Pool enclosures aren’t that popular, maybe because they are considered expensive fixtures. However, they are gaining popularity, especially in Florida. Are you considering installing a swimming pool enclosure and wondering if it’s the best idea? Is a pool enclosure worth it?
A pool enclosure has a long list of benefits, but there are some cons too. However, the advantages of installing the structure outweigh the points against it. It can help improve your pool comfort, ease pool maintenance, reduce evaporation and lower energy cost. It can also increase pool security, extend your home, customize your backyard, and increase your property value.
For most pool owners, a pool enclosure is a luxury, but it doesn’t have to be considering the improvement and transformation it can bring to your swimming pool. If you’re growing interested in the pool enclosure, you might want to what everything there’s about pool enclosure.
What’s a Pool Enclosure?
As the name suggests, a pool enclosure is a shelter-like structure with a house-like design that encloses the entire swimming pool area.
It’s more than a standard fence since it covers the whole thing and even the relaxing area. Some are even made as a part of an extension of the main house to add space and convenience.
A pool enclosure has a set of beams mostly made from rust-resistant materials such as aluminum. The side fillings can be mesh, glass, or other materials convenient for outdoor use.
Besides this, an enclosure has a roof made from any available type of roofing materials depending on the owner’s preference and budget.
It’s something you would want on top of your swimming pool to protect it against lots of debris that fall in, evaporation that takes away pool chemicals and water, and many more.
What Types of Pool Enclosures are there?
Pool enclosures are categorized by various materials used in building them or the design employed on them. You what that means? There are multiple types of these shelters, but I will discuss the most common that you can consider categorically.
One way pool enclosure types are determined is by their roof design. It can be a mansard, hip, dome gable, slope, or custom.
A mustard roof is arguably the most popular pool enclosure roof design. It has a flat top and slops on all four sides. The design makes it more open than other roof styles and gives an impression of more space.
A hip roof is another popular pool enclosure roof design quite similar to a mansard roof. However, the hip roof has no flat midsection.
However, unlike mansards, the hip slopes come from the top. And because of the design, a hip pool enclosure roof acts as excellent wind resistance during a strong storm.
A dome roofed pool enclosure comes with a dome-designed top. The sides can be rectangular, square, or round; its structural design adds a curbside appeal with a gentle slope. It’s also excellent at resisting wind and protect the swimming pool from the harsh weather.
The gable-roofed enclosure, or rather an A-frame roofed, has two sloping sides that create a triangle. The roof design allows the structure to stand alone as it surrounds the swimming pool or is attached to a gable patio.
A slope roofed architecture is the most common among many houses. It’s more efficient in shedding leaves and debris that fall on it. The roof design allows customization because of its gentle slope and complimentary design.
The fun about pool enclosures is, you don’t have to limit yourself to the above roof designs. You can hire an interior designer to draw a plan that meets your needs and preference.
You can even ask for a combination of two or more designs to give a complimentary architecture that makes your home completely different. Your swimming pool area can get a complete makeover with a new enclosure designed for your liking.
Every pool enclosure, unless customized, has a frame. Mostly the frame is metallic. But that’s not the critical part when categorizing. What counts is the framing holding it—there two main types; the mesh enclosure and the glass pool enclosure.
Mesh Pool Enclosure
Mesh enclosures are the more popular of the two. It’s ideal for keeping bugs and debris away from your swimming pool while allowing fresh air in the pool area. It does also allow sunshine to pass through.
However, a mesh enclosure cannot withstand snow or hail weight. That’s why you won’t find it in areas that experience such weather conditions.
It’s ideal in areas with high humidity levels but doesn’t snow. It’s a perfect enclosure to allow the swimmers to enjoy the sun peacefully.
Glass Pool Enclosure
The glass enclosure is also an option mostly seen as a thing for the rich. These enclosures are significantly expensive but also offer a more stable and sturdy design. They use an aluminum frame, thicker than the material used with screen enclosures to support the glass weight.
Glass windows or panels are mainly used as the sides, while swinging glass is the door. The ceiling can have a glass too, but mostly the lighter, shatterproof material like Lexan or polycarbonate.
The materials are safer options since they cannot shatter if something breaks through the ceiling. It does also reduce the risk of cracking under the freezing load from snow.
