Best Underlayments for Above-Ground Pools | 2020 Review

Underlayment Above Ground Pool

If you want to keep your above-ground pool in good shape for the long-term then it’s absolutely crucial to get an underlayment placed underneath the pool structure, especially if you are putting the pool above sand or concrete material.

Product NameOur RatingPool Size
Gorilla Floor Pad★★★★★18 Feet Round
Aqua Select 48 inch Peel★★★★18 Feet Round
GLI Round Armor Shield Floor Pad★★★★18 Feet Round
Horizon Ventures Round 1 Piece Underpad★★★★18 Feet Round

Pool Underlayment Features to Watch Out For

Here are some aspects of an above-pool underlayment to pay attention to as you are shopping around. High-quality underlayments are worth the investment for long-term care.

Durable Material

The underlayment padding should be made of a strong, durable material that won’t see a scratch against rocks, tree roots, glass, and other debris that may lie underneath the above-ground pool. For example, some underlayments are made of Polypropylene geotextile materials, which are known to be very durable.

Cushion Material

In addition to being durable, you want to make sure the pool liner also has a bit of padding so it doesn’t feel like you are stepping on rock and other sharp debris whenever you are walking around in the above-ground pool.

Simple Installation

Ideally, the underlayment should be pre-cut and seamed so that there is little work for you to do aside from laying down the fabric underneath the above-ground pool. If the size of the underlayment is a bit too big then it should be enough for you to use a scissor or knife to cut excess material.

Top Underlayments for Above-Ground Pools

Gorilla Floor Pad

This floor pad is primarily designed for above-ground pools with a size of 18 feet round. Despite its thin layer, many homeowners mentioned they weren’t really able to feel any of the rocks or sands underneath the above-ground pool. The material is already pre-cut so not much preparation is necessary.

Aqua Select 48 inch Peel & Pool Cove

This package actually comes with an underlayment and a foam pool cove, which prevents the liner from ballooning out from underneath the above-ground pool. The underlayment will also prevent excessive stretching and delay premature wear and tear.

GLI Round Armour Floor Pad

This black floor pad is made of polypropylene geotextile material, which will help the above-ground pool liner withstand the wear and tear from sand, rocks, and other sharp ground materials. Despite how thin it is, the inside of the liner will feel a bit softer when you walk around the filled above-ground pool.

Above-Ground Pool Underlayment FAQ

What Do You Put Under an Above-Ground Pool?

You need to add some sort of padding under the above-ground pool to protect the vinyl liner from wear and tear. This is especially the case for those who are placing the pool on top of concrete. While concrete provides a firm and flat surface, the surface of the concrete is also fairly rough and abrasive so you want to make sure there is a protective layer between the concrete and the pool.

How Do I Prepare the Ground for an Above-Ground Pool?

There are some steps you need to take before you implement the underlayment and the pool structure. Key steps include: removing all vegetation in the pool perimeter, evening out the ground as much as possible, and adding a bit of material, such as sand, that can act as a cushion.

Can I Put Tarp Under My Pool?

Yes, in some cases, using tarp as an underlayment could be fine as long as you have removed any sharp debris and rocks underneath the above-ground pool. The tarp, however, won’t offer much smoothness to the pool floor so it may help to also add a layer of sand as well.