9 Things I Wish I Knew Before Building a Precast Plunge Pool

Are you dreaming of adding a precast plunge pool to your backyard oasis but don't know where to start? Building your dream pool is a significant investment, and it's essential to get it right. Luckily, you don't have to sweat it out. We've got you covered. This guide will delve into the important things to consider before building your dream precast plunge pool.

Here are the 9 things we wish we knew before building a precast plunge pool so you can get it right the first time. Stick with us, and we’ll make sure you’re well-prepared for your exciting plunge pool journey.

1. The Importance of the Right Location

When it comes to real estate and plunge pools, location is everything. But why? Let’s unpack this:

The location of your pool can impact not only the aesthetics but also the long-term maintenance of your home. If you’re looking for a pool that captures the sun’s warmth, then picking a spot that gets ample sunlight is essential. Conversely, if you prefer a refreshing, cool dip, then a shaded area might be better. Either way, understanding your climate and sun exposure is key.

Then there’s privacy to consider. Whether you want a secluded oasis away from prying eyes, or if you don’t mind if the neighbours get a glimpse of your backyard pool, this will influence where you position your pool. Planting hedges or installing screens can provide privacy, but these will also take up space and pinch on your budget.

Size of the Area Available

One of the most critical factors to consider when installing a precast plunge pool is the size of the available area. Although precast plunge pools are typically smaller than standard pools, making them ideal for compact spaces, you still need to ensure you have enough room.

Remember, it’s not just about the pool’s dimensions. You’ll need to factor in additional space for your pool deck, landscaping, and a buffer zone around your pool for safety. As a rule of thumb, your pool should be proportionate to your outdoor space to maintain aesthetic balance.

Next, consider access. It needs to be easily accessible, not only for you to get in and out but also for maintenance and servicing. It’s a good idea to have a clear path from your house to your pool.

So before you settle on a design, take accurate measurements of your space. If you have other things going on in your backyard, consider how your precast plunge pool will integrate with other elements such as outdoor furniture, barbeque area, or children’s play equipment. By taking the time to plan out these essentials, you are less likely to run into hiccups that can cost you a lot of money moving forward.

Understanding your Climate

If you live in a colder climate, you may want to consider heating options for your precast plunge pool, allowing you to use it year-round. Insulation can also be a worthy investment to reduce heat loss and save on energy costs. On the other hand, in hotter climates, consider a shaded area or pool cover to protect against excessive sun exposure.

Moreover, specific climates may demand more from certain pool materials. For instance, if you’re in an area with frequent temperature changes, a flexible material like fiberglass may be less likely to crack than concrete. So make sure to take these things into consideration in your planning.

How Sun Exposure Impacts Your Precast Concrete Plunge Pool

Sun exposure plays a crucial role in the enjoyment of your pool. Too much sun, and your pool may feel like a hot tub in summer. Too little sun, and your pool might never reach that perfect, enjoyable temperature. So you have to consider the position of the sun throughout the year. The sun can also affect the longevity of your pool materials and the rate of water evaporation.

Proximity to Trees and Landscaping

Trees can provide coveted shade in a sun-drenched yard, but they can also create extra maintenance. Overhanging branches shed leaves and debris, causing you to spend more time cleaning your pool. And don’t forget about the potential damage roots might cause to the structure of your pool in the long term.

Risk of Flooding

If you’re one to spend a good few minutes on the internet and social media every once in a while, then you’ve probably seen these videos of pools turning brown during the rainy season. Unfortunately, when you skip the process of doing a professional contour survey, do a soil test, and look at the council data about where the floods normally go and where the water may potentially run, it could end up on your dream plunge pool.

So it’s best to talk to a professional pool builder regarding these matters to ensure that you’ve got all your bases covered and your outdoor oasis won’t turn into a muddy jungle come rainy season.

All of these factors may seem trivial but they are all crucial in the beginning aspects of your due diligence, planning, and design. If you get these right, you won’t have to worry about having unforeseen trouble that could cost you loads in the future.

