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What Is a Shipping Container Pool & How Much Does It Cost?

16 April 2024

Category: 

Conversions
shipping container pool

People around the world transform shipping containers into incredible homes, functional office spaces and unusual entertainment venues. However, a new trend is beginning to take hold, with an increasing number of people using shipping containers to create their very own swimming pools.

The shape, structure and size of these industrial units makes them easy to modify, creating pools that are striking to look at, flexible and transportable, as well as eco-friendly. 

These – and the many other benefits – make shipping container pools a popular choice amongst people looking for cost-effective alternatives to the traditional options.

What are shipping container pools?

A shipping container pool is simply a regular swimming pool made from a shipping container. The units are modified and treated to create fully functional, durable pools that can be enjoyed for many years.

stylish shipping container pool

With their striking steel structures and modern designs, these pools are redefining traditional approaches to at-home leisure. Plus their affordability, ease of construction, and sustainable approach make them a desirable choice. 

Types of shipping container swimming pools

Regardless of the type, shipping container pools are typically rectangular in shape, and usually come in standard lengths of 20 or 40 feet – although you can find alternative sizes if you have less or more space to fill. They can also be adapted, at a cost, to suit your individual preferences.  

These portable alternatives to traditional pools are built above ground or in-ground, and can even be placed indoors. Regardless of your choice, they’ll require a filtration system and pump, and an adequate lining.

Above-ground shipping container pools

An above-ground shipping container swimming pool is cost-effective and easy to install – with a unique and impactful design that adds the wow-factor to any outdoor space. 

above-ground shipping container pool

They usually have steps or ladders built-in for easy access, along with adequate heating to ensure they’re suitable for year-round use.

In-ground shipping container pools

If you prefer something that looks a little more traditional and less imposing, building your pool into the ground could be a better option. 

in-ground shipping container pool

This, however, involves more work as you’ll need to excavate a large hole for the container to sit inside. Plus, as with any outdoor pool, it will need adequate heating to combat the plummeting temperatures in colder months. 

Indoor shipping container pools

If you have enough space – or you plan to create it – your shipping container pool can be constructed indoors. This way, you benefit from all the comforts of a regular indoor pool and you’re protected from unpredictable weather conditions. 

indoor shipping container pool

Again, you’ll be saving on costs whilst installing something unique, fun and stylish within your own home.

How much does a shipping container pool cost?

How much a shipping container pool costs depends on several factors, including the size and type of the shipping container, and the features you select for it. 

A basic shipping container pool can be bought for around £15,000, but something a little more sophisticated will be closer to £40,000 – with prices rising up to £100,000 for the most elaborate designs and installations. 

The following factors should be taken into account when calculating the cost of a container pool.

The size of the shipping container pool

In general, these modern alternatives to traditional pools are available in standard 20 feet and 40 feet lengths. A 40-foot pool will naturally be more expensive due to the cost of the original unit, the amount of materials needed to adapt it, and potentially labour needed to install it. However, it might increase the value of your property significantly, outweighing the extra costs.  

It is also possible to buy shipping containers in other sizes (for example 10 foot or 30 foot) – either as cut-down and modified containers, or ones that were custom built at a different size to begin with. However, even if they’re smaller, they won’t necessarily be less expensive. Smaller units are rare to find, so they can cost more to buy, or they may have needed more manpower to adapt.

Regardless of what you choose, consider the space you have, your budget and your preferences when choosing what size to go for. 

Shipping and delivery costs

The cost of delivering your container pool will be influenced by how far it has to travel, its size and its type, and whether you’re expecting help with installation when it arrives. 

A large and complex pool containing additional features such as ladders might weigh more and be a more difficult size and shape to load and transport – even requiring specialist equipment. Plus, if you find your perfect pool but live many miles away, the fuel and labour costs will be higher.

Try and calculate both the obvious and less expected costs of delivery when you’re planning your budget.

