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Thread: Help with Pool Decking

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    Help with Pool Decking

    Guys,

    We are a month into our build and we are facing a dilemma. We want to stay more natural feel here in Houston and are avoiding tropical. So we choose pea gravel decking as the concrete top layer on 1000 sq ft of decking around the pool. We were supposed to have the decking poured today and when they didn't show our PB called and talked to my wife a bit about the build. In the conversation he mentioned he hates his pea gravel decking! We had KoolDeck at our last house around the pool but it always looked dirty and stained easy. Plus we thought it looked abit plain for what we have going in the new pool materials. But now we are second guessing.

    PB has offered unlimited options that we narrowed down and the costs are as follows...

    1) Pea Gravel already priced in
    2) Upgrade to Kool Deck at $1.50 per sq ft added costs so $1500
    3) Upgrade to stamped concrete at $4.00 - $4.50 per sq ft added costs so $4500 more

    We are spending a lot so we don't want to skimp but I also don't want to pay another $4k but will if it completes the look. I figured I would get some feedback from folks on the feel and look of pea gravel vs Kool Deck vs Stamped. I know it varies by individual but we could use some help ASAP. We are going to tour some more pool with the PB tomorrow to see what looks best and to look at Pebble Sheen color in installed pool so we can wrap this baby up next week.

    Here are some pictures of progress and materials... Glass tile, bullnose tarvertine coping, split face travertine on facing, pebble sheen surface (color TBD).
    Attached Images Attached Images
    New pool under construction...

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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    Glass Tile at water line and split face travertine facing above water line
    Attached Images Attached Images
    New pool under construction...

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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    More pics. 360 degree spill pool in all glass tile
    Attached Images Attached Images
    New pool under construction...

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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    Fire pit and second splash pad/tanning ledge with bubbler for the kids
    Attached Images Attached Images
    New pool under construction...

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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    more pics
    Attached Images Attached Images
    New pool under construction...

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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    more
    Attached Images Attached Images
    New pool under construction...

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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    last one
    Attached Images Attached Images
    New pool under construction...

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    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Staten Island NY
    Posts
    34

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    Beautiful pool. I'd go stamped or pavers with a pool that nice.....just personal preference
    12x21 AG-semi-inground about 7200 gal, Cart filter,1.5 hp pump installed May 2012
    TF-100/BBB

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    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Klein Tejas
    Posts
    249

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    I think it's odd that your builder doesn't want to do pea gravel. If he didn't like the work of a previous sub, there are many more in your area that do fine work. The smaller pebbles they use now are easier on the feet and look better too.

    Pavers would look great (that's what I'm using) but would be substantial increase in cost.

    I've seen some nice stamped concrete and I've seen some seriously ugly stamped concrete. I would hate to think of having it done and you don't like it. I guess you could always spray it or top coat it if that was the case.

    If it was me and I wanted pea gravel, I'd tell the builder to get a different sub to do it. It's in your contract right?
    Pool is DONE!
    Pentair Intelliflo VS3050
    Pentair Easy Touch 8 + actuators + swg
    Pentair IntelliPH
    Pentair 400btu HD heater
    3- Jandy WaterColor LED's
    Hayward C5030 525sqft cartridge filter
    Waterway spa blower

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    I wouldn't use pea gravel. No matter the size of the stone it will be hard on your feet. It is also hotter than lighter colored finishes.

    Have you considered the "salted" finish with colored concrete?

    Nice pool by the way...
    18' x 36' saltwater inground vinyl pool

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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    Thanks for the replies. Pea gravel is in our contract and the PB will do it but he scared my wife with his comments on how he wants to rip his out and how there might be some sharp edges that float up in the process. PB has been great as we have had some hiccups that he is on top of so not an issue of his willingness to accomodate us.

    We're going out this afternoon with the PB to look at finished pools for a better decision and for pool surface finishes and colors. I'd like to do stamped I think but we'd be pushing our budget hard given the other material choices which we upgraded.

    Anyone have issues with the pea gravel breaking out over time?
    New pool under construction...