Retractable or Fixed Pool Enclosure
There are also retractable and fixed categories. These two names come from how the structure is built rather than the roofing or the materials used.
Retractable Pool Enclosure
Retractable pool enclosures have multiple designs from a retractable roof, side panels, or even the entire shelter.
They feature a sturdy frame with rollers and an automatic manual or a hand crank for a manual retracting system.
However, this feature is quite expensive but worth it if you’re looking for improved air quality, natural sunshine while swimming, and reduced energy use. You can also enjoy the element of convenience and adaptability.
Fixed Pool Enclosure
The fixed pool enclosure is the regular pool cage you’re familiar with. These models come as a single unit with an entrance to the swimming pool. There is no capability of getting adjusted since they are not movable or something.
The whole setup can be considered more stable, but it leaves you with minimal options, but it can add exceptional aesthetics.
Why Consider Installing a Pool Enclosure?
We all want to enjoy that refreshing dip in an open swimming pool. Don’t you? For most people, that isn’t possible. However, a pool enclosure does open a world to possibilities in your backyard swimming pool. Here are the many reasons installing a pool enclosure is a good idea.
Improves Comfort, Enjoyment, and Relaxation
A pool enclosure isn’t just a shelter for your pool; it’s a place designed for maximum enjoyment and relaxation. It gives you a convenient place to unwind and decompress without disturbing bugs while you enjoy the relaxing sunshine.
And since you can customize the enclosure according to your personal preferences and specific style requirements, you can expect it to give you some aesthetic peace of mind.
If you’re using a fully closed solid enclosure, you can use your swimming pool at any time of the day – no interference even from weather elements.
Increases Property Value
Installing a pool enclosure can boost your property value and attract more buyers – ask your realtor. It creates space to relax and enjoy the sunshine peacefully, which most home buyers are interested in, especially in those hot areas.
Versatile and Customizable
Yes, you can buy yourself an already designed and build pool enclosure that requires you to put the parts together simply. However, you can customize your pool shelter to have some innovative home enhancement solutions.
Protection from Sunlight
Do you live in a sunshine state like Florida, which is almost sunny daily? Even though we love sunlight for its benefits to our health, too much exposure can lead to problems.
A screened pool enclosure can help filter. It can help protect you and your family from dangerous UV skin damage while also allowing you to enjoy enough sunlight exposure.
Energy Cost Reduction
Pool heating can be pretty expensive, especially when you heat the swimming pool when uncovered. Then when the air temperature around the swimming pool is lower than the pool’s, the heater will tend to balance it, thus consuming more electricity.
When you install a pool enclosure, you keep the heat in one room, preventing heat loss resulting in lower energy bills. Additionally, like a pool cover, it will conserve the pool warmth, reducing the time it will take to reheat the pool the next day.
Eases Pool Maintenance
Most swimming pool owners can admit they love cleaning your swimming pool when there is less debris in the water. Right?
A pool enclosure shelters the swimming pool from all the debris and leaves, making pool maintenance tedious and complicated.
And the best part is, it takes away all the strain from your pool filtration system, including the pool skimmer and filter.
Improves Pool Security
One thing most people enjoy about pool enclosures is the extra security they provide. When you cage your swimming pool area, you protect it from unwanted visitors like kids and animals while also keeping the dirt and debris away.
And by keeping the backyard protected to protect, you’ll be reducing the risks of pool accidents, and you can even leave your pool accessories with some peace of mind.
And the best part is, if you live in a residence where protecting your pool is a requirement by law, you can be complying even without knowing when you install a pool enclosure.
Offer Extension of Your Home
If you didn’t know, a pool enclosure creates an illusion that makes your home look and feels more spacious. That might be because of the extra capacity created next to the swimming pool, especially if you’re using the shelter to extend your outdoor kitchen, relaxation area, or dining area.
During the summer heat, the best part is to open your windows directed to the swimming area for some fresh air without worrying about any bugs. You can even keep your doors open and use the pool space as your home extension all year round.
Designed to Withstand Strong Winds
Strong winds have never been friendly to pool owners. They bring all sorts of troubles, including increased evaporation. A heavy-duty pool enclosure can help protect your swimming pool from those strong winds. Some can stop wind currents even at a speed of 130 miles per hour.
One of the many ways swimming pools lose water and chemicals through evaporation is worse during a windy day. Even though covering the swimming pool with a pool cover can help, installing a pool enclosure can work.
