When you think of a pool, chances are that you think of a chlorine pool.
But did you know that choosing a saltwater swimming pool can give you a whole bunch of wonderful benefits?
They are so much kinder on your skin, as well as your eyes.
Not to mention that it will be much cheaper to run in the long term than if you were to opt for a chlorine pool in your own backyard.
The only thing to bear in mind is that the costs of setting up a saltwater pool can be an expensive endeavor.
It will be worth it in the long run, but you need to know how much it will cost you upfront before you get started.
There’s no need to worry though! We’ve put together a comprehensive guide to talk you through all aspects of the costs you will need to consider when it comes to creating your very own saltwater pool.
We’re going to cover how the cost differs depending on the size of your saltwater pool, the average total cost, how the cost differs depending on the materials that you use, what kind of maintenance and equipment costs you will need to consider, what other costs you will need to think about, as well as how much it will cost to convert your chlorine pool into a saltwater pool.
So let’s get started with everything you need to know about how much it will cost to create your very own saltwater swimming pool!
So How Much Does It Cost To Run A Saltwater Pool?
Giving you one size fits all answer to this question will be very tricky, as it all depends on several factors.
The material you use for your saltwater swimming pool is one of the main influences, with the prices differing between concrete, fiberglass, and vinyl.
Not to mention that the price of your saltwater pool will alter drastically depending on the dimensions of the pool you want to install!
Other factors such as location and climate can also influence the overall cost of your new saltwater pool (see also ‘ The Best Pool Slides ‘).
Even converting your chlorine pool into a saltwater pool can give you a drastically different cost to if you were to build it from scratch.
When it comes to building your new saltwater pool from scratch, this will cost you in the region of $30,000 up to around $60,000 on average.
It’s worth noting that the smaller your chosen pool, the cheaper it will be. And the larger your chosen pool, the more it will cost you upfront.
In fact, some smaller saltwater pools could only cost you in the region of between $16,000 up to $18,000 if it has a capacity of around 20 gallons.
So how come the costs involved when it comes to creating a saltwater pool can vary so drastically?
It all comes down to how much landscaping you need done in your backyard.
If you have an area that doesn’t need much to change it, then it’s not going to cost you too much extra.
However, depending on where you live, you may be required to construct a patio, decking area, or to make sure that you install fencing alongside the pool.
So these landscaping and other construction tasks are where the price can start to hike.
Want to convert your chlorine pool into a saltwater swimming pool? Then all you will need to do is purchase a salt chlorinator.
Depending on the size of the pool in question, this will have an average purchase and installation cost of around $600 up to a maximum of $2,500.
So the average lowest cost of constructing your very own saltwater pool from scratch will be around $16,000.
If you were to build a larger pool, this could cost you on average up to a maximum of around $200,000.
In fact, the general average cost of making a saltwater pool from scratch tends to be around the $37,500 mark.
If you were to convert your chlorine pool into a saltwater one, this will cost you around $1,550 on average.
How The Cost Varies Depending On The Dimensions Of The Saltwater Pool You Wish To Build
So now that we’ve covered the general average cost of building a saltwater pool, you may be wondering about the different factors that can influence it.
The main two costs of course will be dependent on the material that you choose, as well as the size of the pool you wish to build.
We will cover the cost of different materials in more detail below.
For now, let’s focus on the cost of your saltwater pool depending on the size that you choose.
This is of course one of the main factors that you will need to consider when it comes to building your new pool.
You will also need to consider how many gallons your new pool will be able to hold, as well as the cost of buying a salt chlorinator that will suit your needs.
Understandably the larger the capacity of your pool, the more your salt chlorinator will cost.
Let’s take a look at a couple of average costs per pool size to give you a better idea of what you can expect to pay.
