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Thread: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

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    Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Hey all. First time poster here, but I've been reading and researching these forums for the last few weeks, or at least since we decided to move forward with our pool. First, I wanted to say thanks to everyone for all of the great posts and advice, even if it was not directed to me personally, it helped out a lot! No on to my question....

    We have very limited space in our back yard, and are trying to use every available inch of space for as much pool as we can get. That being said, we would save a nice chunk of patio real estate if we went with the in-pool steel steps with the vinyl overlay. Many that we've talked to said that would be a smart move, but a few are against them stating that they become very slippery and difficult to navigate.

    Does anyone who has these steps have any problems? If so what are they? What are your recommendations? I'd love to hear from both sides.

    Thanks, and I'll get a signature as soon as I can!

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Welcome to the forum.

    The nature of my pool lent itself to vinyl overlay steps. Aesthetically, they are perfect. Functionally, they can be slippery. Years ago, we tried some adhesive non-skid strips which solved the issue but the adhesive let go after about six months and we never replaced them.

    I would consider a hand rail a must. The slipping was not a deal breaker for us but it is a disadvantage to be aware of.
    Dave S.
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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    IMO, in-pool vinyl covered stairs, hands down. Looks much better than the other type, IMO. Look into the liner you get. Our liner has a different texture on the stairs as compared to the rest of the pool floor. It's slighty textured for no skid.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    I started to write a response, but then figured it was better off in my own build thread.

    Here is the link to it post558029.html#p558029
    18'x43' Sport Pool
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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    Years ago, we tried some adhesive non-skid strips...
    I had thought that if we went with the overlay and they did get slippery, we'd do the same thing and add some kind of non-skid material.


    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    The slipping was not a deal breaker for us but it is a disadvantage to be aware of...
    I'm finding that the pros outweigh the cons. Aesthetically as well as functionally. A few people that I've talked to said that theirs had instantly turned into seating on the really hot days, which is a HUGE benefit if you ask me.

    Thanks for the input!

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    I'm finding a lot of "newer liner technology" that has non-skid or textured surfaces to aleviate slipping issues.

    Thanks!

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    I started to write a response, but then figured it was better off in my own build thread.

    Here is the link to it post558029.html#p558029
    Believe it or not, I asked our builder about the same "step lip" issue in your pics and they said the same thing. The longer they are in, the less chance the liner has to move around. I kind of put that in the back of my mind since it's closer to the end of the season and our liner will have until next spring to settle in better.

    Thanks harley!

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    We have the liner over steps and really have enjoyed them. It is the same texture as the pool but we are just careful stepping down. The PB did put some of the wall foam on the steps & they are comfy to sit on as we use them instead of a "cuddle cove" to enjoy our view.
    18x36 kidney 20,000 gallons IG vinyl. Pentair Easy Touch 8 w/IntelliChlor IC40. Triton II TR100. Pentair Intellifllo Variable Speed. Waterfall/Jump Rock. 2 Pentair Intellibrite lights. TF-100 Test Kit. And a very happy husband who gets to play in the pool without having to take care of it.

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by Ksnewman
    The PB did put some of the wall foam on the steps & they are comfy to sit on as we use them instead of a "cuddle cove" to enjoy our view.
    That's a pretty good idea. I might have to suggest something of the sort to our builder. Not sure how far we can push him though, but it'd be nice since our steps would span the entire width of the shallow end of the pool.

    Thanks Ks!

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Mine was done that way as well, same foam put on the walls was put on the steps.
    18'x43' Sport Pool
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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    Mine was done that way as well, same foam put on the walls was put on the steps.
    Is that something you had to ask for, or is it part of the normal process?

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    I personally hate vinyl covered steps. Vinyl IMO is simply not a strong enough material to deal with a high traffic area like steps. There will always be gaps that form in the coves of the steps as the vinyl can't completely conform to the shape of the step. So if you ever get a hole in this area it will leak FAST. Also if you live in an area that needs to partially drain water from the pool for the winter the vinyl covered steps usually take a beating. When vinyl doesn't have water pressure holding it in place it goes where it want to and the highest steps usually end up getting tighter and pull away as the years go by. Please keep in mine this is just my opinion
    -Kevin
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    22,000 gal / 16' x 32' / Vinyl / Hayward s244t /Pentair SuperFlo 1 hp

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by X-PertPool
    I personally hate vinyl covered steps. Vinyl IMO is simply not a strong enough material to deal with a high traffic area like steps. There will always be gaps that form in the coves of the steps as the vinyl can't completely conform to the shape of the step. So if you ever get a hole in this area it will leak FAST. Also if you live in an area that needs to partially drain water from the pool for the winter the vinyl covered steps usually take a beating. When vinyl doesn't have water pressure holding it in place it goes where it want to and the highest steps usually end up getting tighter and pull away as the years go by. Please keep in mine this is just my opinion
    Is this an example of what you are describing post558029.html#p558029

    Is that the cove pictured? Not sure what the cove is.
    18'x43' Sport Pool
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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by RosenHammer
    Quote Originally Posted by harleysilo
    Mine was done that way as well, same foam put on the walls was put on the steps.
    Is that something you had to ask for, or is it part of the normal process?
    I didn't have to ask for it, it is how my PB does it.
    18'x43' Sport Pool
    19,000 Gallons Vinyl Liner 3'-3.5'-4'
    SWCG and D.E. Filter
    Test Kits - Pool Calculator - Chlorine/CYA Chart - Pool School

    Secret Weapon for Pool Chemistry Testing

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    We went for the Vinyl Overlay steps with non-slip vinyl (no running please ~ it will slip) Here is a link to build. They also put a foam on the sunledge and steps. The steps are textured you can see in some of the pictures there is a slight difference. We LOVE how it turned out!!
    upstate-ny-sharing-our-dig-t64971-20.html
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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by X-PertPool
    I personally hate vinyl covered steps. Vinyl IMO is simply not a strong enough material to deal with a high traffic area like steps. There will always be gaps that form in the coves of the steps as the vinyl can't completely conform to the shape of the step. So if you ever get a hole in this area it will leak FAST. Also if you live in an area that needs to partially drain water from the pool for the winter the vinyl covered steps usually take a beating. When vinyl doesn't have water pressure holding it in place it goes where it want to and the highest steps usually end up getting tighter and pull away as the years go by. Please keep in mine this is just my opinion
    Never had these issues. And the vinyl is just as tight as the day it was installed 5 years ago. No gaps, etc.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    Quote Originally Posted by Rmonile
    We went for the Vinyl Overlay steps with non-slip vinyl (no running please ~ it will slip) Here is a link to build. They also put a foam on the sunledge and steps. The steps are textured you can see in some of the pictures there is a slight difference. We LOVE how it turned out!!
    upstate-ny-sharing-our-dig-t64971-20.html
    Wow! Great pics! Thanks for sharing them Rmonile!

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    Re: Vinyl Overlay Steps vs. Fiberglass external - First Post

    The cove is any area where the wall meet the floor, It's typically a 90 degree angle and the liner has to stretch into this area. There will always be some sort of gap at this location, and since there is a gap if a hole forms there it will leak faster than if for example you were to get a slice in the middle of your shallow end. A slice in the middle of the shallow end will leak but not very quickly as the water needs to find a path out of the pool usually by weakening the sand cement mix of the floor material and this takes some time.
    -Kevin
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    22,000 gal / 16' x 32' / Vinyl / Hayward s244t /Pentair SuperFlo 1 hp

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