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Can I Build an Inground Pool From Concrete Block?

By Tyler Lacoma

In-ground pools are pools that are actually set into the ground, so that the surface of the pool is close to ground level, like a typical pool found at a resort. These pools are more complicated and difficult to build because they require extensive excavation and preparation work in order to provide a necessary foundation. With the right tools and enough work, though, you can build your own version of an in-ground swimming pool.

Excavations and Concrete Blocks

You will need to start by choosing the location and size of the swimming pool. Excavating for the pool can be a very laborious process and you will need to make your measurements very precise. Be sure to dig out an extra six inches or so in the bottom of the pool for concrete (this concrete will be poured in, since concrete bricks will not be level enough nor suitable for the base of the pool. You should also make a foot-deep trench around the area of the pool for a protective and useful patio layer. All trenches for piping will also need to be dug, and you will need to lay down rebar to support the concrete floor, making precise measurements consistently through the process.

At this point, you can start setting up concrete blocks around the borders of the pool for the pool walls. You will need to punch holes through the concrete at the correct places for the pipe and pump entrances, but if this is done correctly then concrete blocks can be used for the wall base. You can expect to use around 700 blocks for a 20 foot by 40 foot pool, and you also will need to use a filler pump to fill the hollow blocks in with a cement mixtures once they are correctly positioned. The other option is shotcrete, which is a type of concrete that is shot from a tank in a damp mixture that adheres to surfaces. Shotcrete is usually less expensive but not always as dependable.

Swimming Pool Finishing

Once the walls are laid, most in-ground pools are typically supported by a ring of concrete set at the very top of the walls, after the walls have been filled with cement to give the required support and all the space has been made for lights, skimmers, etc. When the walls and floor of the pool are ready, they will need to be covered with plaster and then tiled carefully to create a waterproof seal. The concrete walls themselves cannot stand repeated exposure to water, so a layer of plaster and then tile will always need to be added.


About the Author


Tyler Lacoma has worked as a writer and editor for several years after graduating from George Fox University with a degree in business management and writing/literature. He works on business and technology topics for clients such as Obsessable, EBSCO, Drop.io, The TAC Group, Anaxos, Dynamic Page Solutions and others, specializing in ecology, marketing and modern trends.