Disadvantages of Concrete Pools (Gunite Pools)
Most Expensive Pool to Own
After viewing the fiberglass vs. concrete pool 10-year comparison chart, you will see that concrete pools are by far the most expensive pools to build and own. They cost significantly more to construct and maintain. Concrete pools require the most maintenance vs. vinyl liner or fiberglass pools. They are prone to staining on the bottom and sides if you do not maintain and balance the water chemistry. The cost of acid washing and resurfacing are exceptionally high priced, thus costing significantly more over time.
High Maintenance Costs
Whether you hire an outside pool professional or do the maintenance yourself, concrete pools require the most maintenance of all inground pools. Right from the time, you take possession, and after the pool is installed, the pool builder will go over the strict maintenance plan required as the interior surface cures.
It doesn’t stop there. Once the project is completed, a regular maintenance plan must be put in place to maintain the integrity of the pool surface. Concrete is very porous, and if not managed properly, it will stain and deteriorate rapidly.
Draining the pool and acid washing is the only way to remove these stains and over time, will become permanent stains. The only way to remove them is to re-plaster the pool’s surface. Acid washing can also wear down and damage the surface as well, causing you to re-plaster sooner or more often
Use More Chemicals
Water chemistry is an integral component of the ongoing maintenance of concrete pools. Using chemicals and balancing them properly is vital; otherwise, damaging the interior pool surface, resulting in a costly repair is inevitable.
Due to the porosity of concrete, it requires more chemicals for maintenance than either vinyl liner or fiberglass pools. Concrete naturally increases alkalinity (pH), which requires continually adding acid to keep a stable pH balance.
Abrasive Interior Surface
Have you ever been swimming in a concrete pool and have found it to be very rough on your feet? Concrete pools have abrasive bottom and sides which are not as smooth as fiberglass or vinyl liner pools. When it comes to comfort, fiberglass vs. concrete pool, nothing is smoother than a fiberglass pool with vinyl coming in second.
The coarse surface is also tough on automatic and robotic pool cleaners, wearing out pool cleaner parts much sooner.
Longest Installation Time
Compared to fiberglass, installing a concrete pool could be as much as three times longer. This process is very wearing and can exhaust a family who is excited and waiting to swim in their new pool.