Above ground pools are highly beneficial – they are affordable, quick and easy to install, easy to maintain, mobile, and come in a multitude of layouts and models. However, the setup doesn’t stop once the pool is chosen, placed, and filled with water.
After the initial setup, you then need to select and install an above ground pool. There are three common above ground pool ladders to choose from – a frame flip-up, a stainless steel ladder, and an easy step pool ladder.
Table of Contents
Is It Necessary to Properly Install an Above Ground Swimming Pool Ladder?
While it may be possible to climb out of an above ground pool without a ladder, it is not easy and is especially difficult after a particularly long swim. A pool ladder is a necessary safety precaution, as it allows for safe entry and easy exit.
Though you may easily enter or exit the pool, there may be a time where a young child or an elderly friend uses your pool. It is recommended to have at least two or more ladders in your pool, depending on the pool size.
Our Teams Top Considerations When Selecting Your New Pool Ladder
When selecting a quality pool ladder for your above ground swimming pool, most people think of factors like sturdiness, size, durability, weight, and whether or not the ladder is screwed into a deck.
You also need to consider the ladder’s setup and placement as it pertains to cleanliness – how will the layout affect your ability to access and clean each part of the pool? Learn more about pool ladder types and considerations.
The Three Most Common Types of Above Ground Pool Ladders and Steps
The three most common ladder types are a frame flip-up, a stainless steel ladder, and an easy step pool ladder. Each ladder is adjusted and anchored differently. Learn more about swimming pool ladders and how to install the different types of above ground pool ladders below.
A Frame Flip-Up Pool Ladder
The frame flip-up ladder is easily adjusted to suit the desired height, making it especially convenient. The ladder has four parts at the bottom called “extension boots,” that appear as hard sleeves and slide over the ends of the ladder’s legs once it is assembled. Depending on the height of your pool, the extension boots will be all the way on or not necessary.
As a flip-up ladder requires weight to keep it sturdy, you must fill the ladder with sand to increase its weight. To add sand to the ladder, flip the ladder upside down, remove the base of the bottom of the legs, and use a funnel to sift sand into each leg. You need a lot of sand to fill the ladder to ensure that the ladder remains sturdy.
A Stainless Steel In-Pool Ladder
Stainless steel in-pool ladders offer height flexibility, have steps that contain deep treads, conform to fit the shape of your pool floor, and are a go-to for pool owners who have a deck. As a result, stainless steel in-pool ladders are extremely sturdy, sleek, and easy to clean. This type of ladder accommodates pools that stand between 48” and 52” tall.
Once you assemble your stainless steel in-pool ladder, set it in the desired position relative to the deck and ensure that the base step rests flat on the pool floor. Make a note of where the top rails reach the deck and mark a spot on the handrail with a pencil.
Using a small saw, drill a hole for each of the handrails through the deck’s surface. Using deck flanges (these will often come with the ladder), secure the handrails to the deck and tighten the screws in the flanges.
The Easy Pool Step Ladder
The easy pool step ladder is a no-brainer for pool owners whose primary concern is safety. If you have a child, a senior, someone with a disability, or a clumsy friend in your pool, prioritize safety above all else in ladder selection and installation. This ladder offers wide and slip-resistant steps to enter or exit the pool, as well as handrails on each side for assistance.
The pool step ladder accommodates pool heights between 48” and 54” tall, and the easy pool step ladder is easily adjustable to your desired height. As with the stainless steel in-pool ladder, the easy pool step ladder’s anchoring process will ensure that the ladder conforms perfectly to your pool.
Similar to a frame flip-up pool ladder, you need to fill the ladder with tons of sand. To pour the sand in, place the ladder in the desired position, move it left to right to ensure that air bubbles escape and water enters the steps, and pour sand into the side panel on the top step using a funnel.
Next, secure the ladder to the deck using mounting brackets. Slide the mounting brackets over the handrails, adjusting its height to be even with the deck. Proceed to screw the mounting brackets into the deck and ensure the ladder’s sturdiness.
Now that you know how to install an above ground pool ladder, enjoy a dip in the water! Pool ladders are convenient, safe, and easy to install. When considering a pool ladder’s features like size, weight, sturdiness, and durability, also consider the process of cleaning the ladder, and whether or not the ladder is screwed into a deck.
For more help, check out this 4-minute walkthrough video on how to setup the Confer Heavy duty pool ladder below-
Select from the three most common above ground pool ladders – a frame flip-up, a stainless steel ladder, and an easy step pool ladder. Stainless steel in-pool ladders and easy step pool ladders must be screwed into a deck, while a frame flip-up ladder is not.
Each of the three ladders is easily adjustable, can accommodate various pool heights, and are sufficiently sturdy. No matter the swimming pool ladder that suits you best, most pool ladders are highly affordable, mobile, easy to install, and worthwhile to ensure safety as well as ease of pool entry and exit every time it is used.
My name is Denise and I am an Analytical Chemist located in the Kansas City metro area. Some things I am passionate about are gardening, science, swimming, and blogging. I am happy to be part of the All About Pools team & contribute my knowledge & expertise to help swimming pool owners and backyard enthusiasts!