Pool Resurfacing Options
Originally, the material used to build the swimming pool (gunite,
concrete, block, wood) was brand new and had not yet been
exposed to ground water or the natural aging process.
Plaster is an ideal material when the surface is new, but
it does deteriorate over time. Typical life expectancy of the original plaster
(marcite) is 15 to 20 years, although it does begin to look somewhat seedy
after 15 years.
Swimming pool plaster deterioration is caused by numerous factors:
Ground Water is Your Swimming Pool's Worst Enemy!
Ground water is a swimming pools worst enemy. Lots
of homeowners have recognized this problem and attempted
to deal with it by caulking the expansion joint between
the coping and the deck. Unfortunately, this is only a
partial solution because the water comes in under the
deck and attacks the wall anyway.
mind, the deck around the pool is only 4 inches thick.
By caulking the expansion joint you can only protect the
top 4 inches of the pool wall where the tile is located.
The rest of the entire pool shell is constantly exposed
to ground water.
the cause of plaster pop-offs and cracks. Ground water
works its way through the wall and attacks the plaster
from behind. This process takes about 15 years under
normal conditions because the wall (the first 3 1/2'
down from the top) is 12" thick. The bottom however is
only 8" thick, so the cracks and pop-offs usually appear
sooner on the steps and the bottom. These dimensions
apply to almost all pools built since 1965.
there is a hill sloping down to the pool, the bulk of
the damage to the tiles and plaster will be to the wall
on that side, even before any damage to the bottom. This
is known as a gravitational flow of underground water.
enemy of swimming pools is hydrostatic pressure.
Rain water, which cannot harm swimming pools, mixes with
the chemicals of the earth and becomes groundwater. This groundwater moves underground, due to hydrostatic
pressure, until it meets a solid object, your swimming
pool. What was originally rainwater, which could do a
pool no harm, has now been enriched by the chemical
compounds of the earth and has become your pools
worst enemy: groundwater.
common problem is underground springs. The spring erodes
the earth supporting the pool until the water reaches
the bottom of the pool. The ground water then works its way through the 8" bottom and the cracks begin to appear
far more rapidly than normal.
What Is The Best Option for Resurfacing Older Swimming Pools?
are two other solutions available to pool owners besides
the UGlassIt Resurfacing System. None of these other
solutions are "do-it-yourself" and both are costly. Nevertheless, in addition to the UGlassIt Resurfacing
System, each of the following are viable options which we can recommend:
quartz exposed aggregate
marble exposed aggregate
is an excellent article in the Orlando (FL) Sentinel
which explains these resurfacing systems which you can
What Is Not
a Viable Option for Swimming Pool Refinishing?
paint which is rubber based is not a viable solution
because is will only last a few years before it peels
and needs to be done again. Years ago paint was a better solution because it was lead based and lasted for up to
ten years. Due to environmental concerns, lead based
paint is no longer manufactured.
Epoxy paint is not a viable solution because it will begin to crack and
blister within three years and must be done
again. This presents serious problems because the hard
surface is almost impossible to remove.
paint is now being sold on the internet under different
names. Paint by any name is still paint and everyone
should understand that painting a swimming pool is not
resurfacing a swimming pool. Buyer beware.
also known as "marcite" is not a good choice for
resurfacing. The ground water has had ample time to
leech through the sand in the gunite or concrete by the
time you're considering resurfacing.
Re-plastering requires sandblasting to remove the old
plaster, then the application of a new coat of plaster.
Since the ground water has already reached the inside of
the pool wall, it can immediately attack the new
plaster from behind.
why the plaster contractor will only guarantee
the work for one year, except in California, where
the State mandates a three year guarantee. Keep in mind
that when the swimming pool was brand new, the plaster guarantee was ten years
no matter what State
your reside in. If you're considering marcite, be sure to inquire about the guarantee.
Obviously, we are in the fiberglass resurfacing
business, but our management team believes that
consumers should have the option to learn about all the
available choices. We hope this information proves
helpful in your quest to determine which option best meets your needs.
have questions? Don't hesitate to call.
Toll Free: 800-676-8528
Pool Resurfacing, Inc.
607 Louis Drive Suite I
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Toll Free: 800-676-8528