Packing Sand For Above Ground Pool

by Mark
(Kentucky)

I am putting up a 27 ft above ground pool. What are some of the ways I can pack the sand, not really wanting to have to rent tools for this? Is there something I can make for this? Thanks for any info.



Hi Mark. It's pretty amazing what just a little foot packing will do. Walking the entire pool area on damp sand will pack it in pretty tight. I always work with wet sand. As I am spreading and smoothing the sand it is getting plenty of foot packing. Once the entire area is smooth I jump out of the pool and install the liner from the outside. I do this by stretching the liner over the pool framework and letting the water pull the wrinkles out.

By installing a liner this way there are no footprints in the sand. The real sand packing is done by the weight of many thousands of gallons of water. By the time the pool is full the sand is pretty well packed.

I have also seen people make tampers out of a 4 x 4 and a piece of square plywood. You need a base large enough to pack some sand, at least one foot by one foot. You need a handle heavy enough to add a little weight to it. Water rollers are another option. They are probably the cheapest sand packer available from a rental shop.

This is how we install liners with no footprints.

Above Ground Pool Liner Installation

sand base ready for pool liner


With the sand as smooth as this, and the liner correctly installed, you should have a very smooth pool bottom. Another thing I always recommend to my customers is to stay out of the pool for a couple of days. This gives the sand a chance to pack under the weight of the water.

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Smoothing a Sand Base

by Cathi V.
(Washington Michigan USA)

Can anyone assist us in leveling out the mason sand when the liner is being replaced?

We ordered a new liner and the dimensions have changed from a 6" cove to an 8" cove and we added mason sand throughout the pool 27' area.

Is there a secret to the leveling process, cause we sure could use some advise, please!

Thanks, Cathi



Hi Cathi. I use a large push broom to smooth the sand. There is a picture on this page that shows the broom being worked.

Above Ground Swimming Pool Installation

When I am doing a new install I go over the sand once with the backside of my rake. This takes out most of the big humps, lumps and valleys. I then go over the entire area again with my push broom. This makes a very smooth bottom.

The majority of my liner installations are done from outside the pool so the sand base is well packed by the water before anyone ever gets in the pool. This process can be seen here.

Expandable Liner Installation

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