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Thread: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

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    joshuaberman's Avatar
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    Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    As a Noob here, I apologize in advance for the redundancy, but I have spent countless hours already searching and reading throughout this forum, which BTW is chalk full of so much information my brain is about to explode and my nerves unravel....

    So, I'm in the painful process of leveling, from which I've had to take a break due to some crazy Texas rainfall lately...but I'm curious which direction to go once the existing ground is level.

    I've read plenty where folks have used sand underneath the pool yet those who haven't because of erosion. I veer towards the latter and am thinking of possibly using something a little more "dense" underneath (gotta see what is locally available), tamped, (Weedkiller & Insecticide as well) then a pad of some sort, possibly Gorilla (to help with potential nut grass, etc...) > tarp > then pool.

    I just want to do my best to do this right the first time and avoid problems in the future. If sand is simply for comfort, I can forgo that as an inground, concrete pool isn't "soft". I want a smooth, stable foundation.

    Thanks for any insight...
    22'x52" Intex 10,472 gal. w/ 2650 Sand Filter, using Taylor K2006 Kit. BBB

    My Build: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...x)-Will-update

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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Quote Originally Posted by joshuaberman
    As a Noob here, I apologize in advance for the redundancy, but I have spent countless hours already searching and reading throughout this forum, which BTW is chalk full of so much information my brain is about to explode and my nerves unravel....

    So, I'm in the painful process of leveling, from which I've had to take a break due to some crazy Texas rainfall lately...but I'm curious which direction to go once the existing ground is level.

    I've read plenty where folks have used sand underneath the pool yet those who haven't because of erosion. I veer towards the latter and am thinking of possibly using something a little more "dense" underneath (gotta see what is locally available), tamped, (Weedkiller & Insecticide as well) then a pad of some sort, possibly Gorilla (to help with potential nut grass, etc...) > tarp > then pool.

    I just want to do my best to do this right the first time and avoid problems in the future. If sand is simply for comfort, I can forgo that as an inground, concrete pool isn't "soft". I want a smooth, stable foundation.

    Thanks for any insight...
    joshuaberman, I'm sorry I can't answer your question for you but I just wanted to comment that I'm in almost the same situation as you and have the same question except I'm going to start my leveling within the next week or so and just to add to your options I am seeing some people who are using the extruded foam 4'x8' panels that are used in construction for insulation. I am considering going that route because of some of the things I'm reading about the sand erosion and the possibility of the nut grass growing through and some people are saying that with the sand there are sometimes divots from footprints and other things.

    So I'm also curious to hear other's opinions good or bad about what to put under the pool based on their experience.

    Thanks,
    cruiser310

    25,000 gallon, 33'x54" Round AG Sharkline Matrix, 26" sand filter, 2 speed, 1 hp Pentair optiflo pump

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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Was hoping to see some replies here! I'm in the same situation. First pool, Intex 16 ft ultra frame, ground is just about level. I just need another evening to fine tune it with a bit more scraping. Should I get a load of sand down first, or would the pink foam and tarp be fine?

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    poolnew-b's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Personally I would stay away from sand and just use the foam insulation. The sand will eventually get washed out and cause issues. I used crushed limestone, its fine like sand but gets nice and solid when tamped and is less likely to wash out.
    It may be called other things but I know it as crushed lime.
    Intex Ultra frame 16x48
    Intex 1600GPH Sand Filter
    Taylor K-2005 test kit

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    cramar's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Sand is a generic term for pool bottoms, pool base is a mixture of materials and not straight sand. In my area it's got a component of clay to it, it needs to be able to compact a bit, which sand won't do.
    If you go to a landscape store that sells aggregate, dirt, etc just tell them you need pool bottom, they should know what you need.
    20' X 54" Sharkline Matrix Resin AGP, 9400 Gallons, Sta-Rite 1 HP Dynamo Pump, 150 lb Pentair Sand Filter, Gorilla Pad,
    Foam Cove, Taylor K-2006 kit, BBB method, 8'X20' Fafco Sunsaver Hard Plumb, DIY Fountain, Margarittaville Fiji


    My Build: one-man-one-pool-and-one-deck-agp-pics-t37172.html
    My Build 'To-Do' List for other DIY'ers: my-pool-build-list-t40249.html?hilit=list

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    joshuaberman's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Quote Originally Posted by cramar
    Sand is a generic term for pool bottoms, pool base is a mixture of materials and not straight sand. In my area it's got a component of clay to it, it needs to be able to compact a bit, which sand won't do.
    If you go to a landscape store that sells aggregate, dirt, etc just tell them you need pool bottom, they should know what you need.

