Swimming Pool liner beads may have slightly different designs to fit different bead receiver tracks.
Which pool liner bead do you need?
The right bead on your liner will ensure that it locks into the receiving track snugly and securely. The wrong bead may not fit at all or may not keep your liner fitted.
The bead type that you need does not affect your pattern choices. Pattern choice is determined on if your pool has to have a beaded or non-beaded liner. Beaded liners allow you to choose patterns with a tiled wall which are generally more popular.
Most newer above ground pools use the Standard bead. However, if your pool is older, you should check the bead type carefully. The easiest way to verify which bead you require is to compare the old liner bead with the diagrams found here. The most common existing bead other than Standard is Esther Williams bead. If you have an Esther Wiliams pool then you most likely require the Esther bead.
The key items for matching your bead to the diagram is the thickness of the bead and the length of the hook which catches the lip of your bead track receiver.
Some vendors offer a “Uni-bead” or “Multi-bead” option. This refers to a bead that can fit either J-hook or standard beaded pools and allows the manufacturer to have a single bead type for both kinds of beaded pool.
When ordering your bead above ground liner, you will need to choose the bead type. By the way, the choice of pool liner bead may affect the price of your liner.
The diagrams below show the cross section of each to allow you to match your required bead.