Install on Slope - Retaining Wall or Backfill

by Gina
(Nashville, TN)

pool site viewed from back of house

pool site viewed from back of house

We are planning to hire someone to install a 28' Sharkline Matrix AGP this spring. Our pool site is on a slope. I have attached photos of the proposed site.

After much researching I am confused about whether it is okay to backfill against the high side of the pool or if I need to have a retaining wall built. If a retaining wall is needed, should that be done by the installer, during the install process, or can it be done afterwards by whoever builds the planned deck?

Hi Gina. You have a beautiful place. It will really look nice once the pool and decking are installed.

I assume by your question that you are planning to dig down to the lowest spot in the yard, as opposed to raising the low area. That would be my choice if I were to install a pool in that yard.

I would backfill the dirt around the pool where it has been dug out. You want to do this only after the pool is full of water so you do not cave in the sides.

If you have reasons for not wanting the dirt next to the pool a retaining wall is fine. For instance if you are told your ground is too high in acid content and should not be against the wall, or you are worried about the wall warranty, are a couple of examples.

Black plastic, or roofing tar, on the wall before the dirt are both ways of dealing with these issues if you prefer to backfill.

Either way be sure to dig the area out plenty big enough. As an installer I would like to see at least three feet around the pool that is leveled off. Also, as an installer, I would not be the one to build the retaining wall. Your installers might think different on both these maters so check with them to be sure.

So if you were planning a retaining wall it would be at least two feet from the pool leaving a nice sized gap. This gap could easily be covered with decking, so either way, wall or no wall, it would look nice. You may also want the opinion of the deck builders to see if it matters them.

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