When you reduce evaporation, you save your pool water and prevent chemical loss. The best thing is, you don’t have to take it off every time you want to take a swim.
Pool Screen Enclosure Disadvantages
Everything has a downside, and a pool enclosure isn’t any different. But the drawbacks aren’t many. Besides the high cost of installation and maintenance, you might want to consider the following drawbacks:
• Some pool enclosures might block too much sunlight, making the pool area colder than you might have desired it to be.
• A pool enclosure will, at some point, get dirty, which means you’ll need to include this new maintenance into your list of pool maintenance.
• Another thing, pool enclosures are prone to damage. It might take a while, especially for a high-end model, but it will need a checkup now and then to maintain your safety. Fix any damage as soon as possible.
What to Consider Before Deciding on a Pool Enclosure
Now that you know what a pool enclosure is and how it can benefit you, have you grown interested in installing one? If so, you ought to know, choosing a pool enclosure is straightforward with a bit of research. Here are tips I have put together to make your pool enclosure selection as easy as possible.
Examine the Area
Before you can start buying and installing your pool closure, it’d be best to check out the site and understand how it’ll affect your space.
Look for the things that will be affected, such as the yard decorations and plants. You can choose to remove or relocate them. There is also the option of adding new landscaping.
Examining the site can also guide you on the best pool enclosure that will work well with the space available.
Get Quality Materials
Always invest in quality materials for the frame, roof, and sides of the screen. As you well know, pool enclosures are built differently.
The best material for the frame should be corrosion-rust resistance and heavy-duty for exceptional structural integrity.
It would also be best to go with a model that uses internal anchors and hardware to give your structure a seamless look.
The fasteners must be corrosion and rust-resistant, too, since they must withstand the humidity around a swimming pool.
Get Ready for Extra Maintenance
Once you install the pool enclosure, it will be best to regularly inspect the fasteners and the screens to ensure it stays in a tip-top shape. If you notice any problem with the enclosure, you can call for a technician to assist.
Work with Experts
A pool enclosure might not be complicated like a house, but it’s also a shelter that requires expertise during planning and installation.
Getting an expert to install your pool enclosure can be time-saving, and also you can expect the structure to be firmer.
What is the Cost of Installing a Pool Enclosure?
How much it costs to install a pool closure is a hot topic with many numbers to deal with, especially if you’re looking for a customized enclosure.
You should note, though, the pricing differs with the type of enclosure you need, the size, materials to be used, and your local labor rates.
The costs per square foot stand between $14 and $100 in most states, but it all depends on the type of materials used.
However, it doesn’t have to get complicated that much. Here is a summary of what to expect.
Average Cost of Pool Enclosure
National Average $10,280
Typical Range $5,282 – $15,278
Low End – High End $950 – $23,100
Pool Cage Cost by Material Type
Material Cost Per Square Foot
Screen pool enclosure $14
Glass pool enclosure $55
Retractable pool enclosure $100+
Pool enclosure costs also vary highly depending on the type. Here is a cost estimation for some of the common types.
Fixed Pool Enclosure Costs
A pool screen enclosure might cost you $9,750 on average. However, after research, most people with these structures installed in their home spend anything between $5,200 and $14,500 for a 600-700 square-foot structure. Note this, the cost factors involved include the swimming pool type, the design, and the pool enclosure quality.
Retractable Pool Enclosure Costs
Retractable pool enclosures are luxury structures that can averagely cost you $70,000 for a 600-700 square-foot unit. Those high-end or custom-designed retractable enclosures can cost you anything between $105,000 and $140,000, depending on the material quality, labor time, and design.
Glass Pool Enclosure Costs
Another luxurious pool enclosure is the glass cage. Its average cost is $38,500 for a 700sqft area; the low-end price is $31,500, with the high-end being $45,500.
Dome Pool Enclosure Costs
If you’re planning to install a dome-designed pool enclosure for your in or above-ground pool, be prepared to invest around $1,200. According to most pool owners with such a structure, the pricing range between $850 and $1,500 depending on the material used, size, and type of your swimming pool.
Pool Enclosure Kits Prices
Most pool enclosure kits average cost is $3,500, with an above-ground pool kit costing $1,700 averagely and an in-ground vinyl pool enclosure kit costing around $6,500.
