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Thread: Retaining wall and distance from pool

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    Retaining wall and distance from pool

    Ok, the excavator is coming in a day or two, to finalize how he will dig, and quote me for a retaining wall. (If it is too much, I am going to build it myself) The pool will be set "into" the hill. Ground level on one side, and about 4 ft into the hill on the other side. The retaining wall will be round, and follow the contours of the pool about 1/2 around the pool. The installer said he could install the pool about 6 inches from the wall if I wanted him to, but he suggested about a foot and half space between the wall and pool. He said, you never know if I may have to get in there for something. (repair to pool or wall, etc...) Plus, I find it hard to imagine how he will make sure the uprights are perfectly straight if they are 6 inches from the wall. How would he get in there to see?

    It may not look as polished, but do you guys agree with leaving a 1 1/2 ft gap? Hopefully, someday I can build a deck, and that would bridge that gap, but until then, it may look awkward. I am also thinking of building a hand railing along the retaining wall, so no one could fall between the wall and the pool, plus it would stop people from being able to simply jump in the pool from the high side.

    Any suggestions or tips? I know I need good drainage, and whoever does the wall, the excavator or I will have drainage pipe at the bottom and top area of the wall, so there shouldn't be a problem there.
    14.6K gal., 24ft, 54" above ground. 2HP, 2speed Hayward pump (4psi low, 18psi hi), 150sqft cartridge filter. 4x20 solar panel (6 psi).

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    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    Will the top of the hill, top of the wall, and top of the pool all be level?
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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    Quote Originally Posted by woodyp
    Will the top of the hill, top of the wall, and top of the pool all be level?
    No. The pool will be 54inches, the wall will be about 45inches high, and the the ground gradually goes up from there. So it will look like the pool is inside the side of the hill.
    14.6K gal., 24ft, 54" above ground. 2HP, 2speed Hayward pump (4psi low, 18psi hi), 150sqft cartridge filter. 4x20 solar panel (6 psi).

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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    I like the idea of the space between the pool and retaining wall- and most I've seen are that way, or the pool just partially buried.
    With the pool going "inside" the hill, I think 6 inches would tick you off, as dirt/debris got in there over time and you wouldn't be able to clean it out!
    24ft x 52in AGP 18000 gal
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    Quote Originally Posted by Drayken
    Quote Originally Posted by woodyp
    Will the top of the hill, top of the wall, and top of the pool all be level?
    No. The pool will be 54inches, the wall will be about 45inches high, and the the ground gradually goes up from there. So it will look like the pool is inside the side of the hill.
    If you are subject to building codes and inspections, your pool may very well be treated as an inground with a wall that close, and require a fence, so you may want to factor that into your wall spacing.
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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT

    If you are subject to building codes and inspections, your pool may very well be treated as an inground with a wall that close, and require a fence, so you may want to factor that into your wall spacing.
    Even above ground pools in most places require a fence. Check the code in your area. Where I am, even an Intex pool requires a fence.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    Thanks everyone. Man, things go easier when you can post thoughts and get other ideas. I agree with most here, first, I never thought about debris and such, that would suck. Second, my ordinance has no rule of how close/far to a structure it needs to be from, and needs a fence, unless pool is over 48inches. I plan to run a railing/fence along the retaining wall, so half the pool, the part into the hill, will be closed off. I will then, when possible, build a deck, over the gap, and move the railing to the outside of the deck. This would assure that no one could jump into the pool from the high ground, nor fall into the gap. If I run a 1ft-1 1/2ft trim of pea gravel or river rock around the pool, it should look nice, even with the gap. (WOW, so much to do for this pool, lol. I wish I would have started last fall.
    14.6K gal., 24ft, 54" above ground. 2HP, 2speed Hayward pump (4psi low, 18psi hi), 150sqft cartridge filter. 4x20 solar panel (6 psi).

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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    Drayken - So how much space between the wall and the pool did you go with. I am doing the exact same thing here in Minnesota and have no idea how much space is need to build the pool. Reading your post and the replies, I am now thinking at least two feet space between the pool wall and the retaining wall so I can get back in there. Not sure why I will ever need to get back in there though.

    Would love to see photos of your finished install. Having trouble visualizing everything finished.

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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    You will be really glad that you put at least 18" between the walls if anything ever happens.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
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    Re: Retaining wall and distance from pool

    I'd love to see pics from both of your projects! We have the exact same set-up, aside from our retaining wall will be 3' high. What gap did both of you end up with? What did you do to prevent people from falling into that gap? Thanks!
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