Three Kiddy Pools that Will Keep Families Cool Outdoors

Can’t hit the resort pool? Have a little fun in your own backyard.

Dog playing in kiddy pool with hose.
Everyone loves a kiddy pool in the backyard.Shutterstock

A wise man once said that commercials for aboveground pools are only thirty seconds long, because that’s the maximum amount of fun you can have in an aboveground pool. Fortunately, kiddy pools are an exception. Here’s what to look for, whether to keep the kids in the water or cool your own feet.

Sable Inflatable Pool, Blow Up Family Full-Sized Pool for Kids, Toddlers, Infant & Adult, 118" X 72" X 22", Swim Center for Ages 3+, Outdoor, Garden, Backyard, Summer Water Party

The Bigger, the Better

Not everyone has space for a swimming pool, so the right kiddy pool will do the trick for a Saturday of family fun.Sable

Check out the materials, before you buy. Especially with inflatable pools, look for thick PVC and a design that limits the risk of punctures and deflation. A pool suddenly deflating is more than a Peanuts-style bummer. It can flood your lawn, ruining it, and a wrecked pool is hard to recycle. Invest in an electric pump, and you won’t have to worry about having to fill it with lungful after lungful of air.

Intex Sun Shade Inflatable Pool, 62" X 62" X 48", for Ages 2+

A Little Piece of Plastic Paradise

One man’s plastic, inflatable tub of water is another man’s ocean.Intex

Look for easy-drain features, next. If you’ve ever had to drag anything full of water around, you vividly remember the sore arms and annoyance. You also can’t just open the air valve and let the water do the job, which will leave you with a pool covered in mud. Pools with built-in drains will let you take the pool over to the driveway or a nearby drain and just let the water out when it’s time to pack up.

Bestway Hurricane Tunnel Blast Inflatable Water Park Play Center | Includes Big Water Slide, Water Blob, Climbing Wall, and Pool Area | Outdoor Summer Fun for Kids & Families

A Party in a Box

When it comes to kiddy pools, you don’t have to go big, but you’ll be happy you did.Bestway

Don’t think you have to settle for a simple pool, either. Kiddy pools have come a long way from the day of glorified balloons. You can get what amount to fold-away waterparks, depending on what you’re willing to shell out. Before you buy, make sure that you’ve got a pump strong enough to fill it, as some of these things can be the size of a small car, and enough space for it to be fun to use. Nobody wants a waterpark jammed up against the back fence.