Pool Cage Painting Cost
After the installation, you will need to paint the enclosure to give it a nice, attractive aesthetic finish that matches your home décor and preferences.
The average cost of a painting job is $1.90 per square foot, and the average labor cost per square foot is $1.75 averagely. The painting material can cost you $0.25 per square foot on average
Should You Repair or Replace a Pool Enclosure?
Pool enclosure repairs are small tasks. Repairing tears and fixing small rips is relatively easy. However, replacing an entire shelter section can be tedious, not forgetting the enormous investment you will spend.
It might not make a difference financially since extensive repair might not last that long. Depending on the extent of the damage, it’d be better to replace the entire pool enclosure. So, when should you repair or replace your pool enclosure?
How to tell if your Pool Enclosure should be repaired?
Swimming pool enclosures are pretty sturdy, but they are also prone to damage at some point in their lifetime as the materials weaken with age.
Caring for and handling the minor repairs early can help keep your pool enclosure in good condition, saving yourself some money in the long run.
The best way to care for your pool screen is to watch any damages, no matter how small they are. Here are the few warning signs that can tell you if your pool enclosure needs repair:
Small rips and tears
If you’re using a mesh screen for your pool enclosure, pets and other critters can make small tears using their teeth and claws as they attempt to enter the swimming area.
It’d be best to patch these small rips before they get more significant and noticeable. If left open, bugs and unwanted animals might slip through into the pool area.
If you start to notice flaking or loose paint, it might be time to repaint the shelter. It would be best if you considered repainting the entire cage for 5-10 years.
Sagging or Bulging Screen
The pool screen that’s been ripped out of the aluminum groove needs fixing right away. When the screen gets stretched out, it starts to bulge or sag with time, causing the edges to tear away from the frame.
The same might happen when the aluminum frame holding the screen starts to get weaker. If it’s happening in more than one area, it might be time to change the whole pool enclosure screen.
How to tell if Pool Enclosure Should be Replaced
Knowing when to replace your pool enclosure can help reduce potential danger and save you from the expensive expenditure. Here are a few signs to look for if you want to know when it’s time to replace your pool shelter.
Rusty or Missing Hardware
If there are missing bolts, screws, and fasteners, or some are rusting away, it would be safer to replace the entire enclosure. The situation poses a risk of falling and causing damage and probably injuries. What’s more, a strong storm might blow it away, causing even more massive damages to your property.
Large Visible Tears
Even though you can quickly fix the small tears, those large, visible rips represent a severe problem. Even if you try fixing the long sections of the pool enclosure screen, the repair might not hold that long.
If your screen has a visible tear or a visible crack in the glass enclosure, it’d be best to do an entire replacement.
Aged or outdated
An enclosure does once you install it to add some aesthetic beauty to your home. It can also take it away if it ages and gets outdated.
It’s best to maintain them by keeping the enclosure in good condition and upgrading it.
Suppose you remodeled your home or moved to a new home with an older outdated enclosure; a whole replacement is the best move.
How Do You Maintain a Pool Enclosure?
Maintaining your pool enclosure will not only make sure it stays clean and neat but also extend its life. Cleaning the shelter regularly can ensure you get to enjoy its benefits fully. Here are tips on how to maintain your pool enclosure.
• Clean your entire pool enclosure every 6 months.
• When you notice algae growth or other signs of dirt, it’s best to clean it as soon as possible.
• Remove the debris from the roof to keep it clean.
• Remove stains and if they are stubborn, add breach to your water mixture.
• If you have a glass enclosure, check for cracks as that is a sign the glass might break soon.
Can You Get Tan When in a Pool Enclosure?
That depends on the type of screen you use on the pool enclosure and whether it blocks the sun’s UV rays. If the material is a UV-blocking material, NO; you won’t get tan when enjoying your swim. But at the same time, you won’t enjoy the sun’s warmth.
How Long Do Pool Enclosures Last?
Averagely, pool enclosures last around 10-15 years, but the high-end models can even go for more than 25 years. It all depends on the quality and the type of your enclosure, not forgetting the climate in your area and the amount of maintenance you give it.
And there you have it. Everything you need to know about pool enclosure. Is a pool enclosure worth it? I leave it to you to judge. After everything you have read in this post, what do you think? Are you convinced more to install a pool enclosure? Well, that is something you will have to decide by yourself. Good luck.