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Thread: High quality above-ground or semi-in-ground

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    High quality above-ground or semi-in-ground

    Our house is constructed on stem walls that place the floor level a little more than 4' above ground plane. Our deck is almost exactly 4' above ground. We would like to install a pool that comes level with the existing deck, and extend the deck around the pool. We don't want to have to go down steps to reach the pool, and would like it to be visible from inside the house.

    I've looked at concrete or fiberglass pools built within a retaining wall, and talked to a factory manager at a fiberglass pool factory about using a sloping back fill around a fiberglass pool. Both are doable at fairly high expense.

    Now, I want to investigate the possibility of a vinyl-liner pool being constructed mostly above ground. The sides of the pool (most seem to be 52") would have to be recessed slightly into the ground to keep it level with the deck.

    However, there is also one very important desire -- my DW does exercises in the pool, and wants a deep end so she can tread water while exercising. It doesn't have to be any deeper than 6' to the top of the pool sides, but it does have to be deeper than the typical above ground pool.

    The final consideration is that it must be of the highest possible quality. I will not install steel panels, no matter how well they are galvanized or coated, in or on the ground in South Florida. I prefer aluminum but would consider heavy duty poly if it is UV resistant. All fastenings must be stainless or nylon. the liner should be of the highest quality, and the top edge should be the strongest and/or widest. The bracing system should withstand years of use without danger of collapse.

    In my research, the closest I have come to this is the Esther Williams Millennium 15x30 oval offered by Delaire Group. It has aluminum sides, stainless fasteners, 22 mil liner, wide top edge and claimed-to-be excellent support system. It is also available with a "hopper" liner, in which the deep end is excavated approximately 2' and graded with vermiculite to support the liner.

    My local dealer is preparing a quote for this pool now; I'd like to find out if there are others which are the same or better for my needs before I spend any money, and I'd like to hear comments about the above pool. I'd also like to hear opinions about what else I should be considering -- I've had concrete pools for over 30 years, but never a liner pool.

    Let me add that I may or may not install the pool myself depending on what kind of offers I get from local contractors -- I have my own mini-excavator, compact diesel tractor with front end loader, surveying level and other tools. I have mechanical, plumbing and carpentry skills and a friendly electrician.
    16K Gallon, Rectangular, All Tile Surface, 14'X24'X5'
    1/2HP pump, Sand Filter
    FAS-DPD K-2006
    Year-Round Use!

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    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Solon, Iowa

    Re: High quality above-ground or semi-in-ground

    I installed an above-ground pool so that it met the level of an existing deck. I had to excavate a little (but didn't bury or partially bury - holding the dirt back with retaining walls) and was meticulous in my measurements so that the top rail came to the level I needed. Just like you I wanted to be able to step onto my existing deck and walk right to the pool, as if it were in-ground. Takes a little more care and planning but not that bad.

    Here's a picture (unfinished from last fall) from another thread:

    15X30 AGP, Lomart beaded liner;
    1.5 HP Sta-Rite pump with 21 inch sand filter (Zeobrite media)
    Mineral Springs (Aquatrol) SWCG, Rigid PVC plumbing, 2 inch
    Four 4X12 Techno-Solis solar panels, rack mounted, Goldline Solar Controller

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: High quality above-ground or semi-in-ground

    I now have quotes for the Millennium I described above, a 16 x 32 Doughboy Autumn Breeze with an expandable liner for the deep end, and a 15 x 30 Atlantic Aruba with an expandable liner.

    The all-aluminum Millennium and the steel-and-resin Doughboy are comparable in price, while the all-steel Atlantic is much less. In fact, the package price I got from the Atlantic Dealer was about half of the other quotes.

    Does anyone have any information about these brands, or can suggest any other?
    16K Gallon, Rectangular, All Tile Surface, 14'X24'X5'
    1/2HP pump, Sand Filter
    FAS-DPD K-2006
    Year-Round Use!

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: High quality above-ground or semi-in-ground

    Hello Don, did you install the millennium pool? How is it holding up? I am in the research process for my pool, like you I need a deep end option. The one I'm really interested in is the GT 1100 EZ Panel pool by oasis. It's aluminum which is suppose to be better when doing a semi in ground install & I'm pretty much putting it all in ground. But how's your millennium treating you?

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