Landscaping Stone Damaging Metal on Above Ground Pool?

NE Surfer

Active member
May 7, 2020
Coastal Massachusetts
Hi - seems like a common "finish" around an above ground pool (which I plan to do also) is to lay egg-stone in with a border. I dug down 12" on one side to level the area, so I am thinking of adding a few inches of fill then the stone on that side, the other side would just be stone about 3" deep.

The Pool Factory service rep mentioned that there should be a barrier between the pool wall and the stone because:
"most decorative rocks are very acidic and will damage a pool wall beyond repair very quickly. If you want to place stones around your pool just be sure to create a barrier so that the rocks do not touch the metal wall."

I was surprised to hear this and figured TFP people would have been aware of this if it was the case... does this statement "hold any water" (pun intended)?

If so, what material have you folks used for a barrier, seems like standard landscaping fabric would deteriorate or allow any "acid" from the rocks to still come into contact with the pool (not to mention it would also be visible).



Well-known member
Jun 19, 2020
NE Ohio
I just back filled my pool with 57 washed gravel. Put up a premium landscape fabric. You are probably correct that it won't do anything but figured it was easy to do and put up. I'm going to trim it down so you won't be able to see it much.

Someone recommended foam board insulation but didn't feel like going through the headache of doing that. We will see how it holds up....

Brett S

Well-known member
Mar 15, 2019
Personally I have a hard time believing in acidic rock, but it seems like it’s something you could test easily as we all have pH test kits. Get a cup of water and test it’s pH, then put some of the landscaping rock in it for a day or two and test the pH again and see if it went down by any significant amount.

That said there may be some concern if the landscape rock holds moisture against the pool wall. That could definitely cause corrosion issues. I feel like putting landscape fabric against the wall of the pool would probably make this worse as that seems even more likely to hold moisture.

So he might be right about not putting rock against the pool wall, just wrong about the reason.