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Thread: Coping Repair / Replacement

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    Coping Repair / Replacement

    I have coping around the exterior of my pool, with about 6 inches of tile below the coping. Each year, some of the tiles fall off. Each year. I've replaced the tile using a mortar supposedly appropriate for wet (in water) applications. The tiles generally do not stay in place for more than a season, maybe some for two. It's gotten progressively worse.

    Last year, I got a recommendation for a pool repair guy who specializes specifically in these problems. He came over and tapped the coping with a rock. Some sections sounded hollow, others did not. He told me that the hollow sound meant that the coping had separated and that it needed to be replaced. He said that he could replace some or all of the coping (all at a cost of ~$5,000), which he'd fabricate to match the existing style. While it might be less money to replace only some of the stones, he might or might not have sufficient tile in my pattern to make repair feasible. Even if he does, I'm starting to thing that the scope of my problem will make full replacement the best option.

    Does anyone have experience with this? Does this sound reasonable? Are there other, better solutions? And what might cause this problem (and, therefore, might be done differently to prevent it from recurring)?
    Location: Suburban Boston, Massachusetts ? Pool: 25K gal - In-ground / Gunite ? Pump: American Products 384484 Motor: 1.5 HP AO Smith Model SQ1152 ? DE Filter: American Products Titan CM #57025000 48 ft^2 ? Valve: American Products 2.0" Side Mount Multiport 501692 ? Lights: American Products Model R-300 BC 12-volt ? Cleaner: Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, 2005C

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    Re: Coping Repair / Replacement

    Do you live in a city and state that has freezing temps?
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Coping Repair / Replacement

    All that information in my sig and I didn't include geography! Stupid.

    Yes, in the Boston area.
    Location: Suburban Boston, Massachusetts ? Pool: 25K gal - In-ground / Gunite ? Pump: American Products 384484 Motor: 1.5 HP AO Smith Model SQ1152 ? DE Filter: American Products Titan CM #57025000 48 ft^2 ? Valve: American Products 2.0" Side Mount Multiport 501692 ? Lights: American Products Model R-300 BC 12-volt ? Cleaner: Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, 2005C

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    Re: Coping Repair / Replacement

    Yeah, it's the freezing that's popping them off but they probably were never bonded well to the concrete.

    When the bond is poor or has a lot of gaps, water finds it's way behind the tiles and then freezes and, of course, pops the tile right off.

    You could probably save a few bucks by removing ALL the old tile and starting over but that's a BIG DIY project, for sure, and it has to be done well or your new tiles can pop off, too.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Coping Repair / Replacement

    Thanks, Dave. I don't think that I'm up to this large a DIY project (replacing the expansion joint caulking was probably my upper limit). Does the proposed fix, replacing all the coping and all the tile sound like an appropriate solution? I'll post pictures tomorrow.
    Location: Suburban Boston, Massachusetts ? Pool: 25K gal - In-ground / Gunite ? Pump: American Products 384484 Motor: 1.5 HP AO Smith Model SQ1152 ? DE Filter: American Products Titan CM #57025000 48 ft^2 ? Valve: American Products 2.0" Side Mount Multiport 501692 ? Lights: American Products Model R-300 BC 12-volt ? Cleaner: Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, 2005C

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    Re: Coping Repair / Replacement

    Here are a couple of pictures of the damage:





    And an area without damage:
    Location: Suburban Boston, Massachusetts ? Pool: 25K gal - In-ground / Gunite ? Pump: American Products 384484 Motor: 1.5 HP AO Smith Model SQ1152 ? DE Filter: American Products Titan CM #57025000 48 ft^2 ? Valve: American Products 2.0" Side Mount Multiport 501692 ? Lights: American Products Model R-300 BC 12-volt ? Cleaner: Hayward Pool Vac Ultra, 2005C

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    MiaOKC's Avatar
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    Re: Coping Repair / Replacement

    I feel your pain. We like to say our tile is molting in our 1975 pool. When we bought the house in late 2011, the pool inspection co. was amazed that we had all the original tiles still affixed, and we were like "alright! something is going good for this beast of a pool" and then basically the moment their truck pulled out of the driveway, a section of six tiles fell off. Last summer, we used some tube of flexible sealant from the pool store that was supposed to hold the tiles on, but whenever the robot climbs to the tile line, they got bumped off. It's only gotten worse and worse as time goes by, now they fall off with regularity with no provocation.

    My understanding from speaking informally with a few pool reno companies is that a complete re-coping (since my pre-cast is no longer manufactured), re-tiling, and re-plastering - in my instance I've got a painted pool that's ready for maintenance - since once you have it all torn apart it's best to do it all in one swoop, is needed to fix this problem.
    35,000 gallon gunite pool, semi-T-shaped, 29x15 shallow end and 16x22 deep end, built in the mid-1970s and renovated 2013-2014 // Polaris 9300 Sport robotic cleaner // Taylor K-2006 ... Learning as we go and so grateful to everyone here for their help! Our reno thread

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