Above Ground Pool Base

Above Ground Pool Base: Support Your Pool

Intro Pool

Building the Foundation to Support Your New Pool

Above ground pools are a popular and affordable option for homeowners looking to enjoy the benefits of an above ground swimming pool without the cost and maintenance required for an in-ground pool.

However, the success of an above ground pool base depends heavily on the preparation of the area it is installed, including the type of material, and stabilizing products placed underneath it.

Are you wanting to install a pool this summer but don’t know what type of base material is best to place under it? It’s a common issue many homeowners face when beginning to plan their backyard oasis.  It doesn’t have to be overwhelming or difficult and it is actually easy to install your pool with a few guidelines and most of the things you will need are available at local hardware stores.

The truth is, putting the right kind of base under your above ground swimming pool will not only give you peace of mind that it’s secure and safe, but it also sets the stage for where any extra decking or landscaping can be placed around your precious investment.

My helpful guide on materials used as base materials and how to properly install them for an above ground swimming pool will set you on track toward creating quite literally the best summer ever!

If you have ever wondered what to put under above ground pool installations you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, I will provide a comprehensive guide on preparing a base for pools and protecting the swimming pool liner from damage regardless of the size and type of pool. Whether you are installing a kiddie pool, an inflatable pool, or a steel wall Intex pool, these instructions will be a good guide.

Why is an Above Ground Pool Base Important?

The base underneath above ground swimming pools is crucial in pool installations for ensuring the longevity and stability of your pool. Without a good foundation underneath an above ground pool, the ground can become unstable, leading to water displacement and structural damage.

Your pool should be placed on level ground and away from trees or other large objects that can cause damage to the pool wall, foam tiles, or liner.

A good base will also provide a smooth surface for the swimming pool to rest on, making it more comfortable for swimmers and easier to maintain.

Choosing the Right Location for Your Above Ground Pool is very important. Before preparing your base, select the right location for your above ground pool.

Factors to consider when deciding what would be a good location include:

Access to a power source:

Your pool will require a power source for the filter and pump, so it is best to select a location near an electrical outlet.

Sun exposure:

Your pool will benefit from being placed in a location that receives a good amount of sunlight for warmer water.

Proximity to the house:

It is a good idea to choose a location for your above ground pool in close proximity to your home. This will make it more convenient for you to use and maintain your swimming pool.

Ground stability:

You should choose a location that is level and stable. Avoid areas prone to flooding, as this can cause problems for your pool.

Preparing the Ground for Above Ground Pools:

Most homes don’t have a pre-cut pool pad ready for a pool installation and will need a place prepared, Once you have chosen the location for your pool, you must prepare the ground to ensure it is level and stable. Here are the steps to follow:

Clean the site:

Remove any sticks, wire, metal, rocks, sharp objects, and anything that might damage the liner from the ground surface where you plan to install your pool.

Mark the ground:

Use spray paint to mark where you plan to install your pool.

Level the area:

Using a level, check the ground for high and low spots and for the general level of the entire area where you want to put the pool.

Tamp the ground:

Use a tamper to compact the soil and create a firm surface for your pool. The more time you spend on this phase the better your pool installation will hold up over the long term with less movement of the base underneath the bottom of the pool.

Pool Base Layers

Understanding the Types of Above Ground Pool Bases!

Installing an above ground pool is a great way to make your backyard oasis come to life. However, understanding what pool base you need and how to install it is a key factor in the construction of pools. The base is the foundation underneath an above ground pool that supports the pool water weight, pool liner, pool wall, and pool equipment.

The most common pool bases are playground sand, mason sand,  cloth, carpet, carpet padding, and interlocking foam tiles, all of which help create a level surface for the pool that prevents settling and shifting. Sand offers good drainage while providing stability for the pool wall.

On the other hand, cloth and pads reduce the amount of sand used and will protect the above ground pool liner from any damaging objects. With each pool base having unique benefits, it’s important to understand which one is best suited for your individual needs underneath your pool installations.

