With backyard space at a premium in the Sydney area, plunge pools are more popular now than ever before. For homeowners who dream of having their own private pool area but who don’t have the space for a traditionally large pool, a plunge pool can be a great alternative.
What is a plunge pool exactly? In this article, we’ll explore the purpose of plunge pools, how they compare to traditional full-size pools, some plunge pool ideas you may not have considered, and everything else you need to know when making your decision about whether or not a plunge pool is right for your family.
What is a plunge pool?
Plunge pools are smaller-scale pools designed for relaxing and lounging rather than for athletic swimming. They range in size but tend to be, on average, between about two metres to seven metres in length by two metres to three metres wide. The depth of plunge pools varies depending upon the intended use. While some are quite shallow bodies of water meant for cooling off or lounging, others are designed to be much deeper in order to allow for water exercises and stretching.
Why do Australians love plunge pools?
Simply put, Australian plunge pools are often a matter of convenience. Their small size makes them a more logical choice in cities like Sydney where large lots can be hard to come by. Many Australian homeowners don’t have quite enough space for a full-size pool, so a plunge pool is a wonderful way to enjoy the luxury of having one’s own private pool even when you’re pressed for yard space. Plunge pools are great options for homeowners in suburban areas where backyards exist but tend to be smaller. They are also a great choice for people who may have large but irregularly shaped, narrow, or hilly yards.
Another reason why plunge pools are popular in Australia is because of the hot climate. Plunge pools are an ideal way to cool down when the heat becomes too much to bear. While you won’t be going for an intense swim in your plunge pool, you can easily cool off by plunging yourself into the water. You’ll love splashing around and beating the heat during the warmer months, and you can even choose a plunge pool with a heater to help you stay cozy on cooler evenings.
Another benefit of plunge pools is that they provide a great space for relaxation. Stress and anxiety are at an all-time high in Sydney and all over Australia thanks to our modern, busy, fast-paced lifestyles. Having a small, private pool in the comfort of your private property affords you the opportunity to relax and escape at the end of a hectic day. Regularly taking time to unwind is scientifically proven to improve your long term mental and physical health. On a day to day basis, it will leave you feeling rejuvenated, fresh, and ready to face the world as the best version of yourself. This can even have the indirect effect of making you more efficient and clear-headed at work, more creative in your free time, and being a generally more content and sociable person in your downtime.
Finally, plunge pools often add an element of contemporary style to a property. They freshen up a backyard space and create extra aesthetic appeal, thus increasing the value of your yard and your home. Even small backyards will benefit from the attractiveness of a plunge pool. Accentuated with landscaping, a plunge pool can add a touch of luxury to an otherwise normal looking area. Since plunge pool design is limited only by your imagination, you can use your plunge pool to accent any architectural style and enhance the unity and overall appeal of your property. If you ever decide to sell your home in the future, having a plunge pool on premises markedly increases the value of your property and helps your home stand out to potential buyers. Real estate agents in Sydney are typically able to sell houses that feature pools much more quickly because pools are seen as especially desirable in this region.
How is a plunge pool different from a regular pool?
In addition to plunge pool size being smaller than a regular pool, they’re also engineered for a different purpose than full-sized pools or lap pools. Whereas a traditional full sized pool is likely to have a great expanse of open water for swimming, a plunge pool is more likely to include a large seating area around the pool. This allows pool users to sit comfortably while relaxing in the plunge pool.
Can my whole family use the plunge pool?
While your average plunge pool isn’t really large enough for the whole family to go swimming, families can still benefit from plunge pools. They are usually big enough for multiple adults to sit and relax together, so your plunge pool could serve as a great family hangout space if you have older children. For families with young children, a plunge pool provides a safe space for your children to play in the water and strengthen their swimming skills in a small area where they can be easily watched by adults. This helps kids learn to enjoy water at an early age in the safety and privacy of your home.
How are plunge pools installed?
The installation process for a plunge pool largely depends on what type of plunge pool you choose. The most popular style of plunge pool is the in-ground plunge pool. Typically, in-ground plunge pools are installed in the same way as an in-ground full-sized swimming pool. Concrete plunge pools are built from scratch in your backyard, while fibreglass plunge pools are prefabricated and delivered to your home as a full unit for installation.
Whether you choose a concrete plunge pool or a fibreglass plunge pool, installing an in-ground pool means that a portion of your yard will need to be excavated in order for the pool to be installed. The excavation process is typically started prior to the pool being delivered or constructed. In most cases, an in-ground plunge pool installation takes between a few days to a few weeks to complete depending on how much groundwork must be done.
