ecoFINISH aquaBRIGHT longterm review

Waterfan

Bronze Supporter
Apr 30, 2018
51
Chattanooga, TN
My ecofinish looks terrible so I would not say that all installers that have been trained are qualified. Ecofinish even sent a rep out the 3rd time we had the finish applied. Now we have terminated the contractor as it was well over a year and our pools still wasn't done (for more reasons than just the finish). We have called Ecofinish to see if they will help us find someone to make it right. They said they would come out mid-April but I am not holding my breath that they plan to stand behind this installer they "trained". Ecofinish told me that our new contractor would never be able to blast off the old finish and revert to plaster. I would not recommend this product - at least not in our area where there is only one installer.
 

sktn77a

Gold Supporter
May 16, 2010
1,418
Chapel Hill, NC
Just back on the site since last September but I am still without a pool for 2 plus years and counting because of the poor install process by the main contractor and the authorized AB trained installer that was sub-contracted. Now will have to have the AB stuff blasted off and get some professional pool help. And now (unfortunately) a lawyer is now involved. I will post more on my thread as things develop.
Looks like you've made zero progress since your last posts. Rather than pay a lawyer (who won't get anywhere with these guys), it might be time to start fresh. Check these guys out - I considered them for my pool reno but I don't lnow if they travel to MO:

Pool Repair - Resurfacing - Conversion - Remodeling - Swimming Pool Contractor - East Coast Pools

Good luck.
 

STLPool2017

Bronze Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
71
Saint Louis, Missouri
Looks like you've made zero progress since your last posts. Rather than pay a lawyer (who won't get anywhere with these guys), it might be time to start fresh. Check these guys out - I considered them for my pool reno but I don't lnow if they travel to MO:

Pool Repair - Resurfacing - Conversion - Remodeling - Swimming Pool Contractor - East Coast Pools

Good luck.
Thank you for the information. I will keep it on file in case the new contractors are not able to get the EcoFinish off.

Can you tell me how your pool contractor removed the EcoFinish from your pool?
 

Waterfan

Bronze Supporter
Apr 30, 2018
51
Chattanooga, TN
If EcoFinish won't help us find a better trained installer of theirs to fix this mess then we may have to grind it off and go with plaster. And while we are trying to avoid a lawsuit, if it comes to that expense, likely we will have no other choice.
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
97
St. Louis
I've been reading all the posts on Eco-Finish / Aquabrite. Seems that it all comes down to one single thing:

Installer experience.

Living in St. Louis there are two installers here and both seem to be okay. The one I use has had a LOT of experience with installs, so I think my odds of a successful finish are good. Also, my pool is brand spanking new. So there will be no plaster. The walls are Alpha One Composites which are geared for such a finish, the floor is Gunite. Hopefully it will all work out. I have NO INTEREST in plaster whatsoever. Just a personal choice.

Jay
 

STLPool2017

Bronze Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
71
Saint Louis, Missouri
Unless things changed in the last year, there is only one authorized trained company that installs the EcoFinish in the St. Louis area and that company is in Illinois. The one company in St. Louis that advertises that they do it DOES NOT do the actual application of the EcoFinish and brings in the authorized installer from Illinois. I have had a horrible experience with both of these companies with BOTH companies involved in the prep and installation of the EcoFinish on my pool. I have also heard from other St. Louis pool owners that have had similar experiences. Good Luck with your pool and I hope they have learned something since they screwed up my pool 2 years ago. Next month I am having the mess they left (yes, they just walked away) hopefully un-done. I will post the results when it is done.
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
97
St. Louis
Unless things changed in the last year, there is only one authorized trained company that installs the EcoFinish in the St. Louis area and that company is in Illinois. The one company in St. Louis that advertises that they do it DOES NOT do the actual application of the EcoFinish and brings in the authorized installer from Illinois. I have had a horrible experience with both of these companies with BOTH companies involved in the prep and installation of the EcoFinish on my pool. I have also heard from other St. Louis pool owners that have had similar experiences. Good Luck with your pool and I hope they have learned something since they screwed up my pool 2 years ago. Next month I am having the mess they left (yes, they just walked away) hopefully un-done. I will post the results when it is done.
Can you be more specific as to what went wrong?
Jay
 

