pools for small yards

Small Swimming Pool Advantages

In Featured Post by Platinum Pools

If you have a small backyard and yearn for a swimming pool, here is some good news: small inground pools have some advantages compared to larger inground pools.

Large swimming pools are fantastic for parties, races, sports, diving, and more. But what can a small inground swimming pool offer? What are the main reasons why people choose a small in-ground swimming pool even if they have a yard adequate to build a larger pool?

The average small in-ground pool is about 12 feet by 24 feet, providing plenty of room for the typical family to swim, play, and relax. Plunge pools and spools can be even smaller however if requested or needed in order to fit in limited available space.

If you plan to host a lot of pool parties, you may have to decide if the pool is big enough for your guests:

  1. Figure out how many people will be in the pool simultaneously.
  2. Calculate an average of fifteen square feet of space for each person in the pool. Keep in mind that it can become unsanitary if it exceeds the recommended number of swimmers. 
  3. Determine if the total square footage matches the surface area of your pool.

For example, let us say you want to host a pool party and invite 16 of your friends. Assuming that all of your guests, and you, will be in the water simultaneously, your pool should have a surface area of 255 feet. A 12×24-foot pool has a surface area of 288 feet. So, according to this rough calculation, it should be big enough for your needs.


A small inground pool is usually easier to maintain than a compared to a pool of larger size. The smaller the pool, the less surface area you will have to vacuum, brush, and clean.

Small inground pools are also usually less expensive than comparable large pools. Let us take a look at why small pools are cheaper to operate:

  • A pool with a smaller volume of water requires fewer chemicals 
  • You do not have to run the pool filter as long
  • Small pools do not take as long to heat or cool
  • It’s cheaper to re-plaster, re-coat, or renovate a small pool
  • It costs less to refill the pool after draining (for repairs, acid cleaning, etc.)


Small pool sizes vary depending on the space available and the request of the customer. Most small inground pools are about 10 to 12 feet wide and no longer than 26 feet. We only build custom gunite swimming pools, so no matter the shape or size needed to fit your yard we will design your pool accordingly.

The average small swimming pool is about 12 feet wide by 24 feet long and slightly more than 5 feet deep. Small swimming pools are also usually about 4 to 5 feet deep, with most no deeper than 5.5 feet. A pool this size has enough room for everything the average household needs

Any swimming pool smaller than 12 x 14 feet is probably too small for swimming, playing, and exercising. Some tiny pools are specifically for relaxing and cooling off in the summer, but with a pool smaller than 12 x 14 (or 400 square feet), you will not have the traditional experience of an in-ground pool.

Does my Small Outdoor Pool Need a Heater?

Most outdoor swimming pools do not need a heater, but it may depend on your climate. In some northern climates, a pool heater is practically essential, but in hotter climates, it’s not necessary.

The good news with a small in-ground pool is that the volume of water is smaller. So you can expect it to warm up much faster if you opt for a pool heater. In turn, it can help you save on heating costs, primarily if you use a heat pump or gas heater. Alternative pool heating methods such as solar covers, rings, and heating mats are also more effective for smaller inground pools. 

Installing a Diving Board? Think Again! 

Remember that diving boards need adequate space and depth in order to be included in your pool design. If you want a small pool with a deep end that you can dive into, your best bet is to build a custom gunite pool. A small plunge pool limits the shallow area where people spend most of their time, but it is sometimes doable depending on the size of the pool. 


How Long to Build…

Building a small pool does not take as much time as building a large pool but isn’t a huge difference. You might save a few days with a smaller pool and deck, but generally, you can expect the construction time to be roughly the same.

Advantages of Small Inground Pools

Small inground pools have more advantages than large inground pools:

  • There are less expensive to build and maintain
  • Small inground pools heat up faster 
  • It provides more room for other outdoor living accessories (e.g., pool house, fire pit, gazebo, outdoor kitchen, etc.)
  • They provide ample space for swimming, playing, and relaxing
  • Many small inground pools offer additional features such as a spa, benches, and lounge chairs
  • They fit in most backyards

Don’t forget that Platinum Pools is your place where we custom-build the pool and backyard of your dreams.  Call us at 281.870.1600.  You can also visit our website for a free quote.