My pool's plaster is in fairly poor shape. When we bought the house last year, I had never owned a pool before so it was a learning curve all the way through the season, with enormous help from the information I found here.
Now it's time for phase 2... my plaster is pretty dirty looking so I thought "acid wash." I had a couple companies come out and they told me the same thing -- can't acid wash it because the plaster is shot. The conjecture is that either the pool was improperly acid washed in the past or it was drained and left empty for a long time in the AZ heat... but whatever the cause, the result is that the plaster is pretty much at the end of its life. I have a few larger cracks, but the current consensus is that they're cosmetic (not leaking). All around the perimeter where the walls transition to the floor is covered in spalling/spider web cracks. The plaster is pitted and the pores are retaining grime, making everything look dirty no matter how much I brush, etc. The surface is fairly rough to the touch.
I've been told that it's not an emergency that I resurface the pool -- YET. Of course, the condition of the plaster will only continue to deteriorate so naturally I'm being warned that if the problems get worse, the cost to repair will go up. If I can live with the appearance and roughness, I might be able to get through another season, or two...
I'm investigating options for resurfacing. I'm trying to strike a bang-for-the-buck balance here. This is not a fancy pool or a million-dollar backyard... it's a hole in the ground with water in it. Pretty basic.
I've had a few companies come out and everyone is pushing pebble surfaces, not surprisingly. Sure, they say, plaster is a little cheaper, but "new" plaster is not nearly as durable as "old" plaster due to new laws, etc. Most places are offering much better warranties on pebble and talking up the pros vs. plaster. I've gotten a few quotes ranging from "too good to be true" to "new Mercedes", with the middle ground being "used Honda."
I just recently ran across aquaBRIGHT and immediately came here, I read through the threads and it looks promising. There is only one AB installer in Phoenix, which, I have to say... I find that very odd. Phoenix is a huge pool market. This makes me a bit cautious that more companies aren't getting involved with this product.
I am going to have the one local AB installer come give me a quote. I'm hoping that my plaster is in good enough shape to be a good candidate for AB, but I really am scratching my head why this product isn't more prevalent here.
AB reminds me a lot of Corian countertops. Is that a fair comparison? I am not a fan of Corian for counters, but as a pool surface I can see how it might be a good option.
I know it's been covered, but if anyone has any thoughts on pebble vs. AB (since everyone has done everything in their power to talk me out of plaster) I'd be interested to hear them. I'll be curious to see how the quote comes out as well. In theory, I would think it would be a very competitive price to pebble/plaster, but at the same time there's only one installer here so there's no competition and it's a "niche" product which tends to drive prices up.