Cost of materials

If you’re planning on building the shipping container pool yourself, the price of the materials will play a significant role in the overall costs.  They will be influenced by the size and condition of the shipping unit itself, the quality of the pool lining you plan to use, and the filtration system you install.

As a guideline: 

  • you can expect to pay £1100 – £1600 on average for a used 20-foot shipping container, whereas a new or single-use unit of the same size could cost you up to £2300 
  • the pool liner – essential for making your unit safe and watertight – could cost anywhere between £900–£2500.
  • a basic pump/filtration system can cost between £1000–£2500.


Additional features, such as heating or steps and ladders, will also vary in cost depending on the quality and type you select. 

As such, although a shipping container pool is likely to be a cost-effective option, the prices of materials all add up, so it’s important to do your research before making any purchases. 

Customisation and features

How you want your pool to look and function, and whether you want to upgrade it with special features will also influence the cost. Custom features include everything from the lining, heating and pump you install, to optional underwater lighting, built-in steps and feature decking. 

outdoor shipping container pool

The world is your oyster, so provided you’ve calculated the costs upfront and you have the budget, these additional features can all be a great investment.

Cost of labour to install the pool

The complexity of the installation, its location, and contractor rates will all impact how much a container pool costs. 

In the UK, the prices tend to range from £1,500–£3,000 for a basic installation – although additional design or significant groundwork preparation can increase the costs. Plus it doesn’t include any plumbing, electrical or landscaping work that may be needed. 

Cost of above-ground vs. in-ground container pools

In addition to the factors already mentioned, the cost of your pool will depend on whether it’s above-ground or in-ground. 

As a rule, above-ground container pools are cheaper as they require less excavation and groundwork, varying in price from £10,000–£30,000. Whereas an in-ground container pool will require significant site preparation, and a more complicated installation process, so the cost can reach £50,000 or more.

These figures will fluctuate depending on the location, design and any customisation. However, an in-ground pool might offer more long-term value, so it could be an investment worth making. 

The benefits of a shipping container swimming pool

With benefits ranging from cost to flexibility and sustainability, there are many advantages to installing a swimming container pool at your home.

Flexibility

Unlike a conventional pool, a swimming container pool is easy to move and install – which gives you freedom of choice if you change your mind about its location on your property. The entire unit can easily be lifted and moved without any hassle – even to a new house if you  change your mind about where you want to live. 

Plus, because they come in various sizes, you can select one that fits into your surroundings, giving you flexibility even in a smaller space. 

Offers personal space

By installing a shipping container pool in your house or garden, you’re creating a relaxing retreat where you can exercise, have fun and get the family together in complete privacy. 

You’re also adding significant value to your home, in terms of both the value you place in it, and the amount it’s worth on the housing market.

Stylish

If you’ve ever seen a photo of a shipping container pool, you’ll know how incredibly eye-catching and modern they are. Their industrial design adds a truly unique feature to any home, which can be customised in a huge number of innovative ways. 

Installing one in your home provides an incredible opportunity for you to let your imagination run free and create a show-stopping feature that also provides endless entertainment.

Eco-friendly

The very fact that an unused unit has been recycled to give it a new lease of life makes a  shipping container pool a sustainable solution – reducing both waste and the need for new materials. 

Their durability and longevity also contribute to saving resources. Plus, you can go a step further, and install energy-efficient heating and filtration systems. 

Quick construction

With a shipping container pool, the basic structure is already formed, so it simply needs modifying rather than creating from scratch. They are also often built off-site, which means you deal with far less disruption, and you can enjoy your new pool much sooner. 

The whole process can be completed relatively quickly, depending on how complex the design is. Plus, if your pool is an above-ground design, there’s no need for a lengthy excavation period either.

Transportable

The structures that shipping container pools are made from were originally designed for transporting goods, so it’s no wonder they’re easy to transport. 

They come in pretty standard sizes and shapes that fit easily onto lorries, trains and ships. Plus they arrive as one complete unit which doesn’t require constructing or deconstructing. This means you can relocate your pool with minimal difficulty, should you decide to move.

