Quick Definition:

Swimming pool liners typically refer to vinyl liners, which are installed inside a pre-constructed support structure and are responsible for holding the water inside the swimming pool.

What is a Swimming Pool Liner?

A swimming pool liner refers to a covering placed over the swimming pool structure, completely overlaying the walls and floor.  The primary purpose of the pool liner is to retain the pool water within the swimming pool while providing a clean appearance.  The liner usually is made of vinyl, and can be printed in a variety of colors or patterns, and thicknesses of material varies as well.  Thicker liners tend to last longer than thin varieties, and are measured in either gauge or millimeters.  The liner attaches to the swimming pool coping, and can be removed for repair or replacement.

Private or family swimming pools liners tend to most be vinyl liners, as public and commercial pools often get heavy usage and need stronger materials such as concrete and plaster walls and floors.  Vinyl can become brittle over time, as the compounds that provide the stretching ability degrade.  Tears, punctures, and holes tend to appear more easily in aged vinyl liners.  Vinyl liner leaks can be repaired, but do have a lifespan typically about 7-10 years, depending on use and the environment.  Vinyl liners are preferred in areas where there are extreme temperature changes during seasons, as vinyl liners can accommodate movement caused by freezing and thawing cycles.

Swimming pool water needs to be consistently balanced, as water that is too acidic can age the liner faster, and water that is too basic can produce water scale and buildup on the liner surface.  Vinyl liners can be purchased in standard sizes and shapes, or can be custom ordered in nearly any reasonable shape.

Vinyl swimming pool liners are constructed in one of three ways.

  • Overlap liners, while they are least expensive, popular, and simplest to install, removing and replacing them can be laborious, and offer only a few patterns and colors.
  • Beaded liners on the other hand, have many varieties to choose from and are easier to install and replace.
  • Unibead liners offer the versatility you need as it is the easiest to maneuver, as installation, removal, and replacement require the least work.


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