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Where To Buy Sand For Pool Base

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If You Are Losing Potting Soil Out The Bottom Of Your Containersyour Potting Mix Is Too Fine

How to Prepare and Level the Sand / Base for a Swimming Pool to be Erected on.

Can I use all purpose sand for rooting cuttings.

Next up we have what they sell in big box stores as all purpose sand. Not sure what people use it for, maybe under paying brick, but for that Id much rather use crushed, super fine limestone because it packs hard and wont ever seep through a crack hour glass style like sand can. It does contain some small stones which makes it better than play sand. But . . .

Rooting cuttings in all purpose sand.

Again, this is what one of our local big box stores sells. Dont bother looking for brand name.But more importantly . . .

Installing A Pool With A Sand Base And Sand Cove

Step 1

Using fine sand , lay a 3 thick bed of sand across the entire inside of the pool this will form your base.

Step 2

Build a sand cove against the pool wall by creating a 4 angle of sand sand base giving you a total sand cove height of 7 inches where the base meets the metal pool wall.

Step 3

This is the completed above ground pool liner installation. The vinyl pool liner should be completely supported by the pool base to avoid any stress or damage to it or the metal pool wall.

Sand When Not To Use It For Your Pool Floor

Aside from not using it when you dont need it, sand shouldnt be used when building your round pool on a hard surface like concrete or asphalt. I typically dont recommend building oval pools on hard surfaces for other reasons so this pertains to round pools only.

The reason sand shouldnt be used here is because itll wash away due to rain storms, and anyone whos lived in Central Florida for any length of time knows it rains here everyday during the summer months. And every time it rains heavily some of the sand will be washed out from under the pool. Eventually the pool framework will no longer be covered by the sand and the metal edges and corners will be exposed. Once this happens the pool liner can easily be punctured by the metal components of the pool causing you to need a new liner and a different plan of attack.

For round pools being installed on concrete I recommend foam pool cove and an Armor Shield pool floor pad. These items will protect your pool liner from the pool framework and the rough concrete or asphalt surface. I mentioned these items by name deliberately because they work good. Do not substitute other materials for the Armor Shield and foam pool cove and expect great results. Its important to note that some other brands of pool floor pads will cause your pool to rust out so be sure to buy the right one.

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Questions About What To Use Under The Liner

This is the part of Ask The Pool Pro where you can ask questions or post comments about what to use under an above ground pool liner.

The questions that have already been answered are found just below the invitation. You may find the answer you are looking for is already there.

Your questions are important to me and all of my site readers. Also important are your thoughts and comments. What have you tried to use under a vinyl liner that did not work or what do you consider the perfect above ground pool base?

Faster, more personalized, service is also available, for a low fee. Try thePool Pro consulting service.

Thanks for helping to build this great source of information for all owners of above ground pools.

Top 5 Mistakes Installing An Above Ground Pool

Sand Gunite Full Floor Inground Vinyl Liner
Avoid these common mistakes when building your above ground pool.

Mistake 1: Building up the low areas with dirt taken from the higher areas.

This is probably the top mistake we see people make. If you are pushing the dirt around to level out the site for the pool, eventually the dirt will settle and your pool will no longer be level. This might happen right away when you fill the pool, or shortly down the road, one thing is for sure, it will happen. Pool Pros always digs out to the lowest spot so the entire pool is sitting on virgin soil.

Mistake 2: Using too much mason sand.

The ground should be dug level on virgin soil always. The sand is simply a buffer from the pool liner to the ground. The purpose of the sand is not to level your pool. If you are using sand to level things out you will have nothing but problems.

Mistake 3: Setting the track on sand.

The sand should be inside the pool track, never under the track. If the track of the pool is set on sand, it will wash out and the pool will settle or sink, reducing the longevity of your pool.

Mistake 4: Not compacting or troweling the sand.

First the sand should be compacted with a plate compactor, and then hand troweled to a smooth finish. If this is not done, the first time you get into the pool, your feet will sink into the sand creating divots in the sand which could lead to wrinkles in your liner, and ultimately shorten the lifespan of your liner.

Mistake 5: Placing patio blocks under your uprights.

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What Type Of Sand Should I Use

For your pools base, you want sand thats very fine and free of any rocks or pebbles. This type of sand is referred to as mason sand, masonry sand, or sometimes mortar sand. While mason sand is the most popular choice, another option is concrete sand.

With filter sand, you should check the manual to see whats recommended for that specific pool sand filter. The grains of this kind of sand are generally between 0.45 and 0.55 millimeters.

Which Type Of Sand Is Best

When it comes to choosing the right type of sand for your pools base, youll likely realize that you have many options to choose from. Although everyone has their own opinion about which material is best, its most common to employ either mason sand or white sand for the project.

