Breaking Down the Cost to Repair a Pool Liner
The cost to repair a vinyl liner varies based on both the type of pool and the extent of the damage. A patch repair for an above-ground pool is typically less expensive than fixing a wrinkle in an in-ground pool.
The final cost of repairing a pool liner depends on a few factors.
A major cost factor for replacing a vinyl pool liner is whether you have an in-ground or above-ground pool.
In-ground pool liners: You’ll pay the most for in-ground pool liners, so budget approximately $700 to $1,500 for a replacement liner.
Above-ground pool liners: Liners for above-ground pools generally cost less than below-ground pools. Expect to pay anywhere between $100 and $600 on average.
The type of liner you choose also affects the price of your new pool liner. There are three types of liners: overlap, beaded, and uni-bead liners. Overlap liners come in at the lowest end of the price range, but they have a lower lifespan than beaded and uni-bead liners.
Overlap liners: These are the least expensive and easiest to install. Overlap pool liners are draped over the top of a swimming pool, then clamped into place.
Beaded liners: Beaded liners have a groove that is attached to a track around the edge of the pool. They are easy to repair and replace.
Uni-bead liners: This style of liner creates a seamless look, with a curved piece that hooks over the top of the pool. Unibead liners are the most versatile option.
Pool Style and Shape
In addition to cost differences in above-ground versus in-ground, liner replacement in L-shaped or kidney-shaped pools is more expensive than a standard rectangle or oval pool.
Liner Thickness and Design
The thicker the vinyl, the more durable the pool liner—but that also comes with a higher price tag. Most liners are 20 millimeters thick, but you can also choose a 25 millimeters option for a bit more money. The liner cost also increases when choosing designs or patterns beyond the basic solid blue.
The material costs depend largely on the type of pool you have. A replacement vinyl liner for an above-ground pool will cost between $100 and $660, while a liner replacement for an in-ground pool ranges from $700 to $1,500.
Installation of an above-ground pool liner typically costs between $250 and $800, while an in-ground pool liner installation ranges anywhere from $1,000 to $2,500.
Draining and Refilling
Replacing a vinyl liner requires that you first drain the pool to access the interior. You can technically drain a pool yourself for free, but you should be careful since most residential pools aren't designed to be empty. Another option is to hire a professional to drain it; most companies charge between $500 and $700.
Once the work is completed, the pool will need to be refilled. The cost to fill a pool with water runs between $60 and $120 if you use municipal water.
Time of Year
Spring and summer are the most expensive times to replace a pool liner since they are busy. But for best results, you should replace a liner when the weather is warm.
Pool Liner Repair vs. Replacement
Not all damaged vinyl pool liners need to be replaced. Pool liners can last anywhere from five to 20 years, so if your pool liner is relatively new, in good condition, or has only a cosmetic or minor tear, you might be able to repair the liner rather than replace it entirely. For example, you may be able to repair a minor tear to your current liner with a DIY liner patch kit, which costs roughly between $20 and $50.
DIY vs. Hiring a Pro
You’ll pay around $30 to $50 per hour to have a pool pro repair an existing pool liner, so you’d save on those fees if you DIY. While you can do some minor repairs on an existing pool liner yourself, installing a new liner can prove to be more challenging. An improperly installed pool liner can wrinkle, become damaged along the bead tracks, or even rip. You might even void your pool liner warranty if you DIY the installation, as some companies won’t honor the warranty unless a professional installs it.
For these reasons, leave the installation to the professionals unless you have experience installing pool liner replacements yourself. A pool liner installation company near you has the expertise to ensure your liner fits your pool correctly so that you can have a liner that lasts for many years.
How Much Are Pool Liners?
An above-ground pool liner will cost between $100 to $660 for the liner alone, while in-ground pool liners cost between $700 and $1,500. The varying prices are due to differences in brand, liner material, liner color, liner thickness, pool shape, and size.
How to Save on Pool Liner Costs
Replacing a pool liner can be an unexpected expense if you haven’t budgeted for it. From draining your pool and refilling it to the materials' price, you might find yourself sweating at the thought of replacing the liner. Here are a few ways you can save money and still update your liner to protect your pool for future use:
Avoid upgraded features: That stunning pattern or rich color you have your eyes on will inevitably cost more than a plain, traditional liner. Stick with a simple design to keep costs low.
Replace in the slow season: While everyone else may jump to replace their liners in spring and early summer, you might get a discount if you wait until the end of summer or fall to have a pool company replace your pool liner due to lower demand.
Maintain your pool: Routine pool maintenance ensures that your pool’s liner lasts as long as possible, which will ultimately save you money on unnecessary replacements and repairs.
Choose a high-quality pool liner: Though it might seem counterintuitive, a high-quality liner gives you more bang for your buck by lowering how frequently you need to replace or repair it.
Clean your pool regularly: Keep algae, debris, dirt, sunscreen, and lotion residue out of your pool by cleaning your pool filter once a month during the swim season and a few times during the offseason to protect your pool and the liner from deterioration.
Vet your installation company: Always reach out to multiple pool companies to get at least three quotes when replacing a pool liner. This will help you compare installation costs and choose the best price.