Everything you need to know about finding a Pool Fence Installer
No home swimming pool is complete without pool fencing. Fencing defines the boundary of the pool area. More importantly, pool fencing provides a barrier that prevents young children from gaining unsupervised access to the pool area. Here's what you need to know about installing pool fencing that is both aesthetically pleasing and safe.
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Types of Pool Fencing
Pool fencing regulations do not limit the materials your fencing can be made from. As long as they conform to Australian Standards and are soundly constructed, they can be made from any appropriate building material. Some of the more popular materials include:
- Tubular steel
- PVC (vinyl)
The fences can be solid or have gaps between their members, but in either case, they must strictly adhere to pool fencing requirements and regulations. The regulations do not limit the styles or colours you can choose from and you can find fencing to suit any budget or home and pool design.
Pool Fencing Requirements and Regulations
Pool fencing regulations were put into place in 1991 in response to the alarming numbers of children who were drowning in domestic pools because of the ease with which they could gain unsupervised access. Subsequent legislation in 1994 made it a requirement to update pool fences built prior to 1991. The most recent update to pool regulations was in 2012. AS 1926.1-2012 goes into detail about specifications for pool fencing, gates and other barriers to the swimming pool enclosure. The regulations apply to all pools that hold water deeper than 300mm, including inflatable and portable pools. Some of the basic regulations include:
- Fences and gates must be at least 1.2m tall measured from finished ground level outside of the pool enclosure.
- The gap between the bottom of the fence and finished ground level must be no greater than 100mm.
- Any spaces between the vertical members of the fence, such as palings, must be no greater than 100mm.
- If perforated or mesh materials are used, the "apertures" (openings) must be no wider than 13mm.
- Apertures of between 13mm and 100mm are allowed on fences 1.8 metres or more in height.
- Gates must only open outward and must close and latch automatically.
- The gate latch must be at least 1.5m above the ground if it is located on the outside of the gate or 1.2m if located inside the gate.
Other specifications apply as well, including no-climb zones (NCZ) to protect against climbing over the fence using plants or fixtures near the fence as footholds or handholds.
Installing Pool Fencing
When considering installing pool fencing, always make sure that you get at least three quotes from three different companies. Every company you get quotes from should be a licensed installer and thoroughly versed in all regulations for pool fencing in your area. Get written quotes that include labour, materials and warranty information. If you need council permission to erect your fence, the companies you get quotes from should be able to help you through the process. When getting quotes, also ask:
- When you can reasonably expect work to begin.
- How long it will take for the companies to build your fence.
- When the fence will be ready to use (concrete drying time and other factors may be influences).
After the fence is installed, it will have to be inspected and registered with your local authorities.
How Much Does Pool Fencing Cost?
Pool fencing is usually priced by the square metre. As a rule, timber and PVC are the cheapest materials, followed by aluminium and other metals. Stainless steel and glass panels are the most expensive materials. The companies you get quotes from will be happy to give you comparative quotes for different materials and styles.