Removing your outdated or unwanted inground swimming pool basically comes down to two choices: partial inground pool removal or full removal.
In many cases, a backyard swimming pool can be removed most affordably through a partial collapse and fill.
However, depending on your cities specific guidelines and the potential future uses of the land, full pool demolition and removal may be your only option.
We walk you through each pool removal method below.
For many people, a partial swimming pool removal is the more desirable option simply because it costs less. It is also the most common method used among swimming pool removal contractors.
The partial inground pool removal process, or a pool fill-in, involves 3″ deep holes being drilled at the bottom of your pool so it will not collect water in the future.
The holes enable it to drain properly.
Then, the sides of the pool are broken down at least 18″ from the top, and the broken concrete is gathered in the bottom of the pool.
The pool is backfilled and compacted.
Getting the backfill and compaction process right is important so that you don’t end up with a big sinkhole in the middle of your backyard.
Depending on your city requirements, the skills of your pool removal contractor, and your budget constraints, the backfill process can be done with or without the oversight of an Engineer.
If employed for supervision on your pool backfill, the Engineer will guide the process and perform density testing on your soil.
The engineer will submit a letter to your city’s appropriate office once the job has been completed.
Engineered backfills are typically only necessary when required by your city.
An experienced swimming pool removal contractor will know how to get the backfill process right without oversight from an Engineer.
But an engineered pool backfill is also a good idea if you intend to remove your swimming pool yourself or if you have any doubts about the skill set of the contractor you have hired.
So, if you’ve hired your cousin Larry to remove your inground pool because he thinks he can do it with a rented mini-excavator, it might be a good idea to also hire an engineer to oversee the backfill process.
Full Inground Pool Removal
While this option is more costly than a partial pool removal, it comes with the convenience of being able to do whatever you want with your land after your swimming pool has been removed.
So If you would like to rebuild on the location of a former pool, full pool removal is your best bet.
In addition, inground pools with vinyl liners are built with walls made of steel, cement, or wood, and the floors are typically made using sand or vermiculite—a type of cement.
If your vinyl-lined pool has steel walls or a steel collar, the steel must be removed first, so a fully inground pool removal is necessary.
HOW? Everything goes with a full removal. All of the concrete, gunite, fiberglass, steel, and vinyl lining is broken up and removed from the pool cavity using specialized equipment.
Once completed, it is hauled off-site for proper disposal.
The area is then filled in and compacted.
Once again, the backfill and compaction process may be done by your contractor alone or with the oversight of a state-licensed Engineer.
Your city may require you to turn in a demolition and compaction plan before declaring the area as “buildable.”