Why Do You Need To Level The Ground For A Pool
Its worth noting out why this even matters. Your above-ground pool is going to be really heavy once its set up.
Its also not made of concrete or hardened steel, so its not as robust and durable as you might expect.
Hence the immense cost savings of above ground vs. inground pools.
The weight mainly comes from the massive amount of water thats going into it.
Having a solid, flat foundation for your pool makes everything easier. A foundation that isnt level will lead to tearing, cracking, and your pool liner falling apart over time.
In some cases, people want to pour a level of concrete as a base layer.
However, the roughness of hand-poured concrete can scratch your pools liner and also lead to failure. If youre looking to lay concrete, you should use commercial pads.
At any rate, the flatter and sturdier the foundation is, the longer your pool will survive.
As a rule of thumb, you want the ground to be within an inch or two in height from one corner to the other.
Rather watch than Read? Heres a great Video from Hoov45:
Step : Add Or Take Away Soil Until The Ground Is Level
After its clear where the ground is unlevel, its time to use a shovel to level the ground. This part is tedious as the soil needs to be taken out or added one scoop at a time. First, find the deepest spot of the site. This depth is where the rest of the ground will need to be leveled out to meet.
Its not advised to add a large amount of soil to lowered areas because the above-ground pool will flatten the earth, possibly creating an uneven surface. If the site is being topped off with sand, a good rule of thumb is to dig the pool area at least 2 inches into the ground.
Easy Lighting Hack With Pool Noodles
One of the best pool hack ideas Ive come across lately:
Adding solar lights to the pool will make staying around or in the pool at night possible. Get some noodles and zip ties from the Dollar store. Measure the length of each solar light and cut a length from the pool noodle.
Use the existing poll supports to attach the light to the pool.
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How To Level Above Ground Pool On Sand
Now that you know what tools you need for leveling above ground pool, how do you do it? Here is the cheapest way to level the ground for the pool.
Step 1: Choose the right spot
First, choose a spot where you will install the Intex pool. It should not be near trees, septic lines, power lines, underground cables, or sewage lines.
Step 2: Clear the spot
If there is any debris, stones, or rocks, get your rake and remove them from the area. These could damage your pool. Then, put all the debris in your wheelbarrow and transport them away from the site.
Next, use a sod cutter to cut the grass and move it to another location in your garden.
Step 3: Get your leveling device
Here is where you use your 2 by 4 wooden planks. First, lay down your planks from the center of your pool to the outer edge. You can use as many planks as possible. Then, get your level and place it on top of each plank.
Step 4: Identify the uneven ground
In this step, you will use the levels as guides. Then, use your stakes to mark the spots on the site that are not level before you start digging.
Alternatively, you could use stakes and twine. In this case, you simply put one stake at the center and another at the outer edge. Next, you tie the twine between the two stakes.
Step 5: Leveling the ground
After identifying all the unlevel areas, get your shovel and make the ground even. You could either dig out the dirt or add more soil.
Step 6: Smoothen out the ground
Cheapest Way To Level Ground For A Pool
Bob Vila emphasizes that you should carefully select the location for your pool. Use a tape measure and install stakes and use tape or spray paint to mark the outline of the pool. Spend at least a week observing your outdoor space, noting where it’s shaded and any spots that tend to get muddy when it rains.
You should carefully comb the area with a rake to remove any rocks, debris, large plants and weeds. Use a sod cutter to remove grass and vegetation. Next, lay down 2x4s in lines from the pool’s center to the outside, setting a level on each piece of lumber to ensure it’s still even.
Even minor deviations in the ground underneath your pool can cause enormous issues, so it’s critical to be meticulous throughout this process. Begin adding or taking away dirt and earth underneath the planks until all of the level tools show that the ground is perfectly even. If you have a particularly steep slope or hilly yard, building an in-ground pool on your sloped yard might be more cost-effective.
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Bestway 57323e Fast Ground Pool Set
The Bestway provides enough space for multiple people to enjoy the pool at once. The pool comes with a 530-gallon filter pump and has super tough laminated PVC walls, as well as a plug that can be connected directly to a garden hose for easy draining. The pool holds a ton of water for all-day fun and can be ready to use in just 10 minutes.
Pros: Quick setup. Comes with a filter pump.
Cons: Can be a bit difficult to get in and out of, with water escaping every time a person pushes on the wall to enter and exit.
