Glasscoat vs aquaBright

VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
Hi, friends! We're having a shotcrete pool built soon and are wondering if any of you can advise on whether we'd be better off having it finished in glasscoat or aquaBright. Please and many thanks! :giggle:
 
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ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
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Northern NJ
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Do you have a good Aquabrite installer? Aquabrite is time consuming and difficult to install correctly.

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MAPR-Austin

In The Industry
Feb 23, 2021
16
Kansas City, MO
Is there any reason you want to go with those finishes over a cement based surface?

Both AquaBrite and Glasscoat are going to be very dependent on the installer, pool surface prep, and site conditions for success. I would get some references and go in person to look at jobs they have done that have several years of use. Look closely for wrinkles, cracks, or bubbles - those are indicators of poor installation.
 

VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
Do you have a good Aquabrite installer? Aquabrite is time consuming and difficult to install correctly.

One members view is at...

Thank you kindly, ajw22! Thank goodness I do have a good installer available. Well, I hope! These days, it's so easy to be deceived.
 

VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
Is there any reason you want to go with those finishes over a cement based surface?

Both AquaBrite and Glasscoat are going to be very dependent on the installer, pool surface prep, and site conditions for success. I would get some references and go in person to look at jobs they have done that have several years of use. Look closely for wrinkles, cracks, or bubbles - those are indicators of poor installation.
Hi MAPR-Austin!
I really wanted a fiberglass pool originally (mainly for the reason they require less chemicals but also because they offer an easier maintenance/cleaning option) unfortunately, the few installers in my area all advise against going with a fiberglass pool because here in Vegas, even if the right backfill is used (something else that totally stressed me out because 2 told us only sand should be used and the other 2 told us some gravel should also be used) it all comes down to the simple fact our earth here is constantly shifting. Our contractor told us that's why he now shotcretes pools extra thick (10" vs 6") as they've seen problems with cracking and such. We now what the strength and stability of a concrete pool shell with the benefits of a surface that offers the benefits/ convenience of a fiberglass pool. It sure is nerve wracking hearing how these hybrid pools can end up being so hit and miss, though. 😔
 

mknauss

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(mainly for the reason they require less chemicals but also because they offer an easier maintenance/cleaning option)
Not really. There is little difference in pool surfaces when it comes to water chemistry maintenance.

Not sure where you are located in the LV Valley. Here along the Colorado River in Laughlin, there is no 'movement'. Our fiberglass pool is serving us very well.
 
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VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
Not really. There is little difference in pool surfaces when it comes to water chemistry maintenance.

Not sure where you are located in the LV Valley. Here along the Colorado River in Laughlin, there is no 'movement'. Our fiberglass pool is serving us very well.
That's so awesome to hear! Thanks for sharing! We're in North Las Vegas and were told we have the worst dirt in all of Vegas. The highest expense for our permit(s) too. One contractor told us he submitted the exact same plans for the same pool (different locations, I think the other was in Summerlin), only a month apart, and the one in NLV cost twice as much ($1400 vs $700). Just our luck! 🤦🏻‍♀️😔
 

mknauss

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Laughlin, NV
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So you are dealing with the City of NLV. I know they are quick to permit things but did not know about the extra cost.

Are you in a subdivision that was recently built? There should be a soils study available. Our builder provided us a copy.
 
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VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
So you are dealing with the City of NLV. I know they are quick to permit things but did not know about the extra cost.

Are you in a subdivision that was recently built? There should be a soils study available. Our builder provided us a copy.
Actually, yes... new-build community (just completed last month). Thanks a million for the great tip! I'll have to search through our paperwork! All I remember is they did mention they hadn't come by any caliche in our subdivision. Now that I think of it, though, all the contractors that came out to our lot kept warning us about caliche, and all the added expenses that come with it (even after we mentioned we were told none was found in our subdivision and how none of our neighbors had any issues with their digs). They all kept digging their toes into our dirt too, and all, each and everyone of them, told us we had the worst dirt in NLV (that it's always moving) and that they'd, personally, never put a fiberglass pool in their own backyard. 😔 They all advised we go with shotcrete instead. If they're wrong about the caliche, could be they're wrong about the moving soil and perhaps we would be just fine with a fiberglass pool after all! I'll have to look into it again! Thanks again!
 

mknauss

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I have nothing against a gunite pool. In retrospect, I wish we had done that. We have a very small pool. All the room we really had. After living with what we have, it would have been better to have a rectangular pool, a bench on most sides that people can sit on while being mostly submerged, an auto cover, and a heater and chiller. The primary use of our small pool is to sit in when it is 115F out. The pool is mostly in shade by 3 pm each day.
 
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VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
I have nothing against a gunite pool. In retrospect, I wish we had done that. We have a very small pool. All the room we really had. After living with what we have, it would have been better to have a rectangular pool, a bench on most sides that people can sit on while being mostly submerged, an auto cover, and a heater and chiller. The primary use of our small pool is to sit in when it is 115F out. The pool is mostly in shade by 3 pm each day.
Yes! We were originally looking into freeform and then liked how rectangular shaped pools offer the added conveniences you mentioned! On top of that, going with a gunite pool, all the contractors told us we'd also get more bang for our buck going with a rectangular shape vs freeform. Like you, we want more of a relaxation pool with plenty of bench seating available. If we stick to our plan for a gunite pool, we're going with a rectangular shape, only 40" to 4ft (the fiberglass pool would come with a 6' deep end, which would more than likely just end up being unused space).
 

mknauss

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Remember that shallow water is hot water here in the desert.
 