  1. Sand Base: A sand base is the best choice for above ground pool installations. It provides a smooth and level surface for the pool and can help to absorb some of the impacts of heavy use. However, sand can shift over time, so it may require occasional leveling.
  2. Concrete Base: A concrete base is a durable and long-lasting option for above ground pools. It provides a stable surface for the pool and can help to prevent shifting or settling. However, it can be expensive to install and may require professional help.
  3. Foam Base: A foam base is a lightweight and affordable option for above ground pools. It provides a smooth surface for the pool and can help to protect the vinyl pool liner from damage. However, it may not be as durable as other options and may require occasional replacement.

Protecting your pool floor and the liner is essential to ensure the longevity and stability of your pool. Here are some pool floor pad ideas to protect your pool including a pool pad, ground cloth, foam mats, flooring underlayment,

Use a Pool Pad:

A pool pad or pool mat is a protective layer placed over your pool base to provide a barrier between the pool and the ground. It helps to prevent rocks, tree roots, and other debris from puncturing the pool liner, which can cause leaks, tears, and rips.

Install a Ground Cloth:

A ground cloth is another protective layer that can be placed between the pool pad or pool mat and the ground. It helps to prevent weeds, grass, and other vegetation from growing under the pool, which can cause unevenness and instability.

Add  Wall Foam:

Wall foam is a layer of foam placed on the inside of the pool wall. It helps to provide a cushioning effect, which can help to prevent scratches, tears and other damage to the pool liner.

Build a Pool Cove:

A sand cove is a layer of foam or sand placed around the inside perimeter at the bottom of the pool wall. It helps to provide a smooth transition between the pool wall and the pool base providing support that can help to prevent stress on the pool liner.

Frequently Asked Questions!

Q: Do I need to use a pool pad under my above ground pool?

A: I would recommend you use pool pads, interlocking foam tiles, or something similar under your pool to protect the pool liner from damage. Pool pads can also help to provide a smooth and comfortable walking surface for the pool bottom.

Q: Can I install an above ground pool on a slope? 

A: I do not recommend and it is not a good idea to install above ground pools on a slope. It can be difficult to level the ground properly, and the pool wall and pool bottom may become unstable over time. It is best to choose a location that can be leveled and made stable.

Q. Can I install an above ground pool on a concrete slab or concrete pad?

A.  Yes, it is possible to install an above ground pool on concrete. However, you should first make sure the concrete area is level and stable. You should also use cloth or pads to provide extra protection for the liner and foam mats or flooring protectors to provide additional cushioning. By taking these steps, you can help ensure that your pool remains stable and protected over time. 

Q. Is putting a pool on grass a good idea?

A.  It is possible to install an above ground pool on a lawn. However, it is important to consider the extra protection and preparation needed to ensure a stable pool base. A pool pad, ground cloth, pool cove, and other protective layers can help to protect the pool from shifting or settling due to the grass underneath. It is also important to remove any rocks, roots, or other debris from the pool area before installation.

Q: How long does an above ground pool base last?

A: The lifespan of an above ground pool depends on the base material and the level of maintenance. A concrete foundation can last for decades with proper care, while a foam base may need to be replaced every few years.

My Final Take on Building an Above Ground Pool Base!

In conclusion, preparing your pool base and protecting it from damage is crucial to the longevity and stability of your pool. Choosing the right location, preparing the ground properly, and using the appropriate base material and protection can help ensure that your swimming pool lasts for many years.

Using interlocking foam tiles, ground cloth, pool pads, and other protective layers can help to protect your above ground pool from damage and shifts due to the soil or grass underneath. Additionally, a pool cove can help to provide support and a smooth transition between the pool wall and the pool base, while wall foam can help to provide cushioning for the vinyl pool liner. Proper preparation and protection of your pool base can help ensure that you enjoy many years of swimming in your above ground pool.

Finally, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing your above ground pool and consult a professional if needed. This will help to ensure that your pool is installed correctly and safely and that you feel good about the work you’ve done. With proper care and maintenance, you can enjoy many years of

Following the steps outlined in this article, you can enjoy your above ground pool with peace of mind, knowing that it is properly installed and protected.

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