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Stock Tank Pool Ideas: Transform Your Backyard with Simple Elegance

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As summer approaches, you might be considering innovative ways to beat the heat without the commitment of installing a permanent swimming pool. Stock tank pools have surged in popularity as a versatile, cost-effective solution for cooling off during the warmer months.

stock tank pool

Setting up a stock tank pool in your outdoor space is straightforward. You select a tank size that fits your area, ensure a flat surface for stability, and set up a pump to keep the water clean.

However, there’s much more you can do to personalize your pool. By incorporating elements like surrounding decks, customized benches, or even a full-blown filtration system, you transform a simple tank into a stylish retreat.

Your stock tank pool can become the focal point of your summer gatherings. With the right design touches, it can seamlessly integrate into your landscape, reflect your personal style, and provide endless hours of relaxation.

Creative ideas such as incorporating aquatic plants, building a wooden wrap-around deck, or adding night-time lighting can enhance both the functionality and aesthetic appeal of your pool, ensuring it’s not just a way to cool off, but a feature that elevates your entire outdoor living experience.

Understanding Stock Tank Pools

stock tank pool on hardscape

Stock tank pools offer an affordable and stylish way to beat the heat. They have risen in popularity due to their versatility and ease of installation.

History and Popularity

Stock tanks were originally used to water livestock but have been repurposed as pools. Their rise in popularity can be attributed to the DIY movement and the appeal of their rustic charm. Many homeowners now choose stock tank pools as a simple alternative to traditional swimming pools.

Benefits of Stock Tank Pools

Affordability: Stock tank pools are significantly less expensive than in-ground pools. Ease of Installation: Set up is straightforward; you typically only need a flat surface and a water source. Versatility: They can be easily customized with paint, surrounding decor, and hardware. Low Maintenance: The upkeep is minimal compared to larger pools.

Different Sizes and Shapes

Stock tank pools come in various dimensions, commonly ranging from 5 to 8 feet in diameter, with different depths available. Shapes are usually limited to round or oblong, catering to different backyard sizes and personal preferences. Choose a size and shape that fits your space and meets your needs for relaxation or play.

Design and Aesthetics

Creating a stylish stock tank pool requires careful consideration of its visual aspects and thematic integration with your outdoor space.

Choosing the Right Location

Your stock tank pool should complement your yard’s layout. Select a spot that is level to ensure stability and ease of access. Proximity to natural shade or shelter offers comfort while aesthetics benefit from scenic backdrops.

Color Schemes and Finishes

Choose colors that blend with your outdoor palette. A classic galvanized finish imparts a rustic charm, whereas a painted tank can match your decor. Options include:

  • Galvanized silver
  • Bold blues
  • Earthy greens
stock tank pool

Landscaping Around Your Pool

Incorporate plants and stones to create a natural oasis. Use landscaping to integrate your pool into the environment seamlessly.


  • Low-maintenance shrubs
  • Decorative rocks
  • Flowering perennials

Lighting and Decorative Features

Proper lighting enhances the pool’s ambiance. Solar or LED lights offer both functionality and beauty. Add features such as:

  • Underwater lights
  • Surrounding lanterns
  • Floating pool lights

DIY Stock Tank Pool Setup

Creating your own stock tank pool can be a straightforward project with the right tools, guidance, and regular upkeep.

Required Tools and Materials

  • Measuring Tape: To determine the space needed for your pool.
  • Adjustable Wrench: For securing hardware and fittings.
  • Electric Drill: A must-have for creating holes for fittings.
  • Screwdriver Set: For miscellaneous assembly tasks.
  • Sealant: To ensure water tightness around fittings.
  • Hose: For filling the pool and maintenance.
  • Sandpaper: To smooth any sharp edges after drilling.
  • Level: To check that your pool is perfectly horizontal.
  • Stock Tank: The main component, typically galvanized steel or plastic.
  • Filter Pump: To keep the water clean.
  • Pool Chemical Kit: To maintain water quality.
stock tank pool under tree

Step-by-Step Installation Guide

  1. Choose Location: Select a flat, level area with good drainage and access to water.
  2. Prepare Base: Level the ground and, if desired, add a base layer of sand or concrete.
  3. Position Tank: Place the stock tank on the prepared base.
  4. Drill Holes: Drill holes for the pump and filter according to their specifications.
  5. Install Fittings: Securely attach the pump and filter fittings with a wrench and apply sealant.
  6. Check for Level: Ensure the tank is level using your spirit level.
  7. Fill with Water: Once the sealant has dried, fill the pool with water.
  8. Chemical Balance: Test the water and adjust pool chemicals as needed.
  9. Power Up: Connect the filter pump to power and begin circulation.