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mknauss

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If they propose a Glacier Chiller, they use evaporation. I hope you are planning to use softened water for make up water to the pool. Assuming you have a water softener for the house.
 
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CPS Reno

In The Industry
Feb 6, 2019
114
Reno, NV
I know this thread isn't about fiberglass or gunnite/concrete pools..........but sometimes I really just wonder how people (concrete pool builders/saleseman) come to conclusions. Everyone said the dirt always moves, which is reasoning behind a certain type of pool. Do you think concrete poured OVER dirt that always moves is going to stop the dirt from moving? Of course it's not. What happens when concrete is moved? Yup, it cracks. What happens when fiberglass is moved, it flexes. We're not exactly in the same world, but Reno is a little like Vegas (grew up in Tonopah and lived in Vegas for 10 years) and here we say that gunnite/concrete pools have a "Crack Guarantee", which is code for the fact that 99% of those pools here have cracks!

Really didn't mean to derail your thread. If I knew enough about your surface choices, I certainly would have helped.
 
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VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
I know this thread isn't about fiberglass or gunnite/concrete pools..........but sometimes I really just wonder how people (concrete pool builders/saleseman) come to conclusions. Everyone said the dirt always moves, which is reasoning behind a certain type of pool. Do you think concrete poured OVER dirt that always moves is going to stop the dirt from moving? Of course it's not. What happens when concrete is moved? Yup, it cracks. What happens when fiberglass is moved, it flexes. We're not exactly in the same world, but Reno is a little like Vegas (grew up in Tonopah and lived in Vegas for 10 years) and here we say that gunnite/concrete pools have a "Crack Guarantee", which is code for the fact that 99% of those pools here have cracks!

Really didn't mean to derail your thread. If I knew enough about your surface choices, I certainly would have helped.
Hi, CPS Reno!
I really appreciate your comment! Out of these pool builders (only 4 of them that offer fiberglass pools here in Vegas) all of them also kept highlighting how a concrete pool would be more affordable to build, and 2 of them said they'd even throw in a discount because they are already in the area (however, even with them being in the area, that they wouldn't be able to offer any type of discount on the fiberglass pool installation). It made us a little suspicious that they simply want us to go with a concrete pool vs a fiberglass one because that's what they'll make the most money off of, making the whole "worst dirt in all of Vegas; I'd personally never put a fiberglass pool in my own backyard; and constant moving and settling" nothing but a scare tactic so we go with the concrete pool instead. You're so right about the crack in concrete too! One of the builders told us that that's why he advises a coping of pavers around the pool vs cantilevered concrete. Another told us the exact opposite, though! That he'd never install pavers as coping because they become wobbly in no time! Same with the backfill (which is SOOOO important) they use on their fiberglass pool installations. 2 use sand, 1 uses DG (decomposed granite dirt), and one uses a mix of sand and gravel. Some pros tell me gravel is the only backfill that won't settle and what they advise even for here in the desert, others say that sand is the right choice as the gravel would be too heavy and would push out on the lot. SOOOOO many conflicting things we're being told by all the experts! At this point, it's like we're doomed no matter what we go with! A part of thinks that maybe we shouldn't even get a pool anymore. 😭
 

VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
If they propose a Glacier Chiller, they use evaporation. I hope you are planning to use softened water for make up water to the pool. Assuming you have a water softener for the house.
BRILLIANT idea! We do have a water softener system installed in the house, but... how would that work to use it to fill a pool? I thought it wasn't even an option, but was happy to have come by a company that comes and performs reverse osmosis on your pool water! 👍😁
 

mknauss

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You just need to plumb your fill water line to your water softener system. That can be easy or more involoved, just depends on where the nearest line with soft water is in relationship to your pool. You would fill the pool initially with non-softened water. That will give you the calcium you need and then use softened water for make up water. Now you also need to not use trichlor (pucks) for chlorinating your pool. Using those extensively will skyrocket your CYA and cause you to drain the pool. Install a SWCG, best thing to have here.
 
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VegasOas-us

Member
Feb 23, 2021
12
Las Vegas, NV
You just need to plumb your fill water line to your water softener system. That can be easy or more involoved, just depends on where the nearest line with soft water is in relationship to your pool. You would fill the pool initially with non-softened water. That will give you the calcium you need and then use softened water for make up water. Now you also need to not use trichlor (pucks) for chlorinating your pool. Using those extensively will skyrocket your CYA and cause you to drain the pool. Install a SWCG, best thing to have here.
Wow! THANK YOU SOOO MUCH for all of these great tips! I have so much to research and learn still! If it weren't for you being so kind on going out of your way to offer me this advice, I surely would have missed out big time! Will definitely bring all this up to our pool builder tomorrow! THANKS A MILLION!!! 🙏😊
 
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