2. The Cost Can Be More Than You Think

While precast plunge pools are generally more affordable than full-sized pools, costs can escalate. We recommend setting a budget, including hidden costs such as installation, maintenance, and potential landscaping needs, and sticking to it.

Ongoing Costs of Precast Plunge Pools

Ongoing costs can include pool chemicals, electricity to run the pump and heating, water to top off the pool, and any professional maintenance or servicing costs. Being aware of these from the outset can help you avoid any unpleasant surprises down the line.

Resale Value and Insurance Considerations

A plunge pool could increase your property’s value, but this isn’t a guarantee. The value added will depend on many factors, including the quality of the installation and the demand for pools in your area. Also, your homeowner insurance rates may go up when you add a pool, as pools can increase liability.

3. Consider The Material Carefully

You’ve decided to take the plunge, but have you considered the various materials available? Concrete, fibreglass, or vinyl-lined? Each material has its pros and cons, and the right choice depends on your needs and preferences. It’s important to choose and research this aspect beforehand.

Fiberglass vs. Concrete vs. Vinyl-lined

Fiberglass pools are factory-molded into one giant bowl-shaped piece, which arrives at your home ready to be dropped into the excavated hole. On the other hand, concrete pools are built on-site, offering more flexibility in design but requiring a longer installation time. Vinyl-lined pools, on the other hand, are a less expensive option, but the liners can be prone to damage and may need to be replaced every 5-9 years. Weighing these options will help you choose the best fit for your situation and running budget.

The Impact of Material on Maintenance

The material you choose will significantly impact the amount of time and money you’ll spend on maintenance. Fiberglass is generally the easiest to maintain, while concrete pools may require more chemicals and have a rougher surface that can harbor algae.

4. Size Does Matter

The size of your precast plunge pool can make or break your experience. Here’s why:

While ‘plunge pool’ might suggest a small pool, there’s still a wide range of sizes to choose from. And bigger isn’t always better, though. The perfect pool size depends on your space, your intended use, and, of course, your budget.

It’s also wise to talk to professionals about the options you have when it comes to choosing the size of your precast plunge pool. They will be able to provide professional opinions as to the best possible options for you.

How Will You Use Your Pool?

If your idea of the perfect precast concrete plunge pool involves lounging and cooling off, a smaller pool might be perfect. But if you’re dreaming of swimming laps, you’ll need a longer, narrower pool. And if weekend socials with family and friends is your thing, consider a larger pool with plenty of seating areas.

Space Constraints and Layout

Take a good look at your available space. Is it large, small, narrow, wide, sloped, or flat? As previously mentioned, the shape of your yard can influence the size and shape of your pool. 

Integrating Your Pool with Your Home’s Aesthetic

Your plunge pool should feel like a natural extension of your home. If you have a modern house, consider clean lines and a simple color palette. If your home is more traditional, a freeform or lagoon-style pool might be a better fit.

Optional Features for a Personalized Experience: The Extras

Do you want a waterfall or other water features, deck jets, or bubblers? How about pool lighting? Or maybe you fancy a hot tub attached to your plunge pool? Including these extra pool features in the initial design phase can save time and money later. Moreover, some of these extras may add a chunk to your pool plumbing costs and maintenance.

5. In-Ground or Above-Ground?

You’re not just building a pool, you’re creating your dream outdoor oasis. So your pool design must be both functional and ideal. But aside from the basic functions, you also have to determine if you want your pool in-ground or above ground:

In-ground concrete plunge pools offer a seamless look and blend beautifully into your landscape, creating a tranquil and elegant atmosphere. But they come at a cost, both financially and time-wise, as construction can be intensive.

Above-ground precast plunge pools are typically less expensive and faster to install. However, they may require more visible support structures and don’t offer the same integrated aesthetic. However, with creative decking and landscaping, they can still be an attractive feature in your yard.

