Splashpad or no splashpad

Kcpenton88

New member
May 21, 2020
3
Huntsville AL
Hello.

in the process of deciding on a fiberglass pool and wanted to get some thoughts on pools with splashpads vs without.

Basically our two choices are the same pool one with and and one without and we cannot decide!
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
15,826
Northern NJ
Welcome to TFP.

It really depends how you intend to use the pool? You have kids or grandkids who will enjoy the shallow end? You like sitting in loungers in the water? You getting the pool to swim laps and want the maximum length to swim?
 

Kcpenton88

New member
May 21, 2020
3
Huntsville AL
Hello! Thank you for responding.
We do not have kids and are not really looking to swim laps. We are putting in the pool for more relaxing and having people over. We just aren’t sure how much we would use the splashpad but love the look. Just looking for other people’s experiences on use.
 

chazas

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 4, 2007
134
Manassas, VA
Well, I have one in my new pool - it's small and off to the side with a couple of bubblers. Because it's off to the side it doesn't affect the swimmable pool length. I can't tell you whether I'll enjoy it, but I'm looking forward to finding out.
 

DB-Cooper

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2019
191
Austin, TX
I just built a pool, and the splash pad was a must. We built a fairly large one (see sig for build thread). We have an almost 5 year old son, and we thought he'd play in it a lot, and we thought guests would chill there. I also want/wanted ledge loungers and dreamed of lounging and sipping cold ones.

For the first week, my son played a lot in the splash pad, but now it's full on swimming 100% of the time. My wife and I also sit at our swim up bar or on the spa coping. So ironically, we're not using the splash pad as much as we thought. That said, we've yet to have any guests over so we don't know how it'll play out in social settings. We're also not running our heater yet, so swimming is only done in afternoon/late afternoon at present, and the sun is really cooking, so lounging isn't that appetizing. It'll be interesting to see, but I felt it was a critical feature, and now maybe it isn't.

I will say, the splash pad provides a very nice ingress to the water, and it's nice for people who want to be in the pool but not commit to getting very wet. I think as we open our pool up to friends and family, I'll come back and say it's essential.

Long story short, splash pads eat up a lot of surface area. If your constrained by pool size due to yard size, easements, etc. it's something worth really considering. If you have a lot of space, I think it's worth pursuing. I know when we were looking at buying homes, the homes we saw with splash pads immediately made us excited and seemed to be more associated with entertaining/parties which is what we were after.
 

cwspen

Gold Supporter
Sep 8, 2018
1
Barrie, ON, Canada
Just wrapping up our build, we have a splash pad / tanning ledge / whatever you want to call it these days. Ours is fairly large at about 10 x 6, about 13" deep. It takes up a lot of space. We haven't had a chance to use it yet, but it was an important feature for us when we made the decision, time will tell.

We have two young kids who don't swim yet, and many friends with the same. Even if they can swim, it will be nice for them to have a place to sit and play with their toys for a while (we hope).
 

DB-Cooper

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2019
191
Austin, TX
Just wrapping up our build, we have a splash pad / tanning ledge / whatever you want to call it these days. Ours is fairly large at about 10 x 6, about 13" deep. It takes up a lot of space. We haven't had a chance to use it yet, but it was an important feature for us when we made the decision, time will tell.

We have two young kids who don't swim yet, and many friends with the same. Even if they can swim, it will be nice for them to have a place to sit and play with their toys for a while (we hope).
That's basically the same as our logic. Our son can swim, and now he can dive and get rings at 5' depth, but when set on this project years ago, he couldn't and it was a major reason. I also thought about my parents and in-laws and figured they'd spend more time there. As stated, if you're not space constrained, I think it's a no brainer, but if you are, it's really worth considering.
 

Turbo1Ton

Gold Supporter
Dec 26, 2019
108
NE Oklahoma
Our build included a tanning ledge/splash pad/baja deck, with 5 bubblers, and just finished in January, so we haven't used it much yet. As you can see in my avatar pic, my dog thought it was great the first couple of weeks! Our purpose for building the pool was for lounging, and my wife really wanted the ledge. I am certain she will use the heck out of it. My kids are 10 and 12 and are like fish, but we have friends with smaller kids who I am sure will use it, when they are over.

I think the answer is, if you want one, get it. Allen said it best; it all depends on how you want to use your pool. From the responses posted so far, most everyone has one and thinks they are good. I'm sure there are people who are actual swimmers that use their pools for laps and would argue against them, just as we are for them.

--Jeff
 

Randrx2

Bronze Supporter
Dec 13, 2018
257
Orlando, FL
Unless you have the space for it, I would say no.

We have a 4yo son, and we thought he would use it. Very rarely does he go there. He wants to swim in the big pool. Even with his toys.

If you don’t have kids, you probably won’t use it. If it is hot enough to use pool, you won’t sit on the sunshelf chair loungers because it is too hot. If it is cool out, well you probably won’t sit on the ledge loungers. We use the lounger floats in the main part of the pool.

Next pool we won‘t have one. We would like extra deck space, and we have a large deck. The deck is never large enough. It is amazing how fast it fills up with furniture, plants, grill, deck boxes, toys, etc.

It does make a nice focal point and it’s nice to dip your feet into though.
 

DB-Cooper

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2019
191
Austin, TX
Unless you have the space for it, I would say no.

We have a 4yo son, and we thought he would use it. Very rarely does he go there. He wants to swim in the big pool. Even with his toys.

If you don’t have kids, you probably won’t use it. If it is hot enough to use pool, you won’t sit on the sunshelf chair loungers because it is too hot. If it is cool out, well you probably won’t sit on the ledge loungers. We use the lounger floats in the main part of the pool.

Next pool we won‘t have one. We would like extra deck space, and we have a large deck. The deck is never large enough. It is amazing how fast it fills up with furniture, plants, grill, deck boxes, toys, etc.

It does make a nice focal point and it’s nice to dip your feet into though.
This sort of is what I said earlier, we thought our kid would use it more, but now that he can fully swim and even dive, he'd rather be in the pool. It's also just too hot to spend anytime there, and we have umbrellas even. That said, it looks great and provides the best ingress/egress solution for a pool. For us, we have space. I don't regret it. I think when we get deeper into Summer we'll use it more in the morning/lunch hours though, so I'll come back and report.

I wouldn't change anything if I were rebuilding, but if I was severely space limited, what would've been a must have, I probably would scrap in favor of more actual pool.
 

Kcpenton88

New member
May 21, 2020
3
Huntsville AL
15.5 x 30 is all we really have room for and the pad would be 6.5 feet leaving us with 23.5 feet of swim space. I feel like that is still a lot but have never had a pool so I’m worried we will wish we had the extra 6.5 for swimming. We do however love the look of the pool entrance with the pad though. Feels almost beach entry.
 

DB-Cooper

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2019
191
Austin, TX
15.5 x 30 is all we really have room for and the pad would be 6.5 feet leaving us with 23.5 feet of swim space. I feel like that is still a lot but have never had a pool so I’m worried we will wish we had the extra 6.5 for swimming. We do however love the look of the pool entrance with the pad though. Feels almost beach entry.
30 is a good swim lane. It’s not great but good. 23 is on the short side for actual swimming. If you’re more for lounging and splashing, I’d go with the splash pad. If exercise and lap swimming is your thing, consider the extra length. Remember, not a lot of people actually swim laps, especially guests. I actually enjoy swimming 10 laps a day as part of exercise, but my wife and kid don’t, and I don’t at other peoples’ pools.

If you have young kids, or plan to, the splash pad is extra helpful.