It will be worth noting that these are the average costs of building your pool from scratch rather than converting an already existing chlorine pool (Pool guy costs)
|Size of Saltwater Pool||Average Minimum Cost||Average Maximum Cost|
|10ft x 16ft||$15,000||$26,000|
|10ft x 30ft||$24,000||$42,000|
|12ft x 24ft||$27,000||$50,000|
|14ft x 28ft||$37,000||$55,000|
|16ft x 32ft||$48,000||$70,000|
The most popular pool sizes tend to be around 12ft x 14ft, 14ft x 28ft, and 16ft x 32ft.
How To Work Out The Cost Of Your Saltwater Pool Depending On The Materials Used
Once you’ve decided on the size of the saltwater pool that you would like to build in your home, you can then turn your thoughts to the materials that you will be using.
This is the main other factor that can influence the overall cost of your new pool.
Certain materials will cost more than others, and certain materials will be more hard-wearing than others.
This is the main difference between saltwater pools and standard chlorine pools.
Because of the high salt content in the water, you will need to use certain materials to ensure that your pool will last you for many years to come.
This is because certain materials won’t be compatible with salt chlorinators.
Let’s take a look at the average cost of making a saltwater pool with the three main materials: concrete, fiberglass, and vinyl.
The Average Cost Of A Concrete Saltwater Pool
If you choose to build your saltwater pool using concrete, it will cost you anywhere between $35,000 up to $200,000.
The only thing to bear in mind with choosing concrete as your base material is that it isn’t likely to last you as long as vinyl or fiberglass will.
This is because it is generally quite porous, which means that it can start to degrade over time as it absorbs some salt from the water.
Saltwater is also notorious for wearing away at materials like concrete over long periods of time.
So how come it costs so much more to build a saltwater pool using concrete?
The answer all comes down to the fact that concrete is a much easier material to customize.
If you wanted to add any additional water features (see also ‘Pool Grottos: Cool Design Ideas, Cost & More‘) to your new pool, using concrete would allow you to do this.
Let’s take a look at some pros and cons of deciding concrete as your main material for your new saltwater pool.
|Concrete is much easier to customize in terms of shape||Doesn’t last as long as vinyl or fiberglass|
|There’s no need to use any premade sizes or liners||Can be time-consuming to construct|
The Average Cost Of A Fiberglass Saltwater Pool
If you select to build your saltwater pool using fiberglass, it will cost you anywhere between $18,000 up to $40,000.
There are many bonuses to choosing fiberglass for making your saltwater pool as opposed to other materials.
It won’t cost you as much as concrete for one thing, and it won’t take as long to build.
On the whole, fiberglass is a relatively cheap material that is wonderfully compatible with pretty much most types of saltwater generators and systems.
You also won’t have to worry about your fiberglass pool deteriorating over time as you would with a concrete pool.
You can also reduce the costs of using fiberglass by opting for a premade liner, dependent on where you live and the services that contractors are able to offer you.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of choosing fiberglass as your main material for your new saltwater pool.
|Fairly inexpensive when compared to concrete||Not as many options for customization|
|Isn’t as time-consuming to build as other materials|
|Widely compatible with a range of saltwater generators and systems|
The Average Cost Of A Vinyl Saltwater Pool
If you choose to build your saltwater pool using vinyl, it will cost you anywhere between $25,000 up to $63,000.
In fact, this is actually one of the most popular choices when it comes to selecting the material for your saltwater pool.
The only thing to note is that the price can vary depending on several factors.
Deciding a vinyl pool gives you the option of making a customized measurement.
Typically your vinyl linger will arrive with a steel frame for you to use.
You can then customize this steel frame so that you can get the shape of the pool that you are after.
However, if you’re not fussed about using specialized measurements, you can help to cut down your costs by opting for a premade vinyl liner.
This will of course be dependent on the contractor that you are using and whether they are able to offer this as an option.
One concern for some people choosing vinyl as their main material is how the saltwater is going to react to this steel frame.
However, you won’t need to worry about corrosion if you properly maintain your new pool.
