Inground Pool Slide Guide

If you own a pool and you are looking for ways to ramp up your fun, a pool slide might be just the thing. Pool slides are a big hit with children and that’s one of the reasons that they are so popular. Pool slides come in a number of shapes and sizes that provide a thrill for all different types of swimmers. Regardless of the type of pool you own, there is likely a slide that would fit perfectly with your setup.

What are the different types of slides for inground pools?

Depending on the experience you want on your slide, there are a couple of types of slides – prefabricated, free-standing slides and custom-built, landscape slides. A prefabricated slide will mount onto your pool deck while a landscape slide is built into your landscaping, typically in a rock waterfall or grotto-type setup. Prefabricated free-standing slides are much more common, so this post will focus primarily on this type of residential pool slide.

Before you can make the right choice that fits your own situation, there are few things you need to know.

What are the common shapes for inground pool slides?

The path of the slide, commonly known as the flume, dictates the experience you’ll have on your slide. The flume can vary greatly in height, in the amount of curve, and in how steep it is. You’ll want to take all of these factors into account as you choose your slide.

Curved slide

A curved slide is one of the most common pool slides you’ll find. These slides feature a straight section at the top and a broad curve (or sometimes two curves) at the end where it deposits the slider into your swimming pool. These types of slides usually have relatively simple designs. The stairs for these types of slides can be either open or closed. If you’re searching for the right slide for your pool and have smaller children, a slide with closed stairs is much safer as they stop their feet from slipping through.

Corkscrew slide

A corkscrew slide provides an adventurous trip into the pool. As the name suggests, a corkscrew slide allows you to make a 360-degree spin on your way down the flume. These slides tend to have a deeper flume for safety reasons, and also tend to be relatively tall (our Tsunami model is nearly 8 feet tall) to allow for the 360-degree turning radius.


The amount of space you have around your pool is an important factor in determining the type of slides that are available to you. Before making your choice, it’s essential to consider the footprint of the slide. That is, just how much space it’s going to take up on your deck once it’s installed. Larger slides are faster and more exciting, but they also take up more space. Before buying you’ll need to know that you have enough space to accommodate the slide of your choice.

How deep does a pool need to be to add a slide?

When deciding on the height of your pool slide there are a few things to keep in mind. Taller slides, while allowing for greater speeds and more curves, also will take up more space. Further, you’ll need to ensure that the depth of your pool can safely accommodate the size of your slide. Shorter and smaller slides are best suited for young children or where space is at a premium.

Finally, you’ll also want to consider which positions are feasible for your slide to know if you need a left or right turn on your slide. If you’re not sure how to determine which slides will work in your space we recommend contacting your local pool professional.

Water supply

A slide can function without water, but a water slide for inground pools tends to be a lot more fun, especially the larger models. Having running water reduces friction so you can travel down the slide faster. Depending on whether you’re adding a slide to an existing pool or it’s a new installation, it may be a little tricky to install a water supply. Typically, however, this is taken from the pool’s supply so as to not overfill the pool if left on.

Are pool slides durable and safe?

The strength of a pool slide depends on what it has been constructed from. Materials like fiberglass or acrylic were quite popular back in the day. Now, most slides are made from molded polyethylene.

Polyethylene is basically very heavy-duty plastic. It is capable of withstanding the harsh rays of the sun, has some flex to avoid cracking, and is largely a very durable product. Maintained properly, most pool slides are usually strong enough to last many swimming seasons.

We highly recommend avoiding second-hand pool slides. New, modern slides include safety features required by the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission to ensure user safety. Enhanced safety features like deeper flumes and enclosed roto-molded steps and railings made of the same material as the slides. You can see these features on the Global Pool Products slide models listed later in this post.

The safety of your pool slide also depends on making the right choice about which slide is appropriate for your pool. If you will have small children using the slides, you will want to stick with slides built for small children. The depth of your pool is also of critical importance. As states:

“For sliders shorter than 48 inches, if the distance between the end of the slide and the water, known as the drop, is 3 inches or less, the water depth should be 2 feet. For sliders taller than 48 inches, the pool must be at least 3-feet deep, with some manufacturers requiring 3 1/2 to 4 feet as a minimum.”

For larger, faster slides that don’t decelerate users and have a drop greater than six inches, you’ll need much deeper water. It’s recommended by Safe Wise that you should use the same depth as a one meter diving board for these types of slides, which is 11.5 feet.

