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Thread: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

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    Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    We have a slight slope in our back yard.. The very back is level, then it slants a little down toward the house. One of the PB that we have spoke with said he would dig the hole where the pool was going and cut a little off the high end of the yard. Then use that to raise the yard closest to the house . Is that a good idea when we will be pouring concrete up to our back patio? He said he would pack it down and it shouldn't settle but I have no experience with concrete.
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    This is a very hard question to answer without knowing the soil conditions in your area.
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    What would be the best option for something like this in your opinion? Sand? Local top soil? I would like to use the dirt from the dig as I would not have to worry about getting ride of it but I have no idea about the soils conditions.
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    tjwaggoner's Avatar
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    I'm by no means an expert at anything pool related but I would expect any good concrete installers to use some sort of gravel base under a pour of any size. Pouring your equipment pad on dirt is one thing (mine isn't) but not your pool deck IMO. My builder used dga and different size gravel to do the base for my pad. It's actually what you see in lieu of concrete in my avatar. Pouring Monday
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    Unless they're doing structural compaction, "it shouldn't settle" really means "i know it will settle, but hopefully after any warranty has expired"

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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    "it shouldn't settle" really means "i know it will settle, but hopefully after any warranty has expired"
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    XsAllOverIt's Avatar
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    I would compact it and wait a year compact it again and then pour concrete. Let it settle natuarally.
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    Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    What do I do for the year with no concrete? Would it not be a muddy mess all the time from pool water and rain? Don't know if I can get that past the wife.
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    Unless what they are digging out is clay I wouldn't use it under concrete!

    Top soil or regular dirt takes like forever to completely settle.

    If you do have clay, make sure they wet it let it dry, compact it, wet it again let it dry and compact it again, do this maybe 4 times and the clay will settle and support concrete, otherwise use rock/gravel to level for the concrete.

    Wet sand will work but only if you have a concrete wall surrounding it completely.

    The cost of concrete is far too expensive to risk having it crack because your base settles.

    Good Luck.
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    re:would compact it and wait a year compact it again and then pour concrete. Let it settle naturally.

    It takes an average of 10 years for soil to settle naturally

    re:
    Posted: May 22nd, 2012, 12:55 am
    Unless what they are digging out is clay I wouldn't use it under concrete!

    Top soil or regular dirt takes like forever to completely settle.

    If you do have clay, make sure they wet it let it dry, compact it, wet it again let it dry and compact it again, do this maybe 4 times and the clay will settle and support concrete, otherwise use rock/gravel to level for the concrete.

    Wet sand will work but only if you have a concrete wall surrounding it completely.

    The cost of concrete is far too expensive to risk having it crack because your base settles.

    Good Luck.
    Clay requires mechanical compaction in order to correctly pack it down, and because it is a plastic soil, much of the tamping is transferred laterally, which increases the chance of damage to your pool before it's even completed. Therefore, clay is a poor choice of backfill material for around a pool.

    Use washed stone, or compact what's there in lifts; spread a couple of inches (type of soil depends on how thick you can make each lift), run a compactor over the entire area, add a couple more inches of material, run the compactor over that. It takes an intimate knowledge of the specific soil and the compaction equipment to get it right; the most frequent way (and painfully wrong) is to throw down all the soil at once and then run a tiny plate compactor over the top layer and call it a day.

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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    If you haven't read the answer yet, use the dirt somewhere else and fill with the correct material. Crush and run works well for compaction. I've used crush and run all around my pool and in some areas, I've easily got 3-4 foot depths. I've laid blue stone on stone dust on top of the entire area, and after a year, I haven't seen any settling to date, but last year was a very mild winter. I also used a compactor as ConcreteJack described with small layers added at a time. Now, in my scenario, I did all the placement and if I run into settling, I'll simply just take the stone out, add more compacting material and re-lay the stone. I can tell you emphatically, there is no way I would have even used concrete in those areas that I had exclusive crush and run without much more diligence. I would have been compacting for a year in between rains. I had done this for part of a porch quite a few years ago where I had at least a 3 foot depth of Crush and run and after the year, I laid bluestone and to-date (approx 8 years), I've got no settling yet. If you can spread your dirt somewhere else, invest in some truckloads of crush and run or some other acceptable compacting material and follow ConcreteJack's advice.
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    Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    Thanks for all your advice! It is really helpful. One more question. When pouring the footer around the vinyl pool how deep do I pour it and about how many yards will it take on a 2 feet over dig? It is a 16x36 grecian.
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    Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    About How many tons of crush n run would I need? 16x36 Grecian
    18x36 Grecian Vinyl; 8' Roman steps w/t 2 spa jets; cozy cove w/t 6 spa jets; 2 MD, 1 Skimmer, 3 returns; Hayward Ecostar, 30" Ranger sand filter; Hayward color logic 4.0 LED light; Hayward aqua logic; 2" PVC pipe 4 Jandy Valves

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    Both of your last questions are going to be impossible to answer without knowing the actual hole sizes. How big you need the footer to be will depend on where you're located as well as the soil conditions. Neither of which we know. Sorry to be that way but without a lot more information we can't make a guess. A local person with knowledge of the soil is your best bet for those types of questions.
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    Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    I am located in North Alabama but have no idea about the soil. I will see what I can find out about soil conditions. Thanks!
    18x36 Grecian Vinyl; 8' Roman steps w/t 2 spa jets; cozy cove w/t 6 spa jets; 2 MD, 1 Skimmer, 3 returns; Hayward Ecostar, 30" Ranger sand filter; Hayward color logic 4.0 LED light; Hayward aqua logic; 2" PVC pipe 4 Jandy Valves

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    tjwaggoner's Avatar
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    Re: Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    Ask around and find a good excavator who has done a pool or two in your area. That is your best bet in getting the job done the way it needs to be. Re-work will always be more expensive if you have to hire someone to come in behind you or another contractor and fix something they did wrong.
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    Using dirt from a pool dig to grade yard?

    Ok thanks For the tip. I have a excavator coming by today to shoot some lines and quote what he would charge to dig and level out the area.
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