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    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Broken Arrow, OK (Tulsa)
    Posts
    276

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    X2 for a salt finish concrete decking.
    16 x 31, Approx. 12,000 Gal Freeform IG pool; Flagstone coping; Quartzscapes Super Blue plaster finish; Tanning ledge w/2 bubblers; 1 HP Pentair Whisperflo pump, Pentair sand filter; (2) Pentair Intellibrite LEDs w/controller; Easytouch8 w/IC-40 SWG; Salt finish concrete decking.

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    chiefwej's Avatar
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    Jun 2011
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    Tucson
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    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    Kool Deck is porous and stains quite easily. Acrylic textured finish can be applied over concrete. It can be textured and colored to look like almost any surface you can imagine. Flagstone, pavers, or just like Kool Deck (but without the dirty stains tha develop). It's not as hot as other surfaces, but not quite as cool as Kool Deck. Price is usually the same or less than Kool Deck depending on surface texture and finish. You can make it as plain or fancy as you want.
    chiefwej
    Tucson, AZ
    16x36 rectangular (19k) Pebble Tec play pool/spa, Pentair Intelliflo VS 011018, Super II 2hp (spa), Aqua Rite T-15 SWG, Pro Grid 60 DE, Hayward H400 & Heliocol Solar heating, A&A infloor system, fill water w/high CH and TA, 50 ppm borates,TF-100 test kit

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    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Staten Island NY
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    34

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    To be honest I think he's charging you a little to much on the change order for the stamped concrete over the pea gravel. You might want to get another price and compare to your contracted price for the pea gravel mix. I think you can get him down from 4,500 if you really want the look
    12x21 AG-semi-inground about 7200 gal, Cart filter,1.5 hp pump installed May 2012
    TF-100/BBB

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    In the Industry

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    Nov 2011
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    Moberly,MO
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    978

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    My local concrete guys here are in the 4.50 to 5 range on stamped concrete over just plain broom finish.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
    We build vinyl, fiberglass, stainless steel pools
    Certified in Hydraulics

  16. Back To Top    #16

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    I did the integral color concrete salt finish. It is very light in color and not too hot due to this. It has excellent wet traction. Two of our friends did stamped decks which look great but they had a sealer applied that improves color and adds gloss that made it very slick when wet. They both complain about how slick it is and have had several falls. We did consider stamped with a cast on color hardener, no sealer, but it was expensive. That looks very nice but I can't tell you if it is slick when wet or not. You'd think it would have to be better than the above mentioned sealers.
    Blaine

    50' x 22' 27k gal shotcrete freeform, 2hp 2 sp Pentair Whisperflo, Pool Pilot RC-52 SWCG, Pentair TR 100 sand filter, Polaris 280, 2 Pentair Intellibrite LED lights with controller, french gray plaster, Butterfield U-20 "smoke"integral colored salt finish concrete cantilever deck on one side, flagstone coping on the other.

    My pool build:
    osage-hills-pool-build-t50526.html

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Staten Island NY
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    34

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    I agree with bpricedo in that I would be careful on my choice in sealing. You can do the cast on color hardener or kept in mind you can do the salt finish in a stamped pattern as well which would really be great in a nice travertine color with the washed out salt would be great for your pool it would look like real travertine
    12x21 AG-semi-inground about 7200 gal, Cart filter,1.5 hp pump installed May 2012
    TF-100/BBB

  18. Back To Top    #18
    karynkjd's Avatar
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    Mar 2015
    Location
    Berlin, NJ
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    325

    Re: Help with Pool Decking

    What did you decide on, going through the same dilemma myself right now
    New Build started April 2015, 20x30x40 Lagoon Style Vinyl (indigo marble/blue granite), 27,500 GAL, IG, 839 square feet, 9' tanning ledge/baja shelf, 9' radial bench, 8' classic Waterfall, 3'6" to 8'Depth, Sand, Pentair 2 speed Superflow 1 1/2 HP, SWS, 2 Pentair LED Intelibright 5 G lights, Pentair Legend Platinum II pool cleaner, 2 skimmers, 3 returns. 1080 square feet of Silver Slate stamped concrete.

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