Best Above Ground Pools Consumer Reports 2021

The main reason people want a pool in their backyard is to make summer more fun with the refreshing waters. Owning a pool is one of many dreams, but often thought to be challenging to achieve.

Fortunately, above ground pools bring you closer to your dream. However, you might have to go through dozens of products before finding the right one, which can be exhausting and time-consuming.

To help ensure you make the right decision, we’ve expertly handpicked the top 7 best above ground pools considering a more extensive range of factors.

Best Above Ground Pools Consumer Reports- Top 7 Picks of the Year

1. Intex 118-by-78-by-29-1/2-Inch Rectangular Frame Pool

When it comes to the best above ground pool for the family, the Intex 118-by-78-by-29-1/2-Inch Rectangular Frame Pool comes to mind first. This option allows you, kids, and even adults to swim and lounge.

Also, it’s one of the easiest to set up above ground pools on the market. It takes less than an hour to set up and ready. This top choice features metal supports, which are also resistant to rusting to offer maximum stability.

Furthermore, this swimming pool is equipped with gorgeous blue extra-tough laminated walls to reflect crystal clear water. The pool has a dimension of 118 by 78 by 29.5 inches and can hold up to 800 gallons of water. However, Intex offers several sessions of happy splashing, thanks to its metal frame construction.

Also, this unit is a decent purchase but not up to par with other models in terms of durability. Intex 118-by-78-by-29-1/2-Inch Rectangular Frame Pool is spacious and offers enough room to have fun with your kids. Keep in mind that this model is not designed for kids and requires maintenance.


  • Includes a pump
  • Comes with a cover and ground cloth
  • Simple setup with no tool required
  • Enough rooms for kids to swim


  • Does not include a ladder
  • The filter is likely to be replaced often.
  • A pool vacuum is not included

2. Intex Easy Set 8-Foot-by-30-Inch Round Pool Set

The Intex Easy Set 8-Foot-by-30-Inch Round Pool Set is another easy to install, store, and maintain pool out there. Plus, it’s a common choice when it comes to the best small above ground pool since this option is more affordable and a decent fit for a family of at most 4.

This product is hassle-free to disassemble and move around. More importantly, it is heavy-duty vinyl sidewalls to ensure optimal durability. However, it does not include a pool cover, ground cloth, and a filter pump. It takes about 10 minutes to get this pool ready and features a 330 GPH filtration pump with a safety plug feature.

That’s not all: Intex Easy Set 8-Foot-by-30-Inch Round Pool Set is made from super-tough plastic, which is highly resistant to damage from sunlight, impact, and abrasion. Despite its small size, this unit holds up to 639 gallons.


  • Super tough sidewalls
  • Simple to set and disassemble
  • Available in a lot of size options
  • Good quality for the price


  • The inflatable rings tend to leak with time.
  • Best used for a few sessions

3. Intex 15-Foot by 48-Inch Metal Frame Pool Set

The Intex 15-Foot by 48-Inch Metal Frame Pool Set is another decent option for people looking to own a much convenient and easy to maintain. Like traditional pools, this model is also fun and enjoyable.

This well-constructed option is strong and very durable. It provides you with more seasons of safe above ground swimming sessions without having to spend more installing a professional full-sized pool.

Besides, it requires some maintenance to make sure the unit lasts for a longer period and prevents rusting and plant intrusion, which can be very problematic. But taking care of this pool is less hectic and offers great value for your money.

The medium-sized option features a metal high-grade steel frame enameled to prevent rusting. Even better, it comes with a ladder option allowing you to get in and out easily.


  • Comes with a ladder
  • Easy to assemble and transport
  • Requires no additional tools
  • Powder-coated steel for rust resistance
  • Considerable depth


  • Does not include a pool vacuum
  • Not very durable

4. Splash Pools Round Deluxe Pool Package, 27-Feet by 52-Inch

This is another family-sized above ground pool option that makes it to our list. The Splash Pools Round Deluxe Pool Package, 27-Feet by 52-Inch, features heavy-duty construction, making this unit extremely sturdy and durable.

