One of the best ways to bust some stress after a long day’s work is to spend a while in the swimming pool. Not only is it good for your health and helps you burn some calories, but it is also a great place to just chill and unwind. In this article we shall take a closer look at swimming pools and how spending some time in the pool is great for you, but more specifically, we intend to answer a key question: what is the Perfect Pool Temperature For Swimming?. Let’s find out.

A personal swimming pool is quite a delight to own. This is the ultimate form of luxury and is a great means of relaxation not only for yourself but for your guests, friends, and family as well. The idea, however, is not just to provide them with a place to chill, but with a good place to chill and you need to have the perfect temperature in order to provide the optimum experience. No one really wants to be in a swimming pool that has too hot or too cold water.

Ideal Swimming Pool Temperature

Pool temperature matters quite a lot. This is something that many people don’t think too much of and you usually hear if the water is just ‘hot’ or ‘cold’ than how it should be. However, the big question comes when you’ve got to quantify it. How hot or how cold should the water be? What is the ideal pool temperature? These questions and a lot more shall be answered as we proceed further into the article.

We shall also discuss the minimum pool temperature that needs to be maintained, as well as the perfect pool temperature depending on the time of the year. Besides that, we will also take a look at some of the factors that need to be considered when you are setting the temperature of your pool.

A lot of people who are either new pool owners or even some people who have been owning these pools for a while now aren’t really aware of the right temperature for swimming pools. We hope that by the time you reach the end of this article, you are well aware of all these factors and know what the right temperatures are.

What Is the Perfect Pool Temperature For Swimming?

Let us cut straight to the actual question at hand. The answer to this question is not an exact number but is actually a range. Reports from Mayo Clinic point out that the ideal pool temperature range lies somewhere between 83°F and 88°F. This hits the perfect sweet spot in terms of not being too hot neither being too cold.

A water temperature of about 82 degrees Fahrenheit to 84 degrees Fahrenheit is generally where the perfect spot lies but you can still vary it by a couple of degrees and it will still be pretty comfortable.

For those of our readers who prefer their numbers in Celcius, the temperature ranges from about 28 C to about 31 C. This range offers you a very comfortable pool temperature and you can swim without having to worry about catching a cold or any other risks.

However, one more thing that you must know about getting the perfect water temperature is that the ideal temperature for each user varies based on their age group and special needs. We have identified some of these different and specific needs in the questions that follow:

What is an Ideal Pool Temperature for Senior Citizens?

Seniors are a special group that requires a different pool temperature than what you would provide for regular swimmers. A temperature between 86 F to 88 F is generally well suited for the needs of older adults who are performing low-intensity workouts in the pool.

However, if there’s someone using the pool for therapy and rehab, the temperature needs to be slightly warmer, somewhere around 91 F to 95 F. This is important because the warm water ensures that muscles loosen up and are no longer stiff.

The United States Water Fitness Association also points out that people dealing with arthritis need to maintain a minimum water temperature of 83 degrees at all times. Anything warmer is acceptable but it should never go below that number. For specialized hydrotherapy needs, we suggest the use of a hot tub and not regular swimming pools.

What is the Temperature of the Pool for a Competitive Swimming Event?

The International Swimming Federation and the Red Cross have come together to determine the temperature of water for pool-based activities such as swimming, water polo, synchronized swimming, etc) to be set to a common global standard – 77 F to 82 F (25 C to 28 C) for regular swimming and 81 F (27 C) for synchronized swimming.

This standard temperature has been set to ensure a certain range of standardization across all events because if the water is warm, the swimmers will face lesser friction and will be able to score better in those pools. Hence, a global standard temperature is used in competitive swimming events.

What is the Ideal Swimming Pool Temperature for Kids?

The United States Water Fitness Association points out that the younger a swimmer is, the warmer should the water be.

For very young (preschool) kids, the ideal water temperature should be 88 F to 94 F

For 3 to 5-year-old kids, the ideal temperature of the water needs to be 86 F to 90 F

For 6 to 13-year-old kids, a temperature of 84 F to 86 F is best suited

What is the Ideal Swimming Pool Temperature for Above-Ground Pools?

There’s actually no difference in the kind of temperatures you need to maintain for a regular pool vs an above-ground pool. An above-ground pool would also require the same range of temperatures.

Why is it Important to Maintain An Ideal Pool Temperature?

