Are you planning to have your dream swimming pool in the backyard of your house and make this summer a memorable one? You must have thought that the process would be tough and tedious. Well, the good news is that it’s not! Homeowners can now enjoy chilling by the poolside or in the pool at the back of your house anytime without investing endless energy and money.
The only thing that matters when it comes to setting an above-ground pool is its foundation. A solid, flat foundation is extremely important. It makes the pool last longer. Obviously, homeowners would want their dream pools to last the longest. Therefore all you need to take care of while setting up a pool is its foundation. If the pool isn’t level, it might tear and crack with time and cause accidents.
Are you aware that you can level the foundation of an above-ground pool without digging? Yes, isn’t it amazing? This makes the work much more cost-friendly and convenient. There are innumerable ways in which people can level the ground for a pool without digging.
Leveling the ground is important to ensure that the new pool can sit properly. Leveling can be done by using sand or solid foam, concrete slab, crushed stone sand, rolling tamper or pavers.
In this guide, we have given a step-by-step guide on leveling the ground for a pool without digging the ground. It’s easy and cost-effective. Continue to read below and go through the steps one by one.
How To Level Ground For Pool Without Digging?
Leveling the ground involves multiple steps. Once you level the ground, the rest of the process becomes easy. Before the actual leveling process begins, there are a few basic steps that one must follow. They are as follows:
Locate The Area First
It’s not possible to shift an above ground pool after you have finished setting it up at one place. Therefore, it’s better to take time and find out the most appropriate location in your backyard for setting up your dream summer pool.
While looking for the suitable location, ensure there are no utility lines running underground. People are advised to choose the flattest surface in your backyard. Not only should one avoid utility lines, but also avoid overhead power cables. If you are unable to detect where underground cables and gas lines probably are, you can call the utility company for assistance.
While looking for a suitable location, one must also keep the drainage in mind.
Choose an area that has good drainage facilities. You obviously wouldn’t like your backyard to turn into an unhygienic swamp, making it a breeding ground for mosquitoes and all sorts of diseases. Pay attention to how the water flows out when it pours heavily. Don’t select areas that remain waterlogged for a long period of time. If you do not have such an area, you can make channels so that water doesn’t remain stagnant in your backyard.
Clean The Selected Spot
After marking the suitable location for an above ground pool installation, you need to clean that area. Remove all existing plants within that area, if any. Remember, the ground where you wish to install the pool must be barren. It’s not possible to level any grass covered ground.
To get rid of everything within that demarcated area, use a tarp. It will kill the grass, making the task easier for you. You can also use a sod cutter and relocate the trees to another area.
Demarcating the right area is extremely important before the process of pool installation begins because it’s not possible to shift or reinstall the pool once it’s filled with water. Homeowners are advised to choose the flattest area available in their backyard as it will also reduce the amount of work needed to level the ground.
Inspect The Area
After cleaning the demarcated area of debris, rocks and everything else, a thorough inspection of this area is needed. This inspection includes finding out areas that are uneven. You may or may not use specific equipment for this purpose.
However, we would advise homeowners to use torpedo level to detect uneven places that might not be visible to the naked eyes. Lower level areas need to be filled in to raise their levels to match the level of higher level areas.
Correct The Unevenness
Once the uneven areas have been marked, it’s time to correct the unevenness. Like we already said, shovel the high lying areas. It is an easy way to level the ground. Manually remove stones, mud heaps or boulders lying within the demarcated area.
Water And Temper The Ground
After the ground is leveled, it has to be raked, moistened, and rolled. After it’s done, give time till it becomes hard and taut. Tamping is another process that will allow the ground to remain in good shape.
The ground would then be able to withstand the strain and weight of the new above ground pool.
After cleaning the soil and watering it afterward, run a rolling tamper across the ground and make it compact. For better results, use a soaker or sprinkler gently across the ground for about an hour or two before tamping the area.
Treat The Area With Fungicide And Herbicide
Since the area demarcated will be constantly wet after installing the new pool, it’s important to spread fungicide and herbicides to keep the area free from fungus and new plants.
- The amount of fungicide or herbicide needed will vary as per the area of the pool. Approximately, one gallon of these products will be required.
