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What is the best size pool?

Q: I want to build a pool. What do you think is the best size?

A: There is probably no "best size", but here are some things to think about that might help you make a decision.

First, what type of clients do you hope to attract? A typical 800 gallon spa would be fine if your business is limited to providing massage therapy. There's not much room for swimming, but there are many tubs to choose from and you should be able to find one with the ideal configuration for your practice.

On the other end of the scale are full sized pools. For comparison purposes, an average recreational pool (like you might find at a gym) is around 50,000 to 80,000 gallons, while many backyard pools are around 30,000 gallons. With a pool this size, you could offer parties or open swims for multiple clients.

A good in-between option would be a lap pool or swim spa. These typically run in the 2,000 to 4,000 gallon range.

When you get quotes for a pool, you may come to the conclusion that bigger is better. For example, you may find that a 30,000 party-sized pool is "only" twice as much as a 3,000 gallon swim spa. Who wouldn't want ten times as much for twice the price?

HOWEVER, the initial cost is only part of the equation. You will probably find that heating the pool is your biggest monthly expense. Your heating costs will definitely be proportional to the size of the pool, so be prepared to spend ten times as much to keep the water warm. You'll also need bigger systems for circulation (more electricity) and more chemicals for keeping the water chemistry in balance. Regular water changes are still needed, so your water and sewer bills will rise. The dollars add up in a hurry.

One more thing to consider when you think bigger is better: What happens when a client defecates in the pool? Draining, disinfecting, refilling, and reheating an 800 gallon spa is a pain, but can be accomplished in around 4 hours with minimal loss of business. Doing the same thing to a full sized pool will probably mean at least 2 days of down-time, not to mention a significant expense. Are you prepared for that?

Good luck with your project!

Answer courtesy of:

The ACWT Pool Guru:
Karen Hunter
Mega-Dogs
22609 102nd Ave SE
Woodinville , WA 98077
425 487-3078
karen<at>mega-dogs.com
www.mega-dogs.com