Intex AGP 32x16 - level within an inch, but broken pavers. Is it safe?

Holley1111

Silver Supporter
Jul 21, 2021
7
Seattle, WA
Hello,

I am new to this forum and am hoping to get the opinion of folks who are more knowledgeable in pool installation and safety than we are.

We assembled an Intex 32x16x52 pool this week. We did a lot of research before beginning, as we wanted to make sure we were doing things properly, safely, and avoiding some of the most common pitfalls with above ground pools of this size.

We cleared and leveled the ground, removing all rocks and debris. (You will see rocks around where the pavers are set in, but rest assured there are no rocks under the footprint of the pool. We were very thorough in the rock removal under the pool) Then we has 4.5 tons of sand delivered and spread and tampered the sand, again checking to make sure it was level.

Then we set in 20x20x2 inch pavers, leveling them with the ground. We rented a laser level to make sure all the pavers were level with one another within 1/2 inch. Then we put the pool cloth on top of the sand and began building the pool.

Once we had it built and were confident that it was level, we began filling it. Everything was going well until it reached about 90-95% full and then pavers started cracking. 6 of 8 cracked on one side and 3 of 4 cracked on one end. So 9 of 24 are cracked.

Even after the pavers cracking, the pool is level within 1 inch. We measured from the top of the rail to the water line, measuring every 3 feet. All the way around the pool, there is less than a one inch variance in the level. There is about a 2 foot length of area on one side that is almost 1 1/2 inch off from the lowest point, but we suspect that the sand might be slight higher there.

Now that I have provided all the info about the install and what happened after, my question is this... Given that it is within an inch of level, Is this safe to use and address next year? We are in the Seattle area and we only have about 6 to 8 weeks left that we will be able to enjoy it before the weather turns. At that point, we would take it down for the season.

I have included pictures of the pool, the water level, the support legs etc.

I would love any/all feedback and insight you might be willing to offer. Thanks in advance.

IMG_8685.JPGIMG_8680.JPGIMG_8672.JPGIMG_8677.JPGIMG_8678.JPGIMG_8679.JPGIMG_8673.JPGIMG_8674.JPGIMG_8676.JPGIMG_8689.JPG
 

Texas Splash

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 22, 2014
33,384
Texas, San Antonio/Marion, South-Central Area
Pool Size
17888
Surface
Fiberglass
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
CircuPool RJ-45 Plus
Is this safe to use and address next year?
I would say yes. The cracks are somewhat perpendicular to the shape of the leg and I don't expect the leg(s) to move. Something to watch for the next few days, especially once everyone gets in there and starts hopping around making waves, but I think you are okay. When you re-do everything for next season, I suspect you'll need a better/thicker base material under each paver to help strengthen it under the load from the water. But keep an eye on them for a while. If the pavers continue to crack or shatter, then I would definitely replace them right away.

Welcome to TFP! :wave:

 
  • Like
Reactions: Holley1111

Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
10,802
NY
Hey Holley and Welcome !!! I’m sad for you learning this but those legs are under a tremendous amount of pressure and 1 inch doesn’t last under it.

I’m not sure how I feel about it if it’s as settled as it’s going to get or it’s going to keep going. Hang tight for more thoughts. @jseyfert3 @kellyfair @kimkats @Mdragger88

That water tho. (y)
 
  • Like
Reactions: Holley1111

Holley1111

Silver Supporter
Jul 21, 2021
7
Seattle, WA
I would say yes. The cracks are somewhat perpendicular to the shape of the leg and I don't expect the leg(s) to move.
Thank you. I appreciate your feedback. This has been such a nerve-racking process for a first-timer and we just want to make sure we properly care for it, and don't put ourselves or loved ones in harms way. We have been keeping a close eye on it and so far there has been no shifting and no more pavers have broken (it's been about 22 hours since the others broke)
 

Holley1111

Silver Supporter
Jul 21, 2021
7
Seattle, WA
Hey Holley and Welcome !!! I’m sad for you learning this but those legs are under a tremendous amount of pressure and 1 inch doesn’t last under it.