Its true that concrete sand is an excellent choice for creating a level surface beneath an above-ground pool, but the particle size of the sand may be bigger, resulting in the chance for voids.

If youre still unsure of which sand you want to use for your swimming pool project we recommend speaking with a local expert, such as Braen Supply.

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How Much Vermiculite Is Needed For Pool Floors

It depends on the size of your pool I have created this small chart to help you order the right amount of material to cover the floor areas with a layer that is 1-2 thick. Vermiculite is sold in a common size of 4 cubic feet, and you may be surprised at how light it is . Portland cement comes in 94 lb bags, and you may be surprised at how heavy these are! If storing your product outside, be sure to wrap it tightly with plastic or tarps, to keep any rain from touching the bags.

Now Lets Add Some Water

Floor Options In A Vinyl Liner Pool – Sand, Grout and Vermiculite

Testing the drainage of plant propagation sand.

Testing beach sand and silica sand for drainage.

We added water to both of these containers and in a matter of less than one minute the silica sand appeared to be completely free of excess water. In this photo the beach sand still has a little water standing on top. Not a good sign.

Testing play sand and all purpose sand for drainage.

In the same amount of time, we added water to all of the containers at the same time, the play sand was still very soggy and as you can see, some of it washed out the bottom of the container. In the right hand container you can see that the all purpose sand also has water standing on top of the container. That surprised me, with the visible pebbles in the all purpose sand I thought it would drain better, but theres something in there thats inhibiting drainage.

Testing different kinds of sands for drainage for plant propagation.

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Pool Base Materials: Portland Vermiculite And Pre

I know, I wish we could just lay the liner down and call it a day but every swimming pool needs to have a base. The purpose of the swimming pool base is to provide a smooth surface for the pool’s liner. A smooth surface is less abrasive on the liner and makes it easier to keep the entire pool clean. There are four choices to use for the pool base.

  • Sand
  • Pre-Mix also call Pool Krete® or Pool Crete
  • SAND

    Sand is the most economical option out of the four however not really the best. It can work well in pools with play or sports bottoms or simply put pool’s that do not have a steep slope. The amount of sand needed will vary by pool size. The larger the pool, the more sand you will need for the bottom.

    The sand used should be mason’s quality and spread about 1″- 2″ thick. Keep in mind, this type of floor material is much more likely to leave foot prints and impressions that you can still see even after the liner has been installed.


    The combination of sand and Portland cement is the next step up from using sand and merging the two materials will form a hard floor free of those pesky sand footprints.

    Portland cement is available from your local hardware store. This is one of the more common floor bottom materials used by our DIY customers.


    Vermiculite can be purchased in 4 cubic foot that must be mixed with Portland cement or in 42 lbs bags that is already mixed with Portland cement.


    *94 lbs bag of Portland Cement

    Installing A Pool With A Sand Base Foam Cove Liner Floor Pad And Wall Foam

    Step 1

    Using fine sand , lay a 3 thick bed of sand across the entire inside of the pool this will form your base.

    Step 2

    After installing the 3 sand base, lay the liner floor pad on top. Please note your liner floor pad is pre-cut to fit your pools exact dimensions.

    Step 3

    Using spray glue or duct tape attach the pool wall foam to the metal pool wall. Start attaching the foam at the top of the pool wall. This will leave a small portion of the bottom of the pool wall not covered with foam but this area will be hidden with a sand or foam cove.

    Step 4

    After installing the pool wall foam, attach the pool cove by removing the adhesive backing and sticking it to the metal pool wall directly on top of the liner floor pad .

    Step 5

    This is the completed above ground pool liner installation. The vinyl pool liner should be completely supported by the pool base to avoid any stress or damage to it or the metal pool wall.

    In conclusion, there are several ways that one can prepare their pool base prior to installing your above ground pool liner. If these steps are followed correctly they can help prevent issues with your above ground pool liner post installation and in years to come!

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    What To Put Under Above Ground Pools

    After youve decided where to put your pool, its time to decide what under pool mat you will use for your Intex pool. The right material can extend the life of your pool.

    Heres a list of the most popular materials to put underneath an above ground pool, whether its on grass, pavers, gravel or concrete.

    • Interlocking Foam Tiles
    • Easy to Install
    • Cost

    Having a breathable material will help prevent mildew and mound which is caused by trapped moisture.

    Some materials are naturally tougher than others, such as commercial under pool pads. This is more important if you plan to put your pool on grass or dirt.

    Having the right material just feels nicer on your feet. Some people dont mind it but having stones sticking into my feet isnt my preference. Going for a thicker material or combining two materials together will produce a better feel.

