Swimming Pools

A 5m x 10m indoor swimming pool
In the UK you really need an indoor swimming pool if you want to make use of it throughout the the year. We have rented properties with their own pool and believe the ideal size for a family pool is around 4m × 10m. Whilst it is nice to have a shallow end and a deep end, for most purposes a consistent depth of around 1.2m is safer but, this is not deep enough for diving.

Swimming pool building
A swimming pool of this size really needs to be contained in its own dedicated building and to make best use of it in the colder months, it needs to have a covered walkway or connection through to the main house. The building will also require a separate maintenance and storage room for pumps, filters, the dehumidifier and any chemicals used in the pool.

Swimming pool windows and doors
It is desirable for the building to have a south facing aspect to keep it light and warm and a decent number of windows and doors down one side. Ideally, these would be doors that can open to allow the pool to be used open in the summer months.

Swimming pool steps
Most pools have steps leading down into the water. These can either intrude into the main pool area or form a 'cut-out' into the pool side. This latter approach means the whole pool area can be used for games and people won't bump into the steps unexpectedly. Some pools use step ladders and rails but, we don't like this approach.

Doors

It makes a lot of sense to have doors with self-closing mechanisms, as this prevents excessive heat loss. Doors with contact sensors also improve security and safety, as well as being usefl in detecting occupancy and presence.

Automated (remote) locking mechanisms can also provide increased security and safety.

Lighting

As with all of the zones or rooms in our current smart home, it makes a lot of sense to use occupancy and presence to automate the lighting when the external light levels require it. This not only saves energy but can be much more convenient and safer.

Maintenance

It's a good idea to have a maintenance door to the outside, to allow access without compromising the security of the main house. Any door through to the main house should be well insulated and lockable. It is also a good idea to have glass viewing panels in the doors.

Swimming pool ventilation
An enclosed swimming pool requires a dehumidifying and ventilation system. Typically air is cycled through a dehumidifier and then pushed out through vents. These are often aimed up at the windows and doors to keep the glass clear.

Swimming pool cover
When not in use a cover is usually used to minimise evaporation from the pool surface.

Swimming pool cover roller for storage
The cover can be rolled up out of the way when the pool is in use, onto a large roller.

Swimming pool cover roller for storage
The cover can be rolled up out of the way when the pool is in use, onto a large roller.

Cover Suppliers

Splash Protection

From what we have seen, it is a good idea to tile up walls to about 18", to stop splashes and water stains on the walls.

Energy

Swimming pools use a lot of energy to keep the water warm and to run the filters and dehumidifiers. With a south facing building and roof, it should be possible to use the roof space to contribute energy for the solar water heating and solar PV panels.

Insulation of the roof and any glazed areas is also going to be a big factor in keeping running costs down but, swimming pools lose heat in all directions and little of this is to the air. Insulation underneath and around the sides of a swimming pool is just as important.

Features

It's a good idea to have a fresh water shower in the swimming pool building, to wash off chlorine.

You will need towel hooks on the wall, ideally fairly close to the shower and entrance/exit.

Furniture?

Safety & Security

Warning signs
It is advisable to have some warning signs around the pool. As a minimum, these should display the pool depth.

Non-slip mats
Non-slip mats are required around the edge of a pool.

Emergency button
It is advisable to have an emergency button in the pool building and this should be linked to an alarm in the main house. It will also need a reset button somewhere that cannot be easily reached by children.

An IP camera for monitoring pool usage and for security is probably also a good idea. It will need to be enclosed and resistant to the temperature and moisture levels experienced in the pool building though.

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