Once you have decided on the design and shape of your above ground pool, the area where you or your pool builder will place the above ground pool will need to be prepared.
The first step is deciding where you want to place the swimming pool in the backyard. Look carefully at the ground where you plan to place the pool. Note any rocks or other debris on the ground. Note the distance between this area and any other items in the backyard such as trees and plants.
Remove all items that could make it difficult to secure a proper foundation for the pool. Sharp stones should be cleared away as should any items like old tools or farm implements that could puncture holes in the sides of the pool.
Measure the diameter of the space where you plan to place the above ground pool. Mark this area with a piece of string or measuring tape. Place a rock or other heavy item to keep the string from blowing away. Careful planning is essential. You can change your mind later, but it will be very difficult to redo this area once you have started digging.
Use shovels to dig the area where you want to place the pool. Remove the dirt to a singe pile where you can cart it away later. Use larger shovels to remove much of the dirt if necessary and smaller shovels for more detailed work. Measure the depth of the hole you've created. The hole should be about two inches deep for best pool placement.
Use levels to determine if the hole you have dug is level. The level should indicate if the hole is uniform size. When you notice discrepancies, dig a bit more. You can also use a hose to wet the ground and help dampen any dust that may have accumulated as you have dug the hole. Dust can make it difficult to determine if the hole is level.
Once you have finished digging the hole, leave it alone for 24 hours. This will help you determine if the hole is completely level. Check the hole the next day to make sure that it is level, and you can begin placement of the above ground pool atop the area.