- Always buy petroleum-free products. Also buy ready to use products, so that you do not have to dilute them with water or other solutions.
- After applying fungicide and herbicide, wait for two weeks before installing the pool.
Now that the ground is barren and almost even, it’s time to proceed to the next steps.
Draw The Perimeter Of The Pool
Firstly, you need to mark the sides of the pool and locate the center of the above ground pool. Now take a rope. The length of the rope you require must be equal to the sum of the radius of the pool plus extra 6 inches. Now, you have to make a ring using the rope. To make the ring, use spray paint. Hold the rope tight and walk in a large circle. This circle marks the pattern of your above ground pool.
Once it is done, you can choose any of the three methods discussed below to level the base and make it ready for pool installation.
Using Crushed Rock
This is one of the most preferred methods for laying a strong foundation for an above ground pool. Take finely crushed stone for the best base. You can take limestone for this purpose.
Tamp The Ground
With your tamper, start tamping. You can either use a heavy tamper and do the process manually or use a gas powered tamper.
Tamping is an important process as it hardens and compacts the dirt and dust. As a result, it will not move around when the base is filled with water. Look for uneven areas while tamping and give extra attention to those areas. Spread the dirt evenly from higher areas to the lower ones.
Lay Down The Crushed Stone
After tamping, this is the next step. Spread the first layer of crushed stone on the ground. Make sure the pebbles are properly spread. Rake the higher areas and make the stone layer flat.
Pack The Stone
Now you need to tamp the stones methodically from the center towards the outer region. Next, tamp the stones in circular motion. After tamping, check the level again and you are done.
Using Land Grading
If you aren’t okay with a stone base, you can opt for land grading. For people who have a big pile of dirt in their yard, land grading is an ideal solution.
In this process, one simply has to spread out that dirt into an even layer and make it compact with adding anything extra. Land grading, in fact, is a fancy term meaning level the ground. Follow the simple steps mentioned below for land grading:
Rake The Area
Rake the area first to get rid of any debris lying around. Obviously, you wouldn’t like anything to remain at the pool’s base that can puncture the pool linear or collapse the pool.
Tamp And Add Dirt As Needed
After raking, start tamping that area. Check the low lying and high lying areas and spread the dirt accordingly to make it a flat base. Keep repeating this process until you have a smooth, flat base.
Water And Roll The Ground
Now it’s time to water and roll the ground. You can use a premium garden yard sod roller for this purpose. There are lots of them available in the market. You can hire a professional to do the task for you or you can choose to do it by yourself.
This process is important as it ensures that the soil is perfectly compact. For even better results, you can run a sprinkler in the area before an hour of rolling the ground.
When it comes to leveling the ground, one cannot truly emphasize on the benefits of tamping the ground. When in doubt, tamp. The resulting ground should be as compact and flat as possible.
After this step, your above ground pool is ready to be installed.
Using Masonry Sand
This is the last method of leveling the ground for pool. The process is very similar to the one we followed when using crushed stone. The only difference is that we would use sand in this case. Follow the steps mentioned below:
Tamp The Dirt
Needless to say, tamping is an important step if you have to level the ground for the pool. Keep tamping the ground until it’s flat and there are no high lying or low lying areas left.
Now, pour masonry sand on top. This kind of sand is stronger than other kinds and stays compacted for long. It’s perfect for laying foundations.
Spread a layer of masonry sand that’s about 2 inches thick. After spreading out the sand, roll it, water it and tamp it again.
If there are any large rocks or pebbles present, throw them away. Otherwise, they might puncture the pool liner.
Once you are done tamping and the foundation is smooth, your pool is ready to be installed.
Always remember that an improperly balanced above ground pool can cause major accidents. The force of water can break any of the sides of the pool and violently push the contents of the pool outside, including the swimmers.
If this happens, not only will the people inside the pool get hurt and you can also hurt others standing outside the pool. That’s why laying a strong, smooth and flat foundation for an above ground pool is extremely important.
In this guide, we have discussed some of the cheapest ways to level the ground for a pool. You can follow any of the methods and have a leveled foundation before pool installation. The best part is you don’t even have to dig the ground!
Therefore, level the ground as much as possible and enjoy an amazing summer!