If the location you’ve selected for your pool is currently covered in grass, then the area must be cleared out, otherwise grass will penetrate the pool floor and ruin it. As mentioned previously, this can be a great deal of work if you only have a shovel or garden tools. However, you may consider renting a machine known as a sod scraper. This machine is still fairly demanding to use, but it can save you a great deal of time and effort compared to a shovel. Sod scrapers may be rented at many equipment & tool rental locations, including many Home Depot locations. Plan to spend about $50-$80 for a 4 hour rental and be aware that a truck or trailer will probably be needed to transport the machine.
A sod scraper is a bit larger and heavier than a lawn mower. It rolls along the ground and drags a blade that moves forward & backwards cutting just below the surface of the grass. Additionally, as noted in the previous section, this machine will also scrape layers of dirt after the grass is gone. This allows you to quickly “shave” high spots in the dirt which helps to level the surface that your pool will rest on. Although the rental cost is a factor, you should be able to easily clear enough sod for a typical pool in 2-4 hours. Doing this work with a shovel would take far more time – perhaps days – and will be very physically demanding labor, so the cost may be very well worth it.