How to Install an Inground Pool: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Install an Inground Pool?

To install an inground pool, you first need to excavate the land and then level it by creating a flat base using either sand or gravel.

After that, a crane is used to lift and install the fiberglass pool onto the base, ensuring that it is level and secure.

The plumbing system, including the skimmer box, PVC piping, salt chlorinator, and pump filter, also needs to be installed before placing the pool in the hole.

Various valves, swimming pool pumps and motors, and a drain/backwash system must be properly fitted.

The filter system, such as DE or cartridge filters, is crucial for removing dirt particles.

All pool components should be tested before filling it with water.

The plumbing system should be easily accessible for maintenance and troubleshooting.

The pool should be backfilled with gravel, crusher dust, or a mixture of cement and sand while simultaneously filling it with water for equal stability and pressure.

An electrician is required to wire components like pumps and HVAC systems.

For concrete pools, the surface should be graded, and the walls built using metal and wood bars to frame them evenly.

Inground pool plumbing is essential, and safety precautions should be taken to prevent electrocution.

Installation may require the assistance of a qualified contractor.

After pouring the concrete, it should cure for at least a month.

Installing a swimming pool vinyl liner can help prevent moisture from seeping out and improve the pool’s appearance.

Swimming pool coping is installed at the edge to cover the concrete edges and integrate the tile and finish of the pool while preventing concrete from reaching the pool shell.

Key Points:

  • Excavate and level the land using sand or gravel for a flat base
  • Use a crane to lift and install the fiberglass pool onto the level base
  • Install the plumbing system, including skimmer box, PVC piping, salt chlorinator, and pump filter
  • Fit various valves, swimming pool pumps and motors, and a drain/backwash system properly
  • Test all pool components before filling with water and ensure easy accessibility for maintenance
  • Backfill the pool with gravel or crusher dust while simultaneously filling with water for stability

Did You Know?

1. The first concrete in-ground pool is believed to have been built by the ancient Greeks, who used to construct large pools called “piscinas” as public bathing areas.

2. Inground pools can be customized with various features, including swim-up bars, built-in waterfalls, and even underwater speakers for a truly immersive aquatic experience.

3. The world’s largest in-ground swimming pool is located in Chile at the San Alfonso del Mar resort. Spanning over 20 acres, it holds a staggering 66 million gallons of water, equivalent to about 6,000 average-sized residential pools.

4. In some Scandinavian countries like Finland and Sweden, it is common to install in-ground pools not only for recreation but also for therapeutic purposes. These specially designed pools, called “therapeutic pools,” are used for rehabilitation, pain management, and relaxation.

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5. Building an in-ground pool requires careful planning and construction techniques, including measuring the water table level, soil analysis, and ensuring proper drainage to prevent damage caused by water pressure.

1. Leveling The Land And Setting The Base

When installing an inground pool, the first step is to prepare the land and create a level base. This requires excavation of the designated area to create a hole for the pool. Once the excavation is complete, it is essential to ensure that the land is leveled properly.

To achieve a flat base, two popular methods are commonly used: using a bed of sand or a layer of gravel. A bed of sand can provide a smooth and soft surface for the pool to rest on, while gravel offers better drainage and stability. The choice between sand and gravel ultimately depends on personal preference and the specific requirements of the pool.

After the land has been leveled, it is crucial to compact the base to ensure stability. This can be done using a compactor or by manually tamping down the sand or gravel. By securing a solid and level foundation for the pool, you are setting the stage for a successful installation.

2. Installing The Fiberglass Pool

Once the land has been properly prepared, the next step is to install the fiberglass pool. Fiberglass pools are popular due to their durability, low maintenance requirements, and customizable design options. To ensure a successful installation, a crane is commonly used to lift the fiberglass pool and place it on the base.

During the installation process, it is crucial to ensure that the pool is level and structurally secure. This involves carefully aligning the pool with the surrounding area and ensuring that all necessary support structures, such as braces, are in place. It is also important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to ensure proper installation and prevent any potential issues.

  • Proper land preparation is essential for fiberglass pool installation.
  • Fiberglass pools offer durability, low maintenance, and design flexibility.
  • Crane is commonly used to lift and place the fiberglass pool.
  • Pool should be level and structurally secure during installation.
  • Follow manufacturer’s guidelines for installation success.

3. Plumbing System Installation

Before placing the pool in the hole, it is essential to install the plumbing system. This includes fitting the skimmer box, PVC piping, salt chlorinator, and pump filter. The plumbing system is a vital component of an inground pool as it ensures water circulation, filtration, and chemical distribution.

To properly install the plumbing system, it is important to ensure that all components are correctly fitted and connected. This may involve cutting and gluing PVC pipes, installing fittings, and attaching necessary valves and switches. It is crucial to follow local building codes and guidelines to ensure that the plumbing system is safe and compliant.

