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Plunge Pool: 101 Guide

Today, a swimming pool is no longer a luxury. Most people are taking it as a must-have, especially during the warm summer. It offers a way to get our body refreshed and escape the heat. Among the many swimming pools people are installing or constructing in their backyard is the trendy kind, the plunge pool.

It’s gaining popularity day by day to a point where almost everyone wants to know what it is, what it can do, and how to install and maintain it. I believe you’re here too to learn more about it. Right? Well, you’re in the right place. In this post, I will go through every question you might have about the plunge pool. It will help you decide if you need it or not.

What is a plunge pool?

A plunge pool is typically a small pool. It has a shallower and compact design compared to a traditional pool. What’s more, it’s more of an aquatic exercising, relaxing, and hydrotherapy swimming pool.

It has a design of a standard swimming pool but shallower, uniform, and also smaller. It can be installed underground or above-ground.

Its name comes from the plunge pool formed under a waterfall in a natural environment. It offers an ideal place to cool down by plunging your body into the water.

A plunge pool is more common in Australia for reasons I will discuss in the next section. Today, the most common places you will find plunge pools are residential homes, health rehabilitation centers, meditation spas, and more of the sort.

Why are plunge pools so popular?

This type of swimming pool is extremely convenient because of its compact size. The design makes it popularly ideal in Australian cities where small spaces are available, not enough for a full-sized swimming pool.

Plunge pools are also common in suburban areas or those newer homes built on a small block of land. It’s used to satisfy the need for a whole traditional swimming pool for those in need of one in their back yard, but there is no room for it.

The cost of building and maintaining a plunge pool is relatively low, attracting more and more fans. It takes little building materials, water, chemicals, and cleaning is also easy compared to a traditional swimming pool.

What is the purpose of a plunge pool?

A plunge pool fits small courtyard and backyards and creates an ideal place for a cool-relaxing dip. However, it’s not suitable for high-impact exercises or pool games.

But they do provide enough refreshing needed to cool down the body during a hot day. Besides this, here are more reasons to get a plunge pool;

What’s more, a plunge pool provides a perfect place for you and your friends to gather and share a glass of something. The small design keeps everyone close for a talk while also making the moment enjoyable and fun.

All-Year Enjoyment

Besides this, you can heat it and use it as a traditional pool for use during winter. And the best part is, you can design this year-round enjoyment feature to double as a Spa.

Creating a Garden Focal Point

Another reason why people get a pool plunge is that it adds a focal point to any garden. You can decide to add pool features such as a water fountain, wall, or sheer. If the pool features get turned on, the plunge pool doubles as a focal point, a place to enjoy cool-relaxation or viewpoint from the house.

Home Value Addition

Like a traditional pool, you can use a plunge pool to boost your home’s aesthetic and resale value. It’s something that will attract more buyers if they see a nice-welcoming back or courtyard with a plunge pool.

Compound Expansion

Other people use plunge pools to excellently utilize their outdoor space, thus expanding their home’s total living space. The plunge pool style complements the house, personal taste, and lifestyle.

Health Benefits

That is not all; some install plunge pool to use it in improving their health. It might not be ideal for the pool laps, but it does offer a perfect spot for doing a combination of aerobic exercises and resistance training.

Besides this, you can set it up for therapeutic effects when cold or heated. It’s the answer to stimulating blood circulation, just like a spa.

Is a Plunge Pool Worth It?

After reading the above benefits, is a plunge pool worth it? Well, that depends on how you take it. A plunge pool comes with certain benefits and drawbacks.

It’s a unit that can fit in those compact spaces in your back or courtyard. While doing so adds value to your home while also beautifying the area.

Because of its compactness, cleaning and maintenance are relatively straightforward. The same applies to when you want to heat it or when cooling it down during hot days.

Therapeutic benefits are also a reason why plunge are considered a worthy addition. When used as a spa, it delivers the relaxation effect while also stimulating blood flow, ideal for better health.

However, you should know, you are quite limited here. It’s not your typical traditional pool. So there is no diving and the likes. Another thing, since they are small, they tend to get dirty quickly. So be prepared to clean it more often.

Have you got your answer? Are plunge pools worth it? The benefits are more than the disadvantages. So, in my opinion, the plunge pool is worth it.

How much does it cost for a plunge pool?

Plunge pool costs are mainly determined by the pool type you decide to use and the installation method.

In general, concrete plunge pools are expensive than fiberglass types since they are designed individually compare to mass manufacturing of the fiberglass.

Both materials are highly sturdy, and as such, they make a plunge pool you can expect to last a lifetime and give you the best enjoyment.

Because of their small sizes, most people assume that installing the cost of plunge pool will be less than a traditional swimming pool. But that is not always the case.

The process is almost the same, and the work involved is quite similar. These units are installed on smaller, difficult spots ending up adding more cost for the extra planning and effort.

For a high-end plunge pool of an ideal size, expect to spend an average of $30,000 and $50,000. If you need a smaller size, the costs are around $25,000.

It might seem as too much for a small swimming pool, but you’ll be getting a plunge pool of excellent quality and with the same technologies as those of a full-sized swimming pool.

An above-ground plunge pool kit with a vinyl liner and frame is a more cost-effective option, and there’s less work involved.

Such plunge pools cost between $2,000 and $7,000. It’s a considerable save, but the best option considering an inground plunge pool looks like a part of the property.

How big are Plunge Pools?