Maintenance and Upkeep Tips

  • Regular Cleaning: Skim, vacuum, and brush the pool weekly.
  • Water Levels: Check and maintain proper water levels.
  • Chemical Testing: Test water chemistry 1–2 times per week.
  • Filter Maintenance: Clean and replace the filter per manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Seasonal Care: Drain and clean the pool before winter, if applicable.

Safety and Regulations

stock tank with waterfall

When installing a stock tank pool, it’s essential to ensure compliance with local regulations and prioritize safety to avoid potential hazards and legal complications.

Local Zoning Laws and Permits

Before setting up your stock tank pool, you must check with your local government to understand applicable zoning ordinances. Failure to acquire necessary permits can lead to fines or mandatory removal of the pool.

  • Checklist for Compliance:
    • Contact your local zoning office.
    • Inquire about specific permits needed for a pool.
    • Understand setback requirements from property lines and structures.
    • Confirm size and depth restrictions if applicable.
plunge pool at night

Child Safety Measures

Ensuring the safety of children is crucial. Your pool area should have measures to prevent unauthorized access and accidents.

  • Safety Features to Consider:
    • Fences: At least 4 feet high with a self-closing, self-latching gate.
    • Alarms: For both the pool and gate to alert if a child enters the area.
    • Pool Covers: A sturdy cover to prevent unsupervised entry when the pool is not in use.

Pool Water Treatment

Proper water treatment is non-negotiable for maintaining a healthy and clean swimming environment. Untreated water can become a breeding ground for bacteria and algae.

  • Key Components:
    • Chemical Levels: Regularly test and adjust the chlorine and pH levels.
    • Circulation: Employ a filter system to keep the water moving and filter out debris.
    • Cleaning Schedule: Establish a routine for skimming and scrubbing your pool.

Accessories and Enhancements

patio stock tank pool

Enhance your stock tank pool experience with purposeful accessories for maintenance, comfort, and extended seasonal use.

Pump and Filtration Options

Your stock tank pool requires a clean and clear environment. Opt for a cartridge filter pump if you prefer low maintenance, or choose a sand filter pump for larger pools due to its high efficiency.

  • Cartridge Filter Pump: Easy to clean; suitable for smaller pools.
  • Sand Filter Pump: Best for larger volumes; filters finer particles.

Seating and Cover Solutions

Maximize comfort and cleanliness with seating and protective covers.

  • Built-in Benches: Securely install benches along the interior walls.
  • Floating Seats: Add variety with inflatable or foam seats that can be stored when not in use.

Pool Covers: It’s essential to keep debris out.

  • Custom-Fit Covers: Tailored to your pool’s dimensions.
  • Standard Tarp Covers: More affordable, but ensure they are weighted down.

Heating Systems for Year-Round Use

Extend the usability of your stock tank pool into cooler months with a heating system.

  • Solar Heaters: Eco-friendly option, captures warmth from sunlight.
  • Electric Heaters: Rapid heating; requires electrical installation.

Installation Tips:

  • Placement: Position heaters where they receive enough power exposure.
  • Usage: Pair with a thermostat for optimal temperature control.

Inspirational Ideas

Transform your outdoor space with a stock tank pool that suits your style and meets your needs. These ideas will help you create the perfect backyard oasis.

Rustic Country Charm

stock tank pool

For a touch of the countryside, consider a galvanized steel stock tank.

Surround yours with reclaimed wood decking and border it with hay bales for seating. Incorporate a water lily plant to enhance the natural feel.

Contemporary Chic

stock tank on deck

Embrace a modern aesthetic with a sleek, round stock tank.

Paint it a matte black or deep navy for a sophisticated touch. Add minimalist wooden loungers and concrete pavers to complete the look.

Family-Friendly Designs

  • Opt for a larger oval stock tank to accommodate everyone.
  • Sturdy steps or a small wooden ladder can provide easy access for kids.
  • Install a sunshade overhead to protect your family from the sun.

Small Space Solutions

Even with limited space, a small stock tank pool can be a refreshing addition.

  • Utilize vertical planters nearby. They bring greenery without using much ground space.
  • Incorporate multi-functional furniture like storage benches. They can also serve as seating.
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Jena Slocum Co-Founder

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