Wall On Pool Not Fitting

by Steve
(Westfield , NC)

My 24 ft. round metal wall pool will connect the top bolt on the wall seam, but the bottom is about an inch and a half off.

What are your suggestions? We've gone around and tried to adjust the foot plates, to no avail.

Hi Steve

My suggestion will not be the easiest way to go, but the best in the long run. I would take the wall completely out of the track and close up each rail gap by an eight to a quarter of an inch.

It is difficult to adjust footplates with the wall in the track. Kicking, pulling and bumping on the wall and rails will usually result in a pool that is not round or level.

Taking the wall out of the tack allows you to set each gap the same. This is critical later on when you go to install your top rails. It is also critical that your pool stays round. After re-gaping the rails it's a good idea to check it for round and level. These are the keys to a good installation.

pool bottom rail footplate gap

Only a couple of times have I ever seen a pool where the rail gaps could not be closed in enough to make the wall fit. Asahi had a fifteen foot model one year that was like that. Where most of their pools required about a quarter inch gap between rails this model needed them to be tight against one another. And the wall still would not fit, so every one of them had to be customized. It amounted to snipping about a half inch off one of the bottom rails and one of the retaining rods. That's the only time I ever remember that happening, in 40 years of installing pools.

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Trouble With The Bottom Rail

by Tanya
(Steinbach,MB Canada)

We purchased a Summerfield 24ftx52", we set up bottom rail and it only measured 22.5ft round and then when we tried putting up the wall and it overlapped about 2.5ft.

Did we do something wrong or did they send us the wrong rail?

Hi Tanya

The problem with your rails might be something you did or you may just have the wrong parts.

Bottom rail footplates usually have a particular way the rails are supposed to be inserted. Very few footplates allow the rails to go all the way in and touch in the center of the plate. Most of them have stop tabs keeping a distance of an inch or more between rails. If your rails were meant to have a space, but you butted them up instead, then the mistake is probably yours.

Footplates with stop tabs usually add in one more factor, that being a bottom rail gap. You go into the stop tab and then back the rail out by maybe a quarter inch or less. This process changes from pool to pool and is strictly trial and ere. Once you learn a particular pool gap it usually stays the same for every pool of that size, by that particular manufacturer.

The bottom rail gap alone will not account for two and a half foot overlap. But butting all the rails together when they are supposed to be gapped just might.

You might try to see if your instruction manual gives the exact lengths the rails should be. Many of them do, if so, measure the rails, that should tell you if you are using the correct ones. You could also call the manufacturer and ask them for the correct measurement. There is no sense knocking your self out using the wrong parts, it's best to find out for sure.

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Lining Up The Wall Bolts

by Karen Lutz
(Granite Falls, WA)

We are installing a 24 foot round above ground pool in our yard. Everything is level and we have followed directions to a T. We screwed the metal lining closed and although it still falls perfectly on the cement block, the row of nuts and bolts is about an inch off center on the plate. Do we need to take it apart and start over? The problem is that there are only 2 of us to manipulate the heavy metal.

Thanks for your help.

Hi Karen Where the bolts rest on the plate is not important. The idea with putting the wall seam behind an upright is just to hide it, that's all. If your upright covers the seam that's all that matters. If the seam has shifted and is in the way of the upright you may want to consider doing the wall again.

Another consideration with the wall seam is what you had to do to get it to line up. If you were an inch from meeting and you made all that up on a single bottom rail plate then your pool is no longer round. It is very common to get around to the end and see that you need to adjust one way of the other. I always back the wall out for several rails and make the adjustments a little at each footplate. The difference I have to make up depends on how far back the wall goes. Several inches means I got the rail gap all wrong and I would be starting over. A half inch is pretty normal, back the wall up 12' and adjust a few footplates, then all is good.

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