The best inflatable pools in 2024

Warm sunny days get even better when you can float to your heart’s desire in an easy to set up inflatable pool.

Best overall

The Intex 28405E PureSpa4 Person Inflatable Hot Tub Spa is the best inflatable pool overall.

Intex 28405E PureSpa 4-Person Inflatable Hot Tub Spa

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Best budget

The Airso Inflatable Swimming Pool is the best value.

Tukuos Inflatable Swimming Pool

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Best kiddie

The Bountech Inflatable Double Slide Bounce is the best inflatable pool with slide.

BOUNTECH Inflatable Double Slide Bounce House

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In the past, inflatable pools have been perceived as inferior to their in-ground cousins. That’s no longer true. These easy-to-use options provide the benefits of an in-ground pool without the expense and year-round maintenance. Depending on the size and features, these pools can even travel with you or remain a backyard fixture until the weather gets cold. Our recommendations for the best inflatable pools can provide fun for the whole family.

How we chose the best inflatable pools

To narrow down the field of blow-up pools, I started with durability, then looked at setup, capacity, and accessories to find inflatable pools that would offer the best performance. 

Durability: Thick wall materials that resist punctures but are still repairable offer the best bang for your buck. 

Setup: How long does it take to set up the pool? Complex setups may make you avoid setting it up at all. We also prioritized options that are easy to clean so you can spend more time in the pool.

Capacity: The pool has to fit the number of people who want to use it. A pool that fits four adults will fit more kids than that because of their smaller bodies.

Accessories: Ground covers, insulated covers, filters, pool floats, and toys are all extras worth paying for upfront. Buying them separately can get pricey. 

The best inflatable pools: Reviews & Recommendations

The best inflatable pools have the size, features, and capacity for your family. Above-ground inflatable pools that are easy to clean and store can ensure you spend time relaxing instead of maintaining the pool. 

Best overall: Intex 28405E PureSpa 4-Person Inflatable Hot Tub Spa

Best overall

Heated relaxation

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Why it made the cut: Simple setup, portability, and a long list of comfort features make this inflatable pool a standout for adults. 

Specs

  • Dimensions: 28 x 58 x 28 inches
  • Capacity: Four people
  • Gallons: 210

Pros

  • Fast, easy setup
  • A hard water filtration system
  • Comfortable seating that includes headrests

Cons 

  • Online directions are better than those included with the pool

This Intex inflatable pool includes everything you need to get it set up and bubbling from the minute it arrives: from a cover with child locks to keep out leaves and hold in heat to a heating system to heat the water before your first dip. Extra accessories include a 10-watt hard water system; two-filter filtration; floating chlorine dispenser; inflation hose; ground cloth; carrying bag; and headrests.

The setup process for this inflatable hot tub usually takes less than an hour. Once you’ve got everything hooked up and ready to go, it can hold four adults. One thing to note is that the online directions are better than those that arrive with the pool. 

Best kiddie: BOUNTECH Inflatable Double Slide Bounce House

Best with slide

Adventurous fun

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Why it made the cut: The Bountech’s climbing wall and two slides make it fun on the way up and down, propelling it to the top of the “pools with slides” list. 

Specs 

  • Dimensions: 178 x 144 x 92 inches
  • Capacity: Three to four children
  • Gallons: NA

Pros

  • Climbing wall instead of a ladder
  • Two slides and a water cannon
  • Easy setup

Cons 

  • Sometimes arrives with a defective blower

The Bountech lets kids splash, shoot, climb, and slide. You can secure this kiddie pool with eight ground stakes and a protective net to keep sliders on the slide. Despite its large size, this kids’ inflatable pool is easy to assemble. With the included blower, one parent can get it set up on their own. At 750 watts, the blower can keep the slides inflated as long as the total bodies onboard don’t exceed the 350-pound weight limit. We also like that it comes with a repair kit and several patches. 

A word of caution: The large inflatable pool works well most of the time, but a few units have underperformed and have not kept the slide fully inflated.

