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kimkats

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Jul 10, 2012
46,413
Tallahassee, FL
You need a TOTAL plaster redo! They are going to try to just do a "patch" on job right were the drain was. NOPE!! Then they will tell you they can just do a plaster job over the old plaster BUT they will only want to chip out around the returns and such. Again NOPE!! The reason that is a nope is IF/when you every need another plaster job down the road it will cost YOU more as it will be two layers of plaster.

What they need to do is do a FULL CHIP out of the old plaster! I have a link for you about how to get a good plaster job Pool Plaster tips for the Average Homeowner

Saying this I will say your old plaster job was not one of the worst ones I have seen. There have been some really bad ones. The darker colors are harder to do so................

Kim:kim:
 
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Dirk

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TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
6,333
Central California
Others can confirm, or dispute, but my understanding is that the shell is not water proof, it's the plaster that is. So a complete replaster (as Kim recommends, not the plaster-over-plaster the builder is trying to get away with), will seal the pool water from the patch and the rebar. Now, that doesn't mean water won't get to the rebar from underneath the patch, I can't advise on that. But I can share: I had my drains removed. They chipped them all out before I had the pool replastered. I didn't catch how they patched, they might have just filled it all with the plaster. So far so good...

Just seconding that you need to demand a full chip out and complete plaster replacement. Anything short of that and you'll be doing it again in a few years, long after the builder has skipped out with the final payment...
 

ajw22

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TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
19,495
Northern NJ
Well, During the acid Wash the Pool Builder busted the Main drain in the pool. They had to Jack Hammer up the area directly around the drain to replace it. I am concerned because there was exposed rebar in the void that they jackhammered. and they only poured a bag of concrete into the hole.
The rebar was exposed before the gunite was applied. As long as they packed down the concrete into the repair and the rebar is not close to the surface it should be fine.

I am concerned this is a cold joint and that the new concrete and existing shotcrete will not have a sufficient bond over time.
The small area that was patched does not effect the structural strength of the gunite shell.

From Construction Best Practices - Further Reading

Cold joints in shotcrete (gunite) are in some ways a myth. Laboratory testing has shown that multiple layer shotcrete has no anisotropic weakness (cold joint) when the layers are applied within 7 days of each other. In the real world a plane of weakness often develops between layers, but it's almost always due to improper surface prep. Dust, dirt, and rebound from shooting adjacent areas will accumulate on the first layer during/after the shoot, and if not thoroughly removed prior to applying the next layer a plane of weakness will develop. If the first layer is troweled smooth it can also impede bonding of the second layer. If too much time passes between layers a cold joint is possible, but in that case the reduction in strength is pretty minimal as long as the surface is properly prepped

Also, now they are going to replaster the pool without chipping out the old (2 months old) finish. I am concerned that this will cause delamination problems in the future between the new and existing pebble finish.
Delamination is always a risk with a second coat of plaster but if the existing surface is properly prepared and a bonding coat applied it is done successfully in many pools. That said, if you can get the PB to do a chip out that may be preferable. Even though as you found with your cosmetic plaster issues sometimes the cure is worse then the disease. Given how the PB messed up the acid wash I would be reluctant to allow him to do a chipout. There have been threads here of chipouts going too deep into the gunite and exposing rebar. So consider carefully what demands you make of this sketchy builder you have.
 
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Dirk

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TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
6,333
Central California
I had a similar situation, where a contractor (my pool guy) ruined my plaster with an acid wash and refused to replace the plaster. I sent him a certified letter demanding the fix, and because, like you, I really didn't want that guy to "fix it" (and cause even more problems), I was hoping he'd refuse. I gave him two weeks, which is kinda key, and once he didn't perform, I was free to hire another contractor. That contractor replaced the plaster (full chip out) and did a great job. I later filed a complaint on the 1st contractor with my state's Contractors License Board. There's much more to this story, which I wrote about at length here at TFP, but the conclusion was: the Board stepped in and somehow forced the contractor to pay for the repairs. I was prepared to go to court, and that first letter, along with the two weeks to perform, would probably have worked out in my favor. But the Board did their thing and I was able to avoid court.

Point being, you may have recourse, and you may have a way to get everything fixed, by a better contractor, and make the 1st contractor pay. If you want more details about how to research this possibility, let me know...
 
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Dirk

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TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
6,333
Central California
Oh, and not everyone here agrees with my tactics, siting one should try to work things out amicably, but some contractors don't respond to that. So my MO is to get a little rough, sooner than later. Since he's been paid, your demands may fall on deaf ears as long as the contractor thinks you're not going to do anything about it. He's got nothing to lose (he's obviously not concerned about his reputation, or he'd be fixing it out of pride and/or ethics).So the perform-in-two-weeks letter is your first "salvo," a clear message that you mean business and you'll go to court if you have to (you actually have to state that in such a letter). That alone might be enough to get him to do what he should, without all the other hoopla. Might be worth a try.

If you are unsatisfied enough to take him to court if you don't get a proper fix, then there are steps you should be taking now to facilitate that possibility. Which I'd be happy to share if you're interested...