Ways Of Leveling Your Pools Base
Its not something you think about on a regular basis , but each cubic yard of dirt weighs about 2,300 pounds. That same cubic yard, spread out over the area occupied by a 15-foot round pool, is less than half an inch deep yikes! Thats a lot of shoveling.
If your backyard is far from level, your best bet may be to hire some equipment, like a Bobcat with a dozer blade, or even pay professionals to do the necessary earthmoving. This adds to your total cost, so may make it worth looking at either a larger or a more durable pool than what you first had in mind.
Should you choose to do the job yourself, you first have to decide between The Hard Way and The Easy Way.
The Hard Way starts by using a sod cutter or rototiller to hack out a chunk of your lawn. After that, youll use a shovel and rake to smooth and level what remains, removing all rocks and roots as you go, finally tamping down the soil with a lawn roller.
The Easy Way produces nearly as good a result, with much less sweat and no risk of damaging a buried cable or sewer line. It does require a patch of ground thats at least eyeball level, though, so you may still have to do some digging.
Sand takes much less effort to rake flat. Its recommended that you tape a spirit level to a straight board. As you drag it around the site of your future pool, any hollows and dips will be easy to spot and deal with.
Once your ground is level, you can lay down bottom plates, a base protector, and a tarp, and youre good to go.
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Line Your Skimmer Basket With Pantyhose To Improve Filtration
Ah, the good ole skimmer basket. The first line of defense between pool contaminants and your filter system.
Most of the time when you empty out your basket, you only fish out a few leaves, twigs, and bugs if anything. Everything else seems to find its way through eventually making a home in your filter.
But not anymore.
This is one of the simpler pool care hacks, but the results itll get you are immediately noticeable.
Grab an old pair of pantyhose and wrap them around the skimmer basket. As if youre putting the basket in a net. Then, tie the spare fabric around the rim.
This simple hack improves the effectiveness of your baskets filtration drastically. But more importantly, it takes a huge load off of the main filter, which also means less work for you.
Starting to see how all these pool care hacks tend to just stack up and create one awesome, time and money saving effect?
Flaps To Prevent Water Splashing Into The T
Cut a flap of vinyl and glue it to the inside of the pool and then hang it over the edge. The flap hanging over could easily be secured to the leg with a zip tie, or even a magnet.
Flaps were patterned and then cut out of vinyl coated PVC fabric and glued with HH-66 vinyl cement. The black “buttons” are strong neodimium magnets. They came epoxy coated but I’ll probably use the leftover Rust-Oleum I used on the support poles to paint them gray as well.
The bottom of the flaps are square and rolled underneath. This forms two funnels on the sides of each flap that blocks water from reaching the t-connectors and allows any water coming in on the sides to flow out the bottom. The magnet holds the folded-in corners to the upright.
The inside of the pool is now completely sealed, no water can splash through the openings and get into the t-connectors now. Of course this mod depends on the through-the-wall skimmer I had added previously to ensure the water level has an overflow point to prevent accidental overfilling.
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Step : Rake Any Remaining Rocks Or Debris And Tamp The Ground
Once the ground is leveled, use the rake or lawn roller to go through the area again to remove any rocks or debris that surfaced during the leveling process. After the area is free of debris, use a hose to moisten the soil. This will take about an hour of low-pressure watering. Once the area is moist, use a hand tamper or a rolling tamper to compress the surface.
After compacting, theres the option to completely smooth the area out with sand. However, its essential to refer to the above-ground pools instructions before taking this step.
Permanent Steps Make Above Ground Easy
In case your pool is over the ground, it is best if it is supplied with a ladder to make sure that access is safe and no dirt is transferred from the ground.
A plain ladder will do the job, however, if you are looking for a more elegant finished look, make a staircase. By the way, you can even use parts from an old staircase and customize them to suit the height of the pool.
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Can I Level My Above Ground With Sand
Absolutely. However, the intention of using the sand is not to level your above-ground pool. Instead, sand is for cushioning your pools vinyl liner from objects that could tear it. However, you must ensure the base of sand under your above-ground pool is between 2 and 3 inches.
What You Need To Level Above Ground Pool
Leveling above the ground pool is a delicate task. Therefore, you need the right tools and materials for the job, such as:
- 2 by 4 wooden planks
- Rake and shovel
- Sod cutter and lawn roller
- Hand or rolling tamper
What To Use To Level The Blocks
Most people will use a four-foot level and starting with the first block, will level from block to block all the way around until all blocks are the same level. This is hard to do as the distance between the track connectors is more than four feet long. To make up the difference, some will tape their level to a five foot 2×4 so it will reach from block to block.