Best for families: Intex Swim Center Family Lounge Inflatable Pool

Best with seats

Sit back and relax

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Why it made the cut: Ample seating, lots of splash room, and a simple setup make this inflatable pool one of the best for those who like a built-in lounge seat.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 88 x 85 x 30 inches
  • Capacity: Four adults
  • Gallons: 261.5 

Pros

  • Simple set up
  • Two drink holders
  • Comes with a repair patch

Cons 

  • Does not come with an air pump

Intex knows inflatable pools. This inflatable family pool offers a simple inflation setup and enough seats for four. It doesn’t come with an air pump, so you must buy one separately. However, the pool can fully inflate with an electric pump within 15 minutes. Two built-in drink holders let kids sip without getting drinks in the pool. We like that this inflatable pool with pump also comes with a repair patch just in case there’s a puncture. 

Best for adults: Bestway Fast Set Paradise Palms 15×33 Inflatable Pool Set

Best for adults

Bestway Fast Set Paradise Palms 15×33 Inflatable Pool Set

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Why it made the cut: This tropically inspired backyard pool provides plenty of room for adults to cool off and take part in the fun with palm trees that spray water.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 15 feet by 33 inches
  • Capacity: Seven people
  • Gallons: 2,566

Pros

  • Large
  • Palm trees spray water
  • Comes with filter

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a pump
  • No ladder to get in and out

So you don’t have a tropical vacation planned. That doesn’t mean you can’t go swimming among some palm trees. The Bestway Fast Set Paradise Palms 15×33 Inflatable Pool Set brings the spirit of an adult vacation to your backyard. At fifteen feet around, this big inflatable pool is large enough to fit 2,566 gallons of water and seven people. Just hook up your garden hose and the palm trees will spray water. There’s also room for lounging on one of the best float tubes.

This pool comes in seven sizes, and you can choose between a tropical or a more dignified rattan print or blue exterior (minus the palm trees). The liner is three-ply for puncture resistance, and this pool also comes with a repair kit. The included 530-gallon filter will help you keep it clean, while a built-in control valve allows you to drain the water when you’re done.

Best with filter: Summer Waves Quick Set Inflatable Above Ground Pool

Best with filter

Simple but Large

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Why it made the cut: The Summer Waves pool mimics an in-ground model, including a cartridge filter pump for safer, cleaner swimming making it our top pick for an inflatable pool with a filter. 

Specs 

  • Dimensions: 144 x 144 x 36 inches
  • Capacity: Approximately five people
  • Gallons: 1,815

Pros

  • Easy-to-replace filter cartridge
  • Simple setup
  • Provides a lot of swimming/floating space

Cons 

  • Takes a long time to fill with water
  • Doesn’t include a patch kit

The Summer Waves pool provides size and volume above the norm for an above-ground pool. It is 12 feet across and 36 inches tall and holds a sizable amount of water even if it’s only filled to 80-percent capacity. It’s made of triple-layer PVC that resists punctures fairly well. However, having a patch kit with a pool this size is still a good idea. 

Setup takes less than 15 minutes, and the filter easily connects to the pool. A smart design makes filter replacement a simple process. Besides the lack of a patch kit, the only downside is that it’s so large that it takes a long time to fill with water.

Best budget: Tukuos Inflatable Swimming Pool

Best value

Simple splashing

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Why it made the cut: Three air chambers create a simple pool that holds a surprising amount of water for the price. 

Specs 

  • Dimensions: 118 x 72 x 22 inches
  • Capacity: Six people
  • Gallons: NA

Pros

  • Fast inflation with an electric air pump (sold separately)
  • Strong walls hold lots of water
  • Easy to access drain plug

Cons 

  • In some cases, it develops holes fairly quickly

This pool by Tukuos keeps things simple but provides a lot of square footage for backyard splashing. It features three separate inflatable rings that fill within 10 to 15 minutes with an electric air pump (not included). A strong, UV-resistant material resists punctures even with rambunctious play. For the price, you get a good-sized inflatable pool that’s simple to fill and easy to empty with the drain plug. However, a small number of units have punctures upon arrival. It doesn’t come with a repair kit, but it’s worth having one on hand.  

What to consider when buying the best inflatable pool

Inflatable pools may be easier to set up than some of their above-ground counterparts, but that doesn’t mean any old pool will do. Here is what you should consider before purchasing the best inflatable pool.

Setup and location

The complexity of the pool setup varies from model to model. Some models take a few minutes with the help of an air pump. Others may require some construction and setup time before the water can flow. 