Thanks to modern pool building methods, it is possible to have a plunge pool installed above ground or partially in-ground. This solution is most helpful in cases where a backyard is uneven, sloping, or otherwise poses some geological difficulties. If you choose a partially in-ground or above ground plunge pool, your pool builders will need to build an additional structure like a deck or weight bearing joists to reinforce the pool. Otherwise, you could be leaving yourself vulnerable to property damage and potential injuries down the road.
Above ground plunge pools can be built safely in a number of ways. At Compass Pools Sydney, for example, you can choose a ceramic core fibreglass plunge pool that comes with a patented Maxi Rib structure installation. This structure increases the durability and longevity of your pool so that your family can safely enjoy it for a lifetime.
If you choose a fibreglass plunge pool from Compass Pools Sydney, your new pool can have all the features of bigger pools including the self-cleaning system which will save you all the hassle of manually cleaning your new swimming pool. Moreover, your plunge pool can be ‘smart’ by adding more features and integrated pool management that will intelligently automate your pool operation and its features.
DIY plunge pools
It’s not impossible to DIY a plunge pool installation, but we can’t say we’d recommend it. In most cases, homeowners who attempt to install their plunge pool on their own end up damaging the pool or at the very least, wasting quite a lot of time and money. DIY (do it yourself) plunge pools do exist on the market and can be attractive due to their substantially lower cost. However, as with most things in life, you get what you pay for.
These DIY plunge pools are typically cheaper models that are not built to last. They are often made from flimsy material like vinyl rather than materials like fibreglass or concrete, which are reinforced and built to last for decades. The installation process for cheap DIY pools is also typically much more complicated than most would assume. It’s very easy to overexert and injure yourself, tear your pool, or damage your property while installing one of these pools if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Compass Pools Sydney recommends that you always hire a licensed and experienced pool builder who can give your family the best pool buying experience possible and cover all their work with a warranty. That way, you know that you and your investments are protected if anything goes awry. If cost is of high concern, a reputable pool builder should be able to work with you to explore the best pool options within your family’s budget. Remember: quality is not an area where it makes sense to cut corners when it comes to installing a new pool.
How much do plunge pools cost?
The cost of a plunge pool can vary substantially depending on the size of the pool, the materials used, and the installation process. Concrete plunge pools tend to be more expensive than fibreglass, as they are designed and built individually rather than being mass-produced like fibreglass plunge pool shells. Both materials are extremely strong and durable, so when you add a plunge pool to your property, you can safely view it as a long term investment and a permanent upgrade to your property.
One common misconception about plunge pools is that installing a plunge pool instead of a full-size swimming pool will be much less expensive. That’s not always necessarily true. If you choose to install an in-ground plunge pool, the process for doing so requires a similar amount of work as installing a swimming pool. You may save money on the cost of materials thanks to the smaller size, but more than likely, the costs associated with installing the pool in a smaller or more challenging area will surpass any savings you might have accrued.
For a top of the line, average to large sized plunge pool, you should expect to spend roughly between $25,000 and $50,000. Conversely, small pools start at around $13,000. While this may seem like a large sum for such a small plunge pool, you have to take into consideration that this price buys you the guarantee of an excellent build experience, a high-quality product, and all the same technologies that go into building a full-size swimming pool.
Another common misconception is that choosing an above ground fibreglass pool is a way to save money. However, that isn’t accurate. In fact, above ground fibreglass pools installations are often more expensive due to the necessity of adding Maxi Rib structure and the frequent need to work around more difficult terrain. For a precise price comparison, it’s always best to talk with your pool builder so that your specific needs can be accounted for.
When deciding whether to choose an above ground or in ground fibreglass pool, it’s important to ask yourself: what design aesthetic are you hoping to achieve? While both above ground an in-ground pools provide the same relaxation and lifestyle benefits, in-ground pools are generally thought to be more attractive due to the fact that they present a cleaner, more streamlined silhouette in your yard.
Again, the cheapest of all installation options is the DIY plunge pool, but as noted earlier, going this route is not something we’d recommend. DIY plunge pools are typically made of vinyl, which can rip and tear very easily. It’s highly likely that you’ll need to repair a vinyl plunge pool soon and often and, in some cases, you may end up needing to fully replace the plunge pool in just a few short years. Even though you seem to save a lot of money up front, DIY plunge pools typically work out to be more expensive over a long period of time.
Is a plunge pool right for you?
Only you can say what is truly right for your family and your household. The many benefits of plunge pools do make them a popular choice with Sydney homeowners, and Compass Pools Sydney is always happy to work with you to answer your questions and choose the best products for your project.
If you aren’t completely sold on plunge pools, Compass Pools Sydney also offers a variety of plunge pool alternatives. Infiniti pools, swim spas, and similar small pools use a variety of technology and design elements to provide private swimming and spa opportunities to homeowners with limited space.
Whatever your needs, we’d love to work with you on developing a custom concrete or fibreglass pool for your yard. Please contact us for more information on getting started.