DIY Project: How To Build An Above Ground Pool Deck


Being affordable, easy, and quick to install, and requiring very minimal maintenance, above-ground pools are extremely popular. However, to get maximum enjoyment from the pool, one needs to build a deck surrounding it. The deck should eliminate the need to climb a pool ladder while creating a fun gathering place for friends and family. It will also give you a place to dine by the poolside or to just visit. 

If you do own an above-ground pool, chances are, you have wondered about what to put around above ground pool. In this article, we will focus on showing you how to build an above ground pool deck. 

How to Build an Above Ground Pool Deck – Step by Step Guide 

1. Deck Design 

The measurements used for the deck described in this article are ideal for a 21 feet diameter pool. One of the most affordable above ground pool decks, the deck will be constructed entirely using pressure-treated lumber. It will feature a 360-degree wraparound pool deck connected to a 10 x 18-feet sun deck. The 3.5-feet wide circular deck will offer easy access to the water while the sun deck will be large enough to accommodate a couple of chaise lounges, chairs, and a table. 

For this design, we will be using a floating-foundation system. One of the best above ground pool deck plans, it allows you to avoid digging postholes or pouring concrete footings. The entire swimming pool deck will be supported by pier blocks that sit on the ground. 

You will need Dek-Block precast piers measuring 8 inches high by 11 inches square and weighing approximately 45 pounds. Molded onto the top of each pier will be 1.5-inch-wide slots and a 3.5-inch square recessed socket. The slots will accept 2 x joists, while the socket will support the vertical 4 x 4 post. 

2. Framing the Floor ‘

The floor framing around your Coleman or Intex pool will consist of 18 trapezoidal floor-joist frames – four-sided frames with 2 parallel sides and 2 sides that angle toward each other. You can start by making use of 2 x 6s to construct 17 identical frames. The eighteenth frame should be built to fit after you have assembled the other frames around your pool. 

To increase the rate at which you construct the individual frames, you can use galvanized-metal corner brackets to attach the 4 perimeter boards. Next, use joist hangers to install the center support joist. 

3. Setting Piers and Posts

The floor-joist frames will be supported by a series of 4 x 4 posts. These will be set in the pier blocks. Start by setting the first block pair directly onto the ground beside your Intex pool. You won’t have to remove the grass. However, if the ground is uneven, level it out using a shovel

Position the first pier block such that its center is 12 inches from the wall of the pool. Place the next pier farther away, with its center being 18 inches from the center of the first. 

Stand two 4 x 4 posts in the square sockets molded into the piers. Lay a 4 feet level across the pool’s top cap – the coping – and mark the level line across the 4 x 4s. Next, remove your posts and measure down the from each line a distance that is equal to the pool coping thickness, plus 1.5 inches for the 2 x 6 decking, 5.5 inches for your 2 x 6-floor frame, and 0.5 inches for expansion. 

Make a mark at this position for each post and then cut them to length. Put the posts back into the piers and ensure they are in the original positions. 

For above ground pools with decks, the above procedure is repeated for the next pairs of piers and posts. You can refer to your above ground pool deck plans or use 1 of the assembled floor-joist frames to position your pier blocks. 

Once your second pair of posts has been cut to size, set them into the piers and place a floor-joist frame on top. Drive 2.5-inch deck screws down at an angle through the frame into the top of your posts. Continue to work your way around your pool, setting the pier blocks, posts, and frames. After installing 17 assembled frames, measure and then cut the last one to fit the remaining space. 

Complete the pool-deck frame by screwing 2 x 4 diagonal braces to your 4 x 4 posts. You won’t need the bracing if your deck is less than 30 inches high. 

Now, set the pier blocks and posts for your 10 x 18 feet sun deck. This is the ideal solution if you have been wondering what to put around above ground pool for use to relax after you are done with using your swim cap and swim gloves in the pool or for changing into your active swimsuit before getting in the water. You will need to arrange the 42 piers in 11 rows spaced 24 inches on center.

After cutting the posts to size and setting them in your piers, install the 2 x 6-floor joists. Fasten your joists by screwing down at an angle into the top of the posts with 2.5-inch deck screws. 

4. Lay the Decking 

Most people who are learning how to build an above ground pool deck make the most mistakes when it comes to laying the decking. With the above ground pool deck ideas described in this section, it should be easy for you to avoid making mistakes. 

