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Question: Can 2x2x6-ft concrete blocks self-support an above ground lap swimming pool?


Question by : Can 2x2x6-ft concrete blocks self-support an above ground lap swimming pool?
This above-ground lap pool will be erected upon a much larger, pre-existing, 4-in thick, hog wire reinforced concrete slab. Planning on a 4-ft high, by 8-ft wide, by 60-ft long (internal dimensions) lap pool containing 1920 cubic ft or 60 tons of water. Walls will be constructed using stacked & interlocked 2ft x 2ft x 6ft long concrete retaining wall blocks. The birdseye footprint pool & wall dimensions will be 16-ft by 68-ft. Each of the pool’s side & end walls will have 2 courses of blocks on the base layer (e.g. 4 foot out from the pool’s liner) with 1 course of blocks on the 2nd (or top) layer (e.g. 2-foot out from the pool’s liner). The pool’s sides will use 10 sections of blocks 2-high (4-ft by 60-ft) and once again, all base blocks will have an additional supporting block (2nd course) set on the outer side of each (block). The pool’s two ends will be similarly assembled, but will overhang by 2-feet on each of the 4 corners (4-ft tall by 12-ft wide), also with an additional supporting block against the base (a 2nd course). These 2x2x6 concrete blocks weigh approximately 3360-lbs each x 72 pieces or 121 tons (to the water’s 60-tons). Once assembled, I plan to spray-foam insulation approximately 2 inches on the floor and side walls then install a pool liner. Reasons: my only option is above ground and the cost savings will be more than double the price… if it works from an engineering perspective ???? Thank you very much !!

Best answer:

Answer by billrussell42
The blocks are not supporting the pool, as I interpret your question, the pool is directly on the existing foundation. The blocks are forming the sides of the pool. In that case, the pressure is all outwards, which is a tension force, and blocks and cement are not good under tension, only compression.

I’d say you need to get a structural engineer involved, but my first guess would be no.

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