One of the biggest stories of the last few years in the pool business has been the growth of fiberglass pools. Estimates suggest fiberglass has garnered up to 17 percent of the new pool market (that figure is higher in fiberglass’ Midwestern heartland, and lower in the gunite strongholds of the South and West). Overall, those market share numbers have been on the rise for the last decade, partly because fiberglass is taking business from gunite.
The reasons are manifold, says Rick Black, product director of fiberglass pools at Latham. “Over the years, many gunite pool builders have moved away from building concrete pools to building fiberglass pools as a way to reduce their labor requirements, decrease their cycle time (fiberglass pools are typically completed in 2-4 weeks rather than 2-4 months) and increase their profit margins. In addition to these benefits, there are fewer ‘go backs’ as the fiberglass shell is hand-crafted in a controlled environment rather than outside in the unpredictable environment.”