RobStl

In The Industry
Apr 19, 2019
2
St Louis
Unless things changed in the last year, there is only one authorized trained company that installs the EcoFinish in the St. Louis area and that company is in Illinois. The one company in St. Louis that advertises that they do it DOES NOT do the actual application of the EcoFinish and brings in the authorized installer from Illinois. I have had a horrible experience with both of these companies with BOTH companies involved in the prep and installation of the EcoFinish on my pool. I have also heard from other St. Louis pool owners that have had similar experiences. Good Luck with your pool and I hope they have learned something since they screwed up my pool 2 years ago. Next month I am having the mess they left (yes, they just walked away) hopefully un-done. I will post the results when it is done.
It is my understanding the original company and only company you contracted with for the pool work did the initial prep work on your aged fiberglass wall pool. It is also my understanding your pool walls were cover in unsightly fiberglass “blisters” prior to your contractor being hired. If this same original contractor was the one that improperly attempted to “remove” the fiberglass blisters on the aged pool and failed at this initial prep work causing the ecoFINISH to also fail, then wouldn’t this only be a fiberglass prep work failure and not an ecoFINISH failure like you seem to me touting? Seems to me the ecoFINISH is only as good as the structure it is applied to so if the walls of your aged and heavily blistered pool wall were already beyond repair, it doesn’t seem right to blame ecoFINISH or its installers for issues that were already present before the aquabright coating. After all, aquabright is really only an aesthetic coating and will never be able to repair a poorly designed pool structure.
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
97
St. Louis
As I read more and more of these "issues" regarding Aqua Brite they all seem to keep coming back to the same variable: Questionable surface on which it is applied. I'm not excusing or condemning anyone since I am not a professional in this industry. However I can say, being a person who is building a NEW POOL, that my surface area is what I suppose you could call a "best case" scenario, no existing plaster, no existing paint, just bare surface.. While my job is not yet done, I can tell you my contractor has executed every step of this pool so far exactly as he has promised. His people show up on time, and the project manager always double checks with me. I am a PAIN IN THE Rear when it comes to communication, sending out multiple texts and emails per day. However this is due to a hearing problem and somewhat unavoidable for me. My contractor has dealt with this professionally. As for budget, so far we seem to be about $470.00 over budget. $470.00...... Amazing.

Obviously, we're not done. Equipment install, back filling, pouring the steps and the deck, and finally the Eco Finish are still to come. But I owe him the benefit of the doubt. I can hardly wait.

Jay
 
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pooldv

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Aug 10, 2012
25,408
FL panhandle
That is correct, aquabrite ecofinish is a very thin coating applied to the surface of the pool. As with any thin top coat material applied to a surface the surface prep and integrity of the surface being applied to is critical to success.

Just like painting over crumbling brick will never fix the brick and the paint won't last long either.
 
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RobStl

In The Industry
Apr 19, 2019
2
St Louis
That is correct, aquabrite ecofinish is a very thin coating applied to the surface of the pool. As with any thin top coat material applied to a surface the surface prep and integrity of the surface being applied to is critical to success.

Just like painting over crumbling brick will never fix the brick and the paint won't last long either.
Well said.
 

sktn77a

Gold Supporter
May 16, 2010
1,418
Chapel Hill, NC
Thank you for the information. I will keep it on file in case the new contractors are not able to get the EcoFinish off. Can you tell me how your pool contractor removed the EcoFinish from your pool?
I didn't have ecofinish. If you recall, I had a fiberglass wall/concrete basin pool and replaced the fiberglass walls with gunite.
 

