Deciding to fill in your pool doesn’t mean you’re through with making choices. Once you’ve committed to filling it, you’ll need to decide how to fill it and whether to hire a professional. Some homeowners prefer to fill in their pools themselves, as this will save them money and give them more control over the project. Others, however, would prefer to leave it to the professionals to avoid making an expensive or dangerous mistake. Your project timeline may be shorter if you choose to go this route, so think carefully about your priorities before making a decision.
The Pool Removal Process
There are two types of pool removals, though both start with draining the pool entirely and drilling holes into the bottom of it to allow for proper drainage. In a partial pool removal, the top 18 inches of the walls are torn down and left in the bottom of the pool. Then, the rest of the cavity is filled in with dirt and compacted. The pool can then be covered in topsoil and grass or another outdoor feature, like a patio.
In the case of a full pool removal, the entire pool liner and all of its walls are removed. The debris is then taken away instead of being used as fill, and the pool is filled solely with dirt. It is then compacted and covered in the same way as a partial pool removal. Though both result in a filled pool, a full pool removal is often preferred. Full pool removals tend to result in stronger foundation, making it ideal for homeowners who are concerned about the structural integrity of their pool removal or who are considering building on top of the area.
The length of time it takes to fill a pool with dirt depends on several factors. A smaller pool will of course take less time to fill than a larger one, and the equipment used to fill the pool will also factor into the timeline. Using a shovel, while not advisable, is the most affordable option but could take well over a days’ worth of work. A small backhoe or other excavator, meanwhile, would take considerably less time and could help you complete the job in a matter of hours for a smaller pool.
Filling in a pool is not the only step in the pool removal process, though. Before any excavation or demolition can begin, the area must be surveyed to identify gas lines, electrical wires, telephone caples, pipes, and other obstacles that could cause injuries or damage to the backyard. You’ll then need to make a plan to work around them during the pool removal. After this planning is complete, the area will need to be cleared of hardware, such as filters and rails. Then, the breakdown process can begin. This preliminary work can take several days, depending on the complexity of the project.
Overall, a complete pool filling and removal can take professional contractors as little as one day for a partial removal and as much as one week for a full removal. If you choose to complete this process yourself, it could take significantly longer, particularly if you have limited time off and need to work on the project only on weekends.
Hiring a Professional
The idea of saving money on a pool removal by completing it yourself may be attractive. However, the cost savings may not be worth the extra time it will take you to fill the pool. Inexperience with heavy machinery and with the pool removal process can slow you down or cause serious injury. A professional contractor can complete the project in a more timely manner thanks to their expertise.
This expertise can also help a contractor avoid gas lines, electrical components, and other elements. If something does go wrong, they will be able to manage the situation and pay for repairs with liability insurance. Without a contractor, you will be responsible for these expenses and may end up going over your budget.
Finally, hiring a contractor helps ensure that the pool is filled correctly. As we have seen, it is not as simple as just draining the pool and filling it with dirt. Failing to complete each step of the process correctly could leave you susceptible to sinkholes, drainage issues, and water damage to your home. A contractor, however, is trained to identify issues during each step and fix them to create a secure fill.
Hiring a Contractor
Speak to Dirt Connections for more information about pool fillings and removals. The firm provides free estimates and can help you decide whether a partial or full pool removal is best suited to your needs. If you decide to go ahead with filling in your pool yourself, Dirt Connections offers free fill dirt delivery and can help you purchase the right amount for your pool.