Inflatable pools require a flat, sturdy location like level ground, a patio, or a deck. However, if the pool is on a structure, that structure needs to be able to handle the weight. One gallon of water weighs about 8.3 pounds. These pools can get heavy very quickly and can collapse a porch or deck that’s not reinforced. If there’s no level ground available, an inflatable pool isn’t a great option. They need even support around the entire base to successfully hold water without breaking. 

Air pumps

Many inflatable pools come with an electric air pump. You may need to invest in an air pump or air compressor to blow up the pool if the model you choose doesn’t include this accessory. 

Capacity

How many people will use the pool at once? A couple of kids can play in a pretty small pool and be happy for hours. However, several kids and a few adults will need more square footage and water volume to relax comfortably. Make sure to measure the space where the pool will be placed. You don’t want to buy a pool that’s big enough for the family and learn after the fact that it’s too big for the yard. 

Drainage

Most inflatable pools have drainage plugs. However, you need to think about drainage when setting up the pool. Make sure it’s not in a place where all that water can cause damage. Even small pools can hold 100 gallons or more. That much water needs somewhere to safely drain.

FAQs

Q: How much does an inflatable pool cost?

Inflatable pools are generally budget-friendly compared to the cost of in-ground pools. They start at under $25 for small-capacity kiddie pools. They can range up to more than $700 for premium versions that include jets for a spa-like experience, water treatment, and filters, like the Intex 28405E PureSpa 4-Person Inflatable Hot Tub Spa. It’s also worth checking to see if the inflatable pool you’re considering comes with a pump, filter, or ladder, and if not, figuring those costs in, if necessary.

Q: How long can you leave water in an inflatable pool?

How long you can leave water in an inflatable pool depends on the tools you have to keep it clean. For sanitary reasons, replacing the water after each use is best. If you leave the water in the pool for a couple of days, cover the pool to prevent debris and animals from wandering in. Some pools come with a filter or chlorine tablets. However, ensure the pool’s material can withstand any chemicals you use.

Q: How do you inflate an inflatable pool?

There are a range of ways to inflate an inflatable pool. Some inflatable pools come with an electric pump, and electric pumps are definitely the easiest way to inflate them. You may have to buy a pump separately if one isn’t included with the pool. Your other options are a manual pump, like a bike bump, or good old-fashioned blowing, which we don’t recommend.

Q: How do you find a leak in an inflatable pool?

To find a leak in an inflatable pool, create a soap (dish soap) and water mixture, and spray it onto the area where you suspect a leak. If there is one, you’ll see bubbles start to form over the puncture.

Final thoughts on the best inflatable pools

For adults who like to soak, the Intex 28405E PureSpa 4-Person Inflatable Hot Tub Spa is easy to set up, relaxing to use, and offers filters and water treatment. It doesn’t hurt that it includes headrests, too. However, for keeping kids entertained, it’s hard to beat the slides and climbing wall of the BOUNTECH Inflatable Double Slide Bounce House. Whatever floats your boat (and your body), there’s an inflatable pool to fit your yard and lifestyle.

Why trust us

Popular Science started writing about technology more than 150 years ago. There was no such thing as “gadget writing” when we published our first issue in 1872, but if there was, our mission to demystify the world of innovation for everyday readers means we would have been all over it. Here in the present, PopSci is fully committed to helping readers navigate the increasingly intimidating array of devices on the market right now.

Our writers and editors have combined decades of experience covering and reviewing consumer electronics. We each have our own obsessive specialties—from high-end audio to video games to cameras and beyond—but when we’re reviewing devices outside of our immediate wheelhouses, we do our best to seek out trustworthy voices and opinions to help guide people to the very best recommendations. We know we don’t know everything, but we’re excited to live through the analysis paralysis that internet shopping can spur so readers don’t have to.

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Stacey L. Nash Avatar

Stacey L. Nash

Contributor

Stacey Nash researches, tests, and writes about all things home goods and fitness. She’s always looking for the best products, devices, and apps to make life easier so her readers can spend more time enjoying the activities and people they love. But she always makes time for a good workout and maintains her personal trainer certification so she can also provide readers with accurate, scientifically-based fitness tips.