Is this something I can do? Tile my whole pool that is.

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
8,879
Northern NJ
The size and direction of the cracks make me think you have a bigger problem then just delamination of the plaster. I think you may have structural problems with the gunite shell moving causing the cracking. You need to get to the root cause of your problems. Tile on a gunite shell with problems will not last and can become a bigger problem then what you have.

@onBalance may have thoughts if this is just a delamination problem.
 

ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
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Northern NJ

 

onBalance

TFP Expert
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In The Industry
Jul 25, 2011
958
Utah
I see this pool mainly having a delamination problem, as the plaster is simply falling off the walls without any bonding to the underlying surface.
However, the top step crack is a concern regarding structural or movements problems. But given the other more obvious delamination (bonding failure) situation, I think the contractor just didn't know how to properly perform quality work. I think a good contractor could redo this pool and make it work.
 

FloridaLWR

Member
Jan 2, 2019
17
Florida
I see this pool mainly having a delamination problem, as the plaster is simply falling off the walls without any bonding to the underlying surface.
However, the top step crack is a concern regarding structural or movements problems. But given the other more obvious delamination (bonding failure) situation, I think the contractor just didn't know how to properly perform quality work. I think a good contractor could redo this pool and make it work.
We called a couple of companies and they all said it was delamination, I think someone mention not using acid or doing some step before applying the resurfacing?

I can even understand something moving but wouldn’t I see it somewhere else as well? Something else cracked or broken?

This all started to happen when we turned on the water heater and then this blue thing started to come off very slowly from the sides, as it is now is is separated from the side like 5”. I wonder if there is something broken under the pool to make it move when the water heater is on? Could that be something like thT causing it?
 

PoolGate

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TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
3,670
Damascus, MD
First thing I would suggest is getting a professional in there to look at it and perhaps they'll want to chip the plaster off for a close inspection of the shell.
 

onBalance

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Jul 25, 2011
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Utah
Given that this was an existing pool prior to the re-surfacing job and the pool (supposedly) did not have settlement or movement issues before, and that there is no loss of water, then I think that the movement and cracking issue can be ignored. But as PoolGate suggests, an experienced contractor may be able to help.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
8,879
Northern NJ
This all started to happen when we turned on the water heater and then this blue thing started to come off very slowly from the sides, as it is now is is separated from the side like 5”. I wonder if there is something broken under the pool to make it move when the water heater is on? Could that be something like thT causing it?
The water heater is not an invasive appliance. I don't see how it can cause that type of damage. It is likely coincidence.

You need to decide if you want to go the plaster or tile route to redo the pool. Either way the existing plaster has to be entirely removed before anything new can be applied. It does not provide a stable base for new material.

When the existing plaster is removed down to the gunite it can be examined for any cracking. Then it will become clear if the shell is good for the application of a new finish. Now being reminded that it is an old pool with a refinish the likelihood that the shell is moving is remote.

I think someone mention not using acid or doing some step before applying the resurfacing?
They probably did not put a bonding coat on the old plaster before they applied the new plaster. The bonding coat is like paint primer and improved the adhesion between the old material and the new material. Whoever does the work next needs to do the proper surface preparation.
 
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zea3

Mod Squad
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Jul 10, 2009
11,714
Houston, Texas
There was a guy here several years ago - from Europe I believe - who tiled his own pool. And then he had to rip it all out and start over because the adhesive he used failed. He was extremely detail oriented and the pool was amazing.

Someone smarter than I can probably link his thread into here.
 

ckendalls

Active member
May 17, 2018
26
Clermont FL
Well, at least it may not be difficult to remove the bulk of bad plaster before sandblasting and prepping.... Can you share the name of the poor contractor?


MOD note: please use pm (conversation) for this information. Thank you.
 
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FloridaLWR

Member
Jan 2, 2019
17
Florida
Well....given that the shell is coming off I can help it and remove it completely. I wonder if I can buy the same type of plaster that I already instead of buying tiles. I've read some things on the web but they said this is only sold to certified companies?

Can't catch a break on this thing.
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
3,670
Damascus, MD
If you've ever seen them plaster a pool they have a large truck for the mixing and the spray it out of a nozzle. At least that is what they did on mine. Just mixing that amount of plaster without a machine would be a serious task!
 

FloridaLWR

Member
Jan 2, 2019
17
Florida
If you've ever seen them plaster a pool they have a large truck for the mixing and the spray it out of a nozzle. At least that is what they did on mine. Just mixing that amount of plaster without a machine would be a serious task!
Thanks for that info, that is true, If I take this on my own I will have to rent a mixer because I won't be able to do it on my own.
 

Winger 03

Well-known member
Sep 7, 2009
224
Frederick County, MD
Thanks zea3 - I wish he would have continued posting - it was an amazing build.



 

MinerJason

Bronze Supporter
Jan 29, 2018
267
Tucson, AZ
Thanks for that info, that is true, If I take this on my own I will have to rent a mixer because I won't be able to do it on my own.
The mixer is the easy part. You also need a crew of several skilled plasterers because it all has to be applied nearly simultaneously or it will develop cracks where fresh plaster meets partially cured plaster. You're really better off hiring it out.

Tiling is an option, but requires tremendous skill on a pool with that shape, and the materials alone will cost more than paying someone else to replaster it.

If you want to save some money by doing some of the work yourself you could do the plaster chip out, surface prep, and waterline tile. Plaster chip out should be relatively easy considering how badly it's delaminating.

As onBalance mentioned, you may need some structural repair on the cracked step. It's not uncommon for pool builders to use rebound material from the gunite shoot to form the tops/edges of the steps, which results in very weak step edges and issues similar to what the pictures show there. Hard to say until you can get a good look at what's under the plaster though.
 

Jefina

New member
Sep 3, 2019
4
Tucson, Az
Thanks zea3 - I wish he would have continued posting - it was an amazing build.
Oh my gosh! I read that whole thread last night and my heart just sank when he said the tiles started falling off. So terrible. I bet he never came back to the post because he had a nervous breakdown after that. Terrible.