Learn How to Build Your Pool Deck
Above ground pools are highly desired for their ease of installation, but can be awkward to enter and exit. Most above ground pools are accessed with a single precarious ladder than can be difficult to climb. Installing an above ground pool deck is the obvious solution. Above ground pool decks are built either by contractors or by using plans. Building one yourself can be a rewarding experience, allowing for easy access to the pool as well as a great place to sunbathe in a lounge chair. Three basic parts make up the above ground pool deck: the floor, stairs and railing.
Step 1: Create the Floor Foundation
The floor for the deck is created by suspending many trapezoidal wooden segments above the ground next to the pool. The segments are fashioned into trapezoids so that they form a curve when placed end-to-end. You need to make enough segments to cover the entire perimeter of the pool.
Step 2: Set the Posts
The segments will be suspended in the air flush with the pool rim through the use of posts and concrete blocks. Special concrete blocks which have an insert for 4×4 posts are laid on the ground next to the pool. The ground should be even, but you don’t need to cut down the grass. The center of the blocks closest to the pool wall should be 12 inches away from the wall. The blocks farther away from the wall should be 18 inches away from the center of the other block.
Place a 4×4 post into the socket in one concrete block. Use a yard stick to mark a line on the post at the height of the pool rim. Then, lower the mark on the post by the thickness of the decking and floor frame. Now you can cut all of your posts to this length and place them into the concrete blocks.
Step 3: Set the Frame
The frame segments will be attached to the posts using 2.5 inch screws driven in at an angle. The very last segment installed will need custom cut. The vertical posts suspending the segments will need to be reinforced with angled wood beams. However, if your deck is less than 30 inches in height, these reinforcements are not needed.
Step 4: Lay the Decking
Many boards are cut on one end slid underneath the rim of the pool. The boards are secured to the deck frame using long screws driven directly downward. After the boards are put into place, the ends are cut off to the appropriate length.
Step 5: Guard Rails
Guard rails are created by placing vertical on the deck surface and putting fence segments in between. You can learn more about this in our deck railing article.
Step 6: Deck Stairs
We also have an article about deck stairs which you can read.