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    How to Build a Pool: Coordinating Concrete Delivery

    July 30, 2013
    larryweinberg

    concrete-trucks-toy

    There are usually multiple concrete delivery services in your area. What I suggest is calling an find out availability of a delivery for when you will need it and also to check price. Some companies have their pricing online.

    There are different mixes of concrete and what you are looking for is the cheapest mix which has a lot of stone in it as you do not need it for finished concrete - just for the weight to hold the walls in place. This will be buried with backfill material anyway. The cheapest mix is usually called a 2500 mix.

    The concrete companies usually charge by the yard for their product, this may include delivery but be sure to check on that when checking prices. It usually is figured for a certain amount of time on the job site and anything over that amount of time you will be charged for, so I would ask them that also. You do not want to find out that they figure 15 minutes included for delivery and your delivery takes an hour and your hit with a waiting time charge. Plan on at least 5 minutes per cubic yard, for unloading time.

    How much concrete do I need? Order this much concrete, for these standard pool sizes.  12 x 24 -  5 yards,  14 x 28 - 6 yards,  16 x 32 - 7 yards, 18 x 36 - 8 yards and a 20 x 40 - 9 yards.  These are a little in the higher side but the extra ½ yard or yard can be used for an equipment pad for your pump and filter and any other areas you can use the concrete.

    When to Order the Concrete? Order the concrete at least a few days ahead of time to be able to get it there when you need it, any closer than that you will have the times that they have available left to choose from, so the earlier the better is the way to go.spp-concrete-trucks

    Concrete Truck Access. Make sure before the concrete truck gets there you have enough access room for him to get in and out of  the pool area.  The more he can actually move around the pool, the easier the pour will be. The driver will move the truck for you a few times, if you have room to maneuver the truck into other locations.

    Concrete trucks when loaded are extremely heavy, so you may not want them in areas that are very wet or uncompacted fill dirt, which can leave very deep wheel ruts. You can do it all from one location, since you are essentially pouring in concrete to fill the entire area outside of the pool walls and steps, but it is easier if he can move the truck once to pour outside the opposite end of the pool.

    Let the driver know what you are doing, if they are unfamiliar - you are "pouring a concrete collar around the base of the pool wall, about a foot deep". Tell him now if you'll need to move the truck at some point, or if you are going to take the entire amount in one location. The truck will come equipped with about 10-12 feet of 'chute', in most cases.

    Slightly Soupy Mix. When he is mixing and getting ready to pour a soupier mix is the way to go as it flows easier around the pool trench for the walls. Having 2 or 3 people in the trench pulling the concrete with shovels around the outside base of the pool wall. Make sure you are filling up the entire space outside the pool walls, to the trench wall, firmly against the dirt.

    How Deep? The depth of concrete you want is about 10” to 12” deep. There are no special tools needed for pulling the concrete around for the collar, shovels, metal rakes and maybe a wheelbarrow if you can’t get the truck all around the pool.

    One thing to make sure is if you have a pool light that the niche is in the wall already and keep the concrete at that spot just under the nice itself. The pool plumbing is usually done after the concrete collar, so that the pipes are not buried under concrete.concrete-collar

    Before the pour is done make sure the walls are level and plumb and that you have inserted rebar stakes in the bottom lip of the wall panels so the concrete doesn’t move them. do not shoot the concrete directly at the walls you have the risk of moving them that way, just pull it up against the walls as you go.

    storm-cloudsIf you are going to have rain the only problem is getting the truck in and out, If it's too wet in the yard you may have a big mess to take care of that wouldn’t happen on a dry day. If it is a chance of a downpour then definitely cancel the concrete order as soon as you can, and reschedule for later in the day, or the next best forecast.

    One last tip - as soon as the pour is done, go around and check the tops of the pool walls to make sure they are still level and check inside to make sure the walls are good and straight. or plumb. At this point before the concrete dries, you still have time to make adjustments if you need to.  

    Larry Weinberg
    SPP Pool Expert

    Blog Author
    larryweinberg
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