    OK, that's kinda what I figured. As for the pad, will the "Pink" insulation stop things such as Nutgrass?? I had a easyset about two years ago set up for the little one and I remember seeing grass protruding through the bottom which meant it grew in between patio pavers, a tarp, and the pool bottom. I do not want a repeat of that (Good thing the dog ate it anyway :P ) Would that alone be sufficient over the base (Earth > "Pool Base" > Pink insulation > tarp > pool)?

    This project has one **** of a learning curve. LOL - Thanks for the replies!!
    22'x52" Intex 10,472 gal. w/ 2650 Sand Filter, using Taylor K2006 Kit. BBB

    My Build: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...x)-Will-update

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    joshuaberman's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Quote Originally Posted by poolnew-b
    Personally I would stay away from sand and just use the foam insulation. The sand will eventually get washed out and cause issues. I used crushed limestone, its fine like sand but gets nice and solid when tamped and is less likely to wash out.
    It may be called other things but I know it as crushed lime.
    Yeah, I was weary of using sand. Just doesn't sound right to me. I'm in Texas, so some sort of limestone base is probably readily available! This sounds more like it.
    22'x52" Intex 10,472 gal. w/ 2650 Sand Filter, using Taylor K2006 Kit. BBB

    My Build: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...x)-Will-update

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    cramar's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Sand could wash away, proper pool base wouldn't under normal conditions....obviously if you get a leak it would wash away.
    As for nutgrass you could always use Gorilla Pad, the sole purpose of Gorilla Pad is an inpenetrable barrier againt things poking your liner, most people incorrectly assume its for comfort - it's not.
    Is it possible for nut grass to come up thru the seams of the pink insulation....not sure, wouldn't be surprised if it could.
    20' X 54" Sharkline Matrix Resin AGP, 9400 Gallons, Sta-Rite 1 HP Dynamo Pump, 150 lb Pentair Sand Filter, Gorilla Pad,
    Foam Cove, Taylor K-2006 kit, BBB method, 8'X20' Fafco Sunsaver Hard Plumb, DIY Fountain, Margarittaville Fiji


    My Build: one-man-one-pool-and-one-deck-agp-pics-t37172.html
    My Build 'To-Do' List for other DIY'ers: my-pool-build-list-t40249.html?hilit=list

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    joshuaberman's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Ok, so now that the sand question is cleared up, I'd like to ask another that I see popping up....

    Pink Foam vs. Gorilla Pad vs. Other? At HD the pink foam (forget which thinkness) was about $12/board. For a 22' round that's about 18 boards, $216!. A gorilla pad can be found much less and it doesn't require taping, is cut to size, blocks grass, roots, and even glass. Any reason not to use the Gorilla Pad?

    I guess it doesn't add the comfort of foam....



    22'x52" Intex 10,472 gal. w/ 2650 Sand Filter, using Taylor K2006 Kit. BBB

    My Build: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...x)-Will-update

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    reagan's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Quote Originally Posted by joshuaberman
    Pink Foam vs. Gorilla Pad vs. Other?
    Ooh! Ooh! I would like to know opinions on this one, too.
    BBB/TFP/Taylor K-2006 Evangelist!
    6/13 - Installed AG Sharkline Heritage 21'x54" 11K gallons. Hayward 1660s sand filter, Hayward single-speed 1 hp pump; city water. Husband builds, I maintain.
    5/11 - Starter pool 6000-gallon Intex Ultra 16'x48" AG with standard 1500 gph 1/3 hp cartridge filter.

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    cramar's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Gorilla Pad is a 1/16" geotextile like fabric, it's sole purpose is liner guard and is not even close to a proper pool base, Gorilla Pad is meant to accompany a pool base, not to be used as a pool base.
    20' X 54" Sharkline Matrix Resin AGP, 9400 Gallons, Sta-Rite 1 HP Dynamo Pump, 150 lb Pentair Sand Filter, Gorilla Pad,
    Foam Cove, Taylor K-2006 kit, BBB method, 8'X20' Fafco Sunsaver Hard Plumb, DIY Fountain, Margarittaville Fiji


    My Build: one-man-one-pool-and-one-deck-agp-pics-t37172.html
    My Build 'To-Do' List for other DIY'ers: my-pool-build-list-t40249.html?hilit=list

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    joshuaberman's Avatar
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    Re: Sand or no Sand - What's The ideal Base??

    Quote Originally Posted by reagan
    Quote Originally Posted by joshuaberman
    Pink Foam vs. Gorilla Pad vs. Other?
    Ooh! Ooh! I would like to know opinions on this one, too.
    I decided to bite the bullet and get the pink foam. Finally have my base done and am ready to do the pavers and foam.

    Attached Images Attached Images
    22'x52" Intex 10,472 gal. w/ 2650 Sand Filter, using Taylor K2006 Kit. BBB

    My Build: http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...x)-Will-update

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