Cut several 2 x 6s into 4 feet lengths with one end at 80 degrees instead of square. Slip the angled end of your first decking board under your pool coping, being sure to keep it at least 0.5 inches away from the pool wall. Set the long edge of your deck board directly on the joint running between 2 adjoining floor-joist frames. Fasten your board to the joists with 2.5-inch deck screws. 

Lay the next board tight against the first one and then screw it in place. Keep installing your deck boards in this manner with the angled end slipped under your coping until you reach the next floor-joist frame. 

Lay the deck board in place and then mark where it overlaps the joint between your 2 frames. Cut your board along that line and then screw it in place. Similarly, trim your next 2 boards and then go back to installing the full-length board again. Use a circular saw to trim off the overhanging ends so they flush with the joist perimeter. 

Move to the sun deck and start fastening down your 2 x 6 deck boards. Butt the boards tightly and allow them to run long. Snap a chalk line and cut the boards to flush with the joists. 

5. Building the Guardrails 

These will help you improve safety around your swimming pool. After floating in the water, you will probably come out with your feet wet – the guard rails will help you walk around without slipping and falling. 

To save time, you can purchase precut railing posts at your local home center. The tops of the 4 x 4 pressure-treated posts will have a V-groove and a decorative chamfer. The bottom end will have a precut notch that sits on top of your decking. Install a post at every joint where 2 floor-joist frames meet. Fasten each with two 3/8-inch diameter x 4.5-inch-long galvanized lag-screws. 

Make the horizontal rails spanning between your posts by cutting a 10-degree bevel on the ends of a 2 x 6. Slip the board between 2 posts and fasten it with 2.5-inch deck screws. Cut a 2 x 4 to length and screw it to the top of your 2 x 6 rail to act as the cap. 

Enclose the open space under your railing with 2 x 2 precut balusters. Hold each baluster perfectly plumb and then screw it to the 2 x 6 railing and your floor joist. Set the balusters 4 inches on center, with the beveled ends facing down. 

6. Building Stairs Leading to the Sun Deck 

If you have made it this far, you should have an ideal answer to what to put around above ground pool – you should know how to build an above ground pool deck. 

The last step involves building stairs leading from the sun deck down to the ground. One of the best above ground pool deck ideas is to use 5 precut stair stringers – these will simplify the chore significantly. 

Set the bottom ends of the stringers on concrete patio blocks. This should prevent them from sinking to the dirt and wicking with moisture. Screw the stringers’ upper ends to the floor joist. Create the stair treads by screwing 2 x 12s to your stringers. Once you do this, you should be a proud owner of one of the best above ground pools with decks. 



Q: How Do You Build A Deck Around an Above Ground Pool?


The majority of the above ground pool decks are constructed using wood and are usually between 3 and 6 feet above the ground. The building procedure involves setting the frame and then adding the decking, guard rails, and stairs leading from the ground to the deck.

Q: How Much Does It Cost to Build A Deck Around an Above Ground Pool?


While different above ground pool deck plans will have varying costs, you should expect to spend an average of $2400. Depending on the above ground pool deck ideas you have in mind, this cost may increase or decrease.

Q: How Do You Build an Above Ground Deck?


Compared to standard decks, floating decks are much easier to construct. To build an above ground floating deck, set concrete piers and poles, add the decking, before finishing up with a guard rail. Pressure-treated lumber is the most durable and least expensive material option for an above-ground deck.

Q: What Should I Put Around My Above Ground Pool?


You should consider putting a deck around your pool. This will give you a place to change into your swim trunks so that you can get into your pool. Additionally, you can use the deck to recover after a swim or to just sunbathe when you are not swimming.

Q: How Do You Build A Deck Around an Intex Pool?


To build a deck around your Intex pool, you will need some block piers, posts, and pressure-treated lumber. Arrange the block piers as described in this article, stand the posts in the piers, and then use your lumber to construct the frame. Finally, use the lumber to add your decking and the guardrails.

Globo Surf Overview 

If you have an above ground pool, you can eliminate the need to use the pool ladder and also create an ideal place for friends and family to relax between swim sessions by building a pool deck. In addition to giving you above ground pool deck ideas, this article shows you how to build an above ground pool deck. Since above ground pools feature varying sizes, you may need to adjust the dimensions in our above ground pool deck plans to fit your pool.

More Pool Reviews:

Globo Surf
My name is David Hamburg. I am an avid water sports fan who enjoys paddle boarding, surfing, scuba diving, and kite surfing. Anything with a board or chance I can get in the water I love! I am such a big fan I decided to start this website to review all my favorite products and some others. Hope you enjoy!