Nothing feels cooler on a hot day than splashing in the pool. If you’re ready to take the plunge and install your own above ground pool, here are some things you need to consider when choosing your perfect place in the sun.
Like many Americans, we look forward to setting up our pool. Actually, it’s more the swimming we look forward to. The process of setting up our 4′ deep above ground pool is kind of a necessary evil. Because setting up a pool requires a fair amount of time and resources, you only want to do it once. Here’s how to pick the right spot the first time.
Know your legal limits
Some cities and developments don’t allow swimming pools at all. Other areas may have requirements you have to meet to keep things legit. King Technology very wisely suggests checking with your local authorities and zoning boards before investing your time, energy and money in the installation of a pool.
Keep it on the level
Even temporary pools that are only up for the summer need to be installed on level ground. An uneven pool creates uneven pressure on the liner, which can lead to pool collapse or a burst liner, explains LevelGroundPool.com.
Make a clean sweep
Some experts suggest you remove the sod under your pool. Others advise putting down a layer of compacted sand. Intex, a well-known pool manufacturer, discourages sand because it can shift. Instead, it recommends clearing the area of sticks, stones, aggressive grasses and other things that might puncture your liner before putting down a ground cloth or tarp. Your best bet is to clean up any potential pool poppers, and then follow the direction that came with your particular pool.
Stay within hose length
Whether you fill the pool with your garden hose or have water trucked in, you may find yourself needing to top up your pool after evaporation or enthusiastic splashing. That’s a whole lot easier if you’ve chosen a location within reach of your hose.
Plan for access to electric
If your pool has a pump to help keep the water clean, you’ll need electricity to make it run. Extension cords rated for the outdoors allow you some flexibility in choosing a site, but you don’t want to be tripping over extension cords all summer if you can help it. On the flip side, keep a safe distance from any overhead lines. It’s easy to miscalculate and strike a low-hanging line with a vacuum pole if you aren’t careful. Why take the risk?
Soak in the sun
You’ll want your pool’s water to feel deliciously cool — not teeth-chatteringly frigid. Unless you’ve also invested in a pool heater, you’ll want to pick a place that gets plenty of sun to increase the odds that your water temperature will stay comfortable. If, like us, you’re stuck with more shade than sun, you may want to consider buying a pool heater or making a simple DIY solar heater. Just remember to allow for the extra strain on your pump.
Safety is the most important consideration. According to the CDC, ten people die from accidental drowning every day; two of those ten are kids under the age of 14. Choose an area away from your children’s regular play area and teach them to always keep their distance unless it’s pool time. Consider fencing in your pool to prevent unapproved access and make sure there’s nothing nearby that too-clever-for-their-own-good kids might use to climb into the pool, especially if there are children in your neighborhood. It’s also smart to check PoolSafely.gov for tips on staying safe around a pool.
An above ground swimming pool is both a fair amount of work and a whole lot of fun. We love being able to relax, cool off and play in ours. We’ll swim almost every day this summer. Take a little time to choose the best location for your pool and you, too, can savor your swimming time.