6. Safety Should Always Come First

Pools can provide endless hours of fun, but they also come with their risks. From slip-resistant surfaces to pool fencing and pool covers, safety is a crucial aspect of pool ownership. Especially if there are children or pets in the house.

Safety Features for Families and Young Children

If you’ve got little ones or plan on hosting children, safety is paramount. One of the best ways to get on top of this is to consider pool covers, alarms, non-slip surfaces, and fencing with self-closing and self-latching gates. Remember, no safety feature replaces adult supervision.

Pool Safety for Pets

Our furry friends love a good dip too! You’ll be surprised how some of our pets end up falling in love with your precast concrete plunge pool more. Steps or ramps can help pets safely enter and exit the pool. A sturdy fence can also keep unwanted critters out and your pets safely in your yard.

7. Regular Maintenance is Key

A clean, well-maintained pool is a sight to behold. But it doesn’t happen by magic. Regular upkeep is essential to keep your pool clean and inviting. This means you have to have a long-term budget plan for your dream pool upkeep. Knowing what this involves can help you set realistic expectations and avoid unnecessary complications in the future.

DIY Maintenance Tasks

If you’re planning to skimp on your dream pool, daily maintenance is a reasonable aspect you can pinch on. Thankfully, tasks such as regular water testing and treatment can be DIY-ed. Regularly testing your water and adjusting the chemical levels is crucial, so doing it yourself can save you a good amount on your budget.

You’ll also need to skim debris off the surface and vacuum the pool bottom. And don’t forget about cleaning the filter! If you’re ready to get your hands dirty, then you’ve got these basic maintenance tasks covered and you’ll be keeping your dream pool immaculate.

Curious about what else you can do to keep your pool clean? Check out our latest article.

When to Call in the Pros

Sometimes, you might encounter a problem that requires a professional touch. Leaks, broken pumps, broken heaters, or resurfacing are generally best left to the pros.

  • Leaks: Spot a puddle around your concrete plunge pool? Don’t ignore it. Water leaks can cause extensive damage to your property and can significantly increase your water bill. A professional can help pinpoint the exact location of the leak and carry out the necessary repairs.
  • Broken Pumps: The pump is the heart of your pool, circulating water and keeping it clean. If it breaks down, you’ll soon notice the water becoming cloudy and uninviting. The complexity of repairing a pump makes it a job for a professional.
  • Heater Problems: There’s nothing quite as disappointing as stepping into a cold plunge pool when you expected it to be warm. Heater issues are often complex and involve elements such as gas lines or electrical components. This is definitely a job for a certified professional.
  • Resurfacing: Over time, the surface of your pool can become damaged or worn. Cracks, chips, and rough spots can make swimming uncomfortable and even dangerous. Resurfacing a pool is a large task that requires specific knowledge, tools, and materials, making it best left to professionals.
  • Major Installations or Renovations: Whether you want to upgrade your pool with a new feature or give it a complete makeover, hiring a professional will ensure that the job is done right. They’ll know the local regulations, have the right tools, and bring a wealth of experience.

Scroll down as we talk about this in more detail on tip #9 DIY Is Not Always The Best Option.

8. Laws and Regulations: Dotting the I’s and Crossing the T’s

Remember that pool ownership comes with certain legal considerations. Each local council has different rules and regulations for installing a pool. Make sure you’re aware of these before you begin the building process to avoid fines or issues down the line.

Understanding Local Regulations & Necessary Permits

From fence height requirements to setback rules, local regulations can significantly impact your pool project.

According to The Queensland Government regulations, you are required to apply for a building certification before starting construction of your new concrete precast plunge pool or spa. The permitting process can include submitting detailed plans and sometimes even a site inspection. Factor this step and its timing into your project plan. You can apply for certification from a building certifier.

That’s why it is best to work with a reputable pool builder such as Plunge Pools Sunshine Coast who is familiar with all these local codes and makes sure that all extra requirements are covered based on the Queensland pool safety standard.

