Pool fence regulations qld

by | Jun 14, 2023 | Advice & inspiration, Building basics & regulations, Building tips

Swimming pools can be a fantastic feature for any house, great for family get-togethers while also adding value to your home. However, being a pool owner comes with its share of responsibilities and Queensland’s pool safety laws need to be followed. Pool safety laws are something every homeowner needs to be aware of and a lot of these guidelines revolve around pool barriers and fences. Let’s dive into pool fence regulations in Queensland, and also take a look at the pros and cons of various materials to build your fence with.

What are the minimum requirements for a pool fence in QLD?

The following information comes directly from the QBCC website, which is the body in charge of these regulations.

Pool fences

  • at least 1200mm in height. This is measured from ground level to the top fence rail.
  • No more than 100mm from the bottom of the fence to the ground
  • Must be built on solid and stable grounding
  • If you’re building on a sloping site or steps, fences must meet minimum height requirements at every point of the fence.

Pool gates

  • Pool gates must not open inwards to the pool area
  • Every gate must be self-closing and self-latching
  • Latches on the gate must be at least 1500mm high from ground level,

Glass panels

If you choose to have glass panels in your pool fences, they must:

  • be made of reinforced glass.
  • Cannot have signs of fracture, cracks or damage. If any of this occurs, you need to replace the panel.

Door and Window regulations

  • You can not have building doors or windows opening directly into the pool. No entrance to your home can provide direct access to the pool (in other words, there needs to be a barrier between the home and the pool, like a fence).
  • You can use the wall of your house as a boundary line providing it doesn’t infringe on any of the above regulations.

How do I ensure that my pool fence is compliant?

A licensed pool safety inspector will need to come and see your pool to ensure it meets all necessary pool safety standards. If your swimming pool and every pool barrier are up to code, you’ll receive a pool safety certificate.

All pools need to be registered on the Pool Safety Register. You can do this by visiting the QBCC website and following the prompts.

If you’ve bought a property with a pre-existing pool, you can look up your address on the online Pool Safety Register to make sure it is registered.

Are there any exemptions to the pool fencing regulations?

Like most council guidelines, it’s possible to lodge an application for exemptions from the regulations. Whether you’ll be successful will depend on your reasoning and the safety effects of your proposal.

The safety of young children is the ultimate determining factor, even if you’re childless, so if your proposal is likely to increase the danger to kids, we wouldn’t bet on you being approved.

Each local council is different, so what one area was willing to approve might be rejected in another district.

What are the consequences of not following the pool fencing regulations?

If your pool fences or gate don’t meet regulations or are found to infringe council guidelines, you run the risk of receiving a fine of $934. For someone who has an unregistered pool, you run the risk of a minimum $266 fine. The maximum penalty a court can give is up to $22,019, though this would be far more likely to be handed down to a public or company pool rather than an individual.

Nonetheless, you no doubt have better things to spend your money on than fines, so it’s much easier to follow guidelines than try to get away with it.

What are the different types of pool fencing that comply with the QLD regulations?

When it comes to a barrier for your pool enclosure, you have a few options for a permanent fence that will keep everyone safe and ensure your pool complies with any legislation.

Aluminium Pool Fencing

Price: $90-120 per square metre.

Definitely far and away the most popular fencing option for home swimming pools, aluminium pool fences is almost as Australian as the Hill’s Hoist. Affordable yet durable, it’s also lightweight, making it easy enough to install for a homeowner with a few skills up their sleeves. Add to this that it won’t rust or corrode and requires little maintenance, it’s easy to see why aluminium is the go-to choice for many Australians.

The one potential downside is that aluminium, while durable, isn’t as strong as iron or steel. Having said that, it will still take a decent wake to bend your fence.

Steel Pool Fencing

Price: $115- 200 per square metre

At a glance, it can be difficult to tell the difference between steel pool fencing and aluminium. Steel, however, is much heavier and has stronger structural integrity, making it ideal for any property that may face extreme weather. Steel also lasts longer and usually comes with a longer warranty, so while more expensive, it’s one of those cases where you do get more for your money.

Be sure to buy galvanised steel or else risk rusting issues, especially if you live near the ocean and salt air.

Glass Panel Fencing

Framed Glass Price: $200-275 per square metre

Frameless Glace Price: $280-600 per square metre

Semi-Frameless Glass Price: $200-280 per square metre

While glass panels tend to be the most expensive option, it’s also one of the most popular choices in new homes. It provides a sleek, modern look to your pool and the transparency allows you to both watch children easier and make the most of a view.

Some of the downsides of glass is cleaning. Something as simple as a fingerprint will stand out on a glass panel, as well as dust, smudges and streaks from poor cleaning techniques. Looks come at a cost, and with glass panels, that cost is constant cleaning and maintenance.

PVC Pool Fencing

Price: around $100 per metre.

Sometimes sold as vinyl, PVC plastic fencing is an affordable, and durable fencing material that requires no maintenance once set up. Depending on the design, you can purchase PVC fencing that resembles wood. Unlike timber, it doesn’t have the same splintering or rot issues that timber can be known for.

PVC does have its cons. It can break in extreme weather or from strong impact. It’s also a design that, while perfectly functional, isn’t held in high regard and won’t add much value to your home.

Timber Pool Fencing

Price: $200-275

Wood is aesthetically pleasing while being functional, making a timber fence a great way to add a certain classy style to your pool. When well-looked after and treated, timber can last for decades.

The main problem with timber is it requires high maintenance and needs to be treated to avoid problems like termites, rot and water damage.

Wrought Iron Pool Fencing

Price: $450-650 per metre.

Wrought Iron is strong and resilient while also being stylish. There are two main downsides to iron fencing. The first is the ongoing maintenance requirements. The second reason is wrought iron the most expensive material on the market.

How much will pool fencing cost in QLD?

At a rough estimate, expect to pay anywhere between $200-600 a metre for pool fencing in Australia. In Queensland, the average is actually a little lower at only $180 per square metre. It’s best to wait until you receive a few quotes, as prices can vary depending on the project.

There are a variety of factors that will influence your price including:

  • The material you use to build your fence
  • Which company do you use
  • The dimensions of the pool.
  • Type of gate you build.
  • Where you’re building
  • Any surrounding flora or matter that will need to be dealt with.

With any building project, the more complicated it is, the more it will cost you.

How to choose the right pool fence for my property?

Beyond ensuring your fence complies with pool safety laws, there are a few factors to consider as to what will suit your house:

  • Your budget
  • What material suits the aesthetic of the rest of your home?
  • Personal preference
  • The amount of maintenance you’re willing to perform
  • Whether you’re looking to add value to your home or are looking for something purely functional.

Get free advice on pool fencing from an experienced building broker

Building a new home is one of the biggest projects people undertake in their life. It’s an incredibly exciting time but also one that can be overwhelming, especially for the first-time home builder. Buildi is here to help you throughout your building journey. We help with site inspections and pitching your project to our panel of builders. We’ll also sit in on meetings and ensure your builder meets all their obligations. Get in touch with us for a free, impartial chat about your next building project!

Book your free, impartial consultation today!


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