New Pool Plaster Doesn’t Look Right

Butterflypink

Member
Jan 28, 2021
5
Turlock, CA
Hi, our new pool was plastered last week with Quartz material. It is very uneven and blotchy and looks like traditional plaster and not quartz. I’ve been busy googling and need help. The pool company says it looks normal but I know it doesn’t. It also looks nothing like the sample we chose. The photo is shown below as well as the sample shown on the manufacturers website which appears much darker. I believe it was a rushed job as they decided to do it one day before the rain. The pool was acid washed days later after it was full. Any ideas on if it could have been a bad plaster job/troweling etc along with it not being acid washed right away? They also covered the sides of the pool and we had to borrow 2 more hoses and water from our neighbor as they told us it had to get filled up before rain came the next morning. We already waited months so I’m not sure why they decided to plaster it that day. Any help is appreciated. Thanks!
 

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kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
48,180
Tallahassee, FL
Hi and welcome to TFP. Sorry to be meeting like this though :(

So the before water picture does NOT look anything like the sample. The plaster color is nothing like the sample AND I do NOT see any pebbles.

Go out to the pool on a good sunny, still day and take a pic looking down at the highest step or bench in the pool and share it here. I am looking to see if the acid wash brought out any of the pebbles.

Now the appearance of the plaster is within normal variances. It is not the best job I have seen nor is it the worst job. The darker colors are the hardest as they show everything BUT you did not pick a dark color. You picked a light color so.................
 

Dtkokay

Well-known member
Dec 31, 2019
384
Houston, Texas
The water needs to be perfectly still in order to assess the pictures. It looks like there is some water movement, like from the wind, in those pictures, so it’s hard to tell what the plaster looks like.

From what I can tell though, it looks like your quartz isn’t exposed. I have Pebble Sheen in my pool. When it was first installed, it looked like plain flat plaster, which is what I see in your pictures. Then the installers used a pressure washer, which exposed the pebbles and gave it the proper look. This was done while the pool was empty.

Are you saying that they acid washed the pool after you added water? I don’t even see how that can be done.
 

Butterflypink

Member
Jan 28, 2021
5
Turlock, CA
Hi and welcome to TFP. Sorry to be meeting like this though :(

So the before water picture does NOT look anything like the sample. The plaster color is nothing like the sample AND I do NOT see any pebbles.

Go out to the pool on a good sunny, still day and take a pic looking down at the highest step or bench in the pool and share it here. I am looking to see if the acid wash brought out any of the pebbles.

Now the appearance of the plaster is within normal variances. It is not the best job I have seen nor is it the worst job. The darker colors are the hardest as they show everything BUT you did not pick a dark color. You picked a light color so.................
Hi, nice to e-meet you. Thanks for your help with this. It’s going to rain the next few days but once it clears up I will take another picture to show you.
 

Butterflypink

Member
Jan 28, 2021
5
Turlock, CA
The water needs to be perfectly still in order to assess the pictures. It looks like there is some water movement, like from the wind, in those pictures, so it’s hard to tell what the plaster looks like.

From what I can tell though, it looks like your quartz isn’t exposed. I have Pebble Sheen in my pool. When it was first installed, it looked like plain flat plaster, which is what I see in your pictures. Then the installers used a pressure washer, which exposed the pebbles and gave it the proper look. This was done while the pool was empty.

Are you saying that they acid washed the pool after you added water? I don’t even see how that can be done.
Hello, It has been windy as there has been a storm. Once it calms down hopefully in the next few days I can post new pictures. Yes, they rushed us and wanted us to fill it up before the rain came. The pool company owner acid washed it days later after it was full. He just added the chemicals to the water I guess. I asked him why he didn’t do it before adding the water and he said that can cause streaking which is what I got anyways. Thanks!
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
24,960
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
The pool company owner acid washed it days later after it was full. He just added the chemicals to the water I guess.

That is not an acid wash.

An acid wash will dissolve a thin layer of the plaster to expose the aggregate. That looks like what your pool is missing.

That cannot be done with water in the pool. The acid would lower the pool pH to the point where it will damage pool equipment.

Your pool builder needs to drain your pool, use a sander with Diamond pads to polish the surface, and use acid to expose the aggregate, and then refill the pool.

Lets see if @onBalance has anything to add.
 

Dtkokay

Well-known member
Dec 31, 2019
384
Houston, Texas
I agree with AJW22 - it looks like they didn’t acid wash your pool, so your pretty aggregate is covered in solid plaster and needs to be exposed.
 

Butterflypink

Member
Jan 28, 2021
5
Turlock, CA
That is not an acid wash.

An acid wash will dissolve a thin layer of the plaster to expose the aggregate. That looks like what your pool is missing.

That cannot be done with water in the pool. The acid would lower the pool pH to the point where it will damage pool equipment.

Your pool builder needs to drain your pool, use a sander with Diamond pads to polish the surface, and use acid to expose the aggregate, and then refill the pool.

Lets see if @onBalance has anything to add.
I don’t know much about pools but I knew they did something wrong. Thank you for the helpful info!
 

onBalance

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Jul 25, 2011
1,113
Utah
The plaster finish looks okay in one or two photos, but not so good in others. More photos would be helpful, and a close up is also needed.
Since the pool has already had an acid "bath" - I strongly recommend that the builder contractor should drain the pool and sand/polish the plaster as advised and mentioned above in a month from now.
 

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Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
8,624
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Do you have any sort of flat glass baking dish? Scuba mask? Similar object? You can [carefully!] float that on the surface above a step and take a good picture of the finish through the glass. Same principle as a glass-bottom boat.

Bora-Bora-Glass-Bottom-Boat-guide-510x770.jpg

You're getting good advice above. It never ceases to amaze me what PBs will try to get away with, and what they'll say to explain away their actions... Finger's crossed he'll figure out quick that you know what's what, and come back and finish the job correctly. Whatever you do, don't pay him another dime for now, no matter how much he stinks about it. There's a lot not to like about CA government, but pro-consumer laws are not one of them! More on that later if need be...
 
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Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
8,624
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
PS. Good news and bad.

Bad: picking a pool color from an internet swatch is a surefire path to diappointment. There are far too many variables (screen quality, screen color adjustments, how water and depth affect color, to name a few) for that MO to work well.

Good: if it turns out the quartz is not yet revealed, the color will change drastically, and I'm going to guess will be much darker. The color of the plaster itself is a tiny factor in the overall color, which might be all your seeing just now, so it's possible your actual color has yet to be seen, which hopefully will be much closer to what you had in mind. I completely freaked out when I saw my new finish on day one. But after the day two acid wash it was beautiful!
 
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onBalance

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Jul 25, 2011
1,113
Utah
I am fairly certain that this particular plaster job used "Quartz" and without any pebbles. The finish is smooth and not bumpy. Therefore, that particular type of smooth surface finish can be sanded and polished, whereas, pebbles finishes usually cannot be sanded or polished and improved in color consistency.
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
8,624
Central California
Pool Size
12300
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-40
Ah, sorry, I corrected my post. Thanks onBalance. I meant once the quartz is exposed the true color of the finish will be revealed.
 
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