment. Couldn't imagine not having it now.

    Last edited by cjd3060; 07-08-2014 at 08:45 PM. Reason: fix image
    ............................................................ ........................
    Kayak Pool - 12 ft. x 24 ft. rectangular, 5˝ ft. deep end
    Frog System, Sta-Rite-Modular Media Cartridge Filter, Pentair 1 H.P. pump
    AquaPRO Pro500 heat pump & Automatic AutoGuard™ Pool safety cover
    ............................................................ ........................

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    Quote Originally Posted by cjd3060 View Post
    We did a Kayak pool. An in ground was going to be crazy expensive due to the slope. This was a much more cost effective option. I wish we had spent the extra on composite decking, but other than that we are really happy with it.





    With the deck going around the entire pool, we were able to add an auto cover. That has been a fantastic investment. Couldn't imagine not having it now.

    Thanks very much for your reply!

    I hate to do this to you...I have several questions!

    So your pool is an above ground that is buried? Kayak is the brand? I see that you have a heat pump, are you happy with the efficiency or should I say the cost to run it? I heard that some of the new electric heat pumps are really efficient! Did you look at the option of going solar?

    We have a 16ft Intex Ultra frame and it has been a terrific pool with all the add-ons like the SWG and solar panels. We are looking to move up to a bigger pool but I just don't want to spend 75k on an optioned out inground pool and find that the novelty has worn off when our two kids are older (now 6 & 10) or when they move out when they're older. I just don't want to spend a lot of money and regret it down the road! The buried inground looks to be a possibly a better alternative as far as cost and if you decide to get rid of it down the road it's not that big of deal. I'm in Canada and everything is more expensive but I'm guessing your pool would come in at around 20-25k with decking and everything?

    Cheers!
    Matt
    41x25x18 Humpback Haven
    Graduated from 16ft Intex

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    Waldog's Avatar
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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    Yeah what exactly is a Kayak pool??? Never mind... found the website... very interesting...
    Installed May 2014 - 16' x 48" Summer Escapes Pro Series Pool AG Vinyl (6,000 gal) - Intex 2650 Sand Filter - Christmas, FL

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    They are a bit quirky on how you can burry it, but you can do it. Ours is about 97% buried on one corner and 0% on the opposite corner, due to the slope. It worked perfectly for our yard.

    The heat pump was a very good investment. We picked it up as a factory refurb off eBay. It was about 1/2 of what we could find local. It is a slow heat, so expect it to take a couple days to reach temp. But once it is warm, it runs very little to maintain the temp. Our neighbor has had both and is convinced the heat pump is cheaper to run than gas.
    ............................................................ ........................
    Kayak Pool - 12 ft. x 24 ft. rectangular, 5˝ ft. deep end
    Frog System, Sta-Rite-Modular Media Cartridge Filter, Pentair 1 H.P. pump
    AquaPRO Pro500 heat pump & Automatic AutoGuard™ Pool safety cover
    ............................................................ ........................

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    ...on the cost, we only had the PB install he bare bone pool. We basically acted as our own contractor and bid out all the work to the cheaper vendor. It took lots more time and coordinating on our end, but we saved a lot.

    If you are patient, I would recommend that approach to save money.
    ............................................................ ........................
    Kayak Pool - 12 ft. x 24 ft. rectangular, 5˝ ft. deep end
    Frog System, Sta-Rite-Modular Media Cartridge Filter, Pentair 1 H.P. pump
    AquaPRO Pro500 heat pump & Automatic AutoGuard™ Pool safety cover
    ............................................................ ........................

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    Thanks CJD! I was thinking about doing what you did as far as being our own contractor and bring someone in when you need them. What pool did you buy? We thought about going solar for heat instead of a heat pump as we've had very good success with solar heat in our Intex pool. I've heard that the new heat pumps are quite efficient? I'm not sure what it would cost to operate it per month? That being said, it is hard to compare apples to apples with different climates etc.
    41x25x18 Humpback Haven
    Graduated from 16ft Intex

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    We have a doughboy (they can be buried without affecting warranty). Ours isn't buried (but there are a number on this forum that are), we do have a deep end dug to about 6.5 ft. We then have the deck going almost all the way around it. We love having the deep end. It really makes the pool (our kids are 5, 7 and 10). It's a lot like having an inground, without an inground . So glad we did it.

