How Deep Can An Above-Ground Pool Be?

The walls on an above-ground pool generally come in 48-inch, 52-inch and 54-inch heights. The added wall height in recent years has diminished the need for digging a deeper floor for many pool owners.

Keep in mind, of course, that the water level of the pool will be about four inches below the top of the sidewall.

In general, it makes for a better final product to retain a flat bottom surface for the installation, but adaptations can be made to develop a deeper pool.

Expandable liners

Many pool owners, who want the experience of deeper water, opt for a dish-type dig in the center of the pool. The standard vinyl liner will typically allow for an added depth of 3-4 inches using this procedure. However, an "expandable" liner can be obtained which will accommodate a pool depth of up to six feet. The same concept can be used for creating a deep end rather than center. We offer expandable liner upgrades on the pool models that support this type of installation. Look for it in the upgrade options as you shop.

Hopper liners

Additionally, a "hopper liner" can be used to create a pool depth of up to seven feet. A "dig sheet" is developed to properly use this type of liner. This installation gives your oval above-ground pool the same deep end qualities of an in-ground pool.

With any of these methods, it's important to make the slope gradual, at least to the extent that sand can be adequately packed and retained along the edges of the deeper dig. It also is necessary to retain a ledge of a couple of feet inside the sidewall before the downward grade begins.

Placement of the vinyl liner can be a bit tricky when creating a deeper pool. One of the concerns is to minimize wrinkling in the material. This is especially true with installation of an expandable liner. This problem can be effectively addressed with the placement of a Gorilla Pad on the bottom of the pool.

Another factor to consider is that smaller pools make it more difficult to add a deep-water area. This is because there is less room for the needed gradual slope into the deep section.

Deciding on a round or oval pool

Round pools also generally are more suitable for creating a deep-water area. Oval pools normally have metal straps that extend across the bottom of the pool for support, leading to a problem in developing the slope and change of depth. However, some oval pool models do not incorporate internal supports and don't pose a problem for adding deeper sections. If you're planning to add a deep end to an oval pool, we can help you determine which models are best suited.

One thing is for sure - above-ground swimming pools now offer a lot of flexibility in design, functionality and overall enjoyment - and they're significantly less expensive than in-ground installations.

Call us! We can help!

At, we're happy to answer your questions about deep end pools. Our staff has years of experience with deep end installations, and we're available to help anytime you need it, before and after the sale!

We've been providing family fun since 1990 and place a top priority on customer satisfaction. Our website features loads of details on all our pool models, as well as numerous informational videos.

In addition to pools, we offer a full line of accessories and feature free delivery and convenient financing. We look forward to helping your family achieve its outdoor fun goals now and for years to come!