Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Beloit WI
    Posts
    4

    Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    We live in southern WI and really want to install AG pool (at least 18' round) but we are so uncertain as to the best way to proceed with the leveling of our yard. We had someone come out last spring to give us an estimate and he scared us to death saying it would cost as much as the pool itself, so we didn't move on it.
    Here we are a year later getting the fever again! I've read several articles on how to DIY and it seems so difficult. The last thing I want to do is try it and then put the pool up and it be a complete disaster!
    Any recommendations on how to do it or in specific articles to read for guidance? I saw a thread on here in which the writer referred to making "a huge sandbox" with 4x4s. Is making the 4x4 box where you start?
    Please help!!! Lol

  2. Back To Top    #2
    CJadamec's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Quaker Hill, CT
    Posts
    2,192

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    Welcome to TFP hopefully we will be able to help you get your pool up safe and sound.
    By far your best bet is to dig down and make a level spot in your yard. Those of us with hills for a yard that method is difficult. How far out of level is your yard? Pics would help.
    What type of pool are you looking to put up, Intex soft side type or traditional hard sided AGP?

    The sandbox route is not ideal and it will cost a good amount to do correctly. I pulled it off in my build, link below, but I don't recommend it.
    Chuck-
    15x30 AG, Pentair Superflo VS, 19" sand filter, TF-100 test kit
    Aqua Comfort ACT750 heat pump / 6x20 ground mount solar panel / DIY automation

    Photos of 2016 Build, Inside Your Breaker Panel, Free Copy of 2017 NEC code
    TFP is AD Free and is funded solely by member support click here to help

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    buena vista va
    Posts
    14

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    I just recently went thru this process ! I contacted a local guy with a skidsteer and he wanted 100 bucks a hour, so thru that idea out ! I have a older farm tractor and a heavy scraper blade and plow.....took many hours but I was able to get it done myself.....I had to take out about 30 inches on the steep side !! But once I was done & pool filled I was in 1/4 inch of level ! If u do it yourself buy rent or borrow a transit...the level on a 2x4 is NOT the way to go......maybe U know a friend or farmer with a tractor ??

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Cap'n Hook's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    South Central Texas
    Posts
    33

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    I'm using a 4' level on a 2x4, and so far my 30'x54" install is going fine. If you know how to use a level, it's just as reliable as a transit.
    The Pool Factory Melenia 30'x54" Round semi-inground pool 25ga overlap liner
    Hayward SP15922S Power Flo Matrix 1hp 2-speed pump
    Hayward DE3620 Progrid 36 square-foot vertical grid DE filter
    Hayward SP0710XR50 Pro-series Vari-flow backwash valve
    ~22,000 gallons

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    buena vista va
    Posts
    14

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    nothing wrong with a level........but I have yet to see the perfect 2x4

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Colorado Springs
    Posts
    94

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    ok, 2 years ago we bought a used ( ?10 yrs old) I think a Doughboy 18 ft diameter 4 ft high. We had a 35 ft x 35 ft almost area with 8 " of gravel round rock and prairie clay/sand under it. I did 98% of the renovation and install with moving the gravel and soil and I have a spine fusion 20 yrs ago. I did it with no laser level as it cost $75 a day and I know it might take me a week to dig here and then dig there to level. I used a bunyip home made. I am with in 1/4-maybe 1/2" level. I made it for $15. I think the hardest part was foreseeing any problems like it's better to dig the dirt out than try to add soil in as the soil there is nicely compacted and the soil I try to move from high to low spots is soft. Things sink in soft sand/dirt. I watched some you tube videos on bunyips also. My thought is do as much as you can with bunyips and levels and then rent a laser level to be sure. I did not bring in any sand. I decided to level the dirt. I threw down some very very heavy really old smelly carpet, yep ripe with dog pee. Some people said old carpet gets even more stinky with kids splashing but mine has not. The pool is not in a wet area and in CO we have very low humidity. On top of the carpet I installed ?1/2" foam, now I for get if it's pink or blue-makes a difference. I used Gorrilla tape to do the seems. It was extremely hot doing this taping and never do on a windy day. I laid cement 12 "x12 " pavers under the posts BUT I think it best to put pavers all the way around to support the rails. The post and rails kept shifting and sometimes went off the small pavers. So the hardest part was the foam taping and the liner. the leveling was time consuming but not maddening. My husband helped hold the metal wall up as I went around the rail and set the side. He helped a few other places but I basically did it all. AND before you fill the area back in consider having the copper wire going around the pool for safety. I stupidly pushed all the pebbles back around the pool and have to redig to put the copper wire around the pool. Yah I wish I had a skid steer but I don't. I'm old with arthritis and a brain problem so some things were hard to understand but reading stuff here I got it done. Pool is up 2 yrs, 3rd season coming up.
    Used pool 1995 Lomart 18'x48" just installed 7/16/2015, Hayward Power Flo Matrix 1 HP 2 speed pump, 16" Rx Clear Radiant sand filter ( used pea gravel and zeolite) foam wall, polystyrene bottom, liner 25 gauge overlap, TF-100 test kit. Son training for 2018 Paralympics, Hoping for solar heater of some sort. Good chance Labrador will be in pool. Colorado Prairie, 6000 ft elevation high mountain desert, clay soil

  7. Back To Top    #7
    Supermommys4's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Independence, Missouri
    Posts
    41

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    Just take Richards advice and make a water level!!! It is spot on! CAN NOT thank him enough for the advice!!!
    I spent like $4 making the water level (also known as a bunyip- you can YouTube it) and about 10 minutes of time!
    I'm a single mom, so I made the one I can use by myself! But there are ones you can make if you have someone to hold the other side!
    Good luck!!



