ecoFINISH aquaBRIGHT longterm review

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
96
St. Louis
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.....
From what I am reading of your post, you sound frustrated. I can understand that completely, this must be a horrible situation. My take away from all this is that like any covering, be it plaster, paint, or echo finish, the cover will be as good as the surface it's applied too. Since I've spoken to many people who are quite happy with this product, I'm comfortable with it's application provided my pool provided the surface is prepped correctly. There is little risk to me due to it being a new pool as I said earlier.
Being a business owner myself I would ask you: Are you 100% sure the company that prepped your pool walls are "partners" with the people who applied the echo finish? Is it possible the echo finish company was simply hired to apply the covering? Did you hire both the company that "repaired" the pool AND the company that put on the finish? Or did you hire the company that repaired the pool and THEY brought in the company that applied the finish. These things really matter because if that company that applied the finish was sub-contracted they would not really be able to bring any concerns directly to you. They would have to express them to the company that contracted them.

The internet is so permanent nowadays, I'm always careful when dealing with issues of "fault" One thing is for sure, the company that prepped your pool for the finish did not prep it correctly. This caused a domino effect that continued (and continues) to cause problems for you even today. I'm not reading anything in your posts that would fault the finish. It's just a finish, like so many others. There is a recurring theme I am reading in other posts that you mentioned: It's beginning to sound like damaged Fiberglass pools are more problematic to repair / resurface than other types.

Is your pool repairable? I am curious to know where you are leaning as far as a solution goes.

I wish you all the best of luck!
 

STLPool2017

Bronze Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
71
Saint Louis, Missouri
From what I am reading of your post, you sound frustrated. I can understand that completely, this must be a horrible situation. My take away from all this is that like any covering, be it plaster, paint, or echo finish, the cover will be as good as the surface it's applied too. Since I've spoken to many people who are quite happy with this product, I'm comfortable with it's application provided my pool provided the surface is prepped correctly. There is little risk to me due to it being a new pool as I said earlier.
Being a business owner myself I would ask you: Are you 100% sure the company that prepped your pool walls are "partners" with the people who applied the echo finish? Is it possible the echo finish company was simply hired to apply the covering? Did you hire both the company that "repaired" the pool AND the company that put on the finish? Or did you hire the company that repaired the pool and THEY brought in the company that applied the finish. These things really matter because if that company that applied the finish was sub-contracted they would not really be able to bring any concerns directly to you. They would have to express them to the company that contracted them.

The internet is so permanent nowadays, I'm always careful when dealing with issues of "fault" One thing is for sure, the company that prepped your pool for the finish did not prep it correctly. This caused a domino effect that continued (and continues) to cause problems for you even today. I'm not reading anything in your posts that would fault the finish. It's just a finish, like so many others. There is a recurring theme I am reading in other posts that you mentioned: It's beginning to sound like damaged Fiberglass pools are more problematic to repair / resurface than other types.

Is your pool repairable? I am curious to know where you are leaning as far as a solution goes.

I wish you all the best of luck!
You ask a lot of questions and I have answers for all of them but since the lawsuit has now been served and filed with the courts I think it would be best to refrain from going into more details at this time.

Let me leave you with a simple statement - This whole EcoFinish System, like so many other products, is based on the tree legged stool concept:

Preparation, Installation and the Material, if one fails then the stool falls over.
 
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jimim

Bronze Supporter
Jun 20, 2016
2,368
NE/Pa
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
Jay do you have a build thread? I wanted to see how ur pool is looking.

You say you won’t have any plaster? I thought Aqua brite had to be applied over plaster vs gunite? Your floor is gunite. So they would apply a white plaster base to that and then apply the epoxy and then aqua brite right?
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
96
St. Louis
Jay do you have a build thread? I wanted to see how ur pool is looking.

You say you won’t have any plaster? I thought Aqua brite had to be applied over plaster vs gunite? Your floor is gunite. So they would apply a white plaster base to that and then apply the epoxy and then aqua brite right?
Hi Jim!

I should make a build thread! Never thought of it. We're using a gunite bottom and Only Alpha composite walls which take extremely well to the Aqua Brite finish. Advantage: Cost, Disadvantage: You lose some floor space since they have to make a ledge for the walls to sit on. Now I am no expert but I am 90% sure plaster is NOT applied to the gunite first. They put SOMETHING down, but I'm pretty sure it's not plaster. Here's a video on Echo Finsih and Alpha Only composite walls:

I do know some others are using steel walls, and that there have been issues over time. Right now, we have our floor poured, it's 90% back filled with 1" rock, and they have poured our equipment pad and installed all the equipment. The pad is "unique" in that it's 6'x12' and we're going to build a lean to shed over it now that they are done. Nice, clean, well lit. :) Yes pool equipment can be outside, but it also shortens it's life span and get's dirty. :) Weather has put the project on a near hold as we are now in Thunder Storm season here in MO.. SUCKS! But we're managing to do little by little. We'll start building the shed later this week, next week. HOPEFULLY they can finish backfilling the pool, and begin to Forming the stairs and ledges. We're 80% of the way through. If we had good weather, we'd be done in two weeks. AHAHHHHH The builder is good. Not moving fast enough, but I'm not patient either, so it's a balancing act. I am quite happy with him. I've been spooked a bit by some of the negative reviews on Echo Finish, but research shows me there are far more positive reviews than negative ones, so I feel pretty good about it. One thing I've learned running a business, upset people are FAR more vocal than happy ones. :)

I'll look into a build thread.

