Often when refurbishing an existing swimming pool, the only economically feasible option is to re-line the pool with a vinyl pool liner. This does not mean they are an inferior option though, as inground pool liners can last 20 to 25 years or more. A pool liner won’t chip or peel and can accommodate ground movement, which is the likely cause of the renovation in the first place.
With a long lifespan, the average pool owner will likely only need to replace a liner once or maybe twice. To ensure this though, you need to have a “good installation” in order to get the full life out of your liner. Lastly you will need to choose an appropriate pool liner material. So this means, that while it is technically possible for an inground pool liner to be installed by the home handyman, in reality, to handle any problems that may arise during your installation, make sure you find an experienced installer.
Choosing a Pool Liner
A key benefit is that liners come in a variety of exciting colours and patterns, are UV rated for Australian conditions and inhibits bacteria, mould and mildew growth. Ideally they should be textured (embossed) materials as these offer a far better “non slip” finish. To ensure longevity, all inground pool liners installed MUST be made from a material that is no thinner than 0.75mm. Above ground pool liners traditionally are manufactured for 0.50mm and while you can put a .75mm thick liner into an above ground you should NEVER be talked into putting a .50mm liner into an inground pool.
Your installer should be able to supply you with colour samples. Once you have picked a colour, they should be able to either show you pictures of other pools finished with the colour or even better, show you a completed job for yourself; from here you could also speak to the home owner about how their job progressed. To get the best life from your liner you should choose a liner made from virgin vinyl, not one that uses any recycled materials.
Before you can install a new liner, your pool will have to be prepped and cleaned, so now is the time to decide on any changes to the pool shape. These can include:
• The addition of stairs,
• The addition of benches,
• change in the slop angle,
• or pool depth.
Can I put my own inground pool liner in?
While it is feasible for the DIY person to install their own liner, especially for above ground pools, it is not recommended for inground pools. Indeed few manufacturers will supply an inground pool liner to the average person. For the best and highest quality result, your pool liner should always be fitted by an experienced installer. They will prepare your pool shell, and take precise measurements to ensure the membrane will fit your pool perfectly. A special fixing system will be used to secure the liner around tile borders, steps, skimmer box’s and other pool fixtures like step out areas. Once in position, it is then vacuum-sealed to form a smooth skin, and is then ready to be filled with water.