Making sure that you select a high quality vinyl liner can also help to alleviate these concerns.
|ProsConsSuper easy to get delivered to your homePotential for corroding the steel frame if not maintained properlyTakes less time to install than if you were to opt for a concrete baseMore damage can be caused to the pool if there are tears in the linerPremade vinyl liners are available to cut down on costs and time|
The Cost Of Maintenance And Saltwater Equipment
So even though opting for a saltwater pool can save you lots of dollars in the long term, you will have to pay more upfront than if you were opting for a standard chlorine pool.
You will find that opting for a saltwater pool can cost you an average of around $30,000 to install in your garden.
Let’s take a look at the general costs that you can expect to encounter when you build a saltwater pool in your backyard.
These costs will typically be relating to maintenance, any equipment you will need, or repairs that need to be carried out over time.
Average Cost Of Maintenance For A Saltwater Pool
It will of course cost you money to maintain your pool throughout the year.
If you already have a chlorine pool that you are thinking of converting, this will be a fact that you are well aware of.
It can cost you anywhere between $50 to $100 just to maintain your chlorine pool each month.
This will include purchasing additional chlorine to use, as well as the typical maintenance tasks such as cleaning and conditioning.
]And that’s before you even start to think about finding somewhere dry to store your chlorine until you need to use it!
The good news is that by opting for a saltwater pool, you will be eliminating some of these costs.
There will of course be a small amount of chlorine in your pool, but nowhere near as much as a standard chlorine pool.
The only thing you will need to buy regularly to maintain your new pool is of course salt.
But you won’t even have to do this every week or every day as you have to do with a chlorine pool!
The vast majority of salt chlorinators will work with around 3,500ppm to 2,800ppm.
Salt is far cheaper than chlorine. Especially if you buy it in bulk!
You’ll be surprised by how much you will save by opting for 40 pound bags instead of the large amounts of chlorine that you had to purchase for your chlorine pool.
It will cost you under $10 in total for a 40 pound bag of salt.
Average Cost Of Equipment For A Saltwater Pool
In terms of the equipment that you will need for your new saltwater pool, you will only really need to purchase a salt chlorinator.
This is a crucial part of making your pool into a saltwater pool, so it’s not really an item that you can skip buying.
The general cost of a salt chlorinator is between $600 to $2,500, and that also includes the cost of installation.
Another thing to bear in mind is that even though you will occasionally need to replace your generator, this won’t be all that often.
On average, saltwater pool owners only really need to swap the cells in their generator around every 4 to 7 years.
It will cost you around $500 to replace these generator cells.
Other saltwater pool equipment that you will need to purchase includes a pool heater.
These can vary in terms of cost, and as you have probably guessed, it will ultimately come down to how much water you have in your pool that needs to be heated up.
This rule will also apply to the salt chlorinator that you opt for.
If you have a smaller saltwater pool, then you will only need to buy a smaller electric tankless water heater.
This will typically cost you less than $1,000.
However, if you have a larger saltwater pool, then you will need to opt for an electric pump heater.
These can cost anywhere between $2,500 up to $10,000. This also won’t include the cost of installation.
Average Cost Of Repairs For A Saltwater Pool
Even though you take very good care of your new saltwater pool, accidents can sometimes happen.
This is where the cost of repairs differs from chlorine pools, as most of the time you will need to get a specialist to come to your pool and fix it.
This is because the system which runs your saltwater pool is highly sensitive.
If there is damage to your saltwater liner or concrete base, this will often mean that a specialist is needed to come and fix the issues.
The good news is that if you are maintaining your saltwater pool properly, you won’t have to worry about these repair costs becoming a regular thing.
The cost of repairs will differ depending on what the issue is and how much work needs to be completed.
How Much Does It Cost To Convert Your Chlorine Pool To A Saltwater Pool?
For the vast majority of the numbers that we have covered above, this is to cover the cost of building a saltwater pool from scratch.
