Best Inflatable Pools for Summer 2023
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An inflatable pool is a great way to beat the heat when the mercury rises. Inflatable pools are a hot commodity in the summer, so if you’re planning your backyard oasis, now's the time to snag a pool, along with sunscreen and a few new beach towels.
An added bonus: Your wallet will thank you, since inflatable pools are more budget-friendly than installing an in-ground pool. "Once people look at the cost of installing and maintaining a traditional pool, an inflatable pool that people can enjoy for a few summers, makes a lot of sense," says Kimberly Marvel, a pool care expert at Watercrafters in Maryland.
Typically, inflatable pools are round, rectangle, or oval. According to Marvel, your outdoor space plays a major factor."Your yard will determine the size and shape of the pool that you’ll be able to purchase," she says. While kiddie pools can be just a few feet in diameter, larger ones can exceed 15 feet. "The larger the pool, the longer it will take to fill with water and for the water to drain. Larger pools require more maintenance, but once you get into a regular routine, it's manageable," she adds. Adults should choose a pool over 30 x 30 inches or one labeled as "adult-sized" to sit comfortably in the pool.
Marvel recommends considering who's using the pool when deciding on the depth. If the pool is for younger kids, opt for a shallow pool. If older kids and adults will be sharing the pool, choose a deeper pool. Some inflatable pools only hold a few inches of water, others can be up four feet deep. Of course, no matter the depth, children should always be supervised when playing near water.
Inflatable pools are usually made of vinyl or a similar material that manufacturers say won't puncture easily. That's not always the case, but some pools come with a patch kit for quick fixes.
Some of the most popular features of these types of pools are filters that keep the water clean. Some pools have fun features like water sprays, small slides, and seats in the pool. Setup tends to be easy with inflatable pools and usually requires an air pump.
Here are a few of our favorites to help you choose which inflatable pool is right for you.
Think of this inflatable pool as a semi-permanent option for your backyard. Measuring 10 feet by 10 feet, there's plenty of room for a few kids and adults to enjoy the water. According to the manufacturer, setting up the pool takes only ten minutes. Just roll the pool out on a level surface, inflate the top ring, and fill the pool with water.
One of the best features of this pool is the filter that also reduces the number of times you’ll need to drain the pool and refill the water. When you’re putting the pool away, it drains quickly through a valve at the bottom of the pool. If you choose this pool, be sure you are purchasing the "set", or you’ll get the pool without the filter.
If you need a pool that is easy to inflate and affordable, this is the pool for you. With an air pump (not included), the pool is inflated and ready to be filled in a few seconds. The pool has three separate air chambers, so depending on who's using the pool, you can keep the water shallow for younger kids and fill to capacity for adults and older kids.
While it's too shallow for actual swimming, it's big enough for a few kids to splash around in and for adults to sit down comfortably. The pool is made from a heavy-duty vinyl and comes with a repair kit to fix minor holes and rips. The manufacturer recommends leaving it on an incline for quicker results when it's time to drain the pool.
Perfectly sized for a baby, this pool has features little ones and parents will love. The hard plastic pool holds enough water for babies to splash in, and it's easy to drain and clean. Two babies or one toddler can easily fit in this pool—sorry babies, no pool parties here.
Another great feature is the attached umbrella that keeps little ones cool and protected from the sun. It comes with three funnel cups and a water wheel spinner that attach to the umbrella post for easy cleanup. When your baby has outgrown this pool, turn it into a sandbox so your little one can keep using it for years to come.
This pick is perfectly sized for toddlers and will keep your little ones entertained as they splash in this dinosaur-themed pool and play center. From the palm tree splashers and waterfall to the volcano slide, there's enough room in this pool for several toddlers to play.
The shallow wading pool is great for water play, but not actual swimming. Do yourself a favor and get an air pump if you get this pool. When your toddler is ready to swim, you can have the pool inflated in a few seconds, and they won't have to wait for you to fill up the pool with a lot of water—just attach a hose to let the fun begin. Because the pool is light and portable, you can easily take it with you to a friend's house. When summer ends, move it inside and fill with plastic balls for a dino-ball pit your kids will love.
