What Is A Zero Entry Pool?

Key Takeaways

A zero-entry pool (also called beach entry) can make for a truly beautiful pool that is different to what most people think of when thinking of a traditional backyard pool. They are not only stunning to look at, they make access to the water easier and give the experience of entering the water like at a beach or lake.

They allow for a shallow area for kids to enjoy playing in while also giving adults space to lie partially in the water with some well placed furniture.

But there are some downsides with these types of pools, mainly they require much more space. The pool needs to either be much bigger to incorporate the gradual slope or if backyard space is limited the main pool size needs to compensate.

Also because they are less common, not all pool builders can do them which means finding the right contractor for the project might be a little harder and/or more expensive.

If you love pools then you probably love the beach as well. But what many people don’t know is that you can actually combine the two into a new and exciting reality.

You can take some of the best aspects of the beach and bring them into your own backyard by using something known as a zero entry pool design.

And you’re about to find out exactly how to get the most out of the concept.

retangular pool with a zero entry on one entire end
Some designs incorporate the gradual slope into the water and then have a drop off a few metres into the pool.

What Is a Zero Entry Pool?

A Zero entry pool design essentially describes any pool which lets you enter the water through a gentle slope rather than a ladder or stairs. In effect, the slope captures the feeling of walking into the cool ocean water from the shore. Though there’s far more to a zero-entry pool than just the gradual slope. You have a wide range of options. And each brings its own unique elements into the picture.

What are the Benefits of a Zero Entry Pool?

There’s a lot to love about zero-entry pools. You’ve already seen that they can create an almost beachlike experience as you gently stroll into the water. But there are a number of other elements that have made the design a fast favorite among pool owners.

A beautifully unique design

The slope of a zero-entry pool has a striking appearance. As previously noted, it evokes a similar feel to what you’d find at a beach as you move from the shallow water into deeper water with each step. And some people further enhance that effect through the use of decorative beach plants, stone, or even sand. The design also allows for a more streamlined effect since you can reduce dependency on standard stairs or ladders.

backyard pool with beach entry and plants
Some designs play more into the feeling of being at the beach but utilizing plants and rocks.

Easy access for all

Healthy adults tend to think of pools as easy to get in and out of. After all, you can quite literally dive right in! But children, the elderly, and people with disabilities often struggle with it. And it’s even harder to make a traditional pool pet friendly. But all of those issues and more disappear when you’re using a zero-entry design. Small children and dogs can ease their way into the pool without having to confront what is, to them, frighteningly deep water. And it’s also inclusive for people dealing with a wide range of disabilities who find the transition from land to water much easier than in regular pools.

Shallows to play in

One of the great things about a zero-entry pool is that the ease of access also translates into ease of use. The slope of the pool essentially gives you something similar to a tanning ledge. A shallow area where you can just relax, play, and enjoy the water without necessarily needing to stay afloat. The added area provided by a zero-entry pool can make it the perfect way to enjoy pool games. And as previously noted it can even let pets and children join in the fun.

zero entry pool with a tanning ledge in a backyard
Combined with a tanning ledge, a zero entry can make for a really enticing pool entry that is both fun and practical.

Supports in-pool furniture

A zero-entry pool design essentially provides you with flat space in your pool area. And you can use that space in a similar way to dry ground if you so desire. You can even set up various types of in pool furniture within it. Some pool furniture is even light enough for you to bring in or out as needed. So you can easily turn the area into an aquatic playground or a relaxing place to soak up some rays in a lounger.

backyard pool with spa, tanning ledges, waterfall and in pool furniture
Combining a beach entry with in pool furniture makes for a really unique swimming experience.

What are the Disadvantages of a Zero Entry Pool?

While there are a lot of advantages to the zero-entry pool design there are also some potential problems to keep in mind. No pool design is a perfect fit for everyone’s needs. And the following disadvantages need to be kept in mind when you’re thinking about going for a zero-entry pool.

Requires more space

Many of the benefits associated with a zero-entry pool come from the fact that it lets you slowly ease into the pool. But that also means one of two things. You might need to lower the swimmable area of your pool to compensate for the slope. Or you’ll need to increase the total area used by your pool in order to have both the desired swimmable space and a slope.

beach entry pool with concrete decking in a backyard
The main negative of these types of entrys is the amount of extra space they require.


Evaporation is an issue with any type of pool, but it’s a particular concern with zero-entry pools. The main reason is surface area. The more surface area exposed to the air, wind, and sun the higher your rate of evaporation. A zero-entry pool increases exposed surface area by decreasing the volume of water on its slope. This results in an increased rate of evaporation. And the increased evaporation can turn into increased pool-related costs for everything related to upkeep.

Not all pool contractors can work with them

It’s usually a good idea to put together a list of questions to ask your pool builder before getting started. And a must if you’re considering zero-entry designs. Because zero-entry pools aren’t as common as the standard design, not every pool builder is set up for them. As such you might have to shop around a bit more when you have your heart set on beach entry pool concepts.

They require additional planning

A zero-entry pool requires some extra planning when compared to a standard pool. It’s not just that it requires more space. The slope of the pool will also typically require different coping options to account for structural differences. You’ll also need to put some additional planning into pool safety. The zero-entry pool’s slope makes it more inviting to children and pets. And while that’s a good thing when they’re supervised, it’s quite a different matter if they’re out alone.

round pool with zero entry design from multiple sides
Some designs play into a ‘backyard oasis’ or mini lake and a zero entry added to them really helps with the feeling of them being a natural body of water.

Make Sure That Your Dream Pool Design Is a Perfect Match for Your Needs

The final point to keep in mind is that you’re putting together a pool design to fit your own needs. Make sure that you’re picking the zero-entry pool options that’ll make you happy. Remember, you’re the authority for what will make the perfect pool experience in your home. And you now have the knowledge needed to conceptualize the perfect match for those preferences.


At Viking Capital, we try to provide accurate information on loans, credit scores and pool care, but it may not apply directly to your individual situation. We are not financial advisors and we recommend you consult with a financial professional before making any serious financial decisions. The content on poolloan.net is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as professional financial advice. Should you need such advice, consult a licensed financial or tax advisor.

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