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Thread: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enough?

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    Taterfink's Avatar
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    insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enough?

    I have read on here that people are using 2" thick sheets of the pink water proof type of insulation under their pools. As far as I can see, those are available only up North. I'm in NE Florida and we get a few light freezes a year and the only stuff I can find at HD here is 3/4".

    If I level the ground and put weed blocker fabric down, would it be feasible to put the 3/4" insulation down so I'd have a smooth bottom for the pool and put the legs on pavers that I level with the insulation? Would I still need to put down the ground cloth that comes with the pool? If so, where would that fit in the sandwich of weed blocker fabric, insulation and ground cloth? I really want to do this correctly so I don't have to redo.

    OR, is anyone familiar with the Gorilla Pad? Is it as good as they claim? seems awfully thin to me.

    Thanks for your help,
    Angie M.
    AG, 26' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame, vinyl, 14667 gal. And LOVING it!!! Hayward S15922S 1HP, 2SP pump and Hayward S220T Sand Filter. Hard plumbed with PVC, added second return, intex SWG, Hydro Pool widemouth skimmer. Set up in May 2012!
    N.E. Florida. TF100 - Best investment EVER! (Well, for the pool anyway)

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Quote Originally Posted by Taterfink
    If I level the ground and put weed blocker fabric down, would it be feasible to put the 3/4" insulation down so I'd have a smooth bottom for the pool and put the legs on pavers that I level with the insulation?
    That should work fine. Since it is only 3/4" thick you might even consider having the pavers flush with the ground and overlaping the pavers with the foam. Might not look as nice, but the liner would definetly be protected from any paver edges. When the intex frame pools fill up the frame circle goes out a little. See this post here: http://www.troublefreepool.com/how-t...gs-t43028.html

    Make sure when leveling to dig the whole pool down to the lowest undisturbed ground.

    Quote Originally Posted by Taterfink
    Would I still need to put down the ground cloth that comes with the pool? If so, where would that fit in the sandwich of weed blocker fabric, insulation and ground cloth? I really want to do this correctly so I don't have to redo.
    I am not sure you would need the ground cloth, but it would help protect the liner from the paver edges, if any protrude at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Taterfink
    OR, is anyone familiar with the Gorilla Pad? Is it as good as they claim? seems awfully thin to me.
    I have not used it, but it is thin. I like the foam approach better, and that is what I ended up using on my agp.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    linen,
    thank you for the response.

    I had read that the feet/legs will shift during the fill so figured to place the pavers accordingly. I had not however thought about extending the insulation to cover over the pavers. I thought to recess them into the foam so the bottom of the liner and the bottom of the legs would be at the same level. I think I like your idea better. Easier than cutting holes in the insulation for the pavers or risking cutting the insulation too small to support the whole liner. Still not sure how to landscape around the base to make it look nice but still keep everything away from the liner so there's no threat of a puncture.

    I will be leveling as you state to the lowest undisturbed ground with the exception of the area where I am having the tree removed. It's going to be tedious but I'm going to have to fill the void left by the root. I figure to fill a couple inches and tamp down with a vibrator plate , then add a couple more inches of soil and tamp again until it's all nice and solid and level. Getting the ground solid around here tho, is a bit difficult as all we have is sand. Try and pack it down. . . it just laughs at you. If I don't fill/tamp and fill/tamp I think I'd eventually end up with a deep end to my round pool, right smack dab in the center! Wouldn't want that now would we?!

    I'm with you in that I like the idea of the insulation vs. the Gorilla Pad. The thing looks like quilt batting.

    Well, my tree guy didn't show till after 5 p.m. so he's coming back tomorrow morning (we'll see). He claims his acct ( the local transit authority) kept adding to a job he was working on for them. That's why he stood me up. I had decided this morning that I was NOT going to stress out over anything today. I did a pretty good job of it too! As a result, he's going to do some extra work for me at no extra charge, just to make it up to me for making me wait all day for nothing. I can live with that!
    Angie M.
    AG, 26' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame, vinyl, 14667 gal. And LOVING it!!! Hayward S15922S 1HP, 2SP pump and Hayward S220T Sand Filter. Hard plumbed with PVC, added second return, intex SWG, Hydro Pool widemouth skimmer. Set up in May 2012!
    N.E. Florida. TF100 - Best investment EVER! (Well, for the pool anyway)

