New plaster terrible tile job, Any suggestions on how to proceed?

joshlarsen

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Apr 27, 2021
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So we got new plaster yesterday and the plaster turned out pretty well but they also put tile lines along the steps and my opinion is they did a terrible job. Acid wash is planned for today. I had this in my build thread but pulled it out to get attention so I can maybe have some idea what to do before they show up to acid wash.

2 questions for you guys.
1. Is it somewhat common to do plaster on the bottom side of the skimmer opening like the pics below and is their any concern? Never seen it not all be tile.
2. What would you do with the step edge tile. Leave it janky like in the pics below or make them redo it?

20220426_194710.jpg



Step on SPA at more will be 6in under surface.
20220426_194503-1.jpg



Tile on SPA bench
20220426_194535-1.jpg



Im thinking the next 2 might be less noticeable once water is in the pool but not sure. They are on the tanning ledge where the water will only be about 6inches deep.
20220426_194447-1.jpg


20220426_194440-1.jpg
 

Newdude

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1). I don't remember ever seeing a skimmer not tiled, but there would be no harm in it and I actually like yours better FWIW.

2). It's entirely up to you. That is too much 'character' for me, seeing how you will have enough imperfections in the plaster to already give your pool tons of character. I equate yours to putting crooked pinstripes on a brand new $100k car. Ask the builder if you can add crooked pinstripes to his prized Z06 Vette. I bet he wouldn't be ok with that. You paid a stupid amount of money for this small feature. It's not like they threw in the step tile because you were such a great customer who already paid so much.
 

joshlarsen

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I would wonder if that front facing to skimmer basket is going to create a flow issue by creating the below surface dam. May need more floor to that area.
@Toxophilite Thats a good catch and I think your right that the vertical wall of the front of the skimmer basket could catch stuff just enough to keep debris from going into the basked correctly.
 

ajw22

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Yeah, it is poor workmanship the way the step tile was laid. However you should have been reviewing the work as they went along and called a halt before the plastering. Yeah, youc an say it is the builders responsibility but at the end of the day you are the buyer.

There is no easy way to fix that short of a complete replaster of the pool. And you don't know what other problems that will bring from those clowns. In the overall scheme of plaster jobs some crooked tile is a minor problem. I would let the builder know your displeasure but leave it be.

I don't think the skimmer mouth plastering will cause flow issues. A skimmer works from debris flowing in from the water surface. Again there is no easy fix to change it to tile. That should have been found and discussed before the palster went on.
 

joshlarsen

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Apr 27, 2021
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Leander, TX
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Yeah, it is poor workmanship the way the step tile was laid. However you should have been reviewing the work as they went along and called a halt before the plastering. Yeah, youc an say it is the builders responsibility but at the end of the day you are the buyer.

There is no easy way to fix that short of a complete replaster of the pool. And you don't know what other problems that will bring from those clowns. In the overall scheme of plaster jobs some crooked tile is a minor problem. I would let the builder know your displeasure but leave it be.

I don't think the skimmer mouth plastering will cause flow issues. A skimmer works from debris flowing in from the water surface. Again there is no easy fix to change it to tile. That should have been found and discussed before the palster went on.
@ajw22, There was no way to check the step tiles for straightness before the plaster went in because the plaster guys installed those tiles as they went.
 

ajw22

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@ajw22, There was no way to check the step tiles for straightness before the plaster went in because the plaster guys installed those tiles as they went.

That is part of the workmanship error. Tiles should have been installed before plaster and given time for the thinset holding them to harden and hold them down. What you had was loose tiles moving around as the plaster was troweled on top.
 
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Mcow

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As said above that lip on the skimmer is concerning and I think the plaster will become pretty stained there overtime as leaves and debris sit there especially being a lighter plaster color.

Ugh yes that tile job looks rough! I think it may look a little better after acid washing but obviously it will still look like the guy that laid it was cross eye. If you convince him to re-do it I'd make sure they re-plaster the entire tanning ledge and steps otherwise I think it will stick out like a sore thumb.
 

Newdude

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Bowing the corners like that is just plain lazy. Then they laid 2 different patterns which would also bother me. If they have to replaster, then that's on them.

Now. Can you live with it if you are compensated from the PB ? It's going to cost them a full replaster to fix it. Somewhere between not paying for that part of the job and what it will cost the PB to fix it is entirely fair and up to you to decide how much it bothers you.
 

