Used above ground swimming pools can be a great alternative. In fact, 20 percent of our installs are used swimming pools. However, there are several things to be aware of when pursuing this endeavor. I do not recommend any pool more than 5 years old because of rust issues. Any older than that, be careful. Do not consider a pool that is buried in the side of a hill or has a lot of backfill around it. It may look good from the outside but believe me, every part of that pool that is in contact with dirt and moisture is subject to rust and corrosion. Look for a swimming pool that is completely on top of the ground (no backfill).
The parts of the pool that are affected by rust would include the bottom wall channel, foot plates, hardware and the bottom edge of the pool wall. The second area of concern is the skimmer and return. Again, look for rust, corrosion and cracks in the skimmer and wall. Light surface rust can be sanded off in this area and painted but any corrosion that goes through the metal is not good. Plan on buying a new liner and plastic liner coping. Gaskets for the skimmer and return will need to be replaced as well. The liner will shrink when the pool is drained and become brittle along with the plastic coping that goes over the liner on top of the wall for protection. I would also look at the filter and hoses during operation for cracks and leaks. Check the water and see how it looks while the filter is running if it is green and murky there might be filter issues. If it has a sand filter, plan on getting new sand and finally, never consider a pool that is not assembled because there is always a good possibility that something will be missing. Good luck!
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