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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Quote Originally Posted by Taterfink
    If I don't fill/tamp and fill/tamp I think I'd eventually end up with a deep end to my round pool, right smack dab in the center! Wouldn't want that now would we?!
    I would...and I did it ...the deep end that is. My kids love it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Taterfink
    I had not however thought about extending the insulation to cover over the pavers. I thought to recess them into the foam so the bottom of the liner and the bottom of the legs would be at the same level. I think I like your idea better. Easier than cutting holes in the insulation for the pavers or risking cutting the insulation too small to support the whole liner.
    I have read that when people have extended the extruded polystyrene under there intex legs, that the legs dig in to it a little, but in the end it works. See this thread: http://www.troublefreepool.com/foam-...me-t42304.html

    Quote Originally Posted by Taterfink
    I will be leveling as you state to the lowest undisturbed ground with the exception of the area where I am having the tree removed. It's going to be tedious but I'm going to have to fill the void left by the root. I figure to fill a couple inches and tamp down with a vibrator plate , then add a couple more inches of soil and tamp again until it's all nice and solid and level. Getting the ground solid around here tho, is a bit difficult as all we have is sand.
    Since you have no choice, make sure you tamp tamp tamp! I would use a fill that packs well like good black dirt etc., not sand.

    Good luck with the tree guy!
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    The 3/4" will work, just make sure your ground is level and smooth. Tape the seems (I used 3 layers on each seam). A tarp or covering is needed, the sunlight will destroy the foam in short order. Whether you use a tarp, roofing material, an old winter cover or an old pool liner does not matter.
    I like to see where the legs are going, but for 2 years I did not use pavers and the legs only sunk in a little (1/4 to 1/2 inch?) to the foam.
    Not sure about the compacting of sand, but I remember somebody mentioning that you need to water it down as you compact it.
    Intex Ultra 18' x 52" AG 6,981 Gal.
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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    I used pink 3/4" with the grove it is working great, I did read that a vapor barrior is necessay to get full R value. So I laid some high mill plastic under & over the insulation sheets & used roofing tape to tape the sheets & the vapor barrior together.

    I actually built a 12'X24' 2" square tubing frame & put forms 20" around them & filled that with 33 sacks of the max blue bags of concrete, then filled the hole with sand & lime & leveled with water before setting the insolation & vapor barrier. (I also used the Intex tarp under the pink.) So I have 3 tarps, top & bottom plastiic, the foam insolation, covered & taped to the concrete.

    I had the insulation above concrete grade about 1/4 inch & added to tarp covers over the insulation. I actually think one could be 1 inch over leg grade & all would work fine. This was a reset & I have noticed the corner elbows are way closer with everything ture & level.

    I reconfigured the 2 inch steel concrete form frame to a 10' X 24' solar pannel rack. I just have 1 solar bear & it is plenty good, but do have room for expansion.

    Cheers, Bob

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    mcoonan, thanks for the heads up on the effect of sunlight on the insulation. I had no idea!

    linen, I'm going to be tamping my little heart out for a long time. I think.


    Bob, thank you, It's good to know that the 3/4" will work since it doesn't get cold enough here in NE Florida for the stores to carry the thick stuff. It sounds like you have a very stable platform for your pool. Too cool!

    Isn't the R value an insulating thing. Like keeping the cold out and warm in? What purpose would the R value have in being an underlay for a pool? Keep your tootsies warm / cool??? And I thought the pink extruded insulation in question was water proof in it's own right. I don't see how adding a vapor barrier could hurt but I'm not understanding why it'd be necessary. I had planned to cover the insulation before putting the pool on top but under the insulation I had planned only on landscape fabric as a grass growth deterrent.

    Thanks again guys,
    Angie
    Angie M.
    AG, 26' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame, vinyl, 14667 gal. And LOVING it!!! Hayward S15922S 1HP, 2SP pump and Hayward S220T Sand Filter. Hard plumbed with PVC, added second return, intex SWG, Hydro Pool widemouth skimmer. Set up in May 2012!
    N.E. Florida. TF100 - Best investment EVER! (Well, for the pool anyway)

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Yes the R value is for the isulating properties ie cold in warm out in your case (with the cost of elect. and the amount of cooling you need to do I am suprised that your stores do not carry the 2"). In the north we do both - summer cold in and warm out, - winter warm in cold out. (talking about structures). As far as the pool is concerned the foam is more for comfort and protection than insulation, (it does help keep the pool warmer up here in the north).
    Intex Ultra 18' x 52" AG 6,981 Gal.
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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    I hadn't thought of it but you are right! We're already in th 90's here and my cooling costs are astronomical over the course of a summer. My house is built of cinder block and when originally built (1950's), had virtualy no insulation. Since then we've added blown insulation inthe attic and sheet insul on the north facing walls. For a summer heat repreave we also have an attic fan in the hall. Open a window or two, turn on the fan and you get a good breeze pulled thru the house.

