Fiberglass Pool - Cantilever Concrete Plumb Strip Removal


Jan 12, 2021
Roanoke, VA
Hi Everyone. I have seen this topic come up a couple times so I thought I would post what I have done as the plumb strip really looks terrible in my opinion. Backstory, I spent 4 months building my fiberglass pool last year because I have young kids and could only do it a couple hours at a time. When it came time to set the pool, I rushed and 1 corner was about 3/4" out of level, bad on me. When it came time for the concrete, I kept hitting delays and I was really pushing the concrete guys and also putting too much trust in them as they had never poured a fiberglass pool. A couple issues came up:
1) The rushed to set the forms because I was pushing them. The didn't do any kind of leveling when setting the stegmeiger forms and set them by eye. Unfortunately, they turned by 3/4" out to an entire side being about 1-1.5" out of level with the rest of the pool
2) The forms they used were for a gunite pool with tile and included the wrong kind of strip (tile strip vs plumb strip). I saw this happening and did not stop them because I was ready to be done.
3) Even with the wrong strip, they did a really bad job working it around the radius of the corners

So im the type of person that cant enjoy the pool because all I see is that ugly white strip stained by concrete and the 1.5" difference between the deep end and long end of the pool (of course this is directly across from the seating area). So here is what I'm doing.

1) I used an angle grinder with a masonry bit to work my way around the pool following the top edge of the plumb strip. If I had all the time in the world, I could get this done in about 6 hours, but im doing 1 hour at a time. It makes a mess but is pretty easy.
2) I used a laser level a night to shoot a straight line around the pool. On the side that is out of level, I will be cutting extra concrete out to the top of the tile will be level all the way around. This really freaked some of the neighbors out because the laser broadcasts on the back of the neighbors house. If I didn't have the out of level issue, I could easily just caulk the lower edge of the concrete without tile and call it a day. This is an option for someone that just wants to get rid of the plumb strip.
3) I will then install 1x1 glass tile to finish it off. I'm still picking the color but plan on using this super cost effective tile - Islamorada Pool Grade Tile 1x1 - Waterline Tile For Pool
4) to fix the out of level, I will also be building up the concrete between the top of the tile and existing coping. This was I can split what is being cut out by adding and skim coating the existing coping. For this, Im using this product - E-Z Patch® 6 Concrete Deck and Cantilever Edge Repair
5) Im a little worried the patch wont work so I plan on doing a test piece of tile with the patch and letting it sit over the winter. If it holds, I will tile in the spring, if not, back to the drawing board.

Attached are some photos of where I'm at. I will post some pictures in the daylight tomorrow after I do the concrete patch. I'm fully open to any input if any of this sounds crazy! Thanks again or this forum!


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Mod Squad
Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
Evans, Georgia opinion... the only thing that appears wonky to me (from those pics) is that the water a skosh low to the skimmer. Water should be at least up to half the skimmer plate for best skimming action.

I hate the idea of adding tile to a fiberglass pool. It can make it look "cheap", and you might have tile issues down the road if they start coming off. If you are set on tiles I would avoid all tiles that have distinct lines on them. That can exaggerate an "out of level" line. I'd go for something random and varied in color to "trick" the eye

Just my two cents.

Maddie :flower:


Gold Supporter
May 16, 2010
Chapel Hill, NC
I would avoid all tiles that have distinct lines on them. That can exaggerate an "out of level" line. I'd go for something random and varied in color to "trick" the eye
This is critical (sounds like you're a perfectionist). I had a 6" diamond pattern tile on my original pool and the "points" would magnify the fact that it was about 1/2" out of level in places - made it look much worse than it was. Vertical lines (between the tiles) are fine, anything horizontal or 45 degree angle will drive you nuts!!!


Mod Squad
Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
Evans, Georgia
Upon looking at this again, I do see where it is uneven. (musta had my glasses off before?) I still say if you want to fool the eye take away the lights around the perimeter when you want it to appear less obvious, and use random tiles.
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