Maintaining the temperature of your pool is quite important because of multiple reasons. First of all, the most important thing is that it is a matter of comfort. Unless you are someone who is into rigorous fitness or you are a competitive swimmer, most people tend to see a swimming pool as a place of leisure and relaxation. With that in mind, having a pool temperature that is too hot or too cold isn’t really the most relaxing of things. Maintaining the perfect pool temperature is actually quite relaxing.

Algae and Bacteria are two forms of life that love the warmth that hot water brings. If the pool temperature isn’t really controlled and your pool is allowed to heat up as per natural temperatures around you, there’s a chance that you might begin to notice a green film developing on the surface of the water.

Algae can cause a terrible stink that will make it quite a bummer to swim, and they can also cause skin irritations such as itches and rashes to the swimmers. Besides, algae also cause the filters and pipes to clog which is another big headache that you really want to avoid. This is why you need to maintain your pool temperatures so that you can remain safe from algae.

While warm water brings its own set of problems, so does cold water. A pool temperature less than 78 F is considered unfit for swimming because your breathing starts getting difficult after that. This makes it tough for people with asthma or other breathing-related ailments. Temperatures between 60-70 F are even worse, but the human body can still adapt to that. However, if the temperature falls below 60 F (less than 15 C), it becomes really dangerous.

This is why you need to maintain an ideal pool temperature and one which is not on either of the extremes. Hot water is basically inviting bacteria and cold water is bad for your health. Hence, make sure to keep your pool water temperatures around 84 degrees Fahrenheit to get the best possible experience.

How Do I Measure Pool Temperature?

You can’t really dip your hand in the pool and splash some water around to tell the temperature of the pool. You will need the proper equipment which will give you an accurate reading. Pool Thermometers are specialized devices that are used to measure the temperature of your swimming pool.

There are two kinds of pool thermometers, much like human thermometers. There’s an analog thermometer, which comes with a scale where you have to measure the reading manually, and then there’s a digital thermometer, which comes with a digital display.

How Do I Measure Pool Temperature

Besides these, there is also a third kind, a wireless thermometer, which is the kind of equipment used in large-scale competitive swimming events. These are attached to the pool and they transmit the temperatures in real-time wirelessly so that they can be controlled by the organizers.

How to Control the Temperature of the Swimming Pool?

Using a pool heater is the best way to get the perfect pool temperature for all your needs. Be it a casual few minutes that you want to spend in the pool or be it some rigorous exercise that you want, a pool heater helps you get just the right temperature for your pool at all times.

These are devices that you would see in professional swimming events, or in large swimming pools. These heaters attach themselves to the pool pumps and continue to heat the water until the desired temperature is attained. The heater then shuts down and restarts only when a variance of +/- 2 degrees is reached so that the ideal water temperature is maintained all the time. Some of these heaters also come with a timer which can be quite handy.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Swimming Pool Temperature

Let us now take a closer look at some of the most common and frequently asked questions about getting the right swimming pool temperatures:

What happens if my water is too hot or too cold?

If the water is too hot, you’re at risk of getting bacteria and algae to form in your pool. If the pool water is too cold, you risk getting muscle sores or even breathlessness. Hence, you need to keep your water temperature stable – neither too hot nor too cold.

How many degrees Fahrenheit should the water be to call it ‘ideal’ temperature?

Pool water at around 82 degrees F to 88 degrees F is just the right temperature, generally accepted in most countries as ‘safe’, and is also recommended by Red Cross. However, water temperatures have to be tweaked based on the age, the event, and the need of the swimmers.

What is hypothermia and how to stay safe from it?

Spending long hours in a very cold swimming pool can cause hypothermia in rare cases, which can be quite dangerous and even life-threatening at times. Hypothermia is basically a condition where your body is losing heat faster than it is able to generate it. This affects your cardiovascular system and can also cause your nervous system to malfunction. The only way to stay safe from it is to make sure that the pool water is warm enough.


We hope that by the time you have reached this portion of the article, you have fully understood what the ideal pool temperature is for various user groups, and how to measure the pool temperature as well as how to keep the pool warm. It is critical to understand that having a temperature that is too hot or too cold is always going to be counterproductive and you need to maintain an ideal pool temperature at all times. If you still have any more questions or doubts regarding water temperature for a specific user group, feel free to let us know in the comments below or drop us a mail and we shall get back to you as soon as we can! Till then..

..Happy Swimming! 🙂