    AND I hadn't thought of the ground sucking the heat out of the water in your pool. I learn something new every day!

    Angie M.
    AG, 26' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame, vinyl, 14667 gal. And LOVING it!!! Hayward S15922S 1HP, 2SP pump and Hayward S220T Sand Filter. Hard plumbed with PVC, added second return, intex SWG, Hydro Pool widemouth skimmer. Set up in May 2012!
    N.E. Florida. TF100 - Best investment EVER! (Well, for the pool anyway)

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Since I do not have data on with & without a vapor barrior - we just have to trust the building experts, that always use vapor barriors to keep floors warmer. I do think it insulation under to pool makes it warmer, smoother & less likely to get grass penitration. The plastic also keeps the insulation from getting moisture penitration which could be a long term bacteria problem under the pool.

    I use the Saltwater system & am happy with it, I did have to get a replacement, make sure to keep your reciepts to do that, it was a chore to get everything they wanted faxed. The first chlorine generator last 1.5 years, the new ones come with a built in breaker, like the pump & filter - so you might check that the one you order has that breaker. If the pool has shade plan on getting a solar pannel, even in TX the pool is cool when not in sun light.

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Bob, thank you for the information. I had realized the insulation would reduce the possibility of grass penetration. I was joking about it keeping your toes warm in the pool but the more I thought about it the more I realized that maybe the ground would leech the warmth out of the water and that the insulation would slow that down. Neat! And the info about a solar panel was very helpful. It gets so hot here I didn't think I'd need one. However, thinking about it, our blue easy set pool used to get pretty cool after the sun went down. So, I see your point and will be looking into solar panels.

    Thanks again!
    Angie M.
    AG, 26' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame, vinyl, 14667 gal. And LOVING it!!! Hayward S15922S 1HP, 2SP pump and Hayward S220T Sand Filter. Hard plumbed with PVC, added second return, intex SWG, Hydro Pool widemouth skimmer. Set up in May 2012!
    N.E. Florida. TF100 - Best investment EVER! (Well, for the pool anyway)

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Last fall I was very suprised at how cool the pool got when night time temps dropped, TX & FL are both about the same hot, Austin is the southern most capital in the US, so we are both deep south hot. Solar & pool covers are things that can be done after installation.

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Extruded Polystyrene (EPS) is a pretty good vapor barrier (good enough for many municipalities), but the reason why it doesn't loose it's insulating properties is that iis water vapor absorption is very low. So another vapor barrier on the top (or bottom) is not necessary, though any addition barriers between roots, grass and the liner probably doesn't hurt. I would agree with mccoonan that the EPS's primary purpose is not for insulation (though it can't hurt), but protection and feel.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enou

    Taterfink or anyone else. Just trimming our foam pad should we go a couple inches larger or just the same size or a couple inches smaller than diameter of the pool? We have 26 foot round pool and wanted to make sure we got it right. Hoping to get water in tonight.

    Thanks.

    DJ
    INTEX 26' x 52"' Ultra Frame AG / INTEX Crystal Clear 3000 GPH Sand Filter Pump and INTEX SWG

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enough?

    DJ, I trimmed the foam around my pool using a 1" x 6" board that was long enough to span 2 legs at a time. I laid it flat, against 2 legs and used it as a straight edge while cutting the foam with a case knife. This left 6" of foam outside the pool diameter. I have put border trim about 20" out from the pool sides and placed weed-ex and rubber mulch around the pool, hiding the foam.
    Angie M.
    AG, 26' x 52" Intex Ultra Frame, vinyl, 14667 gal. And LOVING it!!! Hayward S15922S 1HP, 2SP pump and Hayward S220T Sand Filter. Hard plumbed with PVC, added second return, intex SWG, Hydro Pool widemouth skimmer. Set up in May 2012!
    N.E. Florida. TF100 - Best investment EVER! (Well, for the pool anyway)

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    Re: insulation sheets under intex pool - is 3/4 " thick enough?

    Thanks, I am heading out to get the legs up in about 5 mins. Will let you all know how it works out.
    INTEX 26' x 52"' Ultra Frame AG / INTEX Crystal Clear 3000 GPH Sand Filter Pump and INTEX SWG

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