Swimming Pool Blog
by Guest Blogger Dave Ward, November 18, 2014
How to buy a pool fence
If you own a swimming pool, it is a good idea to install a fence around it. Nearly 300 children under the age of five drown in swimming pools in the United States each year. An additional 4,100 children in that age group need emergency treatment after falling into a pool. Most of these injuries and fatalities occur in pools owned by the child's family, friends, or relatives. Therefore, pool owners who will be entertaining children should consider buying a pool fence to keep their loved ones safe.
The laws here in Australia surrounding temporary and permanent pool fencing are pretty severe, with stiff fines for non-compliance. And, being that there's a lot of pools down under, pool fencing specialists like myself have cropped up, to fill the need.
US Pool Fencing Regulations
Types of Fences
Mesh Pool Fences: The most cost effective form of fencing are removable mesh panels. Mesh fences are climb-resistant, so you will not have to worry about a child scaling over and into the water. They are also removable and transparent. This ensures that your fence will not permanently change the look of your yard. Removable pool fences are perfect for those who do not want to commit to a permanent fence, but want the added safety that a temporary fence provides.
Wrought Iron Fences: One of the most costly pool fencing materials is wrought iron, which is like the iron fences that you would see encasing the front yard of a home. These fences are welded and dipped - very sturdy, so you will not have to worry about them breaking down for a long time. They also come in a variety of different styles. Keep in mind that iron does rust, so you will have to perform some regular painting to protect an iron pool fence.
Aluminum Pool Fences: Another sturdy, but less expensive, option involves using aluminum slats or tubes, horizontal or vertical. Aluminum fences tend to look just like wrought iron, expect for they are much lighter and will not rust. In some environments, such as near the sea shore, you will need to perform regular maintenance to prevent corrosion. Most aluminum pool fencing is powder coated which is quite durable, but hot sun and salty weather can rough it up a bit over a few years' time.
Wood Pool Fence: The main problem with wood fencing is that it can warp and deteriorate when it gets wet. This is bad news if your fence is close to your swimming pool. In addition, you cannot see through the wood like you can with other materials. This makes it difficult to keep an eye on your pool, unless you are inside of the fence. If you want added privacy for your pool area, this could be a viable option. You must, however, be willing to treat the wood regularly with stains and waterproofing to prevent it from rotting, and adjustments to sgging gates to account for warping.
Vinyl Pool Fencing: Easy to install and weather resistant, vinyl pool fencing comes in many patterns and styles, from traditional picket fences to large textured fence panels. They can be ordered in many colors as well, not just white. Vinyl pool fences wear well in most parts of the country, but can deteriorate in hot desert sun, and begin to crack over time. They also block the view of the pool more than some other fence types.
Above Ground Pool Fencing: Despite above ground pools being more difficult for a child to enter installing a fence is advisable. Resin fences are easy to install and provide a strong barrier in your yard. They bolt onto each pool upright and connect to each other. If you go this route, consider buying the taller fence to make the pool even more difficult to enter. And be sure to never leave any items near the pool, which could be used as a step by a child or animal to climb over pool walls or fences.
Choosing a Fence