How Deep a Backyard Swimming Pool Should Be?

The depth of a backyard swimming pool is dependent on the size and design of the pool, but as a general rule you should be able to stand upright (with head above water) at any point in the pool.

Backyard swimming pools come in all shapes and sizes. In fact, one of the best things about modern backyard pools is that they are highly customizable. You can choose the perfect size, shape, and depth for your pool based on your personal preferences.

How deep can a backyard swimming pool be? It all depends on you! Some people prefer shallow pools for wading and cooling off, while others enjoy deeper pools for swimming laps. Ultimately, the depth of your backyard pool is up to you. However, the average backyard pool is about eight feet deep. While some pools can be as shallow as three feet, others can be as deep as 20 feet. It all depends on the pool’s purpose and the homeowner’s budget.

This blog post discusses everything you need to know about backyard swimming pool depths, including the average depth, the benefits of deeper pools, and how to choose the right depth for your pool. Read on to learn more.

What Is the Average Backyard Swimming Pool Depth?

The average backyard swimming pool is about eight feet deep. However, some pools can be as shallow as three feet, while others can be as deep as 10 feet. The depth of your pool will depend on the purpose of the pool and the budget you have set aside for its construction.

A top view of a small backyard swimming pool.
Some pools can be as shallow as three feet, while others can be as deep as 10 feet.

Shallow pools are great for wading and cooling off, while deeper pools are better for swimming laps. If you plan on using your pool for both activities, you may want to consider a depth of six feet or more. This way, you can have a shallow area for wading and a deeper area for swimming.

Why Is 8Feet Typically the Maximum?

You may be wondering why most backyard pools are only eight feet deep. The main reason is that, beyond eight feet, the water pressure becomes too high for most home pumps to handle.

As a result, swimming pools that are deeper than eight feet typically require commercial-grade pumps, which can be quite expensive.

Another reason why eight feet is typically the maximum depth for backyard pools is that it can be challenging to find insurance for pools that are deeper than this.

So, if you plan on having a deeper pool than eight feet, you will likely need special insurance to cover it.

What Factors Determine How Deep Your Backyard Pool Should Be?

Several critical factors play a significant role in determining how deep your backyard swimming pool should be. They include:

1. Purpose of the Pool

The primary reason you want a backyard pool will determine how deep it should be. Do you want a backyard pool for swimming laps, beach-style fun, or simply for cooling off on a hot day?

Mother and daughter smiling at the pool.
The primary reason you want a backyard pool will determine how deep it should be.

If you want a pool for swimming laps, you’ll need a minimum depth of five feet. This will allow you to move through the water without your feet touching the bottom. A depth of three feet is sufficient for a beach-style pool where people can wade and play in the water.

Sometimes, you may be forced to choose a shallower depth for your pool. This is often the case when the soil in your backyard cannot support a deeper pool. If this is the case, you can still have a beautiful and enjoyable backyard pool at a shallower depth.

2. Ideal Safe Height for Adults

Most people crave slightly deeper pools as it gives them a sense of safety and security. The ideal safe height for adults is around six feet. This depth will allow you to stand in the pool without your head going above the water surface.

You can also safely jump into the pool at this depth without injuring yourself. If you have young children, you may want to consider a shallower depth to prevent them from getting hurt.

3. Design of the Pool

When it comes to backyard pool design, the sky’s the limit. There are endless possibilities when it comes to pool shapes and sizes. However, your chosen design will also play a significant role in determining its depth.

A modern fiber glass pool.
There are endless possibilities when it comes to pool shapes and sizes.

For example, a pool with a waterfall feature will need to be deeper than a traditional rectangular pool. This is because the waterfall will displace a lot of water, so the pool will need to be deeper to accommodate the displaced water.

Similarly, if you want to add a diving board to your pool, it will need to be at least eight feet deep. This is the minimum depth required for a pool with a diving board, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

4. Will There Be Any Diving?

Diving is no small consideration when it comes to deciding on the depth of your pool. If there will be any diving in your pool, you need to ensure it’s deep enough to accommodate this activity.

The minimum depth for a pool with a diving board is eight feet, according to the CPSC. This depth is necessary to prevent injuries from occurring.

If you do not plan on having any diving in your backyard pool, you can get away with a shallower depth.

5. Soil Conditions in Your Yard

The soil conditions in your yard will significantly determine the maximum depth of your backyard pool. In some cases, the soil may not be able to support a deeper pool.

If this is the case, you’ll need to work with a professional to determine your pool’s maximum depth. They will take different soil tests to determine the soil type in your yard and its bearing capacity.

Based on these test results, they will be able to tell you the maximum depth your pool can be without causing any damage to your property.

6. Budget

The budget you have set aside for your backyard pool will also play a role in its depth. Deeper pools cost more to construct than shallower pools. This is because they require more materials and labor to build.

Woman drinking cocktails beside the pool.
You want to ensure that your pool is safe and enjoyable for everyone who will be using it.

If you have a limited budget, you may need to compromise on the depth of your pool. Ultimately, you want to ensure that your pool is safe and enjoyable for everyone who will be using it.

7. Local Building Codes

Before you start construction on your backyard pool, you need to check with your local building codes. These codes will specify the minimum depth for a pool in your area.

In most cases, the minimum depth is four feet. However, there may be some areas where the minimum depth is six feet. It’s essential to check with your local building codes before you start construction on your pool.

This will ensure that you comply with the law and that your pool is safe for everyone who uses it.

8. HOA Restrictions

If you live in a community with a homeowner’s association (HOA), you need to check with them before you start constructing your backyard pool. In some cases, HOAs have restrictions on the depth of pools.

This is usually to ensure that the pools are safe for everyone in the community. If you live in an HOA community, you need to check with them before you start construction on your pool.

This will ensure that you comply with their rules and regulations.

What Are the Benefits of a Deeper Pool?

Several benefits come with having a deeper backyard pool. They include:

  • Safety: Deep pools are generally safer than shallow pools. This is because there is less injury risk when people swim in deeper water.
  • Flexibility: Deep pools offer more flexibility when it comes to activities. For instance, you can add a diving board to a deep pool but not a shallow pool.
  • Privacy: Deep pools also offer more privacy than shallow pools. You are less likely to be seen from the street or neighboring properties when swimming in a deep pool than in a relatively shallow backyard swimming pool.
A top view of a woman drinking cocktail beside the pool.
Deep pools also offer more privacy than shallow pools.

What Are the Disadvantages of a Deeper Pool?

There are also some disadvantages that come with having a deeper backyard pool. They include:

  • Cost: Deep pools tend to be more expensive than shallow pools. This is because they require more materials and labor to construct.
  • Maintenance: Deep pools also require more attention when it comes to maintenance because they are more likely to accumulate debris at the bottom of the pool.
  • Security: Deep pools can also pose a security risk since it’s more difficult to see what’s going on at the bottom of a deep pool than to see what’s happening in a shallow pool. This is even more critical when you have young children who are using the swimming pool.

Summary

How deep you make your backyard swimming pool is a personal decision that depends on many factors. We’ve outlined some of the most important considerations to help you make an informed choice.

Whether you decide to go with a shallow or deep backyard swimming pool, we know you will enjoy hours of fun and relaxation in the sun this summer!

Last update on 2023-07-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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