Why have a shipping container pool at your home

As well as being cost-effective, sustainable and stylish, having a shipping container pool at home offers many other life-enhancing benefits. 

Leisurely everyday use

By installing a shipping container pool in your home or garden, you’re giving yourself and your family practical, daily access to that all-important leisure time – which is vital for maintaining or improving  your mental health. 

Their longevity also allows you to enjoy your regular swim without the worry of wear and tear. Plus their compact design and choice of sizes means they’re suitable for a huge range of homes. 

Not only that, once you’ve decided to install one, the whole process can be completed quickly, so you won’t have to wait long until you can start using it.

Keeping fit

Swimming is incredibly effective cardiovascular exercise, and excellent for toning muscles – and having daily access to a swimming pool removes the need for expensive or inconvenient trips to the gym or leisure centre. 

Swimming pools also provide a tranquil space for relaxation and stress relief, which again, can improve your mental health. Therefore, having one at home will have a huge impact on your physical, but also your mental wellbeing. 

Entertaining guests

Your modern and quirky swimming container pool is the ideal place to entertain your friends – and it will certainly be a talking point. 

These impressive pools can be customised to reflect your personality and design preferences, combining industrial chic with innovative features to create a fun and unique space that is guaranteed to impress even the most difficult guest. 

Interested in shipping container conversions? Explore our latest shipping container conversion projects to discover the innovative ways in which shipping containers can be transformed into highly functional and stylish spaces.

Shipping container pools for commercial use

Shipping container pools aren’t exclusively for the home. They are also a low-cost, low-risk investment for businesses such as hotels, fitness centres and other leisure outlets – offering a unique selling point that can improve customer experience and drive growth.   

Because they’re flexible and easy to relocate, they’re adaptable to an organisation’s changing needs in an unpredictable economy. Plus, you can customise the design to match your company’s brand and your customer requirements. 

Choosing a repurposed container also contributes to your corporate environmental responsibility, and demonstrates that you use sustainable practices. 

The bottom line

With benefits including easy installation, flexibility, sustainability, time-saving, convenience and a striking aesthetic, there’s little wonder why shipping container pools are becoming such a popular choice for people who are prepared to think outside the box. And, with prices ranging anywhere from £13,000–£100,000, there are options to suit most homes and budgets. 

Regardless of your choice, a swimming container pool is a great investment that will add significant value to your home, as well as providing hours of entertainment for you and your guests.

Looking to create your dream shipping container pool? We’re here to help! Contact us today for a free consultation and expert advice on converting shipping containers to design your perfect pool oasis. No obligations, just the support you need to make your vision a reality.

FAQs

Are shipping container pools safe?

Provided your pool is manufactured and installed to hgh standards and follows all the required safety measures – such as adequate sealing and anti-slip surfaces – they are perfectly safe to use. 

Are shipping container pools durable?

Steel is made to withstand the elements and harsh weather conditions. So, provided you maintain your shipping container pool effectively and it has all the required sealants and coatings, it should be very durable and last for many years.  

Want to learn more about what shipping containers are made from and what makes them incredibly durable? Dive into our comprehensive guide Inside the Steel Walls: What Are Shipping Containers Made Of?

How long do shipping container pools last?

A shipping container pool can last up to 25 years if properly maintained, although the typical lifespan of shipping containers is anywhere between 10–20 years depending on whether it’s an indoor, outdoor or above-ground construction.

Do shipping container pools rust?

Concerns about corrosion and rust are common, but your pool should remain rust-free providing it has the appropriate anti-corrosive coatings, waterproof linings and/or fibreglass shells. You should also ensure the appropriate materials are used when installing any additional fixtures and fittings, such as ladders. Plus, as with any pool, it should be maintained regularly to ensure its longevity.

In need of a shipping container for your pool project? Explore our extensive selection of new containers for premium quality, or browse our range of used containers for a more budget-friendly option. Secure your ideal container today and start turning your backyard into the ultimate relaxation destination!

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