Starting out way back in 1986 with the Recreational Factory Warehouse store in Lakeland, my brother and I knowing almost nothing and with only a couple shovels, a rake, measuring tape, and a two-foot level, built our first above ground swimming pool. It took us two days to build that small round above ground. It probably wasn’t very level or round and the liner probably had a lot of wrinkles in it, but it was our first. That was more than six thousand installs ago.
Way back then in the eighties, Rec Warehouse was just about the only place to get an above ground pool. There were a couple of Doughboy dealers sprinkled about and Sears sold pools by Muskin, but that was about it, so the Rec stores sold almost all the above ground pools in Orlando and Central Florida. We installed pools only for Rec for some years and it was easier because they only had a few models and we could make fast work of it.
One day in the early nineties, I got a call from a local Pinch-a-Penny store in Kissimmee to install one of the pools that they just started selling. It took twice as long to build those first Pinch-a-Penny pools as we weren’t familiar with them. Times were changing though and we started building more and more pools that were purchased other than from Rec Warehouse.
By the mid to late nineties, we were building pools for many different pool stores. Rec still sold most of the above-grounds around but others were definitely selling their share. After a few years of this, we became very comfortable with building several models of pools for a few different manufacturers. At this point I felt we had a broad knowledge of above ground pools because we had built so many different ones. But this was nothing compared to what was next. I still remember the first time I went out to build a pool that someone bought from this thing called the “internet”.
By now, we were using a couple of machines for excavating, a laser level, and several very specialty tools for building above grounds.
On this day, we rolled up in our rig to a house in Orange county and when I asked the homeowner where the pool was, he took me to his garage where there was a pallet holding the pool with its boxes securely stacked in shrink wrap. I asked where he got the pool and he said he bought in online.
This was the beginning of the current trend of where above-ground swimming pools are mostly purchased. The result for us installers was that we were now installing any above ground-pool that someone would find on the internet from anywhere. Because of this, our knowledge of above ground swimming pools went ballistic as we learned about every model, every design, and from every manufacturer that makes above grounds.
So now here we are. With now thirty-six years of building, fixing, re-lining, and sometimes modifying all types of above ground swimming pools, I now might know a thing or two about them. And I try to use this knowledge to help guide people in choosing the right above ground pool package and then (hopefully) they choose us to install it properly. This website is full of thirty-six years worth of opinion and guidance for purchasing, installing, and maintaining above ground pools. If you have any question about swimming pools, please ask here. It feeds my ego if I can answer your question and excites me if I can’t. Even though I’ve been around these pools for such a long time, I still come across things I haven’t seen or heard of and am still hungry to learn.
UPDATE: I now have a pretty good information site that gives tons of great info on above-ground swimming pools on currently 120 articles.