I’m not sure how I feel about it if it’s as settled as it’s going to get or it’s going to keep going. Hang tight for more thoughts. @jseyfert3 @kellyfair @kimkats @Mdragger88

That water tho. (y)
1 inch doesn’t last under it.
Thank you. Just to clarify, are you saying that we can expect it to become more unlevel than 1 inch due to the pressure?
 
Last edited:

Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
10,802
NY
No I was saying that the one inch pavers tend to crack like you’ve seen. What’s done is done now but we would have told you that if you found us sooner. Hopefully they are done cracking/shifting and you get through the season.

you’ll have a better idea if it’s gonna hold once the kids start splashing around. Keep an eye on it and see how it goes. These pools have a lot of movement to them. It’s a bag full of water if you think about it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Holley1111

Holley1111

Silver Supporter
Jul 21, 2021
7
Seattle, WA
No I was saying that the one inch pavers tend to crack like you’ve seen. What’s done is done now but we would have told you that if you found us sooner. Hopefully they are done cracking/shifting and you get through the season.

you’ll have a better idea if it’s gonna hold once the kids start splashing around. Keep an eye on it and see how it goes. These pools have a lot of movement to them. It’s a bag full of water if you think about it.
Gotcha. I understand. These were 2 inches thick and still cracked, but I now see that the problem was that they likely had some space underneath that wasn't compact enough as we dug them in.
 

Holley1111

Silver Supporter
Jul 21, 2021
7
Seattle, WA
The thing I see is that those papers aren't centered under those leg supports. Right there could be your source of uneven pressure on them and cracking.
They started centered and then shifted as the pool was filling. But I can definitely see how that caused cracking. In your opinion is it safe to use for this season and address next season?
 

Enjoying this content?

Support TFP with a donation.

Give Support

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
49,052
Tallahassee, FL
I saw throw the kids in and watch as they do their thing. If you see any shifting or such pull the kids out and call it a redo. If you don't see any more big shifting call it CANNONBALL time!

If you want you can look for something strong to pound into the ground of either side of the pavers to keep them from moving out more. I am thinking something along the lines of "grass staples" but BIG, STRONG ones.
 

kellyfair

Gold Supporter
Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 29, 2016
4,767
Tampa, FL
Pool Size
7000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Intex Krystal Clear
I agree with Pat. I think they have probably shifted all they are going to at this point, due to the orientation of the cracks. Just don’t have any sumo wrestlers doing cannonballs, and keep your eyes on it!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Holley1111

chi-chi

Well-known member
Jun 21, 2019
112
Ashburn, VA
Pool Size
8403
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Intex Krystal Clear
Hello I am no expert but am also new myself and have gotten some great advice here and it has always been suggested to use 4 inch thick concrete blocks. I could only find 4"x8"x16" so I placed them in 2s side by side as recommended. Just dig deeper next season to make them flush with the ground and center the legs on them with the "seam" perpendicular to the legs. Good luck and hopefully it holds this season
 
Last edited:

CT-Steven

Well-known member
May 26, 2020
205
CT
Pool Size
5050
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Intex Krystal Clear
When laying pavers, concrete, or asphalt it is always all about the base. In this case it looks like you used 16x16 pewter concrete steps. These are roughly 1.75" thick. As mentioned above it is probable that the base shifted allowing sections to become unsupported properly. Also mentioned from the pictures it does not look as bad as it seems, though I would agree to keep an eye on them. As you noted that you could not find thicker pads to use, next time use at least 4 inches stone dust under your pavers and tamp it down. This will provide you an adequate base to work from.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Holley1111

zea3

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2009
14,029
Houston, Texas
This is my main concern, where the legs are unsupported by paver there is the potential for the legs of the pool to bend around the edge of the paver. Once that happens the leg is ruined and must be replaced. You can try and add a paver to support the full width of the leg so they don't bend. You may be able to push enough dirt out of the way to slide a paver under without taking down the pool. When you do take it down and replace the pavers, they must be fully recessed flush with the ground. You can't leave an inch or so sticking up out of the ground. You can also use thick slabs of pressure treated wood recessed flush with the ground instead of pavers. They are less likely to crack and can be cut wide enough to accommodate legs shifting while the pool fills.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Holley1111
Thread Status
Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
It can take a long time to get an up-to-date response or contact with relevant users.