deck supports

I am planning to replace a deck that is above my above ground pool that is 16' x 32' and can't find info on the size of support beam to use. The original deck is about 4' wide all around the pool with legs on cement pads that seem to heave every year. I want to put in sona tubes and a support beam all around the pool ( 2 rectangles with about 10" centres on each perimeter) on posts and the deck framing on top of that. This would in effect be 2 rectangles about 3' apart. Does anyone know what size support beams would be required. I am thinking 2 laminated 2 x 8 but wonder if one would be enough as they are only 3' apart from each other.. I would like to keep the cost down but don't want a springy deck either. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Any other design suggestions would also be appreciated. Thanks snipped-for-privacy@eastlink.ca
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snipped-for-privacy@eastlink.ca says...

The distance apart isn't as important as the span, which I couldn't find in your post. I'd suggest browsing the book section of your local building supply store. There's a number of books with charts on span ratings and such.
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Mark

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John van Veen wrote:

For a 3' span I would think that a single 2" x 8" would be sufficient.
One thing I would consider is that if your are replacing the deck it would indicate that the pool is not new. Pools don't last forever. How much longer will the pool last, and will you be able to get the concrete piers out once the pool comes down?
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA
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Excellent site for ideas but I am concerned about pads. That is what I have and the deck moves every year, I suspect the area around it is to wet in early spring when the snow melts. The blocks are on top of a bed of compacted crusher dust which should be stable. Has anyone else had problems with these support pads moving with the frost? Here the frost can go 4 feet deep so it becomes a definite concern :-( Novas comment about the age is well taken also. I hope it would last 10 more years but a replacement to fit the hole shouldn't be a problem as it is a standard package size. Thanks to all who responded, think I will do a little more research before I start rebuilding. I got most of the old deck out today and hope to start releveling the pool next weekend. Swimming is over for this year anyway and we can start to dream about next....

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John,
Movement will certainly occur with pads during the winter freeze cycles. However be cautious about using buried pilings (Sonotubes formed pilings) as these can move also. The tubes that have the base belled out are best.
I'm in Maine and see frost depths of 4 feet many years. It's not pleasant when a light structure on pilings, and a pool deck is a light structure, moves with the frost. Anything you can do to keep the freezing soil from grabbing the piling and lifting it will be to your advantage. I prefer to wrap the exterior of the tube with sheet polyethylene before placing it in the hole. Polyethylene is slippery enough to help prevent movement for the first few years until the soil is thoroughly compacted after digging for the piling.
Phil
John van Veen wrote:

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