    A material that is easy to get to lay flat is also beneficial. This will mean that the bottom of your pool will be wrinkle free making it easier to clean .

    Lastly, when deciding on what to put under an above ground pool you want to consider how easy the material is to work with and the cost. Although carpet could be free , its not easy to cut and could be quite a lot of effort to install.

    Interlocking foam tiles can be found here and at Walmart, Home Depot and many other stores.

    They provide thick padding and will feel great under your feet. Provided you install them on a level surface, the bottom of the pool will feel nice and smooth.

    Can Play Sand Be Used Under Pools

    Pool Cove Installation Review

    sandunderpoolsandsandplay sandsand

    . In respect to this, what kind of sand should I use under my pool?

    Mason Sand, For Your Pool’s BaseMason sand, sometimes called mortar sand, can normally be found at any sand/gravel yard or masonry supply yard. It is usually measured in yards. It is very fine and should not contain any rocks or pebbles.

    Likewise, how much sand should I put under my pool? Type and VolumeAn average 18-foot round aboveground swimming pool requires about 3 tons or 2.5 cubic yards of sand to provide a 2-inch base. The cost for a cubic yard of masonry sand varies, but $48 is about average.

    Similarly one may ask, why do you put sand under a pool?

    The sand acts as a barrier between the ground and the liner and helps to protect the liner from any rocks, roots or other hard objects. It also provides cushioning for the floor of the pool, making it more comfortable underfoot.

    Do I need sand under my pool?

    The only pools that require sand as a base are vinyl lined ones. The sand is easily troweled flat and smooth and provides a compactable surface free of any rocks or debris with sharp edges that could puncture the liner. Nowadays, it is mostly only used under above ground pools.

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    Common Pool Cove Materials

    The most common materials used for a swimming pool cove are:

    • foam forms
    • sifted earth
    • sand

    We do not recommend using sand as it does not stay put very well or for very long. Also, once the sand moves around a bit, it could expose your liner to the bottom rail of your pool which could cause major damage to not just your liner but your pool as well.

    Sifted earth is a better option over sand as long as it is packed firmly, but as it can still lose its structural shape over time, we recommend foam forms.

    What You Really Need To Know About That

    Some people will tell you to place paper coffee filters in the bottom of your nursery containers to keep the potting soil from running out. You do not need to do that! Good potting soil will not escape from the holes in the bottom of the nursery container. There is not a commercial grower in the business that I ever seen do that, Ive never done it and Ive never needed to.

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    Why Sand And What Type

    Pool installation manuals and various internet pool websites often tell you to use sand for you pool base. This is because sand is very easy to obtain regardless of where you live in the country. It can be found at practically any landscape supply depot, concrete factory and home improvement stores in the Orlando area. Although home improvement stores rarely have it for sale in bulk amounts needed for this type of work. If you feel you need it, a quick call to one of these places and youll find it to be available and affordable. The catch is youll need a full size pick-up truck to go get it. If you dont have access to a truck, some of these places will deliver sand to you if you order enough.

    Although sand isnt the best material for the job, it is pretty good and the type of sand doesnt matter. You may hear someone ask what type of sand are you looking for, builders sand, play sand, concrete sand etc. This only refers to the size of the sand grains and that really doesnt matter for this application. You just need clean sand free of debris to build your pool on.

    Pool Filter Sand 50 Lb 4151

    Where to buy SAND $7.53 (SANDBOX) if not on Coinbase
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    Provides pool owners with a way to replace your filtering sand to dramatically improve your pool water quality. It requires less maintenance. After use, your sand filter will provide your pool with softer, more natural water with a jewel-like brilliance. This sand adsorbs and eliminates water contaminants, ammonia, and odor caused by algae, bacteria fungus, mold, and mildew.


    • Reduces odors, eye burning, and chemical usage
    • Traps particles and ammonium ions that cause eye burning chloramines
    • Reduces need for chemical shock treatments

    Read Also: Does Cyanuric Acid Reducer Work

    Installing A Pool With A Sand Base Foam Cove And Liner Floor Pad

    Step 1

    Using fine sand , lay a 3 thick bed of sand across the entire inside of the pool this will form your base.

    Step 2

    After installing the 3 sand base, lay the liner floor pad on top. Please note your liner floor pad is pre-cut to fit your pools exact dimensions.

    Step 3

    Attach the pool cove directly on top of the liner floor pad by removing the adhesive backing and sticking it to the metal pool wall .

    Step 4

    This is the completed above ground pool liner installation. The vinyl pool liner should be completely supported by the pool base to avoid any stress or damage to it or the metal pool wall.

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