DIY Pool Fence Ideas That Are Both Stylish And Safe

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Having a pool is the ultimate luxury in the summertime, as there is nothing quite like being able to take a refreshing swim without having to leave your backyard. Unfortunately, something so amazing can quickly turn tragic if safety measures are not put in place. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, sadly, the leading cause of death in young children is drowning. In many cases, one simple thing could prevent this tragedy: a secure fence. However, while necessary for safety, pool fences can be a cost-heavy item to add to your backyard — the average cost is $4,000 and the price can go up to $10,000. If you want to save money, consider building one yourself. 

In many cases, it's actually illegal not to have a fence around your pool. Most states, with the exception of Alaska, Delaware, and Colorado, require homeowners to have a pool around their fence, per Get Legal. City ordinances can also dictate a fence, so make sure you check with your local laws (a quick internet search should bring them up) to confirm the type of fence you need to keep your pool safe. Beyond the laws, though, a fence can help you, your family, and your guests fully enjoy your pool without worry. If you want to install a fence yourself, here are some ideas for types of fences you can DIY that will keep you safe without taking away from the beauty of your pool.

Wooden fence

Before you purchase a house with a pool, you need to consider all the added expenses, one of which is a pool fence. Wood is a great option as it is versatile and easy to use when DIYing a fence. There are a few different types of wooden fences you can consider based on the style you are looking for. You can use cedar wood, which is mid-priced and looks beautiful, or composite wood, which is ideal for those hoping for an environmentally-friendly option, since it's often made out of recycled materials. In addition to the type of wood, you can also customize your fence even further by painting it or installing it following a specific pattern.

On average, the cost of a wood pool fence is about $14 to $20 per linear foot for the materials, with an added $10 or so per linear foot for the installation. However, this added cost can be avoided if you do it yourself. While wood is a great, easy option, you'll need to make sure your fence is tall enough (check your local laws regarding pool fence height) and secure enough (a lattice wood fence may have too large of openings to meet safety requirements). You will also need to consider the maintenance and upkeep to keep a wood fence from falling apart and decaying.

Vinyl fence

When determining the kind of fence your home needs, the biggest things to consider are style, maintenance, climate, and city ordinances. When you are using that fence for your pool, you also need to look at safety. Vinyl is a great option as it is an easy material to care for that can be tailored to your specific taste and provides a safe barrier between your home and your pool. Unlike wood, vinyl does not require much maintenance and does not need to be painted or stained, and it comes in a variety of colors and styles. In most cases, vinyl fences are super durable and can last you a very long time. However, if you live in a wind-heavy area, you may want to reconsider this option, as vinyl can fall easily in strong winds.

Vinyl fencing is similar to wood in terms of price, costing about $10 to $25 per linear foot for materials. However, installing a vinyl fence can be harder than wood, so you'll need to consider the labor involved if you choose to DIY it. Vinyl fences are also a haven for children who love to climb, so consider adding spiked tops to the fence to avoid any dangerous activity near the pool.

Glass fence

One of the trendiest new options for a pool fence says goodbye to wood and vinyl and hello to glass. Glass is a great option for the style-focused as it allows you to still see the beauty of your pool without sacrificing safety. Plus, with the unobstructed views, homeowners can opt for a taller fence, leading to enhanced safety around the pool. Unfortunately, with that beauty comes a much higher cost. On average, a glass pool fence can cost about $90 to $195 per linear foot for the materials alone. Add installation and you can be looking at up to $210 per linear foot.

Luckily, there are DIY options that get the glass look without breaking your budget. On TikTok, one user showed how she used glass chair mats, like these found on Amazon for about $70 each, to create a glass fence around her pool. These mats are made out of tempered glass, so they can withstand wind and heavy rain and provide a safe and beautiful option for your pool fence without going too far over budget. She made them stand vertically by installing stainless steel clamps. Of course, still ensure your DIY fence complies with city ordinances and will keep your family as safe as possible, since safety is more important than aesthetics.

Mesh fence

If you really want to keep costs low for your pool fence, you may want to consider mesh with a metal frame. While it doesn't quite offer the clear view of glass, it does offer visibility, which is great for parents who want to keep an eye on their kids in the pool without going in themselves. But the best part about mesh is its affordability. A mesh fence will cost about $3 to $8 per linear foot, making it much less than glass, wood, and vinyl options. Plus, it's a great choice for those looking to DIY the fence, as it's easy to work with.

Mesh is great for homeowners who may have recently moved into a home with a pool or built a new pool and need a quick safety solution, as installation is quick and easy to do. While not as durable as other materials, quality mesh fences that are installed correctly can last a very long time without maintenance and worry about it falling in a storm, so it's a fence material you can keep for the long term, too. If you want to enhance the safety of your mesh fence, you can add a latch or gate that self-closes as well.

Bamboo fence

If your vision for your home pool is to create a tropical retreat, adding wood or vinyl can take away from that feel. Instead, you may want to consider bamboo, as it provides a stylish option for a pool barrier while remaining pretty inexpensive. A bamboo fence will cost you about $20 per linear foot. Bamboo offers a closed fence system that allows for ultimate privacy, truly giving you that retreat you crave. If you want it to be free-standing (i.e. not attached to an existing fence), you may need to attach it to wooden posts or ones made out of another material.

However, it will require regular maintenance to ensure it does not decay or become overrun by insects. Furthermore, if you live somewhere with a high chance of wildfire, bamboo may not be your best option. Otherwise, it is a great choice for most other climates and can provide a gorgeous and safe addition to your backyard. If you already have wood or vinyl but love the look of the bamboo, you can also use the TikTok hack of attaching bamboo fence posts to your existing fence for an easy, budget-friendly DIY. Further, attaching bamboo to an existing fence could also provide some extra stability and durability.