Pool sinking due to hard clay cracking from the dry heat


New member
Jul 25, 2018
Hello everyone. We're having issues with our above-ground pool sinking on one side. The pool came with our house which we bought a little over a year ago. It's 18 foot with metal sides/frame and a vinyl liner. We're located in SW Oklahoma and anyone from this area knows the clay here will dry out and cause all sorts of problems with pools and even home foundations. We hope to replace the pool for next season but we want to prevent the same issue from happening again. So our question is once we level out the ground, what steps should we take to prep the area to avoid large cracks in the clay from forming under the new pool? I agree with using some sort of A2 material, compacting it and then using either sand or foam for a smooth surface. We don't know how the ground was originally prepped. We're just wondering if we follow the steps I mentioned will that help prevent our current situation from happening again?


Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
Fletcher, OK
I just run the sprinklers every 2 to 3 days and no issues in 4 years, pool is sitting directly over rock hard clay slab 3 feet below pool... (no issues with the house slab also)


Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2009
Houston, Texas
Keeping the clay moist is really the only guaranty that the soil around it won't shrink again. For the new pool you can lay mulch around the pool and cover it with a layer of rock chips and water it well during the summer. The mulch will help keep the ground moist. Just don't pile mulch next to the metal pool wall. Leave about a 1" gap w/o mulch next to the pool. You can carefully fill in the gap with rock chips.