How to Build a Pool


There is something about a backyard pool that makes a house even more of a home. Whether you have in mind a pool large enough for the whole family or a simple wading pool for the kids, there are a few basic steps that will make the installation process a great deal easier.

Things You'll Need

  • City Permits
  • Survey of the yard
  • Stakes and string
  • Shovel
  • Backhoe
  • Plumbing
  • Cement
  • Tile or paint
  • Get the proper permits from your city or other local jurisdiction. This often is a simple process that involves filling out an application and providing the measurements and location of the pool. Check in advance for guidelines regarding how close the edge of the pool can be to the property line, how the drainage system will be tied into the existing sewage system and other details. This will help to speed the approval of the permits and allow you to begin work on the pool.

  • Check with the water company on the location and process of tying into the sewage system. Keep in mind they may either choose to do the job themselves or require that you use an authorized professional for the task.

  • Survey the back yard and stake off the dimensions for the pool. Use string to outline the dimensions of the pool. This will help you keep the proper shape as you begin to dig.

  • Using the shovel, dig out the outline of the pool. Remove the stakes and string, paving the way for the backhoe to dig out the interior sections of the pool.

  • Rent or hire a backhoe. Make sure to use the information gathered from the water company to determine the depths of the pool at any given point. Take care to not dig deeply enough to hit a water pipe.

  • Call the water company to make the connection to the sewage system. This is much easier to accomplish now than later in the process.

  • Pour the cement to finish the bottom and sides of the pool. Allow the cement to set according to instructions. Keep in mind this may take several days. Make sure to pour the rim of the pool at the same time. Smooth and seal the cement once it is in place.

  • Paint or add tile to the pool walls and floor if desired. Make sure to use paint that is manufactured for the task. Allow the paint to dry thoroughly before putting water into the pool.

Tips & Warnings

  • When in doubt, outsource specific tasks to professionals. This can save a lot of time and money in the long run.
  • Instead of pouring concrete, it is possible to buy a prefabricated concrete or resin insert that can be installed in very little time.
  • Never take shortcuts! Choosing this path can lead to a lot of extra expense as mistakes have to be corrected by professionals.

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