Been lurking for a while and recently purchased an Intex 16' x 48" Ultra Frame AGP. My wife and I wanted to install this closer to our house, but we have a pretty steep grade (14" across 18 ft). We made the mistake of hiring someone with no real experience with leveling ground off of Craigslist, and while he managed to get all the sod off and dig up some of the ground, his leveling was really poor. So my wife and I then had to spend almost 1.5 days just carting out dirt and leveling as best as we could. With our soil being pretty clay like, it was hard work, though the nice thing is that it compacts nicely and is very firm underfoot.
Here are a couple of pics of the process.
1. My wife spreading out sand across the level base. We used a 2x4 staked into the center of the circle (18' diameter) with a level taped at the end and rotated it around to get a level base. It was still a LOT of work with the base soil, but was easy work with the thin top layer of sand (~ 0.25" or so).
2.Our final level base with ~ 0.25" of sand
3. Assembled pool
4. Another shot of assembled pool
The pool is all setup and ready to go. We do have 2" high paver stones on which the legs will be placed to help prevent any settling as it will distribute the weight on each leg over a larger, more uniform surface. We are really pleased with the leveling job so far.
I did have a couple of questions I was hoping to have some help with.
1) Filling the pool: I have the TF-100 kit ordered and it should get here on Tuesday. I did want to get started with filling today though. I can use pool calculator to determine how much bleach to add along with the CYA (which will likely take a week to dissolve in). What should my approach to dosing bleach in the meantime be? Should I dose 1/10th of the total dose when the pool has a few inches of water and keep dosing more as it fills up till I hit the total recommended dose?
2) My pool will get many hours of sunlight. How much chlorine in ppm should I assume will be burnt up over the course of a day so I can dose some extra accordingly over and above the recommended total dose based on pool calculator? How do I figure out what maintenance dose of Chlorine to use in the interim while the test-kit gets here?
3) Any other tips while filling up the pool in terms of pool chemistry?
4) This will be transitioned to a SWG system (the Intex 2650gph pump + integrated SWG) in a few days. For now, I'm just using the 1500gph pump that came with the pool in the interim period. It will serve as my backup pump in the future. Anything in particular I should do with this in mind?
5) Do you think I need to build a retaining wall on the high side? The total height of the vertical section is ~ 14". Not sure if that will be necessary or if I can get away with leaving things as is.
6) Any suggestions on what to do around the base to prevent weeds/grass growing all around the pool? Should I just dump a bunch of sand around legs and liner to prevent weeds or could that hurt the liner? Any other suggestions?
Thanks a lot for all the awesome information on the forums! Looking forward to hearing from more experienced folks!