Pool Renovation - 3 Surface Options to Consider

by Pool Builders on 12-28-2010 in Articles

Swimming pool resurfacing is necessary to have the pool in good condition without holes, cracks, discoloration etc. The deterioration happens over a period of time because of several reasons including the type of ground water you have around the pool, usage of chemicals, algae damage.

The commonly known surface options are mar cite (plaster), fiberglass, sprayed liquid vinyl, exposed aggregate, tile and coatings paint.

Pool paint is today considered to be not a practical solution as it doesn't last long. With the unavailability of the lead based paints for environmental reasons, any type of paint for resurfacing is liable to run not long enough. This also necessitates frequent chemical cleaning.

Mar cite or plaster is also not a practical solution for resurfacing. Even if replastering is done after removing the old plaster by sandblasting and applying plaster coat, it is not free from the impact of ground water attacking it from behind if it is near the wall. The three options available are Fibre glass resurfacing Aggregate and Tile.


Tile is a very expensive option; however, if you take a long term perspective, it is not so expensive considering the fact that it lasts at least twice as long as any other resurface option. There are instances of indoor tile pools which are more than 30 years old remaining maintenance free.

However, as for outdoor pools, this may not apply and some experts warn against the lasting benefit of tile and possibility of the finish getting dull on account of improper water balance.


Fibreglass coats over any existing pool surface. Fibreglass resurfacing is longer lasting than plaster. The option is less expensive. Cleaning is easier. The fibre glass shell is comparatively less susceptible to discoloration on account of staining, algae growth etc. If you look at the other pool resurfacing techniques from the point of view of pools shifting, you will notice that fibreglass is resistant to the same.

The tensile strength protects it from cracking by accommodating earth movement. What happens over longer periods of time is as yet unknown. The negatives include the delamination which may happen on account of severe and frequent changes in weather. It is also likely that the color goes off over a period of time and easily even when impregnated in the resin.


Aggregate refers to quartz aggregates or marble pebbles blended with white Portland cement. The finish which is gently rough give you the look of a composite piece where lots many very tiny stones are knitted together. There are many colour options with stones of varying shines, size and quality.

In terms of durability, the Aggregates have a longer life than plaster. The maintenance in terms of cleaning is easier. There is better algae prevention when the aggregates are very well polished and woven tight.

As for aesthetics, the aggregates offer more options not only in terms of color but also in the choice of appearances which you may like to create as the background under water as also on the sides in some cases. These give better depth perception for the users. These can be fade resistant

The major disadvantage is that this option is critically dependent upon the process of installation or application. There can be severe impact on the quality of the created surface because of the way the process of application is handled and the surrounding weather prevalent at the time. You may end up with stones which are shaky or those which are escaping out of the finish.

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