Personally, if I were using a four-foot level to level the blocks, I would leave the track in place and put the level on top of the track. This will allow you to level farther than the four-foot length of the level as the track covers the longer distance from connector to connector. This is also more accurate as you are now leveling the actual track and not just the blocks. Confused yet? Sorry. This will make more sense when you are doing it instead of just reading about it.
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Saltwater Pool Vs Chlorine
Most above-ground pools use harsh chemicals like chlorine to keep the water clear. But a saltwater above-ground pool is the safer alternative. While saltwater pools still need cleaning chemicals, they dont use nearly as much of the stuff. Saltwater pools are becoming popular for those who want to use fewer chemicals and dont want to be burdened with maintenance. Swimming in saltwater also feels better. The lower chemical content means the water is not as harsh on your eyes and skin.
Saltwater above-ground pools are just as easy to set up as other types of pools. And you can also buy a conversion kit that turns standard chlorine pools into saltwater pools.
Lift The Slab Of The Pool
To level your pool, you will need to reach under the slab and put in the new leveling blocks. So, to do that, you need to lift it. Now how can you lift a heavy pool? Take a shovel and slip in the tip of the shovel under the slab and push down the handle at a slight angle, you will see that the tip of the shovel has lifted the slab. Make sure that you are doing this for the side that is on the lower end.
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When The Pool Level Is Severely Off
Suppose the pool was more than a few degrees from perfectly flat. If that is the case, then things are more complicated. Since the pool is so tilted, the water is concentrating in one area. Thus, it will be far heavier for you to lift. Plus, on top of that, the wall is far more likely to break. While you move it, extreme caution is advised. Otherwise, you might be looking for a replacement sooner than expected.
Blend With Your Surroundings
This pool has been built in the backyard of a property in the woods. So the most natural thing has been to look for a pool design that blends it with the landscape.
The shape of the pool has curved lines outlined with stones. The stacked piles at the end imitate a natural phenomenon that finishes with a waterfall pouring directly into the pool.
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Step : Contact A Landscaping Or Pool Professional
After the ground is leveled, its time to learn how to install the above-ground pool. Follow the manufacturers instructions to install the pool correctly or contact a pool professional for assistance. They can examine the ground to ensure it wont cause issues for the pool liner. Contact a landscaping company to spray the area with herbicides or fungicides to keep growth at a minimum around the pool. If the area for the pool is still uneven, a professional can assess any damage and work to level the ground for a pool.
Leveling the ground for an above-ground pool can be a difficult task, so its advised to have a professional verify the area for the pool is truly level before you have your pool installed. This will ensure that the pool water level is even and theres no possibility of damage to the pool walls or liner.
If youre concerned about safety or your ability to successfully level the ground for your pool, its always best to hire a professional.
How To Level Ground For A Pool
This article was co-authored by Rob Litman. Rob Litman is a Landscaper, General Contractor, and the CEO of Vitoli Inc., a landscaping, hardscaping, ecoscaping, and swimming pool design company in Los Angeles, California. With over 20 years of experience in construction, Rob specializes in energy-efficient and drought-tolerant landscaping. He holds General Building Contractor and Registered Pool/Spa Contractor Licenses. In 2007, Rob won House of the Year in Gardena, California.There are 12 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 186,494 times.
An uneven surface can weaken or damage an above ground pool, so leveling the ground before installation is essential. Remove the sod, then check for levelness to identify slopes and high spots. Always dig out high patches instead of filling in lower areas. After youve leveled the ground, rake away debris, tamp the soil, then spread and tamp a layer of sand.
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Build A Swimming Pool Using Pallets
Who says you need to buy a regular aboveground pool? If you dont like that look at all, no matter how well it is disguised, or you just want to do-it-yourself, consider building an aboveground pool from the ground up using wood pallets.
The supplies are cheap and the finished design is gorgeous!
Ready To Learn How To Level Ground For A Pool And Unsure How To Handle The Terrain Heres The Complete Guide For Leveling Ground For A Pool
By Lauren Wingo | Updated Apr 7, 2022 11:28 AM
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One of the most refreshing warm-weather activities is going for a swim in a pool. While many homeowners may be ready to learn how to install an above-ground pool in their own backyard, there are a few things to consider. The first is how to level ground for the pool of their choice to ensure a safe and reliable swimming experience.
Time required: A few hours to days, depending on the size of the areaDifficulty: Beginner to intermediateEstimated cost: Varies depending on tools purchased
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