Drop-in pool steps
A quick and cost-effective way to add steps to your inground pool is the drop-in (sometimes called “bolt-on”) stair. These stairs are usually made from plastic or fiberglass. They can be placed anywhere in your pool’s shallow end, including the corner. A popular style is the wedding cake stair, named for its rounded tiers. One advantage of drop-in steps is they can be added to a pool without having to replace your liner.
In-wall pool steps
If you don’t want to lose swim area to your stairs, fiberglass “in-wall stairs” are a great option. These stairs are added during a more extensive pool renovation, as they are added to your pool’s structure as an extension from the main wall. Fiberglass steps come in a variety of colours and coping styles. Bullnose coping (see the second photo to the left) can be a bold design look that is best coordinated with the colour and style of the rest of your pool’s coping. We take you step-by-step through a pool renovation featuring fiberglass in-wall stairs in another post.
Vinyl-over steel pool stairs
Vinyl-covered (called “vinyl-over”) steps give a high-end concrete look to your pool without the cost and roughness of concrete. They’re an excellent option if it’s time to replace your liner. (If you want to know how liner colours change when they’re under water, use our colour comparison photos!) Because they’re custom built from steel and then covered in vinyl, design options are limitless—you can even add a tanning ledge as part of your stair project or add benches or other features. Most vinyl-over steps are added to the interior of the pool, so you don’t need to alter your pool structure or excavate additional space in your yard. You can even get fancy with bubblers and fountains in your vinyl-over pool steps.