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Thread: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

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    Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    Renovating my 25 yo 22k gunite pool. Emptied and pressure washed, gonna acid wash in a month or two, waht is this yellow/brown stuff all over the walls?
    Will it come off when I acid wash?


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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    When was the last time you drained your pool, and what are/were your CH levels? Looks like pretty scaled up plaster to me!

    FWIW, I would not acid wash that. You are at the end of the plasters' life, and an acid wash will not only accelerate the demise, but will also leave what you have left very rough. If you were going to pay to have it done, I would save the money until you can re-plaster. If you were going to do it yourself, you could save the time and aggravation!

    Fill it back up and enjoy what you have until you can re-plaster!

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    Thanks for the recommendations. The pool plaster has looked like that for as long as I have owned the pool (6 years), last season the Calcium level was normal. I have never drained the pool totally until this year. Before that I would just change out 1/3 of the water or so when I let the pool get gross (lagoon) over the winter. I never really noticed it until I drained the pool for remodel work a few months back and really started looking at the plaster. Before there were too many other dark stains in the plaster that drew your eye away from the little stuff. Those dark stains are my primary reason for wanting to acid wash. I don't know that they will go away but maybe just lighten up a bit.

    How do I know when my plaster is done for? It is intact and not crumbling, no major cracks.

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    You have the "old" formulation of plaster, which is much stronger than today's plaster. If it is not deteriorating, crumbling or releasing from itself, and only looks "dirty", I would keep it! However, and I cannot stress this enough, if you acid wash it you will be looking to re-plaster soon; much sooner than if you just accept the way it looks now! Do not acid wash it!!!!

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    Just for fun you could try a vitamin C tablet or a trichlor puck, holding them on the walls to see if any of the color releases, maybe the color can improve that way?
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    OK no problem, will definitely NOT acid wash it. I would rather live with discoloration than re-plaster soon, $pending enough already on what I am doing.
    I am working on a post listing what I currently have (with pics) and what I propose to do. It should be up soon.

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    Glad to hear it You made the right decision!

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    One more question, if acid washing is a no-no what about pressure washing?

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    RC51Jim, seriously... a Vitamin C tablet, held to the stain for 30 seconds, could tell you if the staining is metal. A Trichlor tablet, held to the stain, can tell you if it's organic. Can't hurt to try these things, if they have an affect or not you can at least make the surface appear better till you can replaster.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    OK, I will try it out. Thanks for the tip!
    If one or the other works what is the remedy? Would I have to rub it everywhere the stains are? That would take a while, see pic below.


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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    If the Vit C works, then you will want to do the Absorbic Acid treatment, directions are in Pool School.

    If the trichlor works, then the stains are organic and shock levels of chlorine will make them fade. Since your pool is empty, the trichlor puck won't really work.... wasn't thinking clearly about that. How about....(wearing rubber gloves) applying undiluted bleach straight to the stain, see if it changes.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Join Date
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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    sorry off topic question. But why are the main drains not in the deepest part of the pool?
    John
    15x30 inground vinyl pool. 1 hp hayward pump, 200 pound sand filter. 8 feet deep in the deepest part. 3 feet in the shallow. 4 returns 2 in the steps, 1 in the shallow end, and one in the deep, 1 skimmer (wish there were 2) and one Main drain. Only thing I wish is I had a more powerful pump, The jets never really put out alot of power. No frills pool. Has a light and thats about it as far as specail features go. BBB user ever since I opened this season thanks to TPF

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    It is, the raised white heads you see around the pool are part of the in floor cleaning system. The main drain is under the pile of scooge (since cleaned up) about where the head of the broom is.

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    Re: Gunite Pool: What is on my walls?? Picture

    The tan discoloration looks very similar to the staining I get on the white scale in my pool. I can tell it is scale as the pool plaster is blue. My staining, mostly what appears to be iron, apparently comes from the sand/silt/mud/dust that blows in or carried in by dogs as we have no issues with our fill water.

    I did the AA treatment last fall. It took longer than normal as the water was cool. The last stain to release was the tan staining on scale. I was anxious to let the doggies swim again, after two weeks of treatment, (many chem reactions slow down as the water gets colder) so I didn't go any longer with the aggressive AA treatment. There was still some slight staining on the scale on bottom of shallow end. I slowly brought the pH up to 7.2 and slowly brought up chlorine. I kept generous amounts of sequestrate in the pool all winter with pH hovering around 7.2 (but not below). The tan staining continued to release all winter as did the scale. I can see a hint of tan in the shallow end but I'm not doing anything other than keeping generous amounts of sequestrate and every other day or so brushing. Keeping pH right at 7.5.

    I agree with others about NOT doing an acid wash. I lucked out with my contractor when I had the pool replastered in '96, which apparently was a great job, as my mistreatment of the pool prior to finding TFP, last year, and three aggressive acid washes I did didn't destroy the finish. A friend and I did a very drastic acid wash, summer of 2008, and I can see some areas that were roughened up more than from the other two acid washes. So no more acid washes for this pool.

    It's pretty amazing what an AA treatment can do if your stains are certain metals and AA is far less destructive.

    BTW... I don't think anyone mentioned but get the areas of plaster you are going to test well saturated with water before testing. Possibly hold a wet sponge on spots if you don't want much water going into pool.

    gg=alice
    1981, 25K, IG, Blue Plaster 1996, somewhat oval, widens a bit at shallow end, 1.5" pipes, 2" at Pad, 1 separate main drain, 1 skimmer, 4 returns + dedicated cleaner return, 10 ft deep end with very fast decline from shallow, Pentair Quad 80 DE, Pentair Intelliflo VF, 3/4 HP Booster Pump (equipment pad about 8 ft below top of pool), Challanger 3/4 Trash/Emergency Pump 120v, Polaris 280 (pressure), iRobot Verro cleaner (robotic), Aquabot Turbo (robotic), Jacuzzi Tracker 4X (vacuum) Pool Blaster (Buster), Two (2) PoolSkims, Solar Breeze (solar powered top skimmer) (beta to ver. 2, release date 2010), ColorSplash LED replacement bulb. Aries 550 gal separate spa, 2002 (our 3rd and BEST spa) , BBB-Bromine

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