9. DIY is Not Always the Best Option

When you think about a project as significant as installing a concrete precast plunge pool, the DIY route might seem appealing. After all, it can offer you potential cost savings and a sense of personal accomplishment. However, when you dig a bit deeper (no pun intended), you’ll find that taking on this task yourself might not always be the best option. Without the proper knowledge, it can easily turn into a costly nightmare.

Firstly, constructing a plunge pool involves a lot more than just digging a hole and filling it with water. It requires careful planning and execution, dealing with numerous considerations, from soil type to drainage and from pool material to aesthetic design. A professional pool builder brings the necessary expertise and experience to navigate these complexities, ensuring that the pool is safe, durable, and visually pleasing.

Secondly, the physical labor involved in pool construction is immense. Unless you are an experienced builder yourself, we highly suggest leaving this to the professionals! Excavation, material handling, plumbing, and electrical wiring are not trivial tasks. Professionals have the appropriate equipment and manpower to handle this labor efficiently.

Lastly, let’s not forget about time. Building a pool is a time-consuming process, and as a DIY project, it can take you several months to complete. This not only delays your enjoyment of the pool but can also result in prolonged disruption to your property and life. You don’t have time for that, do you?

Finding a Reputable Pool Builder

So, if you’ve decided DIY is not the way to go, how do you go about finding a reputable pool builder? It’s essential to take your time and do your homework. Here are our top tips:

  1. Start by asking around. The best way to find a reputable builder is to ask for word-of-mouth recommendations and get referrals from family and friends, or neighbors. They can provide honest insights and share their experiences, both good and bad.
  2. Next, dive into some online research. Look at reviews and testimonials for pool builders in your area. Check out their portfolio of work – do you like what you see? And Talk to a number of pool builders to compare your choices.
  3. Don’t forget to verify their credentials. Make sure they’re licensed, insured, and have all the necessary permits to carry out pool construction. Check how long they’ve been in business. It’s also a good idea to check if they are members of any professional associations as well.
  4. Finally, meet them in person. A face-to-face meeting can give you a sense of their professionalism, work ethic, and whether they’re someone you feel comfortable entrusting with your project. Go with your gut and find one you can trust.

In the end, finding a reputable pool builder is all about doing your due diligence. Because, when you’re thinking about something as significant as a plunge pool, you want to ensure you’re making the right choice!

We at Plunge Pools Sunshine Coast are proud of our years of legacy in the plunge pool installation business.

What’s Next?

Now that you’re aware of the key considerations before getting a plunge pool, you’re one step closer to making that dream a reality. Whether it’s a small pool for lounging on summer days or a lap pool for exercise, a plunge pool can transform your outdoor space into a personal oasis. Always remember, professional help is available to guide you through this journey. So, are you ready to take the plunge?

Equipped with the 9 Things I Wish I Knew Before Building a Plunge Pool, you’re well on your way to making an informed decision. Ready to take the plunge?


What is the best material for a plunge pool?

The best material for a plunge pool depends on various factors such as your budget, maintenance capacity, and personal preference. Concrete, fibreglass, and vinyl-lined are popular choices, each with its pros and cons.

Is a concrete plunge pool worth it?

A concrete plunge pool can be a fantastic investment, providing plenty of advantages: It is a place for relaxation, exercise, and socialising. Plus, it can increase the value of your home. However, whether it’s worth it depends on your individual circumstances and lifestyle.

How do I maintain a plunge pool?

Plunge pool maintenance involves regular cleaning, checking the water chemistry, and ensuring the pool equipment is functioning well. It can be a good idea to hire a professional pool service for more complicated tasks.

Do I need a permit to install a precast concrete plunge pool?

Yes, you generally need a permit to install a precast concret plunge pool. Requirements vary depending on your local council, so it’s important to check these before starting your project.

Can I build a precast plunge pool myself?

While it’s possible to build a precast plunge pool yourself, we don’t generally recommend it unless you have significant experience. Hiring a professional ensures your pool is safe, durable, and complies with all local regulations.

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