Jay
 

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STLPool2017

Bronze Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
71
Saint Louis, Missouri
Well, the lawyers were here at my pool on Friday along with the owners of the two pool companies that did the work. Jeff Fitterling from Pool Pros of St. Louis (main contractor) took this opportunity to announce that Pool Pros of St. Louis was closing after he announced earlier in the week that he was shutting down his 400+ Lifeguard Management company for all the local city pools and HOA pools that they had contracts with for the season that started today. The sub-contractor that was here was left high and dry too (no pun intended). It will be interesting as my lawsuit continues but everyone in the St. Louis should know that if they have had any dealings with Pool Pros of St. Louis they are now out of luck.

My NEW contractors will be starting on repairing the damage done by these guys in about 2-3 weeks and hopefully I sill be in the pool by the end of June. Pictures and comments will be submitted on how successful my new contractors are in getting that EcoFinish off of the pool surface and we get back to where we were in October 2016 before the "experts" started on this project. Stay tune!
 

STLPool2017

Bronze Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
71
Saint Louis, Missouri
New Fiberglass walls as the walls were in October 2016 and the Pebble Sheen for the flooring by Schilli Plastering. I am just trying to get back to a more traditional pool. I have had enough with the EcoFinish process. The product may be great in some applications BUT it still comes down to prep and install processes and both of those processes failed in my case, thus making the product useless no matter how great in theory it is.
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
96
St. Louis
The ironic part is that with new fiberglass walls the finish would most likely work great. :) Of course I can understand why you would want to avoid that altogether at this point. Also, with new walls, why do it anyway.
 

STLPool2017

Bronze Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
71
Saint Louis, Missouri
Yeah, hindsight is always best, but want I have heard from other Ecofinish customers around the country there are still problems and its not the great fix for everything and certainly like everything else, the prep and installer is about 90% of it.
 

pooldv

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Aug 10, 2012
25,408
FL panhandle
The normal process for applying aquabrite to gunite is to first install a layer of plaster and then apply the aquabrite to the plaster.
 

jimim

Bronze Supporter
Jun 20, 2016
2,368
NE/Pa
I
The normal process for applying aquabrite to gunite is to first install a layer of plaster and then apply the aquabrite to the plaster.
I mentioned that before also cause I swore I read it was going right on gunite. So I didn’t make that up then?
 
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JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
96
St. Louis
It might have been me.. I spoke to my GC and he did in fact tell me that first a layer of Epoxy goes down first (In the case of my pool anyway, it's not all Gunite)
 

jimim

Bronze Supporter
Jun 20, 2016
2,368
NE/Pa
So jay yes epoxy ontop of the gunite but then a layer of plaster before the aqua brite? Did he mention that. I know all the ones I have seen here done had a layer of plaster out down before the finish layer of aqua brite.
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
96
St. Louis
So jay yes epoxy ontop of the gunite but then a layer of plaster before the aqua brite? Did he mention that. I know all the ones I have seen here done had a layer of plaster out down before the finish layer of aqua brite.
I have not dug too deep into the process.. I have complete confidence in them. I don't know the procedure for a gunite botton and composite walls. Right now I'm just praying they SHOW UP tomorrow. It could be our only day without rain. They could use it to clean the property and do a final grade. If they don't then I'll be waiting another two weeks to do it. I don't mind the weather delays, but that plus "getting line" on the number of pools they are building is proving amazingly stressful. Normally it would not be a huge deal, but if they miss tomorrow, then I lose 10 more days waiting for good weather. I'm not enjoying this part at all. My contractor is good at building pools, but they win NO AWARDS in communication. I'm never told anything about schedule or if they will or will not show up. Driving me nuts right now. I have a severe hearing loss so I try to communicate through text or email. It's a rate moment when someone writes back. Not fun.
 

JayK

Well-known member
Feb 24, 2019
96
St. Louis
How long does the EcoFinish process take? What if it rains overnight after the 1st day's application? Does that ruin it? Do you have to have 2 solid days of good weather, or however long it takes?
Jay
 

sberggren

Member
Jun 26, 2016
17
Boise Idaho
Once the surface is prepped and ready to go, they should be able to finish the coating install in a full day. I don't think it will hurt it any if it rains after that first coat. I don't know about rain in between the epoxy coating the first Aquabright coating.
 

swimcmp

In The Industry
Nov 8, 2011
1,062
Moberly,MO
If they did a gunite floor they will have a plaster coat between gunite and ecofinish, unless they troweled gunite smooth. If they did a straight poured concrete they can apply ecofinish direct to it as long as it is smooth like a basement floor.
 

jimim

Bronze Supporter
Jun 20, 2016
2,368
NE/Pa
If they did a gunite floor they will have a plaster coat between gunite and ecofinish, unless they troweled gunite smooth. If they did a straight poured concrete they can apply ecofinish direct to it as long as it is smooth like a basement floor.
So that’s what the plaster layer is for. I figured it was for a bonding process. Not just for a smooth finish. That’s good to know.