5 Must-Have Pool Upgrades For Families With Young Swimmers

20 March 2015
 Categories: , Articles


Building a beautiful in-ground custom pool transforms a bare spot of your backyard into a summertime oasis for the entire family. Aside from the shape and finish for the walls, you also need to consider the extra features that mean the most to your kids. Installing safety and recreational equipment during initial construction costs less than making changes to the pool after years of use.

Jets And Fountains

From waterfalls to spouts that spray high into the air, water features really liven up the average backyard pool. Since the structure is already designed to hold water and deliver electricity for a number of pumps and filters, it's fairly easy to introduce more fountains into the design. Laminar jets work especially well when because you can install them around the edge of the water and let them arch gracefully into the pool.

Water features also work to make a simple pool more attractive to adults as well. Ever dreamed of listening to a babbling brook while relaxing in bed? A pool fountain adds the sound of running water without requiring you to invest in a separate decorative installation for the yard.

Slippery Slides

Why go to the water park when your backyard oasis already offers a spiral two-story slide? Of course, you'll need a deep end so the guests using the slide don't hit the bottom when they splash in. Slides beat diving boards for fun they provide, especially for kids intimidated by heights. The most comfortable slides keep the surface wet for a smooth experience. Dry slides get hot in the sun and slow down the user. If the slide is built in as part of the pool's structure, the installers can insert a small hose for feeding water up to the top to create a smoother ride.

Tall Fences

Curious young kids wander all over, no matter how close an eye you keep on them. Tall safety fences are a must when putting a giant bowl of water into the ground next to your home. Strong metal bars running at least four feet high offer the most protection. A small gap between the bars prevents toddlers and pets from slipping through as well.

Don't forget about locks and alarms on the gates. These safety features also keep wild animals from drinking the water or falling in when you live in a rural area.

Shade Screens

Consider more than just the safety of the water when designing your family friendly pool. Children with fair skin can turn beet red after just a few minutes of exposure during the mid-morning to afternoon hours, making a shade screen a must-have addition to any backyard pool. Using sunscreen for skin safety is much more effective when at least part of the water is shaded.

Pick a shade structure based on the style of your pool and the home's exterior. Some popular options include:

  • Pergolas built with wood, which also work well for supporting green canopies of flowering vines
  • Triangle sails made of cloth, usually suspended from three or more posts around the edges of the pool
  • Gazebos and free-standing frames for shade cloth to keep poolside seats cooler for comfort

Automated Covers

Covering the surface of the water is another important way to make the pool safer with children. Retractable covers spread from edge to edge, and automated models roll the tough fabric out and back in again at the push of a button. If your child gets past the gate and fence, this prevents the danger of drowning

Combine fun and functional safety features to make your new pool a popular neighborhood attraction. Since most of these upgrades work best when anchored in the concrete edge around the water, plan out your design before calling the pool installers.