Tips on Choosing Vinyl Swimming Pool Liners  

by Pool Builders on 02-09-2011 in Articles

Inground pool liners come in different patterns, thicknesses and with different warranties. Your vinyl pool liner selection is something that you will live with for many years so consider these tips that we've learned from our many years of pool ownership.


Liner thickness is listed as "gauge" or "mil."The two most common are 20 mil and 27 mil. You can also purchase a blended thickness, meaning it is 27 mil along the top where the liner is most exposed to the hot sun and 20 mil along the bottom of the pool. Sometimes you will see 30 gauge instead of 27, I've been told they are the same, but for reasons unknown to me manufacturers use these terms interchangeably.

The thicker liner usually costs an extra $200-$300. Ask the pool companies if they have any 27 mil liners available at the 20 mil price. Each spring many of the pool liner companies will select three to five 27 mil liner patterns and order larger quantities of these patterns and then make them available to the consumer at the cheaper 20 mil price.


Warranties can range from 10-25 years. There is a warranty that comes from the manufacturer that usually covers seams separating or if the print comes off. The first couple of years, the liner may be covered at 100% and then prorated after that. The coverage for labor will differ with each pool liner installer,so be sure to ask.

Color and Pattern

Choosing a color or pattern from a small swatch of vinyl is not an easy way to make a selection. It really helps if you can go see someone's pool who has that same liner installed. Don't be afraid to ask your installer if they have installed the liner that you like at another pool. If so get permission to go look at it.

Stay away from solid colors as they will show stains more readily than a pattern will. Also a solid color liner will fade or discolor unevenly making it more noticeable.

To see pictures of replacing our pool liner and comparing our light colored liner to our new darker liner go here:

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