Keyword: #poolregulations

Pool Regulations
Ngā Waeture Puna Kaukau

If you have a swimming pool or spa pool, there are rules and regulations regarding safety barriers that you must comply with. You are also required to have pool inspections.

Pool barriers

Every residential pool (including portable or inflatable pools) that is filled with water (400mm deep or more) must have a barrier to restrict access to the pool by unsupervised children under 5 years old. 

Spa pools must have a barrier to restrict access when the pool is not in use.


If you are building a fence for around a residential pool, you will require a building consent.

Fence heights must be at least 1.2m above the ground or any permanent projection/object (e.g. planters, walls or furniture). 

If your property’s boundary fencing forms part of the pool barrier, ensure there are no trees or climbable objects on the neighbours side of the fence.

Make sure your pool fence is durable and strong to prevent any child under 5 years old from being able to climb over, crawl under or through from the outside.

Remember: a pool fence is designed to keep young children out unless they are supervised.

Watch out for any possible climbing points on or near the bool barrier, such as:

  • Windowsills
  • Trellis fencing
  • Hose taps
  • Pool pumps
  • Trees / plants
  • Pot plants / planters
  • Retaining walls


Gates on pool barriers must open away from the pool, swing clear of any obstruction that may hold it open and have a self-closing device that will return the gate to the closed and latched position

Building part of the barrier?

Any doors opening to the immediate pool area must be side-hinged or sliding single-leaf no wider than 1m.

Doors must have either a self-closing device or an audible alarm AND a self-latching device that is released manually, with the release at least 1.5m above floor level.

A sign must be fixed inside the door between 1.2 - 1.5m high stating “SWIMMING POOL. CLOSE THE DOOR” Windows opening out to the immediate pool area must have safety latches restricting the window from opening more that 100mm.

Spa pools

Some small, heated pools are exempt from fencing requirements when they meet the following criteria:

  • The water surface is 5m2 or less
  • All side walls are at least 760mm high and cannot be climbed
  • A durable cover that can support 20kg, is hinged from the centre with lockable fasteners that inhibit child access.
  • Signage fixed on two opposite sides of the cover stating: “WARNING: This spa pool cover must be kept locked except when under adult supervision”


Council is responsible for ensuring all residential pools in the District comply with the regulations relating to pool barriers. All residential pools must be inspected every three years to check for compliance with the Building Act.

An inspection may occur at any time if Council receives a complaint regarding a residential pool barrier regardless of if that pool is due for a periodic inspection. 

All pool barrier inspections will be chargeable, and an invoice will be sent to the property owner once completed. If your pool barrier is found to be non-compliant, an additional fee will be charged for subsequent inspections.

Below are some of the main things our inspector will be looking at:

  • Barriers must be at least 1.2m high and strong enough to prevent climbing over, under or through from the outside.
  • Gates must open away from the pool and be self-closing
  • Latches must be positioned where a small child cannot reach.
  • If your pool is above ground and exterior walls at least 1.2m high, any ladder or means of access to the interior of the pool must be removable or able to be left inoperable whenever the pool is not intended to be in use.
  • Spa pools must have a durable, lockable lid, capable of supporting 20kg in load.
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