Waterfan

Bronze Supporter
Apr 30, 2018
51
Chattanooga, TN
As far as my ongoing pool saga with ecofinish, they connected us to another installer to try to salvage the finish on our new pool. Ecofinish is going to pay for the materials but we are looking at $7500 of labor out-of-pocket even though we already paid one of their "trained" installers to do it. We will never have nice straight lines on the ledge and stairs and coming down from the spa or the quality look you would expect with a six-figure brand new pool since our prep work is what it is. In fact, I told my husband I don't want the pool lights on at night because you can see just how terrible the tanning ledge and stairs look. However, hopefully after this other installer who seems to be great, does his work, the finish will no longer be peeling off and maybe he can smooth out a few lumps, "wrinkles", and the streaks in the process. This new guy tells us that Blue Lagoon is the most difficult to apply and that is what we had. We are going darker with Mediterranean Blue to hopefully cover the mess we have from the 3 application attempts of our original builder. The third attempt even included an ecofinish rep on-site and it was by far the ugliest reapplication. I would swear they patched it with a lighter color, not to mention the ecofinish that got into and plugged up our in-floor cleaning system. On one hand I am really irritated with ecofinish and how they don't stand behind their installers, but on the other hand, I am glad they are going to cover the cost of the materials for this 4th application. Overall, since we like the concept of ecofinish and how smooth it is, I hope it works out. JayK our surface was new as well but there are so many additional steps in the prep process before aqua bright goes on. I pray yours works out better than ours. It may be worth trying to find videos of the prep steps required and then watching to be sure each one is followed. From what I have learned the skim coat needs to be perfectly applied then there are certain prep materials that need to be applied in the right order. Some cannot sit too long or get wet and need to be just the right mixture. And we had some of them splash up and stain our coping. Then when the AB was applied it left burn marks on our outlet covers. It truly sounds like a work of art to get it on right - and then it should be amazing.
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
97
St. Louis
As far as my ongoing pool saga with ecofinish, they connected us to another installer to try to salvage the finish on our new pool. Ecofinish is going to pay for the materials but we are looking at $7500 of labor out-of-pocket even though we already paid one of their "trained" installers to do it. We will never have nice straight lines on the ledge and stairs and coming down from the spa or the quality look you would expect with a six-figure brand new pool since our prep work is what it is. In fact, I told my husband I don't want the pool lights on at night because you can see just how terrible the tanning ledge and stairs look. However, hopefully after this other installer who seems to be great, does his work, the finish will no longer be peeling off and maybe he can smooth out a few lumps, "wrinkles", and the streaks in the process. This new guy tells us that Blue Lagoon is the most difficult to apply and that is what we had. We are going darker with Mediterranean Blue to hopefully cover the mess we have from the 3 application attempts of our original builder. The third attempt even included an ecofinish rep on-site and it was by far the ugliest reapplication. I would swear they patched it with a lighter color, not to mention the ecofinish that got into and plugged up our in-floor cleaning system. On one hand I am really irritated with ecofinish and how they don't stand behind their installers, but on the other hand, I am glad they are going to cover the cost of the materials for this 4th application. Overall, since we like the concept of ecofinish and how smooth it is, I hope it works out. JayK our surface was new as well but there are so many additional steps in the prep process before aqua bright goes on. I pray yours works out better than ours. It may be worth trying to find videos of the prep steps required and then watching to be sure each one is followed. From what I have learned the skim coat needs to be perfectly applied then there are certain prep materials that need to be applied in the right order. Some cannot sit too long or get wet and need to be just the right mixture. And we had some of them splash up and stain our coping. Then when the AB was applied it left burn marks on our outlet covers. It truly sounds like a work of art to get it on right - and then it should be amazing.
Thanks for writing. I am grateful for the concern. And yes I am nervous, but as I have watched the construction of this pool, I've learned that there are any number of THOUSANDS of things that can go wrong if not done correctly and carefully. When I was shopping for a pool company, the 1st one I chose was the least expensive, and in the end I chose not to go with him and picked my current installer instead who was considerably more expensive, but also much more established. It was a good choice and the word "expensive" was based on inexperience. I've getting a lot of bang for my buck, which I will detail when the project is completed. So far the builder I've been using has been excellent. And from my limited experience, it would seem they are being detail oriented and careful. In some ways this process has been almost TOO good to be true. I've been through some real nightmares with contractors in my life, and some of the situations my parents endured was simply off the charts. So you can imagine my fear of this project "going south" Will they really repair mistakes to property when finished? Will there be a sudden onslaught of unknown charges when the job is completed? (This is my biggest fear). I've been keeping a spreadsheet of charges and changes as they go on to make sure everyone is on the same page. That said, my builder seems to trust me on this and more or less says "just keep tracking it, I'm sure it's fine". If he pulls this off, finishing the pool with good quality, repairs and nearly on budget then I'm going to have to come here and tell you this guy is one of the best contractors I've worked with in my life. I hope and pray this is what happens. Right now, it's looking real good. We'll see. I'm in MO and weather has taken a turn. We've lost most of this week due to rain, and next week looks worse. Backfilling is 90% done, but cannot be completed due to mud. They are working on other things, but next week looks bad as well. 1 week of good weather would allow this project to get 90% tied up. Here's hoping. :)

Jay
 

STLPool2017

Bronze Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
71
Saint Louis, Missouri
It is my understanding the original company and only company you contracted with for the pool work did the initial prep work on your aged fiberglass wall pool. It is also my understanding your pool walls were cover in unsightly fiberglass “blisters” prior to your contractor being hired. If this same original contractor was the one that improperly attempted to “remove” the fiberglass blisters on the aged pool and failed at this initial prep work causing the ecoFINISH to also fail, then wouldn’t this only be a fiberglass prep work failure and not an ecoFINISH failure like you seem to me touting? Seems to me the ecoFINISH is only as good as the structure it is applied to so if the walls of your aged and heavily blistered pool wall were already beyond repair, it doesn’t seem right to blame ecoFINISH or its installers for issues that were already present before the aquabright coating. After all, aquabright is really only an aesthetic coating and will never be able to repair a poorly designed pool structure.
Since this post from RobStl was put on the thread as well as a message directly to me I feel I should post my message reply to RobStl on the thread so that everyone can understand that yes my pool is an older pool but we based our decision on having this done because of what we were told that could be done and was promised they could fix these bumps on the walls. The pool was not a "poorly designed pool structure"

The reply - "Well, the facts are that the original company represented themselves as the EcoFinish company when in fact they were in partnership with the authorized EcoFinish installer. The fact is my pool had bumps, not blisters but my wife and I were told that they could fix these bumps. They were the ones that ground open the bumps to create the breach in the fiberglass, thus causing blisters and they were the ones that cut into the seams that were not leaking and caused them to leak. The fact that the authorized EcoFinsh company came in just to blow the EcoFinish over what their partner did and not prep the pool themselves is on both of them. I have now read enough from other pool owners / installers that suggest that Ecofinish is not recommended for pools with fiberglass and of course bad prep by both companies is another important factor.

I see that you are in the industry in St. Louis. Do you work for one of these companies? "

I hope everyone understands that I used this posting thread to educate others to be cautious based on my own experiences but of course they can make their own decision on whether they want to go with EcoFinish or some other process / product. This is just an FYI on this great website. i hope to have positive news on how to remove the EcoFinish and what is being done to put the pool back into proper shape within the next 60 days. Stay tune.....
 
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