pool cover

Outdoor vs Indoor Swimming Pools

In Ask the Pool Experts by Platinum Pools

Pools are beautiful, fun, and give your home a luxurious look.  Depending on your space and needs, you can install them indoors or outdoors.  There are many options to consider when deciding where to place your pool.  It is essential so you can decide which pool is right for you.  Let us provide you with information on the differences between an indoor and outdoor pool.

Installation, Cost, and Appearance


Because of their location, indoor pools can be more expensive to build, especially if you do not already have an enclosure that works for adding a pool.  Even in areas where space is already available, breaking up the existing foundation to excavate the pool dramatically increases labor and installation costs.  Depending on the location, leveling, and draining an indoor area can also add time and cost to the project.  In addition, an indoor pool requires a vapor barrier for the surrounding areas to prevent leaks and damage and ventilation if you choose a chlorine system.

Outdoor swimming pools come in above-ground and in-ground models.  In-ground pools are more technically complex as they must be excavated, shored, and concreted, and then the liner installed.  Decks, fencing, gates, leveling, and drainage are other factors to consider with an outdoor pool.


Indoor pools are more expensive to build than outdoor pools.  In addition to the plumbing, pump, cover, and filtration system, you must also consider the expense of drilling through an existing foundation, dehumidifiers, vapor barriers, heaters, and ventilation.  If you are building the pool as an addition, there is also the cost of framing and finishing. 

An outdoor pool requires excavation, leveling, pouring concrete, fencing, finishing the site, and decking.  Outdoor pools require the same filters, heaters, and pumps as indoor pools.


There are options in shape, size, and style with both indoor and outdoor pools.  Since outdoor pools are more visible, they tend to be more decorative, such as pool accessories and decorative decks.  With an outdoor pool, it’s more likely to match your landscaping and architecture.

Indoor pools tend to be less decorative and are more about function than appearance.  They may be more streamlined and less likely to have unusual shapes.  And while you can add decorative elements to an indoor pool, the options are less varied.

About the Weather…

Sun Exposure

Sunlight contributes to the growth of algae in pool water, which is a significant problem during the off-season and when chlorination is inadequate.  Indoor pools don’t get sunlight, so you do not need to worry about algae growth as much.

Weather Dependency

Unless you live in an area that experiences good weather year-round, your outdoor pool will likely have limited use at certain times of the year.  However, a rainstorm or an unexpected cold front can cause you to stop using your pool. Here in Houston, you can use your outdoor pool the majority of the year.

Indoor pools are not weather-dependent.  You can use them any time of the year, day, or night.  For this reason, people who use their pool for sports activities may find the indoor pool more beneficial.


During a thunderstorm, lightning strikes can be dangerous.  A lightning strike can come at an extremely high voltage and amperage, aiming to discharge electricity.  So, keep in mind that the water in your pool is an excellent conductor.  One way to mitigate this is to ground it.  Check if there is a society specialized in lighting and get additional information.

Both outdoor and indoor pools must be properly grounded.  Grounding ensures that energy dissipates into the earth if lightning strikes, which helps prevent electrocution.

Keeping a Swimming Pool Clean, Indoor or Outdoor

Outdoor swimming pools are a magnet to elements, so dirt, leaves, and even small animals can get into the pool without a cover.  Therefore, an outdoor pool needs cleaning regularly.  However, it doesn’t require ventilation since the pool is outdoors.

Indoor pools don’t require the same maintenance requirements.  Although they have no exposure to the elements, it involves aeration to prevent dangerous levels of chlorine gas from building up inside the pool.

How to Avoid Health Issues with the Pool

Chlorine releases gas into the air while in use for pool cleaning.  It has a particular odor associated with health issues such as migraines and asthma.

Outdoor pools readily release chlorine into the air, preventing strong odors.  However, indoor pools require proper aeration systems to allow the free flow of fresh air, increasing the pool’s cost and maintenance.

Platinum Pools makes backyard dreams come true. With custom-designed pools and surrounding areas, technologically advanced equipment, beautiful materials, and exceptional craftsmanship, we make sure to turn that area into a special, quality pool environment that brings your family much happiness.  Visit our website for more information about our services and ask for a free quote.