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How to fill in an inground pool?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by mcwlandscaping, Jul 27, 2007.

  1. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,163

    The neighbors behind me have totally neglected the once beautiful inground pool that the people before them took care of meticulously, and now it's beyond repair worthiness. They have mentioned to me before that they are considering filling it in (i can't blame them) and i was just wondering what the real correct way to do this was? There is a cement walkway thing that goes around it that would be torn up as well and was wondering if this could be used at part of the fill or not. I can see there is a huge risk of shifting and settling as this is a rather large depth to be filling in. So, what is the correct way to do it? And what machines would be most beneficial to use? Thanks for any help :)
  2. Mike33

    Mike33 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,649

    I have done a few. Punch some holes in bottom for drainage than fill in. I did one 2 years ago where all of the concrete along the pool had to come up. It went in for fill makes excellant fill wont hardly settle. Then i had some shale material and filled the rest, compacting when neccessary. Then we added top soil and seeded. Its fairly an easy job just backfill it like you would a large hole or low spot in yard and dont want it to settle.
  3. procut

    procut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,852

    ^ What he said basically. If your really interested, do a search, I can remember a decent sized thread about this exact topic.
  4. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,163

    forgot about the search option :) i learned a lot from the several threads i found.....i have a question or two now:

    -What would be considered good clean fill for this? what would i ask people for?
    -in one of the threads they said something about using geofabric somewhere in the fill in....what is this and where does it go and what does it do?
    -in a couple threads it says to make a ramp for yourself with the fill into the pool to drive the skid steer down to spread the dirt out....how do i know when the material is compacted enough on the ramp to drive the skid steer on? and what should i be compacting with until i get the skid in there, a plate compactor?
    -how many inches of topsoil should be on the fill material to bring the area to final grade?
  5. NC_Irrigator

    NC_Irrigator LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Messages: 1,444

    Def. punch some holes in the bottom, or it will become a mosquito breeding ground!
  6. Mike33

    Mike33 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,649

    Okey, i didnt know your experience or what for equiptment you had. Fill: Depending on your area, in my area shale or slate is plentiful and cheap. It compacts and drains descent. As far as ramp i have had trucks back up to pull and dump. Then pushing down in with bobcat you are able to put machine down in pool area spreading fill also compacting the fill with the weight of the machine. If you can do this in 6" lifts the machine should compact everything good, or otherwise run a tamper. I have punched holes in bottom but at times felt it was a waste. The pools i did was 6' deep normally water doesent drain down 6' but it will be a piece of mind. Concrete would also make good fill you mentioned about having some to remove. Top soil for grass typical amount you would use for a new yard 4-5".
  7. freddyc

    freddyc LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 578

    Might not be a bad idea if you sub this out. Most of your questions indicate that you have no experience either with a skid steer or in construction in general. I would respectfully suggest to you that this is not the job for you to get that experience on. For instance, either tipping a skidsteer over and falling into the pool or burying it in 2 ft of loose sand will cost you more in injuries or a tow charge than you can ever make back on the job.

    The only other thing to add is that some areas really frown on adding used concrete as filler material...especially if its in a water suppy/reservoir area.

    Geotextile fabric is essentially very thick and very strong landscape fabric--weed fabric on steroids if you will. Its used to allow water thru but support the upper layers. As this area will probably be used for a lawn area later I don't think you need any geotextile material....you're not driving any cars over it and if you do a decent job compacting as you go, settling later should be very little.

    If you're hell bent on doing this, then punch some decent holes in the bottom of the pool, truck in some fill, and start filling from the shallow end. Because the shallow end is usually 4 ft or less, then making your access ramp while still having a firm enough ground under you is easy. If you haven't been on a skid before please remember that they are tippy and in general they don't like going up or down steep angles--Bobcats in particular will tip. So try to make a ramp thats less than about 20 degrees to feel safe.

    Compact it every 3-5 inches by using the bucket and just running over it again and again. By starting at the shallow end, you can pretty much fill it up to start the ramp you need. It would be best to use some solid fill to get going such as rock, or the concrete from the pool area if you dertermine its OK to use. Once you get a transition ramp from the ground level into the pool, then you can drop material into the deeper ends from the other end or sides, and then spread it and compact it by using the ramp you made for access...compacting every 3-5 inches should give you a decent fill that won't settle too much later on (providing you dont have a toin of voids from concrete pieces). You can either drop the material in from above or use the skid and your ramp to truck it in. If you havent used a skid, I suggest using the ramp to make sure you dont screw up and fall in the hole. If all this doesn't make sense to you them please sub it out....falling 6ft into a hole in a skidsteer can seriously hurt you--or worse.
  8. prizeprop

    prizeprop LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 822

    I would check with the town to find out their requirements.Around here two towns next to each other had two different requirements.Both wanted holes punched in the bottom though.
  9. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,806

    rent a mini'excavator 7-9k lbs machine, drive around the pool, the arm is long enough to reach out and pull up the concrete and push it in the hole, that should be enough to fill in most of it, then id get unscreened topsoil (clean fill) and dump it over it. the mini excavator has a nice dozer blade that grade it all out after you've filled it in. sounds like a fun job to me. if you hve no expericence with the machines sub'ing it out might be the way to go, or a good learing expercience???? let us know if you roll a machine and take some pictures

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