Plunge pool sizes vary. But a normal plunge pool is sized around eight by 8 feet to 8 by 16 feet. And you know what, they come in various shapes meaning the volume can vary a bit.

Round plunge pools have diameters ranging from 10 feet to an 8-foot radius for the half-circle types. There is also the square plunged pool measuring 8 feet by 8 feet.

Most plunge pools are rectangular to make use of the unused available compact space. But you can get a custom-designed plunge pool depending on your available space.

How deep is the plunge pool?

With plunge pools mostly used for hydrotherapy effects, it must be deep enough for you to submerge your full body.

An average plunge pool depth is between 54 to 60 inches. An endless plunge pool, full customized from 51 inches and up.

If you need a deeper plunge pool, you will need to discuss with your engineers to determine if the topology allows it and if it’s really necessary.

So, is a plunge pool deep? That depends on what you consider deep and your height too. But compared to traditional swimming pools, a plunge pool is not deep.

How to plunge pool formed/how to build plunge pool

How do you keep plunge pool clean?

Even though plunge pools offer impressive relaxation and offer tones of entertainment, there is the challenge of needing regular cleaning.

With some of these units installed or built indoors, it’s an obligation to give them a daily cleaning. So how do you clean a plunge pool?

Like any other swimming pool, a plunge pool requires the three basic cleaning routines, namely Cleaning, Circulation, and Chemistry.

  1. a) Circulation

Water circulation is the most crucial thing in the prevention of algae. The stirring mechanism moves the water preventing the water from forming the yucky grime that facilitates algae growth.

For your plunge pool to stay clean, the pool circulation system has to run for at least 12-hours in a day. You don’t need to use a low or high-speed pump; the goal is to keep the pool water in motion.

You need a pool filter attached to collect all the dirt passing through when the water is circulating. Remember to remove and wash the filters regularly and replace them when needed.

  1. b) Chemistry

Water chemicals are another way of keeping your pool water clean and sanitized. You need to keep the pH and chlorine levels in check. Check it at least two times a week.

Keeping them in check allows stabilizing the water to keep it safe for the swimmers and prevent the growth of bacteria, algae, and mildew.

The ideal pH of any swimming pool water, not just the plunge pools, is between 7.4 and 7.6. The best chlorine level has to be between 1 and 3 ppm. The chlorine is ideal for sterilization.

Remember to do the pool water testing needs to be done after four houses of use.

  1. c) Cleaning

Apart from ensuring the water is moving, filtered, and chemically balanced, for a completely cleaned pool plunge, you need to clean it regularly.

What you need to do here is brush the walls and remove the dirt, grime, and any algae grown on the surface.

Keep the circulation pump on while you brush. That way, the debris gets pulled away from settling at the pool bottom.

Vacuuming the pool twice a week and scoop the clutters. It makes vacuuming quite easy.

Can plunge pools be heated?

I don’t like the idea of sitting in cold water on that cold day – it gives shivers down the spine, and it’s not something I’d want to do. Isn’t that the same with you?

With the plunge pool being the same as a traditional swimming pool, you can heat it by installing a heater to enjoy a warm bath anytime you need it. It also allows you to use the swimming pool throughout the year.

And you know what, a warm plunge pool would help enhance the therapeutic effects and relaxation process. What’s more, it can alleviate those sore muscles and give you injury-related symptoms relief.

How long should you stay in a cold plunge pool?

When you dip your body in cold water, you share your body temperature, trying to balance the temperature difference. That’s why medics recommend you stay less than 10 to 20 seconds in chilly water.

The cold water might draw too much warmth from your body. If the water isn’t that cold, you can there until it feels uncomfortable.

Are plunge pools dangerous?

With kids loving to jump in and out of pool water, plunge pools can present a great concern for a home with young ones.

The shallowness means there is no deep end posing a safety risk as the kids might jump in and hit the hard surface while playing.

Does a plunge pool need a fence?

Pool fencing is required by law, and it might be different from state to state. The regulations that surround pool fencing states clear requirements.

Even though it’s a necessity, it does help keep the place secure. If your plunge pool is partially or fully inground, it must be enclosed with a fence.

For an above-ground plunge pool, the fence is required depending on the pool depth. You have to check this with your area local code. It’s normally set at a minimum of 18 to 24 inches.

Can I use a hot tub as a plunge pool?

A hot tub is designed to give you a hot and warm bath when you need it. It offers therapeutic effect and relaxation, not forgetting the muscle relief.

When you need the cold bath, then you need to shut off the heater. A hot tub has a design that allows you to dip your body, thus acting as a plunge pool.

And can you turn a hot tub into a plunge pool? Of course. But you will need to make a few changes here and there to make it comfortable every time.

The plumbing needs to have a chilly water inlet. You need to get a cold or hot bath whenever you need one.

Why are plunge pools good for you?

If you bought a house in the city and you need a swimming pool in a place where a traditional one cannot be built, then a plunge pool is for you. It will give you a better way to utilize the available space. And with a plunge pool having to a sizable pool with therapeutic effects and relaxation.

The construction costs compared to building a normal sized swimming pool might lower your budget a bit. If you’re on a low budget, a plunge pool might be the best option, especially an above-ground one.

About the author

Sharif Miah

Hi! I'm Sharif, the founder of Globo Pool® and I have been working in the pool & hot tub industry for the last few years. I love to share my experiences with people & hope you are enjoying my information and lessons!

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