Pool design help plaster, water, tile color

qofmiwok

Member
Apr 27, 2011
19
I'm in Hawaii and need to replaster. Quartz has been recommended, as the regular plasters don't last too long here. One guy does Krystalcrete and the other recently switched from Diamondbrite to Quartzscapes. (I believe these are all similar products though?)

The Krystalcrete guy says not to expose the aggregate, that it will just cost more and the plaster won't last as long because right away you're removing some of it. He says to just let the aggregate expose itself over time. Does this make any sense?
 

qofmiwok

Member
Apr 27, 2011
19
I have to replaster and I want to replace the waterline tile. It is 1x1 glass grid and always looks terrible. I had it re-grouted a few years ago but it still collects algae.* My pool is rectangular, so is there any reason I can't use very long tiles to minimize the grout lines? Like 12" long?
*This has been true with many different pool guys. And we can't monitor chemicals ourselves because we rent the house to other people 8 months a year and aren't around ourselves.
 

PoolGate

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Jun 7, 2017
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Damascus, MD
I was under the impression they are all plaster as the base so not sure what getting the aggregate vs plain old plaster would do other than cost you more. It costs considerably more around here to get the aggregate so I cannot imagine paying for it and then not exposing it. How long did your last plaster last? 10-15 years is about normal.
 
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ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
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Northern NJ

@onBalance thoughts?
 

onBalance

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Jul 25, 2011
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Utah
The KrystalCrete person is right and understands the situation. Read the link provided above. Proper timing while troweling can eliminate the weak creme coat and allow the quartz aggregate (which is very durable) to be visible. But also it should be understood that both quartz aggregate and typical common white calcite aggregate pools also contains Portland cement, and that is what breaks down first. Therefore, quartz is only slightly more durable than the other. Both will last 20+ years with quality workmanship and chemical maintenance.
 

duraleigh

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If the gunite substrate underneath is uneven, you may find the tiles will not lay very flat. Probably not because you have some latitude with the grout but it's worth mentioning. You can expect the same algae in the grout lines.....just not as many lines to deal with.
 

qofmiwok

Member
Apr 27, 2011
19
I was under the impression they are all plaster as the base so not sure what getting the aggregate vs plain old plaster would do other than cost you more. It costs considerably more around here to get the aggregate so I cannot imagine paying for it and then not exposing it. How long did your last plaster last? 10-15 years is about normal.
My plaster lasted 20 years but I am told the plaster they are bringing to Hawaii now often only lasts 8 or 9 years.
It costs a LOT to re-plaster here in Hawaii so it's worth spending a few thousand more for extra performance. Regular plaster about $15k and quartz about $4k more.
 

ajw22

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Jul 21, 2013
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Northern NJ
Haven't looked yet. What is the actual difference between waterline tile and other tile? Is the glaze formulated a specific way?

Pool tiles are designed to withstand pool chemicals, are frost proof, impervious to liquids and vapors, resistant to fading, staining and discoloration, and are submergible.
 

santacruzpool

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Feb 24, 2015
687
Santa Cruz, CA
Here is a photo of the Tile - it is a Bedrosians Porcelan tile...


And another showing the full size tile on our cover vault slanted wall at the end of the pool...


I like it less grout lines to clean.
 

YippeeSkippy

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Jan 17, 2012
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Evans, Georgia
My plaster lasted 20 years but I am told the plaster they are bringing to Hawaii now often only lasts 8 or 9 years.
It costs a LOT to re-plaster here in Hawaii so it's worth spending a few thousand more for extra performance. Regular plaster about $15k and quartz about $4k more.
Is that a valid thing- substandard plaster sent to Hawaii?? Or is that a lack of craftsmen who know how to put it on? @onBalance
 

chazas

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 4, 2007
74
Manassas, VA
I built a pool in Hawaii. There’s just a lot of poor craftsmanship - that build was probably the worst building/remodeling project I’ve ever been involved in. Plaster is plaster. BTW I love white plaster pools, I think they look great. I actually think they should last longer in Hawaii - because your pool is open year round if you keep up with your testing you won’t get that winter closing/ignore it and let the levels drift problem that we can get on the mainland.
 
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qofmiwok

Member
Apr 27, 2011
19
Pool tiles are designed to withstand pool chemicals, are frost proof, impervious to liquids and vapors, resistant to fading, staining and discoloration, and are submergible.
Porcelain tiles fired to vitrification are also frost proof and submergible, but anyway it doesn't matter in my case because I'm in Hawaii. So the only difference could be the glazing. Has anybody ever taken a regular porcelain tile with a well formulated glaze and seen what really happens to it in a pool?
 

qofmiwok

Member
Apr 27, 2011
19
Here is a photo of the Tile - it is a Bedrosians Porcelan tile...


And another showing the full size tile on our cover vault slanted wall at the end of the pool...


I like it less grout lines to clean.
Thanks! It looks modern too. So many pool tiles are hideous. That's regular porcelain tile then? How long have you had it?
 

qofmiwok

Member
Apr 27, 2011
19
Those of you who are experienced in designing beautiful pools... what are some of the factors that go into a good design?

1. Plaster color. We want a relatively light pool because of seeing to the bottom and the reflectivity. Currently it is white plaster. Wondering if we should stay with white (quartz) when we re-do it, or make it light blue or light gray. I'm not a fan of the "windex" color of my friend's pool that is painted light blue. In general, how do you choose plaster/water color? What are the factors? Which colors are "modern" in 2019?

2. Waterline tile. How do people decide on colors, whether dark or light blue or stone-look? Seems like a light color will hide calcium deposits. But dark tile and dark grout wouldn't show algae as much, and algae is a big problem here. But our tile decking which wraps around the lip of the pool is travertine and I feel like continuing a light blue or stone look would look better than a contrasty dark blue. Just wondering what approach to take to get a design I like.