Monday, January 11, 2010

Should I Get Rid of My Swimming Pool?

The only way I could see someone justifying building a new swimming pool is if it is a community pool where many people will be using it. Other than that you are just adding to the ever growing problem of resource demand.

But if you already have a pool, built it years ago, or acquired one with a home purchase then you might be realizing that you might be better off without it. There are a couple good reasons to keep a swimming pool, such as your children use it a lot. But if you can't think of a good reason to keep it, then it is time to remove it. Or better yet, convert it to something "earth friendly".

There are several reasons that homeowners are getting rid of their pools in record numbers. Here are just a few...

1. They are water hogs. The water that needs to be replaced from evaporation, splashing, spills, leaks, etc... can be enormous in the summer. Don't be fooled by the numbers game that some want to play. You will hear something like, "It takes more water to keep a lawn than a pool." or, "You can stop 80% of the water evaporation with a cover." That might be true if you kept it covered 100% of the time. In reality, I covered my pool in winter. In the summer, it was off most of the time. Putting it on and taking it off repeatedly is a pain in the ass. And as far as the lawn thing goes, what makes them think that a lawn is the only option? I guess it is as much a word game than a numbers game.

According to the Geotechnical, Rock and Water Resources Library evaporation calculator and using the Annual Class A Pan Evaporation Rate from the National Weather Service, a 30' x 15' uncovered pool can lose 11,000 gallons in cooler areas, and up to 37,000 gallons in hotter areas, of water per year, due to evaporation alone.

2. They require a lot of energy. Pool pumps are not efficient. Heaters are a waste. Pool sweeps require an extra pump. Of coarse, if you have solar panels, then energy is probably not an issue.

3. Maintenance can be expensive and/or time consuming. Repair people are not cheap. Replacement parts are not cheap. Diagnosing problems can be difficult and/or expensive. Older pools can get to the point of needing complete overhauls. Need I go on?

4. Money Money Money! Everything costs money with a pool, regardless if you do it yourself or hire someone. Pool supplies are getting outrageously expensive. Chlorine tripled in price over a three year span. Worst of all, most dealers and suppliers want nothing better than to get your money, and most will say anything to get it. I don't trust any of them to give me an honest opinion.

5. Harmful chemicals. Need I say more?

IMO, the cost of a swimming pool in resources as well as money, just cannot be justified in these times. Our resources are getting thin and the population keeps growing at an exponential rate. Watch this video to get an idea of what that means. Pay attention to the last part about the bacteria growing in jars.

So to answer "Should I Get Rid of My Swimming Pool?"

I would have to say, "Almost certainly, yes"


  1. Nice video.. thanks for sharing . i agree with you. for these reasons homeowners are getting rid of their pools in record numbers

  2. I understand the reason why you decided to transform your pool into a pond. You seem to be enjoying some positive results, with the surroundings coming to bloom because of the flowers! It would be great if you post some of the latest pictures of your pond! I wonder how the place has turned out.

  3. You do make some pretty interesting points here. I'd say that, if you can afford it, go with it. If you can't, let go of it and convert the space into something more useful. It's important to remember that our lifestyle should be dictated by our means. If you use the pool to keep yourself healthy, or it's something that the kids can enjoy, keep it, as long as you can afford to maintain it.

    Luke Stephens