Vinyl Pool vs. Fiberglass Pool: A True Cost Comparison For Your Raleigh Home

a swimming pool in a backyard with a deck.

Dive into the Pool Debate: Vinyl vs. Fiberglass Pools in Raleigh

Ever found yourself daydreaming about those hot Raleigh summer days spent by the poolside?

Or perhaps you’ve been pondering the perfect backyard addition that would skyrocket your home’s value?

If you’ve been considering installing an inground pool, you’ve likely stumbled upon the great debate: vinyl liner pools vs. fiberglass pools.

In this blog post, we’ll dive deep into the cost comparison of vinyl pools and fiberglass pools specifically tailored for your Raleigh home.

By the end, you’ll not only be an expert on the subject, but you’ll also be ready to make an informed decision about whether you want a fiberglass pool or a vinyl liner pool installation in Raleigh that suits your needs, preferences and budget.

And if you’re curious about concrete pools, be sure to check out how our blog on vinyl pool vs. concrete pool costs in Raleigh, NC.

So, let’s jump right in!

Initial Cost and Installation: Vinyl Liner Pools vs. Fiberglass Pools

Vinyl pool vs. fiberglass pool- A vinyl pool's walls being installed on the second day of the process.

When it comes to the initial cost and installation, both vinyl liner and fiberglass pools have their pros and cons.

Vinyl liner pools are generally less expensive upfront, with costs starting around $55,000 to $75,000.

This price includes the pool liner, installation, and basic features such as a pool pump, filter, and electrical controls.

However, a vinyl pool requires a liner replacement every 10 to 12 years, which can add to the lifetime cost.

A fiberglass pool shell being placed into an excavation hole

On the other hand, fiberglass pools have a higher initial cost, ranging from $65,000 to $90,000. (In general, fiberglass pools cost $10,000 to $15,000 more than vinyl pools of the same size.)

But they are also known for their longevity, which can save you money in the long run.

The installation process for a fiberglass pool can also be quicker, as they come in pre-manufactured shapes and sizes, allowing you to enjoy your new pool in as little as three days after delivery.

In short, a vinyl pool is less expensive to install than a fiberglass pool.

Lifetime Cost: Vinyl Liner Pools vs. Fiberglass Pools

When it comes to owning a swimming pool, the initial installation cost is just the tip of the iceberg.

You’ll also want to think about the lifetime cost, which includes general maintenance and replacement costs for wear and tear on components.

Let’s start with vinyl liner pools.

Vinyl Pool Lifetime Cost

16x32 Rectangle vinyl pool with 2' radius corners with thermoplastic steps

Over the years, you’ll need to replace the vinyl pool liner.

Thanks to modern technology, these liners are more durable and resilient than ever, with most vinyl liner pools offering a 20-year pro-rated warranty.

Additionally, the smooth, non-porous surface of vinyl helps keep algae from adhering.

However, you’ll likely need a vinyl pool liner replacement every 10-12 years to keep your pool looking its best and operating efficiently.

Vinyl liner replacements are usually done because of color fading from high chlorine levels, significant cuts, or gashes in the vinyl liner.

While small damages can be patched up, a full vinyl liner replacement will cost you around $7,500, depending on your pool’s size and configuration.

On top of this, you’ll have ongoing maintenance costs.

Vinyl pools and fiberglass pools both require fewer chemicals than concrete pools, which can save you some cash.

On average, vinyl pool owners spend about $1,000 per year on chemicals and electricity.

So, over a 10-year period, you’re looking at an additional $17,500 for maintenance and liner replacement.

Now, let’s dive into the lifetime cost of fiberglass pools.

Fiberglass Pool Lifetime Cost

These pools are renowned for their low maintenance needs.

Once installed and the water is balanced, they require minimal upkeep.

The smooth, nonporous gel coat finish helps prevent algae from attaching, reducing the need for constant chemical balancing.

Your main expenses for a fiberglass pool will be chemicals and electricity, which are similar to those of a vinyl liner pool–about $1,000 per year.

Over a 10-year period, you can expect to spend an additional $10,000 for maintenance costs for a fiberglass pool.

Vinyl Pool vs. Fiberglass Pool: Lifetime Costs vs. Initial Costs

To summarize, vinyl liner pools have lower initial costs but require periodic liner replacements.

On the other hand, fiberglass pools have higher upfront costs but lower maintenance costs over time.

It’s essential to consider these factors and decide which type of pool fits your budget and lifestyle best.

Vinyl Pools vs. Fiberglass Pools: Other Factors To Consider

18x36 Mountain Lake shape vinyl pool with vinyl steps

Durability and Longevity: Vinyl Liner Pools vs. Fiberglass Pools

When it comes to durability, fiberglass pools take the lead.

These pools are known for their strength and can last the lifetime of your home with proper care.

Vinyl liner pools, while durable, do require more care when it comes to sharp objects.

The vinyl liners can be susceptible to punctures and tears and, as mentioned earlier, will need to be replaced every 10 to 12 years.

However, this also provides an opportunity to refresh the look of your pool periodically!

