How To Level An Above Ground Pool

After purchasing an above ground pool, you’re eager to jump in and enjoy the cool, refreshing water. Understanding why leveling the ground for your pool is so important, as well as the steps you must take to make the project as easy as possible, is important. In this article we’ll show you how to level an above ground pool as efficiently as possible.

The Importance Of Even Ground For Above-Ground Pools

level above ground pool location

There Will Be An Uneven Water Level

Uneven ground poses a safety hazard when installing a swimming pool. This is why it’s crucial to know how to level an above ground pool. A shallow and a deep end can pose a danger to smaller children if they cannot touch the bottom.

If your skimmer or other cleaning equipment gets stuck in the “shallow end” you’ve created in your pool, the uneven water level can also pose problems for your pool’s skimmer or other equipment.

There Will Be A Weak And Compromised Structure

Having an uneven pool also poses a significant risk to the liner and wall of your pool because of the extra pressure. It is possible for the walls to buckle, twist, and even break when the weight is not distributed evenly on all sides.

In a worst-case scenario, your pool would be destroyed if the wall gave out. It may cause a flood of water in your backyard. This can put swimmers and other people in close proximity at risk of injury.

The Pool Will Look Strange

An uneven pool is immediately noticeable. When your pool’s water is not level as it should be, it’s like a glass balancing off center.

If you see your pool, you’ll immediately notice that the bottom is lower on one side than the other. Everyone will feel the same way if they see your pool.

How To Level The Ground – A Step By Step Guide

As long as you follow these steps, creating a level swimming pool site is a straightforward process with the right tools.

Discover what you should do by reading on.

how to level an above ground pool

Step 1: Choose The Right Location

Knowing how to level an above ground pool is so important because a pool can’t be moved once it’s set up unless it’s completely disassembled. This is why choosing the right location before you start is essential.

The easiest way to do the following steps is to find the flattest part of your yard. You’ll appreciate less shoveling if the ground is flatter.

Even though trees provide some shade, they also drop leaves and other debris into your pool, making it more difficult to keep it clean.

In addition, stay away from underground cables, septic lines, and power lines. Choose a spot that’s well within the boundaries of your property, with a buffer around the pool that’s at least a foot wide.  

Step 2: Clear The Area

It is crucial to clear the site before installing a pool. If you have grass, rocks, and other debris underneath, the liner may be damaged, and maybe even destroyed.

Grass must be removed first. If you prefer using a rototiller, you could hire one or use a sod cutter to cut, roll, and relocate the grass. All stones, roots, and other items that may damage the liner need to be removed.

You can use a thick tarp to starve the grass of sunlight and water if you’re thinking ahead about your pool installation and have a few weeks to kill. That way, it’ll be easier to remove the grass.

Step 3: Make Your Device For Leveling

The level of the pool can’t be determined by merely eyeballing its location. You can cause significant problems if you’re off by even a few inches once it’s filled with water.

It is necessary to use a leveling device. It is easiest to get a long, straight piece of board. Then you place it across the intended location for your pool and check its level with a level.

As a result, you will be able to identify any high and low points on your site.

It’s also possible to use stakes and string if you don’t have a long enough board to stretch out from the center. You can then use your level to confirm that the site is flat by sighting along the tightened string.

Step 4: Fill The Holes And Fix The Bumps

By now, any leveling issues should be apparent. It can be very tiresome to smooth these out. Especially because you need to shovel them out one by one.

The best way to get the ground level is to dig into it; it’s actually better to remove the bumps in the dirt rather than add more, as it helps create a more stable foundation.

As a general rule of thumb, sink your pool at least two inches into the soil, since you’ll be topping it off with sand after getting the base flat.

Step 5: Use Sand To Smooth It Out

A truckload of sand is needed after leveling the ground. In addition to protecting your pool’s liner from grass and weeds, the sand also provides a buffer against sharp objects that you may have missed in the dirt.

A landscaping supply company or your local garden center can deliver sand to your home. You should request enough sand to cover your entire pool site with at least a 2-inch layer, but it is totally fine if it ends up being 6-inches thick.

As soon as the sand is delivered, spread it evenly with a rake, then give it a good water and let it dry. The sand should flatten and dry out overnight.

Step 6: Compact The Sand Down Firmly

Having let the sand come to rest, you should compact it into a solid pool base. You can easily buy a lawn roller online, which is the best tool for the job. You should pack down the entire pool base flat.

Then it’s time for you to use your level. You should make sure that nothing has changed and that everything is still flat. Otherwise, use your shovel to level it out, then your lawn roller to pack it down firmly. It’s worth taking extra time to get this right.

Step 7: Put The Base Protector Down

Last but not least, you need to lay out the base layer. You can buy a specialized pool pad that goes under your above-ground pool. This will protect your pool’s vinyl as another layer of protection.

In addition to reducing the risk of puncture in the liner, the base layer also helps to insulate and prevent the heat loss from the water as a result of the cold ground.

I’d recommend putting a tarp on the ground at the very least.

Even finding the hole to patch up your liner after your pool has been filled can be a nightmare if you puncture your liner. Putting in place adequate protection is a far smarter move at this point. Once the protector is installed, you are ready for the last step.

Step 8: Now You Can Start Setting Up Your Pool

How to set up an above ground pool

The instructions will vary slightly depending on the model, but they all have a similar theme. When you follow the steps carefully, your above ground swimming pool will be set up in no time and your kids will enjoy the water right away.


Make sure the ground is properly prepared and leveled before you install your swimming pool. I hope that you now know how to level an above ground pool in the easiest and cheapest way.

You risk creating a safety hazard in your yard if you get it wrong at this crucial stage, and your pool will never look quite right.

If you do it right, your pool will last for many seasons to come.

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