    We have a 15'x48" Pro Series above ground pool - with salt water filter system!!! Year 7 and I'm trying to get more creative ... Really wish we could keep it up year round!

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    11

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    I rented a sod-cutter from Home Deport for ~$80/4 hours, and it was worth every penny! The sod cutter's depth is adjustable, so after clearing my initial circle, I could come back and shave off the high bits of ground until my water level said I was in good shape.
    Round Intex 16' x 48" UltraFrame, 1/2hp SandPro 50D pump, put up June 2016

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Beloit WI
    Posts
    4

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by CJadamec View Post
    Welcome to TFP hopefully we will be able to help you get your pool up safe and sound.
    By far your best bet is to dig down and make a level spot in your yard. Those of us with hills for a yard that method is difficult. How far out of level is your yard? Pics would help.
    What type of pool are you looking to put up, Intex soft side type or traditional hard sided AGP?

    The sandbox route is not ideal and it will cost a good amount to do correctly. I pulled it off in my build, link below, but I don't recommend it.
    Attached should be a picture of the section of yard where I think would be best.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. Back To Top    #10
    CJadamec's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Quaker Hill, CT
    Posts
    2,192

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    With a yard that flat I would definitely dig the high end down to level the site. Building up a retaininng wall would cost way more than it's worth for that site.
    Chuck-
    15x30 AG, Pentair Superflo VS, 19" sand filter, TF-100 test kit
    Aqua Comfort ACT750 heat pump / 6x20 ground mount solar panel / DIY automation

    Photos of 2016 Build, Inside Your Breaker Panel, Free Copy of 2017 NEC code
    TFP is AD Free and is funded solely by member support click here to help

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Casey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    SW PA
    Posts
    10,514

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    That should be pretty easy to dig up the sod and start at the lowest level. Anyone who is trying to charge you thousands is out of their mind considering the site you have chosen.

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Bixby oklahoma
    Posts
    80

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    So I'm in the process now. 22' pool. Had go down about 7" on half the circle. I was able to bring home some equipment from work to get it pretty close. My question is this. How important is it to have the floor absolutely level versus the blocks I'll use for the legs. I feel if the blocks are perfect and the floor is a little off it should be ok right. Leveling a 22' circle by hand is no fun.

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Posts
    261

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    If the blocks are level you are fine. Minor variances across the pool floor are insignificant, just try to make it nice and smooth. Are you planning to use foam or sand? That will also help smooth over any bumps.
    Intex Ultra Frame 24'x12'x52" (732cm x 366cm) rectangular pool
    Intex SF80220RC (1600 GPH) pump/sandfilter
    Intex SF10220 (1050 GPH) pump/sandfilter driving the
    Intex Automatic Pool Cleaner
    Intex 8220 ECO SWG, Brilix XHP100 9kW heatpump

  14. Back To Top    #14

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Bixby oklahoma
    Posts
    80

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    Can't afford foam this year. I'm going to put down some sand but my soil Is already very soft. Not a rock one when I was digging.

  15. Back To Top    #15

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Escondido, CA
    Posts
    15

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    We are in the middle of leveling a 26' circle for a 24' AGP. It's definitely some work, but I am also using a home made water level, and we are moving right along. This will be our 3rd AGP install. The last two were Intex, 10' and 15'. I learned from experience that this is the step to take my time on and make sure it's done right. Once I am satisfied everything is level, the pool will go up in a day, plus filling. The hardest part is the kids chomping at the bit to get it done asap, but I am insisting this time to get it as level as humanly possible. They will thank me later!


    24' AG round, 13,500 gal, vinyl liner
    Hayward XStream cc1500

  16. Back To Top    #16

    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Beloit WI
    Posts
    4

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Casey View Post
    That should be pretty easy to dig up the sod and start at the lowest level. Anyone who is trying to charge you thousands is out of their mind considering the site you have chosen.
    I would like to keep pool up all year, so I'm wondering what to do ...
    once grass is removed and ground is level, should we avoid sand entirely and just put gorilla pad on dirt then liner? Or should we put tarp, gorilla pad then liner? I've read using foam in a permanent installation isn't recommended so I'm guessing the gorilla pad is the next option. ???
    Also what is your opinion on wall foam?
    Thank you!!!

  17. Back To Top    #17

    TFP Guide
    cfherrman's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Hays, Kansas
    Posts
    1,687

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    Several people used xps foam and after years it's still in good shape

    Wall foam doesn't help much with heat retention, heat heads up more
    Casey
    Intex 24' x 52" Filled to 40-45", 2 Main Drains, 1 Skimmer, 1 Return, PVC
    1/2 HP Intex Pump 633T w/ Taeglus TA-40 175 lb 19.5" Sand Filter, Auqabot Extreme Robot
    TF-50 and Taylor 2006 Test Kits, Quality Well Water, Fleck 5800SXT Water Softener

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Re: Want pool but scared of leveling process!!!

    Get lots of bids. Some excavators don't like doing pools since they are smaller jobs. My pool is only 21 feet and our ground is mostly clay. The first guys I talked to quoted $500 if under 4 hours, $1000 if over. They really wanted to do a retaining wall and were not all that interested in our little job. Two guys flat out said they were too busy.

    Best quote came from a guy who does a lot of pools. He said his charges range from $180 to $300 so I had him come out to give a true estimate. Final price will be $200, and he is going to have to dig down a couple feet on the high side due to our slope. Once I have the liner I'll have him come out to dig.

    I was worrying about borrowing tractors, renting a transit, etc but for $200 I'll let a professional handle it!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •