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The Pros and Cons of Adding Special Features to your Pool

Posted on Oct 11, 2019 |

Over the years, pool trends too have come and gone. Certain features are now rising in popularity, while others have fallen by the wayside. How do you decide what features to add to your pool, if any when you are remodeling your swimming pool? Here are three of the major pool trends from the past several decades through present and the pros and cons of adding each of them to your pool.


Sunshelves are one of the most popular pool trends today. These shallow shelves are usually 6” – 12” deep and create a platform to set lounge chairs or sometimes lounge chairs and umbrella to create the effect of sitting in the water, kind of like you’re at the beach.

Figure 3 - Sunshelfs are a recent trend in pool building and remodeling.

Figure 3 – Sunshelfs are a recent trend in pool building and remodeling.


Sunshelves are a relaxing feature to add to your pool. A sunshelf creates another place to for swimmers to take a rest and can be a shallower hangout for kids and pups alike. The sunshelf allows pool-goers to stay cool in the water while enjoying the sunshine.


Adding a sunshelf to your pool is a big commitment because unlike a swim up bar or diving board, they cannot be removed once constructed.  Sunshelves can be somewhat expensive to construct depending on the size, shape, style, and whether the homeowner wants to add tile or other features to the sunshelf.

Swim Up Bar

Swim up bars and seating areas have become very popular in the hospitality industry and some homeowners have wanted to bring that flair of luxury to their back yards.

Figure 2 - Photo from:

Figure 2 – Photo from:


Swim up bars are great for entertaining your guests and from adult parties, to snacks for the kids. In the summertime a swim up bar can be a great way to enjoy the outdoors while staying cool in your swimming pool to beat the heat.


Swim up bars can get in the way of other pool related activity and take up room on the pool deck as well. Also, because it is primarily a feature used in entertaining, many homeowners may not use them as much as they anticipated leading to wasted space in the pool. Also, depending on how the seats/stools are designed, it could be difficult for homeowners to clean around and most automatic pool vacuums may have a tough time navigating those obstacles.

Diving Boards

Several decades ago, many residential swimming pools had diving boards. Today, many homeowners are removing existing diving boards. The fall in popularity of diving boards seems to have occurred for two main reasons: safety and pool depth.

Pool remodel where a diving board was removed.

Figure 1- Pool remodel where a diving board was removed.


Some pool experts argue that diving boards can enhance safety because they assist the swimmer to land in the deepest (and thereby safest) portion of the pool when properly used. Additionally, diving boards can help swimmers to more easily recognize the deep end of the pool preventing them from jumping or diving into the shallow portion of the pool by mistake.


Diving boards can be dangerous when not used appropriately. Also, diving boards require a much deeper “deep end” than pools being built today (this deep area is often called a diving well). Sometimes, the presence of a diving board can even cause the homeowner’s insurance to increase. It is worth noting, however, that most jumping/diving incidents do not occur when using a diving board, they occur when a swimmer dives into too shallow of water.

Building a deeper pool to safely accommodate a diving board can be more costly. To safely accommodate a diving board, most pool professionals would recommend a deep end that is at least 8 feet in depth. Digging a deeper pool, or refinishing a deeper pool, is more costly because of the additional surface area, additional labor, and additional material, and additional equipment (such as scaffolding) required to properly apply the finish, all leading to greater expense.

Building a deeper pool limits the amount of area that can be used for other activities, such as volleyball, because of the space needed to accommodate an appropriate grade/transition from shallow to deep.

Smaller pools are simply not large enough to accommodate a diving board due to the depth needed. Pools with

**Advanced Pool & Spa, Inc., cannot install a diving board for you, but we would be glad to help you remove it as a part of refinishing or remodeling your pool.

If you are considering remodeling or refinishing your swimming pool, please give Advanced Pool & Spa, Inc. a call. We have been in business for 35 years and have the experience to assist you in making your pool beautiful and enjoyable for the whole family! Please be sure to follow us on Facebook and on Instagram (@advancedpools.fl) to see some of our work.