How To Install a Fiberglass Ground Pool

Summer's a month away and you are thinking how wonderful it would be if you have your very own pool. Installing a concrete pool takes a long time and is expensive. What's your alternative? A fiberglass pool!

A fiberglass pool, unlike a concrete swimming pool, is pre-fabricated. It comes in different pool designs, colors, shapes and sizes, with or without steps or ladders. This type of in-ground pool construction is easier to install and maintain. Pool liners are not needed because the fiberglass shell itself acts as a liner.

As soon as you purchase the pool, prepare for the installation.

  1. Identify the location of the pool. The best site is a level area large enough to accommodate the pool size plus space to lounge around. The site should be high enough so that water from the surrounding area will not drain into the pool.
  2. Find out if you need to get a local permit. Check if your city requires a permit. Contact your local utility departments to make sure that none of the gas, phone, cable or water lines will be in the way of the new pool.
  3. Prepare the site for excavation. Place stakes and strings around the excavation site. If you are installing the pool yourself, a number of fiberglass pool manufacturers provide DIY installation instructions.
  4. Dig away. Depending on the size of the pool, you can use a shovel or a back hoe/excavator. Make sure you dig three inches deeper than the pool size. You will need to fill the bottom with sand (or gravel) for the pool to sit on.
  5. Prepare the hole. Place compact sand into the bottom of the hole. Make sure it is level. Remember that the pool should be above the surrounding ground to allow rainwater to drain away from the pool. Preparation for plumbing may have to be done at this point, especially if the pool has a bottom drain.
  6. Place the pool. Depending on the size of the pool, you will either need a backhoe or a crane to lift the pool out of the truck and into the prepared hole. Make sure that the fiberglass pool is level. You may need to lift the pool and level the sand bed several times.
  7. Backfill the hole around the pool. Start by filling the pool with 12 inches of water. Check the level of the pool. See where adjustments need to be made to keep it level. Add equal amounts of sand in the hole and water in the pool. The water should be one foot higher than the backfill each time. Since you have a fiberglass pool, too much water can bow the pool outwards. While too much sand can make the pool bow inwards. While backfilling, you can also start the next step.
  8. Install the plumbing. Install the necessary plumbing equipment, including the automatic cleaner, pumps and optional lights if any.
  9. Prepare the yard and pour the deck. There are different types of decks like standard or cantilever. After preparing the yard, pour the concrete and let it set. This will lock the pool in place.

You may also choose to install pool enclosures for safety reasons or to keep out animals from enjoying a dip in your fiberglass pool. Ground pool installation is a fun project if you know your way around excavation, leveling and plumbing. If you are not sure what to do, it's best to leave the installation to the professionals. That way, all you have to do is grab your swimsuit and enjoy you new fiberglass pool.


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