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As the temperatures rise, installing a pool in your backyard probably sounds like a really good idea — until you learn that the average cost of a backyard pool is $20,000 to $30,000. Instead of dropping a ton of cash just to stay cool this summer, you may want to consider a stock tank pool.
These inexpensive farm staples, originally designed as water troughs for livestock and affectionately referred to as "hillbilly hot tubs," are popping up in more backyards across the country than ever before. "More and more, we see our customers turning to this innovative solution as a way to enjoy many of the benefits of a pool without the high cost," reads the Tractor Supply Company's website.
Not only are they more affordable than traditional pools, they're easier to set up, too. Once you've chosen a smooth area in your yard, you can seal and install the cow trough and even add a pump to make it easy to fill and clean.
To maintain the tub, drain it after use or treat it like any other pool. "We use an above ground pool pump/filter," Annie McCreary, the owner of a stock pool, wrote on Instagram. "We do add chlorine as needed, just like a regular pool/spa. I test it daily with the pool strips, [and], I shock it once a week — so easy! If it gets too funky, it's easy to drain and re-fill."
We think the standard galvanized metal look offers rustic charm, but you can also customize or enhance the pools to complement the style of your home. Some users position them in the ground and add surrounding rock tiles or flooring, while others add wooden decks or siding. For around $350, plus the cost of an $89 pump, you can easily add a country pool to your yard this summer.