Best Above Ground Pools For California

Hello and welcome to the most frequently read page on this website. If you’re like most people reading this, you are new to the idea of purchasing an above ground pool and have no idea where start, and who better to ask than a pool installation company. I guess that’s what makes What should I buy? the #1 most commonly asked question I get! And like most everyone else you simply want a quality pool that’s going to last and not be a hassle to maintain. You don’t want to get taken advantage of and buy the wrong pool for your family. So below is my recommendations on shopping for an above ground pool. I’ve done my own above ground pool reviews and checked out many pool dealers. I’ll give you the short and sweet version of what to buy, where to buy it and why it’s good. Thanks again for taking the time to read this page. Please scroll down to view entire page.

Shopping For An Above Ground Pool

Let me start by saying if you are shopping for pools under $1000.00, I suggest waiting until you have a larger budget to spend. Pools in this price range can usually more trouble than you bargain for. I’m speaking of soft sided pools from Walmart, Target and other big box stores include models from Intex, Coleman, Ultra Frame and others. These pools usually only last about 1-2 years and most people are so disappointed in there pool they shop for a different one the very next swim season. Aside from the fact they’re made from inferior materials, the pump and filter systems aren’t strong enough to circulate the pool water properly or run a vacuum for cleaning. And as you know, algae tends to grow very rapidly in warm water, making these pools very aggravating to operate and maintain in the extreme California heat. These are more of a headache than a swimming pool.

Now on what to buy. Like anything else, some pools are better than others. Basically when shopping for a new above ground pool it breaks down into three main pool components to consider, the pool, liner and equipment. All should all be made in the USA end of story. Why? Because American made pool products are better quality than the imports and you can always get replacement parts for name brand American products anywhere. And when I say American made pool I’m referring to the typical American made hard-wall or steel wall above ground pools. These tend to last an average of 15-20 years in California. The imported hard-wall pools last about 5-8 years while soft side and blow up pools tend to last only 1-2 years.

Always go for the thicker pool liner upgrade. The thicker liners resist puncture better and take longer to succumb to UV light so they tend to last longer. Remember that the larger the number the thicker the material. Choose the 25 gauge over the less expensive 20 gauge everytime.

Filters and pump should be made by companies like Hayward, Pentair, Waterway or Sta-Rite. These are large reputable American companies that make great long lasting products. Also look for size, larger filter mean less frequent cleaning and better water filtering. Some pool dealers offer larger filters as standard equipment while other will up-charge for what you really want, so pay attention.

Don’t forget to read up on pool installation accessories you may want to consider when purchasing your new pool. Click to view here.

Where To Buy Your Above Ground Pool And Why

Believe it or not this is as important as what to buy. I have dealt with so many pool stores in my life and I have found one that is very good. You can shop anywhere you feel comfortable or take my recommendation, Why? Great company with decades of dealing specifically with above ground pools. They have an A+ BBB rating, knowledgeable salesman, prices are excellent, website is great, offer live human tech support and they answer their phone. These guys install pools and know what they’re talking about. I chose two pool models from them as best picks based on brand, features, accessories, price and company support. These are both are sharp looking pools and easy to assemble when compared to other models, trust me you can’t go wrong here. You can view full details of each pool along with specs, brochures, manuals etc. on their website.

I have sent many customers there over the years and honestly I don’t know what more you could ask for. This is where I would buy, but if you know of somewhere better than shop there.

And The Winner Is…

Best Above Ground Pool Southern California

Best Above Ground Pool Southern California

Caspian – The Best Above Ground Pool

I must mention that other dealers are now calling their pools Caspian so be careful. This Caspian pool is from

This Caspian is 54″ has 9″ wide resin top ledges and the stainless steel wall panel, the knockoffs don’t. This is my pick and thee best pool to buy. Resin hybrid construction and tough as nails. Resin is a high grade polymer material that lasts a long time and weathers very nicely. Because resin bounces back from impact, doesn’t dent or get hot to the touch it’s a great material for pools. Resin also can’t rust or corrode like metal, so it’s what you want anywhere in SoCal, especially in salty ocean air of the California Coast. Solid resin components in Caspian are thick, wide and heavy duty and include injection molded top ledges, frame rails, stabilizer bar, base plates and top plates. Caspian is completely resin except for the pool wall of course which does include a stainless steel service panel that prevents rust around the skimmer and return jet. These features make Caspian likely the last pool you’ll ever buy.

Why It’s Good – Made by Wilbar in New York. As much resin as possible and heavy duty design. Warrantied for both saltwater and freshwater. Looks great and easy to build. Everyone comments on how nice this pool is. Buy as a complete kit with everything or build your own custom package. For detail and specs on this pool click here.

Best Above Ground Pool Southern California

Best Basic Above Ground Pool Southern California

Montego – Best Basic Above Ground Pool

Again I must mention this Montego pool is from Other dealers have started using this name on completely different pools also.

I chose this one because it’s sturdy and safe. Montego is a high quality long lasting all steel pool and a step up from entry level pool models. It’s 52″wall with all steel construction but with wider 8″ top ledges, bigger frame rails, bigger upright posts, and thicker parts than any base model pool out there. I chose this as my best pick because it’s only slightly more money than base model pools. Montego is tough but nicely styled and has no problem with a tough environments. It’s a great heavy duty pool without the added costs of the resin parts upgrade.

I have built this pool many times and really like it, it has a very sturdy feel and a real clean look. This pool will last 15-20 years anywhere inland from Santa Barbara to San Diego and at least 10+ years right on the coast. This is a great value in terms of construction quality and price.

Why It’s Good – Made by Wilbar in New York. Buy as a complete kit with everything needed to swim and get a matched pool package with proper sized American made filter system, ladder, chemical kit, cleaning tools and cover. For details and specs on this pool click here.

” Super nice pool and great work. You are my go to guy from now on!”

Chris W - Anahiem CA15x30 Oval Caspian Pool Installation

“Thanks for making the pool my favorite part of my yard again.”

Mrs. J. Ramirez - Chula Vista21’ Round Liner Change And Repair Work

“The job you did on my new pool is wonderful. It’s much nicer than my old one.”

Charles Woods - San Bernardino CA24’ Round Caspian Pool Installation

Use Our Pool Building Experience

Our above ground pool experience and knowledge come specifically from working in Southern California. Our work here has allowed us to see the effects the environment has on swimming pools and products over time. The views expressed on these pages are strictly our own and based on our 3 decades of working in this area. We have served thousands of customers by building or repairing above ground pools and replacing liners in the greater LA area including the surrounding couties. In this time we have come across most everything you could expect to encounter at this job and somethings we never thought we’d see. Now we want to share our findings with people seeking honest and real information about above ground pools and their installation. We wanted our website to bring you more than just a price sheet, or parroting something we heard on a pool blog. We wanted to offer something based only on real world experience. I hope you find the information on these pages helpful in your swimming pool project. We will continue to help those in need by continuously adding to the FAQ and pool blog sections. If you have a pool experience you wish to share or pool installation questions to ask, please send us an email we’d love to here from you.

Listed below are cities we worked in regularly. We’ve had a lot of fun and worked on some very interesting pools here. If fact we have done some things I wouldn’t have thought possible. If you have an experience you wish to share or pool installation questions please send us an email, we’d love to here from you.