New Pool Looks real Blotchy

jhbrfla

Member
Oct 2, 2019
16
Boca Raton, FL
Glad I found this site and appreciate any help you guys can provide. Here is a photo of my pool that was just filled with water a week ago. I live in South Florida and the color is Florida Gem French Silver. The deep end looks dark and the shallow end it really blotchy. My pool builder has been really difficult to work with so I want to make sure I understand the situation before I approach him with this. A friend of mine thinks it could be because they left the acid on too long. Would appreciate any thoughts on what caused this and what can be done. Thanks for any help!
 

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PoolGate

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Jun 7, 2017
6,194
Damascus, MD
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Plaster settles into a "mottled" look. That is normal. How old is the plaster? Can you show a close-up?
 

jhbrfla

Member
Oct 2, 2019
16
Boca Raton, FL
Plaster settles into a "mottled" look. That is normal. How old is the plaster? Can you show a close-up?
Thank you! I believe the plaster is a little over a week old. Will take close up pics tomorrow. My neighbor has a pool with a similar color and it was done around 3 years ago and looks so consistent and nice. Thanks for your help!
 

jhbrfla

Member
Oct 2, 2019
16
Boca Raton, FL
Plaster settles into a "mottled" look. That is normal. How old is the plaster? Can you show a close-up?

It's a windy day here so the ripple on the surface hides it a little bit but here are a few photos. Would love your thoughts. The plaster is a little over a week old. Friend told me to drain the pool and acid wash it - what do you think of that? Thanks again for taking the time to try and help me!
 

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engrav

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Jul 4, 2012
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Whidbey Island, WA
I think I am “expert” at this question (am not expert at much but this? maybe)

Had our pool re-plastered with deep blue plaster.
Outcome is not uniform.

Discussed forever with people at National Plasterers Council and on this site.

Concluded
1) mottling that looks like clouds is normal
2) streaks, on the other hand, are from hard troweling, late troweling or troweling in cold/hot weather; and not normal
3) our problem is streaking from hard/late troweling in cold weather

The builder offered drain/acid wash and said would be maybe 50% improved but would remove some plaster thus shortening the life of the plaster a bit. We declined and accepted the appearance.

The wind makes your pics hard to interpret. Can you reshoot on a windless day? And shoot the sidewalls and steps also?
and
Do you have pics of the plaster before the fill?
 
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ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
26,604
Northern NJ
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Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Doesn't it take a few weeks to completely cure?

Plaster can take months to completely cure. The look does not change much after the frist 24 hours. What you see is what you got.
 

jhbrfla

Member
Oct 2, 2019
16
Boca Raton, FL
I think I am “expert” at this question (am not expert at much but this? maybe)

Had our pool re-plastered with deep blue plaster.
Outcome is not uniform.

Discussed forever with people at National Plasterers Council and on this site.

Concluded
1) mottling that looks like clouds is normal
2) streaks, on the other hand, are from hard troweling, late troweling or troweling in cold/hot weather; and not normal
3) our problem is streaking from hard/late troweling in cold weather

The builder offered drain/acid wash and said would be maybe 50% improved but would remove some plaster thus shortening the life of the plaster a bit. We declined and accepted the appearance.

The wind makes your pics hard to interpret. Can you reshoot on a windless day? And shoot the sidewalls and steps also?
and
Do you have pics of the plaster before the fill?
Unfortunately we have another windy day here but will definitely post pics on a calm day. Really kind of sucks that there are pools in my neighborhood that are years old and look better than my brand new pool. I can understand a little color variation but when its so different it really looks bad. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts after you see the new pics when its calmer out. Wonder how much the plaster life is shortened if you acid wash. Spoke to Florida Stucco who manufactures the plaster and they are going to come out and take a look.

Did your builder acknowledge that it wasn't a good job and only offered the acid wash solution? Is it ridiculous to try and get the pool builder to redo the plaster? I attached of when the pool was filling and when they were plastering. Thx for your help!!
 

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ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
26,604
Northern NJ
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There is no guarantee that if you have your plaster redone it will not have some issues. Plastering is a labor intensive custom process and there are many variables that affect the quality of the work. Some turn out better then others. You have to assess the risk of a better outcome than what yiu have versus a worse outcome.
 
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jhbrfla

Member
Oct 2, 2019
16
Boca Raton, FL
There is no guarantee that if you have your plaster redone it will not have some issues. Plastering is a labor intensive custom process and there are many variables that affect the quality of the work. Some turn out better then others. You have to assess the risk of a better outcome than what yiu have versus a worse outcome.
Thanks. Will take some more detailed pics when the wind settles down. I guess it could come out worse but would think that the builder would maybe have the crew pay more attention on a redo especially if Florida Stucco gets involved. My last pool was stucco'd before I bought the house and I lived there for 8 years and it looked better than my new pool.
 