The high-end pool from Splash Pool comes with a lot of add-ons, which makes it on the pricey side and not recommended for people on a tight budget. Also, installing this model is quite difficult to install and might require a professional to aid.

More importantly, it includes 1 HP pump and motor and features a big, painted 7-inch galvanized steel ledge. Plus, it comes with a sturdy ladder to provide you with unwanted access to the pool.


  • 15-year manufacturer guarantee
  • High-quality, sturdy construction materials
  • Includes motor, pump, skimmer, and resin ladder
  • Heavy-duty construction for longevity


  • Installation can be tricky

5. Intex Easy Set 12-Foot by 30-Inch Round Pool Set

If you’re looking to purchase a pool without spending much more, then Intex Easy Set 12-Foot by 30-Inch Round Pool Set can be your best bet. Even though this cheap model does not compromise build quality for affordability.

This option is ideal for children and simple to set up. While the pump and filter system is not up to par with other models reviewed on this list, it should be enough for a family of at most 4. Even better, it is equipped with 6 filters right out of the box for the pump.

Considering the price point, the pump performs beyond our expectation and offer good value for the money. Besides, carrying this above ground pool is easy to carry to the back yard and set up in less than an hour.


  • Filter pump includes
  • Easy to carry
  • Easy to assemble
  • Suitable for kids


  • Durability is not impressive.

6. Splash Pools Oval Deluxe Pool Package, 30-Feet by 15-Feet by 52-Inch

Splash Pools Oval Deluxe Pool comes with everything needed except the water to get you swimming. This incredible above ground swimming pool sport a lot of features including a sturdy 7-inch painted hot-dipped galvanized steel frame, 20 gauge all-weather vinyl liner, pleasantly-looking wall pattern, hot-dipped galvanized G-60 wall with a multi-layer protection system, and many more.

This option also comes along with a 1HP pump and motor, and a filtration system. Furthermore, Splash Pools Oval Deluxe Pool is easy to install, thanks to the manufacturer’s step by step installation video.

More importantly, it’s a decent purchase of a family of more than 4, since it offers a larger pool surface. For the sake of ease of use, this unit includes a sturdy resin ladder to allow you to get in and out of the pool. On top of that, it comes with a decent 15-year manufacturer warranty and lifetime customer support to assure customers of quality.


  • Comes with a standard through-the-wall skimmer
  • 15 years manufacturer warranty
  • Large size
  • 1hp pump
  • Sturdy construction


  • Requires additional rust protection

7. Intex Easy Set 15-Foot-by-36-Inch Round Pool Set

The Intex Easy Set 15-Foot-by-36-Inch Round Pool Set is also for people with a tight budget. It’s affordable and easy to set up. This inflatable pool includes a filter pump.

The sturdy PVC walls ensure the above ground pool serves you for many seasons to come. Plus, there’s a drain function to make emptying out the pool at the end of summer is hassle-free. Another important thing that gives this model an edge is its dimension. It provides enough space to accommodate children and adults at the same time.

With this product, you don’t have to break a bank. Considering its low sticker price, Intex Easy Set 15-Foot-by-36-Inch Round Pool Set features a built-in GFCI to instantly shut off the pool pump immediately electrical current and water get in contact with each other.

Lastly, Intex Easy Set 15-Foot-by-36-Inch Round Pool Set will hold up to 2822 gallons of water, which is more than enough for a pleasant relaxation session during summer seams.


  • Simple to install
  • Large size for the whole family
  • Includes a pump and a drain
  • Sturdy build construction


  • Issues with the ring staying inflated


There are over hundreds of above ground pool options out there, and choosing a badly suited model can be challenging. Besides, the plethora of factors to consider when pinning the right model can make the whole process exhausting.

Nevertheless, we’ve painstakingly handpicked the top 7 best above ground pools by Consumer Reports to make sure there’s the right inflated pool in your backyard this summer.

We hope our shortlisted product review helps you make a decent decision. Nonetheless, you can’t really go wrong with any of the models on this list.

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