I don’t know about you, but my kids are waterbugs. They love any opportunity to swim so it has been hard to keep them out of our new Coleman® Power Steel™ Swim Vista Series™ II above-ground pool. Here in Georgia, the temperatures have been 70-80s during the day, but down as low as 40s at night. Let’s just say the water hasn’t been warmer than 70°F, which is still really cold, but the kids don’t seem to mind (at least for the first 10 minutes! HA!) They are just so excited to have a pool right in their backyard!
What is included in the pool kit?
• Size: 18 ft. x 48 in. (5.49 m x 1.22 m)
• Water Capacity (90%): 6,092 gal. (23,062 L)
• Reinforced, fortified portholes built into the sidewalls to offer a truly unique swimming experience
• Tritech enhanced 3-ply liner is durable and puncture-resistant
• Corrosion-resistant steel frame is held together with our Seal & Lock System to provide remarkable strength and connection
• Natural-looking rattan wicker print on the outside liner, with unique tile print on the inside liner
• Easy, no-tool setup and takedown process
• Contents: 1 pool, 1 filter pump (compatible with Type III cartridge), 1 safety ladder, 1 pool cover
For several years we have enjoyed having a membership at a privately owned local pool (community pools are so great for socializing!) Last year we hardly used the membership, not for lack of want-to, but taking our whole family became increasingly more difficult. As you may know, our second oldest son suffered a brain injury in the summer of 2018 and his limitations make it hard for him to enjoy swimming. Mostly this is due to his body not properly regulating his temperature. He gets cold (and hot) much easier than typical kids, and that makes swimming hard. It would also be unfair for him to sit by in his wheelchair while the rest of us enjoyed the pool (usually in the sweltering GA summer heat). Having our own pool in the backyard is a nice compromise. Our other kids don’t have to wait for us to all load up and go to the pool, they just have to wait for Dad to put the ladder in the pool! Smidget can enjoy watching them swim from the porch or even inside on hot days.
Best Features of This Above-Ground Pool
The obvious one here is cost. This Coleman® Swim Vista Series™ II Above-Ground Pool retails at Walmart for $398.00. That’s significantly less than in-ground pools. There is a common myth that these types of above-ground pools are single-season use, but that is definitely not true (provided they are set up correctly and maintained properly) so this pool will save us plenty of money over the next few years now that we won’t be spending $300+/year for a pool membership.
Another great thing about above-ground pools is there is very little digging or prep-work to be done before installing it. My husband had the area for our pool level in just a few hours. Please note that it is VERY important to have the site for your above-ground pool as close to level as you can (within 1″). The area may look flat, but it probably isn’t. We prepped the area by digging out the grass and leveling the topsoil. If your pool isn’t level there is a huge risk of pool sides collapsing so don’t take the risk.
I personally love the brown rattan wicker print on the outside liner of this pool! It looks so nice in our yard! I would have never chosen one of the blue above-ground pools because they stand out too much. This one coordinates with the trees in our backyard and doesn’t look out of place. It isn’t immediately obvious through the trees around our yard that there is a pool there, which is nice.
Another fun feature of the Coleman® Swim Vista Series™ II is the 4 “porthole” windows around the sides of the pool! The kids love peeking out and its fun to watch them swim underwater too! We’ve seen some reviews of these leaking, but we also did some research and found that the liner around the windows will crack if the water level isn’t kept above the window seals, so keep that in mind if you decide to purchase the Swim Vista Series™ II (or any model with the porthole windows.)
A Few Less-Than Ideal Things to Mention
There were several issues that arose or things we had to add to this pool. Please do not buy an above-ground pool and assume it will work properly without some other things to help keep it in proper working order. This isn’t a downside but I wanted to note: You will need to purchase the proper chemicals for your pool and a test kit. Do not let anyone swim in your pool until the water has the correct levels of pH/alkalinity, stabilizer, and chlorine.
The pump included with this pool is the bare minimum for properly filtering this size pool. If you use this pool as-is, the pool will NOT stay clean and you will have issues with algae blooms. We decided to upgrade our pump to a sand filter pump (here’s the one we picked based off reviews/YouTube).
We also supplemented the pump with a surface skimmer (link here) and this was a MUCH NEEDED item that should have been included in the pool kit. Trust me: if you don’t purchase anything else to supplement your pool filtering system a surface skimmer needs to be it. A hand net just doesn’t cut it. Your pool will be covered in leaves, insects, pollen pods, and more. This picture was taken 4 hours after we installed the skimmer:
I’m not sure what I envisioned exactly when the kit said “locking safety ladder” but I didn’t imagine a simple A-frame ladder we have to take in and take out of the pool and “lock” away in the garage or our barn. I had hoped for more.
Lack of Instructions
Another problem we encountered when we unboxed the pool there were instructions for the ladder assembly and how to put the pump together, but there were no instructions telling how to put up the actual pool. I figure it was just an oversight and thankfully the instructions were easy to find on the internet. On the off chance you purchase this pool and have the same trouble, you can download the instructions for the Coleman® Swim Vista Series™ II Above-Ground Pool here:
Coleman® Swim Vista Series™ II Above-Ground Pool Assembly Instructions.pdf
Overall the Coleman® Swim Vista Series™ II is a great pool and we look forward to swimming it for years to come!
Disclosure: I received the Coleman® Power Steel™ Swim Vista Series™ II from Tryazon, which facilitated this review and blog post. No other compensation was received and all opinions are honest and my own.
**Edited to add: I am in no way affiliated with Bestway. I have no control over their customer service and whether or not they get back to you with issues with their pools. I cannot control if this pool is available to purchase or if it is out of stock. I can’t do anything if you’ve had issues with this pool or any like it. I’ve turned off commenting due to some very rude people leaving angry comments as if I can control these things. I got the pool in early spring before COVID-19 and quarantine made everyone want to buy an above ground pool.
Lousy pool, windows leak, liner leaks and no one returns phone calls from the company. BAD POOL
Sorry you had such a bad experience with this pool 🙁 We did see online that others had complained about the windows leaking and someone found the issue – the water always has to be above the top of the windows or the seals around them dry-rot in the sun. From what we read, its an easy fix with some silicone sealant. As for the poor customer service, I would recommend posting on their social media pages – that usually gets their attention pretty quick!
Does this pool need to be emptied and taken down at the end of each the summer ?
I’m not a pool expert by any means, but I think it depends on your location and weather during the winter. We live in GA so we have relatively mild winters and have no plans to take it down. We watched several videos about this pool and several who live up north do drain it and take it down every winter because it could freeze and burst or damage the liner. It does come with a cover so when we close it for the season it’s protected from debris and critters.