4. Fitting Valves, Pumps, And Filters

In addition to the plumbing system, the installation process also involves fitting valves, swimming pool pumps and motors, and a drain/backwash system. These components are crucial for controlling water flow, ensuring proper filtration, and maintaining the cleanliness of the pool.

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Various types of filters, such as DE (diatomaceous earth) or cartridge filters, can be used to remove particles of dirt from the water. It is important to choose the appropriate filter system based on the size of the pool and the desired level of filtration.

During this stage of the installation, it is essential to ensure that all fittings and connections are properly sealed to prevent leaks and maintain optimal water flow. Proper installation of valves, pumps, and filters is crucial for the long-term functionality and maintenance of the pool.

  • Fitting valves, swimming pool pumps, and motors
  • Drain/backwash system
  • DE or cartridge filters for dirt removal

“Proper installation of valves, pumps, and filters is crucial for the long-term functionality and maintenance of the pool.”

5. Testing And Ensuring Proper Function

Before filling the pool with water, thoroughly test all parts of the pool to ensure proper function and identify any potential issues. This includes:

  • Testing the filtration system
  • Checking for leaks in the plumbing system
  • Ensuring valves and switches are working correctly

It is also important to check the integrity of the pool structure and ensure it can withstand the pressure of the water once filled. This step involves:

  • Inspecting the pool walls for damage or weakness
  • Reinforcing them if necessary

Additionally, properly install and test pool lights and other electrical components to ensure safe operation and compliance with electrical codes.

6. Backfilling And Electrical Wiring

After all necessary tests have been conducted and any issues have been addressed, it is time to backfill the pool and complete the electrical wiring. Backfilling involves filling the space between the pool shell and the excavated hole with gravel, crusher dust, or a mixture of cement and sand. This process provides equal stability and pressure to the pool.

During the backfilling process, it is important to consider installing a drain pipe system for easy water drainage. This can help prevent water buildup around the pool and ensure proper maintenance.

Electrical wiring is another crucial step in the installation process. A qualified electrician should wire components such as pumps, lighting systems, and HVAC systems to ensure safe and efficient operation. Proper wiring is essential to prevent electrical hazards and ensure the smooth circulation of water once the pool is full.

Installing an inground pool is a multi-step process that requires careful planning, proper leveling and base preparation, and the correct installation of the pool structure, plumbing system, valves, pumps, and filters. Thorough testing, backfilling, and electrical wiring are also crucial steps to ensure the functionality and safety of the pool. By following these steps and seeking the advice of a qualified contractor, you can enjoy the benefits of a beautiful and functional inground pool in your backyard.


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Frequently Asked Questions

How deep should an inground pool be?

When considering the depth of an inground pool, it is important to prioritize the safety and enjoyment of both kids and adults. For a pool that caters to all age groups, a minimum depth of 3 feet ensures that children can stand comfortably while also allowing adults to engage in water activities. To create a more versatile swimming experience, a maximum depth of 4-5 feet is preferable, providing enough room for leisurely swimming as well as games and water sports. Additionally, for those with lap swimming in mind, a pool with a length of 25 feet and a depth of 5 feet offers ample space to practice and enjoy this form of exercise in the comfort of your own backyard.

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What do you put under an inground pool?

When installing an in-ground pool, one common option for the base is vermiculite. Vermiculite is a lightweight and porous material that is easily moldable to the contours of the pool. Another alternative is grout, a mixture of cement, sand, and water that provides a solid and durable foundation for the pool. Both options require the application of the chosen material directly on top of the soil, using a rounded pool trowel, before placing the pool liner on top.

How do you install a pool without digging it?

Installing a pool without digging it is a modern solution that involves using above-ground pool kits. These kits come with pre-made walls and a liner that can be easily assembled and installed on a level surface. To begin the installation process, the pool’s future location should be marked and cleared, ensuring enough space for the pool’s size. Once the area is prepared, a sand base is poured and leveled to create a stable foundation. The pre-made pool walls can then be installed, and any high or low spots in the sand can be fixed. Finally, the pool’s liner is installed, and the pool can be filled with water, transforming the space into a refreshing oasis for relaxation and enjoyment.

Although this installation method might lack the excavation process, it provides a practical alternative for homeowners who are unable or prefer to avoid digging. Above-ground pool kits offer a relatively simple solution that saves time and labor. Additionally, they can be easily disassembled and relocated if needed, providing flexibility for homeowners. By following the steps outlined above, individuals can install a swimming pool without resorting to traditional digging methods, resulting in a hassle-free and accessible pool installation.

Do you have to keep water in an inground pool?

Yes, it is necessary to keep water in an inground pool for various reasons. One important factor is that keeping water in the pool helps maintain the integrity of the liner. Continuous exposure to air can cause the liner to dry out, shrink, and potentially crack, which can lead to costly repairs. Furthermore, having water in the pool, even when covered, provides a protective barrier against debris and potential damage. Without water, an empty pool becomes more vulnerable to debris accumulation, increasing the risk of wear and tear on the structure.

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