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johig

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May 23, 2019
50
Mission Viejo, Orange County, CA
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
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Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
In our pebble finish we had a major and obvious streak several feet long that only became obvious after filling (I believe from improper rinsing after acid) and we insisted the PB fix it. Now that is taken care of the finish still has areas that vary slightly in color. Mottling is probably the best description. Maybe it's a coincidence but the effect is most obvious in the "regular" shallow end. Much less noticeable on the very shallow areas (Baja shelf and bench) and the deep end. I can pick out the worst spots pretty quickly and they are somewhat obvious to me on a calm day. HOWEVER... I am the one out there paying attention, testing the water, brushing, etc. My wife has not noticed it. It is highly unlikely anyone else will spend enough time looking to notice. Once anyone is in the pool and the surface is moving even I am hard pressed to see the difference. Moreover, I seriously doubt anyone who comes over to swim in the pool is going to care. I suspect you are somewhat in the same situation - although it is hard to tell from photos. All this is to say, take a look at the practical implications and pick your battles. If it really bothers you then certainly don't be shy to push your pool builder for a fix, but I agree with the sentiment expressed by others to consider the risks of your builder repeating the same mistakes or causing other problems.

For what it's worth, I also recently got done with a pool builder who was really difficult to work with and I feel your pain. We had our tile crew back out to the project multiple times and eventually realized that "good enough" was as good as they could manage.

Before this we had a fiberglass pool and the finish was perfect, immaculate, consistent white, but it showed every speck of dirt and minuscule stain! By comparison I prefer the "natural" variation of the new pool.
 

engrav

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Jul 4, 2012
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Whidbey Island, WA
Unfortunately we have another windy day here but will definitely post pics on a calm day.
so await calm pics but

if you look at pic 60028363816... enlarged
and look at the wall and floor behind the guys butt
you can see that the mottled blotchy appearance already existed, before the fill, during the application process
the NPC says this is because it is not humanly possible to get the cream (whatever that is) to distribute evenly

what was the temp on the day they did the plaster?

in your paperwork prior to the job, is there not a discussion of uneven color?
 

markayash

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Mar 21, 2016
3,323
Atlanta Ga
My Plaster guy blamed the water for months then finally said " the manufacturer said I need t pressure wash" and that helped but concerned it shortened the life :(
 
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l1ltaral1l

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Jul 16, 2019
618
Walnutport, PA
Pool Size
20000
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Chlorine
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I know zilch about plaster as we have vinyl, but love the shape and your decking!
 
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jhbrfla

Member
Oct 2, 2019
16
Boca Raton, FL
In our pebble finish we had a major and obvious streak several feet long that only became obvious after filling (I believe from improper rinsing after acid) and we insisted the PB fix it. Now that is taken care of the finish still has areas that vary slightly in color. Mottling is probably the best description. Maybe it's a coincidence but the effect is most obvious in the "regular" shallow end. Much less noticeable on the very shallow areas (Baja shelf and bench) and the deep end. I can pick out the worst spots pretty quickly and they are somewhat obvious to me on a calm day. HOWEVER... I am the one out there paying attention, testing the water, brushing, etc. My wife has not noticed it. It is highly unlikely anyone else will spend enough time looking to notice. Once anyone is in the pool and the surface is moving even I am hard pressed to see the difference. Moreover, I seriously doubt anyone who comes over to swim in the pool is going to care. I suspect you are somewhat in the same situation - although it is hard to tell from photos. All this is to say, take a look at the practical implications and pick your battles. If it really bothers you then certainly don't be shy to push your pool builder for a fix, but I agree with the sentiment expressed by others to consider the risks of your builder repeating the same mistakes or causing other problems.

For what it's worth, I also recently got done with a pool builder who was really difficult to work with and I feel your pain. We had our tile crew back out to the project multiple times and eventually realized that "good enough" was as good as they could manage.

Before this we had a fiberglass pool and the finish was perfect, immaculate, consistent white, but it showed every speck of dirt and minuscule stain! By comparison I prefer the "natural" variation of the new pool.
Thanks man! Very frustrating dealing with this guy. He came out today and said he is going to add acid to the water and that should do it. I told him I have no problem with him trying whatever he wants but I really want it looking more consistent. He was better about it than I thought but I'm sure he won't be if his adding acid idea doesn't work. I'm not looking for perfection just want it not as noticeable. Thx again!
 

jhbrfla

Member
Oct 2, 2019
16
Boca Raton, FL
Still quite windy here but got a couple of shots of the shallower end for you guys to check out. Top pic is the shallow end gowing toward the deep end on the left. Deep end is much darker and the shallow end has these long streaks of light area. Not sure why it posted so many copies but only meant to post 2 different pics.
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