You’ve leveled the ground and installed your new above ground pool — and now it’s time to add the water. But how do you do that? Pools require a lot of water; where does all that water come from? How much to fill an above ground pool?
Here we’ll take a look at the different sources for water to consider when filling your new above ground pool. We’ll also consider how much you need to fill your new pool in order to enjoy a cool summer while making sure everything is maintained properly.
Table of Contents
There are a few different ways to get water for your pool, including:
Use municipal water
This is the most obvious and convenient option. Just hook up a hose to your outdoor water spigot, place the other end in the pool, and wait. City water is one of the safest options, too, because it’s already been treated and cleaned – it’s safe to drink and bathe in so it’s perfect for a pool. You’ll still have to worry about testing the water and adding chlorine, however.
The biggest downside to this approach is cost. Municipal water isn’t cheap and the bigger your pool, the more you’ll pay. To get an idea of what to expect, figure out how much water your pool holds. You should be able to find this information in the owner’s manual or manufacturer’s website. If not, you can always give them a call. Once you know how much you need, call your local water authority. They can give you an estimate of how much it will cost and may even work with you and offer a discount.
Have water delivered
One huge benefit to water delivery is that it’s much faster than using a hose. A big water truck brings water right to your home, using a large hose to fill the pool quickly with water from the tank. Water delivery service isn’t available everywhere but if you live in a warm climate in an area with a lot of swimming pools, call around and see if there are any options available.
Don’t just go with the first company you find, either. Check out social media pages for customer reviews, ask friends and neighbors who have pools if they know of any company that can help, or talk to the staff at your favorite pool supply stores to see if they have any recommendations.
Make sure to find out if the water is treated and if there is any additional fee to have it treated. If it’s not, you’ll have to shock and add chlorine to the water and test it to make sure it’s balanced appropriately before anyone can swim in it.
Depending on how much to fill above ground pool, it can be somewhat expensive. Some fire departments may also deliver water but this isn’t as common as it once was. Still, it never hurts to ask and it may save you a lot of money.
Use well water
If you have a well, this is the cheapest option for filling your pool. That said, there are some things you should consider.
First, the water quality of well water isn’t always great. If you use it in your home, you probably have a purifier or filtration system to make sure the water is safe for consumption. This filtration system likely will not treat the water going into your pool. That doesn’t mean you can’t use it, just that it will take a little work to get the water chemistry balanced and safe for swimming.
Another thing to consider is that wells go dry eventually. You have to decide whether using that huge volume of water needed to fill a swimming pool is worth it in the long run.
How much to fill above ground pool
The ideal water height for any pool is at the midpoint of the skimmer. The skimmer is the hole in the side of the pool wall that lets the water flow into the filter. The actual height varies slightly from one pool to the next but this is a good rule of thumb when trying to figure out how much to fill above ground pool.
What if the water is too low?
If the water is too low, not enough water flows into the filter which can lead to permanent damage. The filter needs a proper flow of water to continue working properly.
Low water is a much more serious issue than high water which is why pool owners must keep an eye on the water level. Water evaporates over time and people are always splashing water out of the pool.
If you notice the water level dropping, turn off the filter and use your garden hose to refill it to the proper level. Figuring out how much to fill above ground pool simply requires paying close attention and adjusting as needed.
What if the water is too high?
High water can happen from over-filling but it’s also a possibility if you live in an area where it rains frequently. One heavy thunderstorm can do it if there’s enough rain. If the water is too high, it doesn’t flow into the skimmer correctly. Debris backs up into the pool and the filter doesn’t work as efficiently as it could.
U.S. Pool supply heavy duty blue pvc swimming pool backwash hose
High water is easy to fix when trying to figure out how much to fill above ground pool. In some cases, you don’t have to do anything as active swimmers and natural evaporation will typically take care of it. If the water is so high that it is actually overflowing over the edge of your pool, use a backwash hose in the “drain” setting until it reaches the midpoint of the skimmer.
Tips & Tricks
Use a garden hose
Consider using a garden hose filter when filling your pool. They attach right to the end of your hose and filter out some of the contaminants from the water, saving you a lot of time and effort when you’re trying to get the water balanced. If you’re looking for a good one, check out the AQUA CREST Garden Hose Water Filter, the Guardian Max Clear PRO Hot Tub Spa Pool Garden Hose Carbon Pre Filter, or the Hydro Life Pool Water Filter.
Shock your pool after filling
Shock your pool after you fill it. Depending on the source of your water, you may not need to make a lot of adjustments but shocking your pool sort of wipes the slate clean and makes it easier to get the water just right. Use something like In The Swim Chlorine Pool Shock, DryTec Calcium Hypochlorite Chlorinating Shock Treatment for Swimming Pools, or Zappit 73% Cal Hypo Pool Shock.
Keep an eye on the water level. You might be surprised how much it fluctuates! Make adjustments when necessary to keep your filter running effectively.
Is it time to buy an above ground pool?
Now that you know how much to fill above ground pool, check out our picks for the best above ground pools to buy. You may also want to check out our selections for the best above ground pool lights. If you live in an area with cold winters and want to swim in the off-season, you may also want to invest in a solar-powered pool heater to heat your above ground pool. Alternatively, find out how to winterize your above ground pool so it’s ready to go next spring.
Want to know more about ground pools?
If you’re researching above ground pools and need to know how to install an above ground pool liner or how to empty an above ground pool, we’ve got all the information to make setup easy. Or perhaps you’re wondering if above ground pools can have different depths or if above ground pools can be converted to saltwater. Enjoy your new above ground pool!
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