What are some general rules for pool slide safety?

Having a pool comes with a lot of responsibility, and a pool slide adds one more element you need to establish rules for. In general, these are some good rules of thumb that all your slide users should abide by:

  • Only one person on the slide at a time
  • Make sure there’s no one at the end of the slide before using
  • Only go down the slide feet first
  • No rough housing or horse play on, in, or around the pool area including the slide
  • Avoid using alcohol while using the pool and slide
  • Never use the pool without someone else in the pool area

How much does a pool slide cost?

Pool slide prices can be all over the map. While slides for inground pools can certainly be very expensive, adding one doesn’t necessarily mean you will break the bank. The average price for pool slides is typically about $3,000. However, if you want to spend more you certainly can. Tube slides, like you may see at water parks, or custom pool water slides surrounded by rocks can be priced as high as $20,000 or more.


The Larger the pool slide, the more work it will take to maneuver into place and install successfully. Some models are quite heavy in the box, but all this information and the full specifications are usually available before you buy. As mentioned above, you’ll want to do your due diligence in checking out the slide’s footprint and comparing it to the available space around your slide to ensure that it will fit.

If you’re not going to contract a professional for installation, you’re likely going to need at least two people to install a pool slide successfully. A lot of products come with detailed instruction videos, you may want to do some research on the company website or YouTube to review the installation process before you decide to take on that project or hire it out. Depending on the make and model of the pool slide, it can take anywhere from one hour to several to set up.

When should you install a slide?

It’s usually best to add a pool slide when you initially install your pool. The reason for this is that most slides will require a water supply, so building this into your plan will avoid potential headaches of trying to add plumbing later. It also allows you to ensure that any slide you add fits with your pool design and deck configuration. If you do choose to delay the installation of a slide, it’s wise to make a full plan for it and have your installers add the necessary plumbing when they do the initial installation.

Global Pool Products Pool Slide Buying Guide

Now that you’re a bit more knowledgeable about your pool slide options, you can take a more informed look at the different models available from Global Pool Products.

Rip Tide

The Rip Tide slide is safe and easy to install. These slides are perfect for kids with sturdy molded-in handrails and an enclosed ladder for safety. The Rip Tide also comes with an LED lighting option to create a beautiful, late night feature for your pool. This slide is available in right and left curves and in 2-colors, Sandstone and Grey Granite.


  • Height: 7′-8″
  • Flume: 23″
  • Required deck space: 12′-6″ x 6′-6″
  • Weight limit: 275 lbs.
  • Water delivery system: Enclosed 1″ plumbing

rip tide pool slide


This slide is perfect if you do not have a ton of space but want to maximize the bang for your buck. The Splash is available in two colors, Grey Granite and Sandstone, and has an available watery delivery system. These slides bring the optimal fun-filled flows to your poolside.


  • Height: 4′-2″
  • Flume: 20″
  • Ladder: Enclosed with molded handrail
  • Required deck space: 7′-6″ x 5′-6″
  • Weight limit: 175 lbs.

splash pool slide

Tidal Wave

Whether it’s the flowing water or thrilling dips and curves that you love, the Tidal-Wave is packed with tons of great features. With sturdy molded-in handrails and an enclosed ladder, this slide is safe to use and easy to install. The Tidal Wave is available in right and left curves and in two colors, Sandstone and Grey Granite, and offers the option of LED lighting.


  • Height: 7′-8″
  • Flume: 22″
  • Required deck space: 12′ x 6′
  • Weight limit: 275 lbs.
  • Water delivery system: Enclosed 1″ plumbing.

tidal wave pool slide


The tsunami stands 7’8″ tall to the top of the handrails and is available in Sandstone and Grey Granite and offers an LED lighting option. Like our other slide models, it comes with an enclosed ladder and molded handrail design for maximum safety. With the included water delivery system, Tsunami offers lots of rushing water for a fun ride. The Tsunami is available with a left or right entry.


  • Height: 7′-8″
  • Flume: 22″
  • Ladder: Enclosed with molded handrail
  • Required deck Space: 12′ x 6′
  • Weight limit: 275 lbs.
  • Water delivery system: Enclosed 1″ plumbing

tsunami pool slide

Is it time for a pool slide?

A swimming pool slide can bring so much joy and excitement to your pool experience. Investing in one is can be a great way to increase the amount of use and fun your family has with your pool.

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