A Comprehensive Guide to Accurately Measuring Your Swimming Pool

Ever thought about installing a pool cover or liner, but stopped dead in your tracks because you weren’t quite sure about the measurements? You’re not alone. Understanding how to accurately measure a pool can seem daunting, but it’s simpler than you might think.

Key Takeaways

  • Understanding various pool shapes including rectangular, oval, kidney, and free-form pools is pivotal in the pool measuring process. Each has unique characteristics worth noting.
  • Precise pool measurements may be complicated for non-standard pool shapes, such as free form and figure-8 pools, as they lack consistent width or length due to their irregular shapes.
  • Appropriate pool measurement tools range from basic hand-held tape measures to advanced devices like laser measures and 3D measuring tools. The former is cost-effective while the latter ensures higher precision.
  • Correctly measuring pools includes steps specific to each shape, such as measuring the length, width, and depth of rectangular pools and determining the diameter and depth of circular and oval pools.
  • Avoid common measurement mistakes such as allowing the tape measure to sag, disregarding pool depths at various points or minor irregularities, and eye-balling instead of marking exact measurements.
  • For complex pool shapes with intricate design elements, seeking professional help can ensure accuracy and detailed attention to ensure optimum fitting of pool covers or liners.

Understanding Different Pool Shapes

Getting a firm grasp on the variety of pool shapes and their features significantly eases the process of measuring. It’s essential you become acquainted with the most common pool shapes as each one exhibits unique traits worth knowing.

Common Pool Shapes and Their Characteristics

There’s a broad range of pool shapes available, but some are far more prevalent than others. These include Rectangular, Oval, Kidney, and Free Form.

  • Rectangular Pools: Square and rectangular pools might be the simplest to measure since they echo classic mathematical shapes. Their characteristics include straight walls and 90-degree corners. For example, a standard Olympic pool follows a rectangular structure.
  • Oval Pools: An oval pool, as the name implies, has a symmetrical shape with no hard edges or corners, much like an egg. For instance, many indoor Olympic diving pools come in an oval shape. It differentiates from a circle, however, with its extended length on two ends.
  • Kidney Pools: Kidney pools have an unconventional shape, roughly resembling a kidney bean. This design features an indentation on one side, providing a natural separation if you want to diversify the pool functions.
  • Free Form Pools: These are pools designed specifically to mimic shapes found in nature, e.g., lagoons or natural ponds. Usually, they don’t follow any standard geometric format but flow seamlessly into the surrounding landscape.

Challenges in Measuring Non-Standard Shapes

Finding accurate measurements for non-standard pool shapes poses an inevitable difficulty. Without pre-defined dimensions commonly found in basic shapes, it becomes more complex. A free form pool, resembling a natural body of water, is one such example. It doesn’t have a consistent width or length due to its irregular shape, complicating the measuring process.

Another example is the figure-8 shaped pool. It can be tricky to find exact dimensions if you’re not familiar with the shapes composing it. It’s constructed of two circles of different diameters, connected by a narrower area. Measuring these separate sections and calculating the pool’s overall volume thus requires extra attention and expertise.

However, with a basic understanding of pool shapes and measuring techniques, you’ll be well equipped. The more you familiarize yourself with these different shapes, the easier the measuring process becomes.

Tools Needed for Pool Measurement

After grasping the complexities related to different pool shapes, it’s crucial to equip yourself with the appropriate tools for precise pool measurements. Here, we delve into the two major categories of instruments for pool measurement: manual and advanced devices.

Tape Measures and Their Uses

Tape measures form the basic tools in your pool measurement toolbox. These hand-held devices offer a convenient and cost-effective method for gauging dimensions. Regardless of the shape of your pool – be it rectangular, oval, kidney, or free form – a tape measure is a reliable tool to get started.

In the case of simple, rectangular pools, you’d use a tape measure to calculate the length, width, and depth. Take care to measure from the pool’s edge inward for both the width and length, ensuring you get accurate results.

However, more intricate shapes like free-form or kidney pools necessitate careful maneuvering with the tape measure. Often, multiple measurements from various points might be needed, forming an essential part of your pool measuring process.

Advanced Tools for Precision

Despite the simplicity and convenience of tape measures, they might sometimes fall short in accuracy, especially with complex pool shapes. Here, advanced tools play a pivotal role in obtaining utmost precision.

Laser measuring devices, often used by professionals, boast of exceptional accuracy by allowing you to measure distances and depths without needing to bend or dip into the pool. They offer digital readings, minimizing human errors that might occur while noting measurements.

In instances of detailed pool shapes, 3D measuring tools offer comprehensive data, mapping every nook and cranny of your pool. This advanced technology provides a three-dimensional virtual representation of your pool, ensuring meticulous measurements and an easier ordering process for custom pool covers or liners.

Remember, though: while these tools promise higher precision, they are also pricier. Weigh your need for accuracy against your budget before deciding on the best tool for your pool measurement needs. Remember, a well-measured pool ensures a perfect fit for your pool liners and covers, enhancing longevity and saving costs in the long run.

Step-by-Step Guide to Measuring Your Pool

Your pool’s measurements directly influence the fitting of pool liners and covers. In this guide, you’ll learn how to measure different pool shapes accurately and with ease.