    I love the look of the kayak pools and the radiant pools. I researched both of those as well. In the end we went with the doughboy because of the deep end (and they were the only installers near us that would do the deep end).

    I think as long as you have a nice sized deck around the pool, you will be able to enjoy it like an inground (without the cost). But the deck did get pretty expensive! I think ours (composite) will end up costing us about as much as the pool when it's all done!
    28 ft round ABG with ~6ft deep end, approx. 20,000 gal, 2 spd 2 HP pump, sand filter

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    If you're up for a challenge, as I was a month ago, you can build your own wood-walled AGP and bury it as much as you want! Full inground if you want, just be sure to use ground-contact rated wood. The 2x6 tongue and groove I used is ground-contact rated, but none of it touching ground - I built a French drain around mine and back filled with river rock. Half of mine is about 2ft below grade. I love the warm look and feeling of wood.
    17,100 gallon, 27' round Wine Barrel, Hayward Matrix 1.5HP 2-speed Pump, Hayward Pro Series 24" Sand Filter, Hayward Skimmer and Returns, TF100 test kit......and lots of labor!

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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    Quote Originally Posted by pigeon View Post
    We have a doughboy (they can be buried without affecting warranty). Ours isn't buried (but there are a number on this forum that are), we do have a deep end dug to about 6.5 ft. We then have the deck going almost all the way around it. We love having the deep end. It really makes the pool (our kids are 5, 7 and 10). It's a lot like having an inground, without an inground . So glad we did it.

    I love the look of the kayak pools and the radiant pools. I researched both of those as well. In the end we went with the doughboy because of the deep end (and they were the only installers near us that would do the deep end).

    I think as long as you have a nice sized deck around the pool, you will be able to enjoy it like an inground (without the cost). But the deck did get pretty expensive! I think ours (composite) will end up costing us about as much as the pool when it's all done!
    I agree with you on the deck making the pool! If you dont have a nice deck, it would be like using ugly steel wheels on a new Porsche.

    I'm expecting crazy costs for the concrete or (similar) decking. But tjats what makes it! ; (
    41x25x18 Humpback Haven
    Graduated from 16ft Intex

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    Beadedbiker's Avatar
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    Re: Opinion's on a semi inground or above ground fully inground pool??

    We had started out looking at doing that. But we were going to do a fully bury-able pool. It wasn't a radiant. It was another name, A Rockwood, made of steel wall panels by a company called Latham, that makes a lot of fiberglass and in ground pools under different brand names. I never could find it on their website - but I found a link to the brochure online for you
    http://www.poolserviceplus.ca/upload...ockwood_52.pdf

    Anyway, to give you an idea of cost a 24' round completely buried, surrounded by 3' of concrete all around, was going to cost $13,000 installed, tax and everything. They also make a set of swim out steps like in ground vinyl liner pools have for an extra $2500, but the price we had included a fancy tiered step. That was only about $5K more than an above ground, and a deck is really expensive to build. Like really. We had an 18' above ground with a half around it deck that got damaged in a storm, and it was going to cost us twice as much for the deck rebuild as the pool was going to cost. The pool was going to be $4K to replace (without equipment), the deck was going to be $8K to built - even if we did it, it was about $3K in materials.

    In our case, our pool is at the end of our yard, we live in a subdivision and I really hated that I'd get on the deck to swim, and I could see all my neighbors over our 6' privacy fence and they could see me from the deck. I wanted the privacy a partial bury of a AGP or a fully buried pool would give.

    I think burying it will help you lengthen the swim season a bit. Although you lose most heat via the top, my above ground was always cooler than my friends with in ground pools, they could open theirs first and ours got too cold to swim in earlier. None of us use covers but a solar cover will also help. Of course you can get solar heaters also.

    In the end we decided that for us, the right choice was to go all in on the crazy and we are doing an inground gunite pool with spa so we can use it almost year round - but then I live on the gulf coast almost, and with just a little bit of heat, we can swim almost all year. Or at least soak in the spa.
    Eva.
    We are building a 14x28 in ground with a spillover spa...
    All Pentair Equipment, 3HP VS pump, Sand Filter, 250K BTU gas heater, 2HP blower.
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