Repairing vs replacing fiberglass steps

geocacher

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 2, 2010
26
Wilmington, NC
Hey there!

We are replacing the vinyl liner in our in ground pool and also need step replacement or repair. There are tiny cracks in the steps where we were told the iron in the pool water is reacting with metal behind the stairs and causing black spots. The guy who is replacing our liner suggested repairing the steps vs replacing them (although the guy who used to do this for him no longer does and he was looking for someone who does this). The cost for repair is 1,500-2,000 vs 4,000 to replace (general quote not final). I lean towards just replacing as I don't trust repair to last. Anyone have any thoughts on this subject?

Vinyl liner, inground, 36x 20, SWG. I have attached a picture of the black stuff on the steps. Excuse other grime not filtering/balancing as usual because of pool leaking.

Lisa
 

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ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
33,836
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
Fiberglass is very repairable if done properly.

Pleased post pics directly to the TFP site. Many of us will not open unknown documents.
 

Lanzz

Bronze Supporter
Jan 28, 2021
57
Charlotte, NC
geo, I would replace the steps for $4K any day. Seems like the repair at about half the cost isn't certain to address the issue, and future replacement of the steps would probably require another new liner. (I am sure the experts will weigh in here...) I am getting estimates in the $7K range to replace my steps - still thinking about doing it.
 

Newdude

Mod Squad
Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
14,616
NY
FWIW, before moving I noticed my steps delaminating in spots. They were structurally sound, but needed a dozen half dollar sized spots refinished. I had complete confidence that they would be as good as new, but next to no confidence that a dozen new spots wouldn’t appear shortly afterwards.

If the repair cost was half of the replacement, I would have started new.
 

geocacher

LifeTime Supporter
Jun 2, 2010
26
Wilmington, NC
$7K ouch! and yes, future problems or the repair not holding were my concern. Steps are 17 years old. Replacement is the way I was leaning as well since the cost is not much more and I would rather have it done right when tearing it all up anyway. Thank you all for your input!
 
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sktn77a

Gold Supporter
May 16, 2010
2,313
Chapel Hill, NC
Repairing those steps shouldn't cost $1500-$2000. All they will do is rough up the surface and reapply a layer of gelcoat. Check around boat repair shops to get some more estimates. You will have to lower the water level below the level of the steps whatever you do, but if you are replacing the liner you'll have to do that anyway.
 
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