Measuring Rectangular and Square Pools

First off, let’s talk about measuring rectangular and square shapes, which are among the simplest pools to measure. Here’s a straightforward guide:

  1. Obtain the length: Measure from the inside of the pool from one end to the other. Ensure your tape measure is accentuating the longest point on horizontal ground.
  2. Determine the width: Similar to the length measurement, assess the widest point.
  3. Get the corner radius: For pools with rounded corners, it’s essential to measure the radius. Align the end of your tape measure to the point where the pool wall and floor meet, and measure till the other end of the curve.

Make sure to record these measurements accurately as they are crucial when purchasing a pool cover or liner.

Measuring Circular and Oval Pools

Moving on to circular and oval-shaped pools, they require a slightly different measurement process. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Get the diameter: For circular pools, you need to measure the widest point across the middle.
  2. Obtain the length and width: For oval pools, measure the longest and shortest diameter across the pool.
  3. Determine the depth: Regardless of shape, depth is important too. Measure from the deepest point of the pool floor to the top of the pool wall.

Bear in mind, pools aren’t always perfect shapes, and small deviations can make a significant difference in cover or liner fitting. It’s recommended to measure from a couple of different points to ensure accuracy.

Tips for Accurate Pool Measurement

Following the discussions on how to measure pools of different shapes, let’s delve into specific tips to ensure accurate measurements and avoid unintentional mistakes. Occasionally, it’s advisable to seek professional help for complex pool measurements.

Avoiding Common Mistakes

Your pointers lie not merely in knowing what to do, but also in understanding common mistakes to prevent. When measuring your pool, ensure the tape measure doesn’t sag; maintain its tautness, lest you get shorter measurements than accurate dimensions. Ignoring to account for 3D aspects, for instance, pool depths at various points, often leads to faulty measurements. Besides, eye-balling instead of exact markings results in discrepancies. Don’t fall for the expectation of symmetry in pool structures. Measure angles and radius by physically marking the pool’s edge, rather than estimating the mid-point. A popular mistake involves neglecting minor irregularities. Pools without standard forms often witness deviations, which, if overlooked, compromise the fit of the pool cover or liner.

When to Seek Professional Help

Regardless of how proficient you become, certain pool forms test your accuracy and call for professional intervention. Pools with intricate design elements, including multiple depths, steps, waterfalls, infinity edges, or spas integrated, pose significant measuring challenges. Engaging professional services for such complex forms ensures error-free measurements and optimum fittings. They come equipped with precise tools, knowledge often amassed over years, and experience that guarantees detailed attention to every feature of the pool. Don’t shy away from utilizing their service, if your pool’s measurements seem daunting. Remember, an accurately measured pool maximizes the potential of your pool cover or liner, protecting your investment in the long run.


So, you’ve now got the tools and the know-how to measure your pool with confidence. Remember, it’s not as daunting as it might seem at first. Familiarizing yourself with the shape of your pool, whether it’s rectangular, oval, kidney, or free form, can make a world of difference. Always ensure you’re measuring key dimensions like length, width, corner radius, diameter, and depth accurately. Don’t forget those small deviations in shape that can affect your liner or cover fitting. By measuring from multiple points, you’ll increase your accuracy. Avoid common pitfalls like sagging tape measures and overlooking 3D aspects. And finally, don’t hesitate to seek professional help for complex designs. You’re now ready to get that perfect fit for your pool liners and covers, maximizing their potential. Happy measuring!

Accurate pool measurements are essential for maintaining balance and proper chemical treatment. To measure your swimming pool accurately, it’s important to understand the dimensions and volume, which can be calculated using specific formulas based on the pool’s shape. For detailed guidance on measuring different pool shapes, Leslie’s Pool Supplies offers comprehensive instructions. Proper measurements ensure you add the correct amount of chemicals, helping to maintain clear and safe pool water.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: What’s the key point this article seeks to convey regarding pool measurements?

This article reiterates that accurately measuring pool dimensions (length, width, corner radius, diameter, depth) is essential for a perfect fit of pool liners and covers. It simplifies the process by providing guidelines for different pool shapes and suggests measuring from multiple points to factor in small deviations.

Q2: What types of pools were mentioned in the article?

The article distinguishes between various pool shapes: rectangular, oval, kidney, and free form. Guidelines provided can be applied to accurately measure square, circular, oval, rectangular, or other unique-shaped pools.

Q3: What common mistakes does the article urge to avoid while measuring pools?

Common measurement errors highlighted in the article include sagging tape measures and neglecting 3D aspects of the pool. Precise measurements require taut tapes and factoring in deviations, corners, and depths.

Q4: Should one seek professional help for measuring pool dimensions according to the article?

The article suggests that complex pool designs with intricate features may require professional expertise for error-free measurements and optimal liner or cover fittings to maximize the pool’s potential.

Q5: Why does this article emphasize the need to measure from multiple points?

Measuring from multiple points is recommended to consider small deviations in pool shapes, which can significantly impact the fitting of liners and covers. It aims to ensure that coverings fit as perfectly as possible, contouring the pool’s unique shape.