The ultimate guide to pool fencing
Are you considering installing a security fence or barrier around your swimming pool? There are a few things you should know before you start.
Many states and localities have enacted laws and regulations requiring fences for all inground swimming pools. Updated legislation in some areas also requires fences for above ground pools or bodies of water deeper than 18 inches. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and other safety-conscious organizations such as the International Code Council (ICC) and the Pool & Hot Tub Alliance (PHTA) have developed minimum standards for safety fencing for pools, which form the basis of most state and local legislation.
Fencing requirements for your new pool enclosure vary by state and may have even more stringent standards depending on the city. Before starting any pool fencing project, make sure you do your research so you understand the minimum standards of regulations in your area. Check with your local building and zoning authority (city or county) for state and local pool fencing codes specific to your property.
Some states require a fence to be at least 5 feet high, while others may require a minimum of 6 feet. In some areas, the three-sided property fence surrounding the backyard is sufficient. But elsewhere, such as in California, secondary fencing or alternate barriers are required in addition to the perimeter fencing.
Different types of pool fences
A pool fence can be made of many materials. The most important thing is that it meets the minimum size criteria and is not climbable or passable (through/over/under). Structures or walls can be part of a fence, and hedges or vines can help soften or conceal fences if desired. Pool fence gates must open outwards and they must be self-closing and self-locking lock installed at least 54″ off the ground.
During pool construction, the pool inspector makes the final decision on the suitability of the fence. If, like most pools, your new pool requires a permit, the fence will also be inspected. For a DIY pool fence, be sure to do your homework and call your local building inspector if you have any questions or review pool fence plans before breaking ground.
Mesh pool fences
Also known as a removable security fence, Mesh pool fences meets all regulations and has several advantages over other types of pool fencing. First and foremost, the cost of a pool mesh fence is often much lower than other types when priced by linear feet, and installation is quick and easy. Many mesh security fences can be partially or fully removed to allow for poolside activities or group parties. The mesh fabric is transparent and allows a full view of the pool. The right self-closing goal meets all codes. Mesh pool fences are typically only 4-5 feet tall and work best as an indoor perimeter or secondary fence around the pool.
Aluminum pool fences
A popular choice for style, durability and cost, Aluminum pool fences offer a wide range of heights, lengths, colors and designs and can be adapted to all needs. However, aluminum pool fencing is usually limited to pool enclosures or restricting access from the back patio to the pool. Many types of aluminum fencing are 4 feet tall or less, making them unsuitable for areas that require taller pool fencing.
Glass pool fences
Glass fence panels used as pool barriers are an idea that started in Australia, where pool fencing laws are even more restrictive than in the States. Like the aluminum pool fence above, glass fencing is usually only used for internal pool fencing to separate the pool from the house on one or two sides. Glass fences are also popular for retaining a beautiful view, a must for hilltop homes with a pool. The limiting factor for glass pool fences is cost as it is the most expensive pool fence to install.
Wooden pool fences
In a typical residential pool, a wooden fence is used to enclose the backyard, which is often referred to as a three-sided pool fence (the fourth side is the back of the house). In most states, a three-sided fence meets all pool fence requirements. However, as noted, some states require additional barriers and/or security measures to separate the pool from the home and yard. Wooden fences may not be acceptable as secondary pool fencing due to loss of view of the pool area.
Chain Link Pool Fences
While it may not be high on the list of pool fencing materials, chain link fencing is a fairly economical choice and can be quickly installed to meet pool fencing codes. Chain link fencing is available in galvanized steel or vinyl coated steel. Some panels come with privacy slats which can be ideal for perimeter fencing but are not suitable for indoor pool fencing. It may not be the most attractive choice, but this affordable pool fencing option meets important pool safety requirements.
Resin pool fences
A common choice for above ground pools, resin pool fences easily attach to the top rail of an above ground pool and lend themselves to quick and easy self assembly. Above ground pool fence The kits meet most needs in areas where building codes require a fence for above ground pools. Invest in a goal instead of a goal above ground pool ladder and access system that includes security mechanisms to prevent access.
Some resin fencing options can also be an economical alternative to wood or cinder block fencing, as shown.
Steel pool fences
Pool fence from Saftron is made of heavy gauge galvanized steel. It’s coated with a proprietary polymer to withstand the elements even better than a powder coating. Panel posts are either put on top or concreted in. There are other steel fencing options on the market like the one pictured if you are looking for a more unique or decorative aesthetic. Steel fence panels are typically 8 feet long and 4 feet high, so like other types of fence, they work best as indoor fences around the perimeter of the pool.
Ready to start?
When it comes to secure pool fencing, the options are almost endless. Unleash your creativity and get the backyard aesthetic you’re looking for while creating a sturdy barrier around your pool. You don’t even need the same type of barrier on each side. As long as the entire perimeter of the pool is fenced off, the barrier meets all height and other standards required in your area and access to the pool is restricted by a self-closing, self-locking, lockable gate to walk well.
You don’t necessarily have to limit yourself to the options on this list. However, many of the pre-built options listed above can be purchased and installed out-of-the-box, and some don’t even require much extra effort to install. We’ve seen fencing materials like stone pillars paired with metal accents and decorative wood panels, as well as trellises covered in floral vines, to name a few unique examples.
If you have questions about choosing the right safety fence for your swimming pool, contact the professionals at Leslies happy to help. We even offer one installation service for our Protect-A-Pool earth protection fence.