Maintenance: Vinyl Liner Pools vs. Fiberglass Pools

A man cleaning a pool

Maintenance is another crucial factor to consider in the vinyl liner pools vs. fiberglass pools debate.

Both fiberglass and vinyl pools generally require less maintenance than other types of pools.

Their smooth, non-porous surfaces are resistant to algae growth, reducing the need for frequent cleaning and chemical balancing.

Similar to fiberglass, the vinyl liner is nonporous and doesn’t absorb chemicals.

Although the smooth surface of vinyl and fiberglass pools helps keep algae from adhering, you will still need to brush and clean the pool walls occasionally.

You can learn how to clean a vinyl liner pool here.

So when it comes to the maintenance aspect, vinyl pools and fiberglass pools are both relatively low-maintenance options.

Customization and Aesthetics: Vinyl Liner Pools vs. Fiberglass Pools

A vinyl liner lagoon shape pool with spillover spa

When it comes to customization options in the vinyl pool vs. fiberglass pool debate, vinyl pools are the clear winner.

They offer a wide range of liner patterns and colors, allowing you to personalize the look of your inground swimming pool.

Plus, you can choose from a variety of vinyl liner pool shapes and sizes to fit your backyard perfectly.

A fiberglass shell sits in a hole

Fiberglass pools, while less customizable, are praised for their sleek and modern look.

They come in a variety of pre-manufactured shapes and sizes, and some models even include built-in features like tanning ledges and swim-up bars.

However, unlike a vinyl liner pool, your fiberglass pool design options are limited to predesigned molds.

The total size of your fiberglass pool is also limited to a width of 16 feet and a length of 40 feet due to oversize load limits for transportation to your Raleigh home.

Resale Value: Vinyl Liner Pools vs. Fiberglass Pools

Investing in either a vinyl liner pool or a fiberglass pool can significantly boost your home’s resale value.

Both pool types offer unique features that potential homebuyers find attractive.

While fiberglass pools are often favored for their durability and low maintenance, vinyl liners also hold their own with their customizable features and cost-effectiveness.

Ultimately, the addition of either pool type to your Raleigh home can make it a hot property on the market.

Still not sure about which type of in-ground pool is right for you? You can read more about the benefits of a vinyl-lined pool versus a fiberglass pool here.

The table below provides a quick and easy way to compare the features of vinyl pools and fiberglass pools:

FeatureVinyl PoolsFiberglass Pools
Initial Cost & InstallationGenerally less expensive upfront ($55,000 to $75,000). Requires liner replacement every 10-12 years.Higher initial cost ($65,000 to $90,000). Quick installation due to pre-manufactured shapes and sizes.
Lifetime CostLiner replacement costs around $7,500. Average annual maintenance cost is $1,000.Average annual maintenance cost is $1,000.
DurabilityDurable but requires more care. Liner can be susceptible to punctures and tears.Known for their strength and can last the lifetime of your home with proper care.
LongevityLiner needs to be replaced every 10-12 years.Can last the lifetime of your home with proper care.
MaintenanceRequires occasional cleaning, but is algae-resistant due to non-porous surface.Requires occasional cleaning but is algae-resistant due to non-porous surface.
CustomizationOffers a wide range of liner patterns and colors. Wide variety of shapes and sizes available.Less customizable. Comes in pre-manufactured shapes and sizes. Size is limited to 16 feet wide and 40 feet long.
AestheticsCan refresh the look of your pool every few years with a new liner.Praised for their sleek and modern look.
Resale ValueCan boost your home’s resale value due to customizable features, low-maintenance, and cost-effectiveness.Known for their durability and low maintenance, which can boost your home’s resale value.
Interior Surface TextureSoft, comfortable pool surface.Smooth, non-porous surface.
Algae ResistanceRequires occasional cleaning to prevent algae buildup.Requires occasional cleaning to prevent algae buildup.

Advantages of Vinyl Liner Pools

There are many benefits of vinyl liner pools. Vinyl liner pools are affordable, low-maintenance, customizable, and can be installed relatively quickly.

They offer a soft, comfortable pool surface and the opportunity to refresh the look of your pool every few years with a new vinyl liner.

Here at Prestige Pools of NC, we pride ourselves on using top-of-the-line products for all our vinyl pool installations, including durable vinyl liners from Latham, premium pool equipment from Pentair, and sturdy walls from Hydra Pools.

Advantages of Fiberglass Pools

Fiberglass pools are durable, low maintenance, and quick to install.

They offer a modern, sleek look and can last the lifetime of your home with proper care.

While they have a higher initial cost, their longevity and low maintenance needs can make them a cost-effective choice in the long run.

Dive into Your Dream Pool with Prestige Pools of NC

lagoon vinyl pool with spillover spa

If you’re leaning towards a vinyl liner pool, Prestige Pools of NC is here to help.

We understand that choosing the right swimming pool for your Raleigh home is a big decision, and we’re committed to making the process as smooth as possible.

With our pool builder expertise and high-quality materials, we’ll help you create the backyard oasis you’ve been dreaming of.

Ready to take the plunge?

Fill out our contact form today, or give us a call.

Let’s make your dream pool a reality!