The good news is that if you already have a chlorine pool and are looking to convert it to a saltwater pool, these costs are typically drastically reduced.
The largest expense that you will need to consider will be buying a new salt chlorinator.
This can cost you up to $2,500 depending on the size of the pool that you have.
You will also need to consider the cost of installation depending on your chosen generator.
You can also skip the construction costs that we have covered in more detail above.
However, you will need to make sure that you stock up on the salt that you will need to run your new saltwater pool (see also our pool salt guide)
When you first get started with transforming your pool into a saltwater haven, you will need to purchase a lot of salt.
It could cost you around $100 depending on the size of your pool.
If you have a 15,000 gallon chlorine pool that you are trying to convert, this will need around 11 bags of salt, presuming these are 40 pound bags.
Once you have purchased your salt and the new salt chlorinator that you need, you can expect your conversion to cost you no more than around $3,000.
It could even be less than this if you have a smaller pool, or have an above ground pool.
The only other thing to consider will be if you need to factor in additional landscaping costs or other features that you want to customize to your pool.
This can of course push up the average price of converting your chlorine pool into a saltwater one.
Other Things To Consider When It Comes To Saltwater Pool Costs
Now that we’ve covered the vast majority of the costs that you will need to consider, we can also take a look at any additional costs that you may need to think about.
These are often considered to be hidden costs by some saltwater pool owners, so it’s worth bearing these in mind.
The Impact On Your Water Bill
One of the most obvious ones perhaps is how your new pool is going to influence your water bill.
Now you may not find much difference to this overall hidden cost if you are thinking about converting your chlorine pool into a saltwater pool.
However, if you are building a saltwater pool from scratch, you may not be aware of how much it will cost you once the initial upfront cost has been covered.
On average, you will notice an increase of around $5 to $20 per month.
It’s also worth noting that if you have a pool in a hotter climate, you will typically lose between 1 and 2 inches of water each week thanks to evaporation.
The cost of using city water will also differ depending on where you live. For example, it would cost around $0.0049 per gallon if you lived in Virginia.
The Costs Of Cleaning Your Saltwater Pool
Even though your new saltwater pool won’t need as much cleaning and maintenance as a chlorine pool, it will still need to be cleaned occasionally to make sure that it is still safe to use.
There won’t be any need to buy any balancing agents or chemicals, but you will still need to purchase an array of manual equipment so that you can clean it as needed.
If you have an outdoor pool, you will of course need something like a telescopic net skimmer so that you can remove any dead leaves or floating debris from the water.
By following regular maintenance such as this, you can avoid any issues with sanitation and even further repair costs later in time.
Working Out A Budget And Estimate For Your Saltwater Pool
It can of course be confusing when you are trying to work out an estimated budget for your new saltwater pool.
There are lots of choices for you to make, with the average cost differing between $16,000 up to a whopping $200,000.
It will all come down to the materials you use and the size of the pool that you are opting for.
In order to work out an accurate cost estimation for your new saltwater pool, you will need to think about all the factors that we have mentioned in more detail above.
Are you looking to build your saltwater pool from scratch, or will you be converting an already existing chlorine pool?
Think about the material that you wish to use and how easy this will be to maintain.
Once you have thought about all the factors that we have covered above, this will give you a much better idea of how much it will likely cost to build your new saltwater pool.
So there you have it! Choosing to have a saltwater pool instead of a chlorine pool may not be the cheapest of decisions, but it will be worth it in the long run.
You will need to factor several costs into your budget to help you work out whether this would be a worthwhile investment for your home.
We have covered these all in more detail up above, but it will basically come down to the materials that you wish to use as your pool base, as well as the size of the pool that you wish to create.
It will cost you far more money upfront if you are trying to build your saltwater pool from scratch. If you have a chlorine pool, this will cost you much less to convert.
You should now have a much better idea of how much it will cost you to make and run your very own saltwater pool!