I know this topic has come up before, but I'm struggling with what decision to make.
I have one PB who normally uses sand. If I want to pay for the extra cost of gravel, he will use gravel. He says that none of the fiberglass pools he has installed (over 200) have ever had a problem due to settling or eroding of the sand backfill. I am in red clay country here in North Carolina. I don't know if that makes a difference in deciding whether to go with sand or gravel. The pool will be installed in an area that slopes. So, they will have to make a cut into the slope and build a retaining wall. So, there is the potential for water runoff down the slope. Overall, the ground is fairly high...so I'm not worried about the water table.
My understanding from a PB who does Viking pools is that Viking will not honor their warranty if the pool is backfilled with anything other than sand. I've read the River Pools and Spas article about this topic which includes the quote from the president of Viking Pools regarding sand backfill. So, I guess the comment from the PB about the warranty could be true.
I'm waiting for a price on how much more gravel will be than sand. I think it will be about $1,000.
I've never heard of a fiberglass pool problem caused by gravel backfill. But, I have heard of problems attributable to sand backfill.
So, do I spend an extra $1,000 for peace of mind?
What say you, pool experts?