Soft-Sided vs. Steel-Sided Above Ground Pools

As you work toward a decision on what type of above ground pool to purchase for your backyard, you’ve probably come across both soft-sided and hard-sided (steel) frame options. In fact, you’re likely reading this blog because you found Splash SuperPools to be one of the top above ground pool manufacturers in the world – and we just happen to make soft-sided pools.

We know you’re wondering what the difference is, so we’d like to shed a little light on that.

The Quality

To be clear, when we mention soft-sided above ground pools, we are not talking about the models available in the big box stores. While they may be exceedingly inexpensive, you get what you pay for. These mass produced items likely won’t last more than a couple of years, and must be disassembled and stored during colder months if you want to prevent cracking. Additionally, these boxed pools are limited in size and shape.

Soft-sided pools manufactured by Splash Pools are in a completely different category of quality. Our pools last just as long, if not longer, than a traditional hard-sided above ground pool. And we’re not limited by size. We have traditionally sized models available, but specialize in customizing the size of your pool based upon your needs. We’ve done everything from 4 x 4 feet to 108 x 312 feet!

The Structure

Of course, the main difference between a soft-sided above ground pool and a hard-sided one is the structural materials. Hard-sided pools are typically made of steel or steel-lined resin for the frame and then have a liner for the interior of the pool.

The purpose of this hard structure is to maintain the strength and durability of the pool. It’s successful at doing so, but with the sacrifice of a more complicated installation process and lack of mobility. Many hard-sided above ground pools are as permanent a fixture as an in-ground swimming pool, meaning you can’t move, but must demolish it.

Conversely, the wall is also the liner with soft-sided Splash pools. This not only adds comfort to your swimming experience, but mobility for your pool because the installation process is significantly less work. Our liner wall is incredibly strong and durable – a rock thrown by a lawn mower certainly won’t penetrate it – and is treated with a special coating that prevents dirt from attaching to exposed areas and protects it from damage caused by UV light, mildew and other fungi.

The structure of our soft-sided Splash pools is made up of zinc-coated steel support beams that go through a deliberate process of shaping and varnishing, providing just as much structural stability as a hard-sided above ground pool. Additionally, any metal parts exposed to the water are also made of stainless steel.

Before you make your decision on the structure of your above ground pool, we wanted to make sure you had all the facts. For over 40 years, Splash Pools has been and will continue to be committed to providing a quality, long-lasting, soft-sided above ground pool. You can rest assured.