Mcow

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So I just looked at your build thread and you have a beautiful pool/outdoor living area. I know what pools cost in Texas and the kind of money I am sure you spent I just couldn't live with this. I am not a professional but I think you could get away with just re-plastering the tanning ledge and steps as those always appear to be a different color than the rest of the pool anyways. Obviously insist they set that tile after the plaster is removed and thin-set cured. I am amazed an experienced builder would "tile as they go" during plaster. Was it the plaster crew that did it? Maybe this is a common practice for tile on steps/tanning ledge but from my limited construction and DIY experience I do not see how that would ever work with good results. Honestly if this was my pool I'd just have them remove the plaster on the ledge and steps along with the tile and then re-plaster without the tile. Your pool and the rest of the tile is beautiful and just feel like the juice isn't worth the squeeze with those tile lines.
 

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ajw22

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Honestly if this was my pool I'd just have them remove the plaster on the ledge and steps along with the tile and then re-plaster without the tile. Your pool and the rest of the tile is beautiful and just feel like the juice isn't worth the squeeze with those tile lines.

Step tile lines are a safety feature for those with poor eyesight and who may not be wearing their glasses getting in and out of pools.

It has more function then just decorative.
 
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Mcow

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Step tile lines are a safety feature for those with poor eyesight and who may not be wearing their glasses getting in and out of pools.

It has more function then just decorative.
Ah gotcha. I have built two pools both with tanning ledges and steps and do not have this feature but I guess I can see the advantage.
 

joshlarsen

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I didn't watch the whole process of them installing the tile but it wasn't their when they started the plaster so I'm pretty sure they laid the tile directly in the plaster without any thin set behind it as they went and as ajw22 said I I'm guessing it got worst as they were troweling it since it wasn't stuck to the ground.

We wanted the tile more for the safety issue than for looks. Being the tanning ledge is on the deep end we thought being able to clearly see the edge especially when the water is rough would be a good thing. One of our neighbors doesn't have the ledge tile and has some goofy shaped steps and he said people are constantly falling off the shelf because they miss judge where the steps are and highly recommended getting the tile along the edge. Our pool being rectangular and this shape will be less of an issue other than along the tanning ledge.

I sent my super pics last night and called him this morning. He very quickly agreed that it looks like Crud and he is calling the plaster guys to see what they can do.
 
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Noreaster

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I am looking at the plaster job in general, and it looks like there are areas of over-exposed aggragate and areas of under-exposed. Hopefully its just the pictures or lighting or something. If its not - the result may be blotchy and have an inconsistent feel (some areas smooth, some rough.

What is going on here:
1651068109397.png

Come to think of it, this thread sucks. We are looking at this finish job and can pick out "imperfections" but short of a costly full redo, can't do much about it. Im sorry !
 

Cena_sea

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I would be upset too. I don't know any solutions. I am hoping you have not paid for plaster. For us, step tile was a small charge but if you know the cost, I'd ask that to be fully refunded. I'd also ask for a discount on this plaster charge. This is if you decide to accept the job they've done.

If you want it gone, then I would withhold all of the plaster payment until it is fixed. Even if that takes place after this summer (live with it for this swim season knowing it will get fixed later on).

I would also be upset with your builder. Was he/she on site? Mine was their the entire time of plaster and what looks good to me, he made them "fix" several things that I have no clue what he saw. He didn't verbalize it, just was snapping his fingers and pointing and then giving thumbs up when he felt it was taken care of. Your builder should've been there to supervise this.
 
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ajw22

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Ah gotcha. I have built two pools both with tanning ledges and steps and do not have this feature but I guess I can see the advantage.

Wait until you get old and you will appreciate all the handicap conveniences that were put in place just for you.
 

joshlarsen

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Apr 27, 2021
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Leander, TX
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I am looking at the plaster job in general, and it looks like there are areas of over-exposed aggragate and areas of under-exposed. Hopefully its just the pictures or lighting or something. If its not - the result may be blotchy and have an inconsistent feel (some areas smooth, some rough.

What is going on here:
View attachment 404385

Come to think of it, this thread sucks. We are looking at this finish job and can pick out "imperfections" but short of a costly full redo, can't do much about it. Im sorry !

I'm hoping the blotchy spots will disappear once they complete the acid wash.

2 of those circles are from a pipe that runs down from the bottom of the skimmers(Cant remember the name of it) and 2 are suction lines for a second pump. They left covers for them that I assume either the acid wash guys or start up crew will put on.
 

TampaKathy

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Oct 2, 2020
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Tampa, FL
1. My pool was done that way with plaster instead of tile...not what I was expecting either but it doesn't bother me (mine lines up better though...doesn't have that lip that someone else mentioned).
2. Um, no. That looks like crud.
 

Toxophilite

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@Toxophilite Thats a good catch and I think your right that the vertical wall of the front of the skimmer basket could catch stuff just enough to keep debris from going into the basked correctly.
There will be a floating door that will create a weir dam overflow above that point, about 1/2 of tile line, it's just whether that lip will cause any unwanted turbulence ahead of that.
 
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