The Summer Waves Quick Setup pool is a great choice for adults. Measuring 10 feet in diameter and 2.5 feet deep, there's enough space for four adults to comfortably lounge. Also, you’ll be able to spend more time enjoying the water and less time on maintenance since this pool comes with a pump that can clean up to 300 gallons of water per hour ,as well as a replacement filter cartridge.
Because the sides of the pool are higher, it can be difficult to get in and out of, so you might also consider purchasing a ladder. Since the pool is made from a durable triple-layer poly-laminate PVC, you should get several summer seasons out of this pool.
This pool has something for everyone in the family. While kids splash around, parents can relax on the built-in bench. Depending on how much water you add to the pool, parents can get just their feet wet, or if they really need to cool off, fill the water higher to cover the bench seating.
The sides of the pool are low enough for kids to climb in and out of the pool easily and it takes just a few minutes to inflate it with an air pump. Grab the pool toys and take a family dip in the pool.
Looking to relax this summer? Take a seat in the Summer Waves Premier Swimming Pool with four comfortable seats and backrests. While you won't be swimming laps in this pool, four adults can comfortably relax in it. If kids will be using the pool, this is a great one to toss in a few pool toys while they splash around.
We love that this pool comes with cupholders, but with four seats and only two cup holders, unless you’re willing to share, two guests will have to leave their drinks outside of the pool.
If your summer motto is go big or go home, try out this water slide from Costway. With features like a climbing wall, splash pool, and a water cannon, this pool is a great pick for large families looking to keep kids of various ages entertained.
A blower to inflate the pool is not included (a 75 watt blower is recommended). It comes with stakes to secure the pool and a bag to store the slide when it is deflated. While it comes with a patch kit, the material is durable and can withstand kids tugging, pulling, and climbing on the slide. This is another inflatable that can be taken inside and used by kids during colder months.
Dive into summer with a play center that keeps kids entertained and happy all season long. This inflatable kiddie pool features a watermelon-themed slide, multiple sprinklers, and an inflatable strawberry toy. The Intex Fun 'N Fruity is one of those rare inflatable pools that receives tons of positive reviews because parents and kids absolutely love it.
The pool inflates in seconds and kids don't have to wait for the pool to fill up. Just attach a hose and the sprinklers start working in seconds. There are two areas of play, so more kids can join in on the fun, and it even comes with six balls to use inside the pool.
Kiddie pools can be stylish. Instead of the traditional bright colors of other inflatable pools, the Minidip features calming, soft tones.
The Minnidip Amalfi pool gives regular inflatable options a fun upgrade with a unique "tiled" design and scalloped edges. Plus, each pool has an extra-plush lining to make relaxing easy and fun.
We researched pools from the most popular brands and selected options based on durability, features, setup, and maintenance. We also received expert tips from Marvel about picking the best inflatable pool for your needs and backyard space. "Once you’ve picked your pool, think about where you will place it because your grass probably won't survive under the pool, she says. "You may want to put your pool in a shady spot that is flat and free from rocks and other debris that could damage the pool."
The surface of the pool can be cleaned with a mixture of dish soap and water. Be sure to rinse thoroughly with clean water, and dry the pool with a soft towel. Let the pool finish drying by sitting in the sun.
The lifespan of an inflatable pool depends on the overall design, material, and size. The way the pool is used, maintained, and stored will determine its longevity. Most pools are usable from one to three years.
It's recommended that inflatable pools with untreated water be drained after every use. If you choose to leave your inflatable pool full of water, for safety reasons, the pool should be covered and kept away from young children and small animals.
A pool skimmer comes in handy when you need to remove leaves, grass, or dirt. For larger inflatable pools, you can purchase a handheld vacuum to clean any debris that gathers at the bottom of the pool. Finally, when the pool isn't being used, a pool cover is a great option. A plastic tarp can be secured using yard stakes or weighted down with bricks or rocks. When the water is drained, clean the inside and outside of the pool with dish soap, water, and a soft sponge.
After a day of splashing around in your inflatable pool, you may be wondering just how long you can keep the water in the pool before you need to drain it. It won't take long for pool water not treated with chemicals or being flushed with a pump to become stagnant and turn swampy, so it's recommended that water in inflatable pools be drained after every use, according to the Center for Disease Control. If you’re using chemical cleaning agents, like chlorine, it's recommended you change the water every two weeks.
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