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Home > School Of Pool > Swimming Pool Installation Guide

In-Ground Swimming Pool Installation & Construction

Putting in an in-ground pool can be very expensive. The individual will need to make sure that they have ample funds available to them in order to get the job done right. If the person chooses to put the pool in themselves they can save a substantial amount of money. The one main thing that would need to be considered when installing an in-ground pool by yourself is the amount of time needed for labor and the level of expertise in the areas of electrical work and plumbing.

pool deck installation

First Things First

The very first thing that the individual will need to do is decide exactly where the pool will be put. It is highly suggested that the area be in a sunny region of the yard with few trees overhanging it. This will make the heating and cleaning of the pool significantly easier. The sun will aid in the heating of the pool, and the lack of overhanging trees will decrease the number of cleanings that will be necessary in order to remove debris.

The area where the pool is to be installed should also be level. This will make the installation go much quicker and assure that the pool will not need reinforcement on one side or the other to prevent breach of the walls. If there is no perfectly level area in your yard, one will want to level out an area for the pool to be installed in. Many individuals have a professional company come to their location and do an assessment for them in order to assure that the pool is installed somewhere where it will be level, safe for use, and will not experience severe shifting of the soil that will dictate repairs.


What To Do Next

The next step in installing an in-ground pool is to check the local codes. This is necessary to ensure that any permits needed are acquired. Many localities require that the individual obtain a building permit before ground is broken. If the proper permits are not in place one may face hefty fines, and may be blocked from completing their project. 

After all of the permits are in place to continue with your project, check with the utility companies to make sure that where you are digging is free from underground lines. These lines include electric, plumbing, sewage, and natural gas. It will be quite costly if one of these lines are breached and need to be replaced. It is also better to be safe than sorry when dealing with power lines. Worse case scenario could result in serious injury and even death if a power line is hit.


Choosing The Pool

Now that all of the necessary permits are in place, and that where the pool is to go is level and stable for the weight of the pool, it is time to make the final decision on shape, color and size of pool. While an initial decision should have been made to this point, the prospective pool owner should finalize all of the details before the ground is broken. 

Among the decisions at this point in the process are the extras that will also be installed with the pool, whether there will be a deck or patio around the pool, and the type of material that the pool will be made of. Extras include things like slides, ladders, and diving boards. One will need to make sure there is ample space for these things to be installed and mounted so that they are safe and free from overhanging branches or power lines.

If a deck is desired around the pool, one will need to make sure that there is space to lay brick or concrete, and that the deck maintains the required distance from fence lines and property lines. If the individual does not assure that the patio or deck meets the local code requirements, they may be required to tear the structure up and move it. This will be not only time consuming, but it will also cost a substantial amount of money as well.


Begin The Process

Once the individual has settled on the type and shape of pool that they will be installing, they will need to commence excavation of the site. As mentioned earlier, if the site is not level, this will need to be done first. Once the area is level then the hole can be dug. One may want to consider hiring a backhoe or a professional to do this job. The hole needs to be the proper depth and width in order to assure that there is enough room to install the support system and the liner for the pool.

One can choose to do the excavation for them self, although this is a time consuming task. It is especially not something that one will want to do with a simple shovel. If the hole is not dug to the proper specifications then assembly will need to stop, things removed from the hole, and depth or width added to the hole. It is best to pay for someone else to do this part of the job in order to save time, money and labor.


The Assembly Process

The first part of the assembly process is the side panels. It is best to bring the panels to the location of the hole. This will make it easier to place them in their proper location. This is also the point in time when the skimmer and the steps will also be assembled. First one will want to get the framework for the walls of the pool down in to the hole and put them together. Once the frame is entirely assembled and in the hole, double check to make sure that is is level.

The individual will then want to start attaching the physical walls to the framework. This can be done one section at a time to make the process easier. Once the walls and the framework are level and in place it is time to brace and reinforce the walls. This process will entail the pouring of concrete at the base of each brace. This will provide extra strength and stability once the pool is filled with water.


Fine Tuning The Assembly

Your pool now has walls, base, and framework that is stable and ready for fine tuning. Make sure that the concrete is completely dry, then begin to back fill dirt around the walls of the pool. Keep the dirt level approximately 2 foot lower than the walls of the pool. Once this is done the individual will want to take a trowel and make sure that the floor of the pool is smooth and level. This will prevent any shifting due to the water weights and assure that the liner of the pool will not rip.

The liner will be the next thing installed. One will want to make sure that it is as smooth as possible. One may use a soft bristled broom to do this. After these steps have been done, it is time to install the filter, plumbing system, and electrical system that will be needed in order to operate and use your pool. 


The Finishing Touches

Now your pool is securely in the ground and ready for use. It is now time to start filling the pool with water. This may take a while as most pools use more than 15,000 gallons of water. While it is filling, one may then take the time to get the diving boards situated, the slide installed and any other equipment that is wanted or needed. When installing boards and slides it is suggested that they be mounted on a concrete base to assure the safety of users. 

Once the dirt has fully settled around the pool one can begin installing the deck or patio. It is suggested to give the area about a week before laying any further cement or tiling. This will assure that once it is installed there will be minimal to no shift in the structure. With everything done and the pool completely filled, you are now ready to dive in and enjoy the fruits of your labor. Just make sure you have a fence or ample barrier to make sure that small animals and children do not breach the perimeter and drown. Many localities require certain specifications for perimeter fencing for pools. 

Time is always an issue with the installation of a pool. A note for consideration if wanting the pool for summer enjoyment. If the individual chooses a concrete pool, the average installation time can run from 3 to 12 weeks. If the pool decided on is a vinyl pool the time can be between 1 to 3 weeks. The fiberglass variety of pools usually takes about 3 days, give or take a day or two for shipping. If doing the installation by yourself these time limits may differ pertaining to how many hours per day is expected to be allotted for installation. 

Still need help? Visit Pools Company to find the right swimming pool company for your pool construction, renovation, repair, and service needs.

Image courtesy of Greg's Landscaping via Flickr