Shotcrete done but wetdeck/tanning ledge too shallow.

raindrop25

Silver Supporter
May 28, 2018
16
Las Vegas
We just had our gunite completed yesterday. When we measured it, our wetdeck/tanning ledge will only have 4” of water instead of 6” that we want. We originally wanted 9” of water but to avoid having an extra entrance step we settled with 6”. That’s the shallowest we can go, and even told the shotcrete crew that they can go an inch deeper, just make sure to not go shallower. But guess what, it’s shallower!

We talked to our PB and said a possible solution is to increase our deck height. Wouldn’t increasing the deck height mess everything up, such as our benches and spa seats going deeper? Also the water will not be at the mid skimmer level.

What would be our options to get the wetdeck depth fixed? Would jackhammer help? Would they have to redo the whole wetdeck and steps gunite?
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
4,505
Northern NJ
Wouldn’t increasing the deck height mess everything up, such as our benches and spa seats going deeper? Also the water will not be at the mid skimmer level.
I think you are correct about why raising the deck and the normal water level is not acceptable.

Do you have in writing on any pool plans or drawings what the ledge depth was to be?

Keep pressing your PB. He is hoping you will rollover on a solution that is cheap for him.
 

raindrop25

Silver Supporter
May 28, 2018
16
Las Vegas
On the original plan we have the wetdeck depth written as 9” of water. I made some changes on the plan and wrote down 6” of water, and sent that to PB.
What kind of fix should I push the PB to go with?
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
4,505
Northern NJ
On the original plan we have the wetdeck depth written as 9” of water. I made some changes on the plan and wrote down 6” of water, and sent that to PB.
What kind of fix should I push the PB to go with?
I am going to wait for our plaster experts to arrive at the scene.

What type of finish do you have?

I would be concerned about color matching different batches and where any seam between old and new plaster would be.
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
4,377
Central California
Raising the deck. Interesting. What would that do to your landscaping? And access to the deck? It would make the whole pool deeper, and add to your water volume by some amount. Not the worst thing. But will the new shallow end depth compromise your plans for the pool. I'm picturing little ones on their tip toes. Returns will be deeper. Probably still OK. I'm pretty sure the bench and step heights can be corrected with plaster, though not dead sure about that. Maybe the shallow end depth could be adjusted that way too? Not sure about the skimmer, that could be a problem.

When my pool was being resurfaced, they said the process might destroy the existing steps. But they said "no problem" they'd just rebuild them (at no cost, even). They chipped out gunite around the returns, to add eyeballs. And filled in my drains. Which leads me to believe that all kinds of things can be done and redone at the gunite stage.

If the wet deck rebar is in the right place, then why couldn't they chip off 2" of it, plaster over that? Now if the rebar was set wrong, too high, which governed the gunite depth, then you're stuck, because rebar can only be so close to the surface, or else you get trouble, like rust-through.

All that said, I'm with Allen. If it's possible without compromising the shell, make the PB build your pool to spec. If it's in the plans, then that's what he needs to deliver. If it isn't possible, then he can always redo the shell (yikes!) or give you a very substantial refund. Or raise the deck. Tough call...
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
4,505
Northern NJ
Ah, now I have the picture. Although it may be helpful to post some pics of your situation and what is there so far.

If the PB wants to raise the deck height, and raise the skimmers, and raise the benches and seats then maybe some more gunite can solve the problems. I would do careful measurements of the way things are and what needs to be adjusted.

The PB needs to say what can be fixed with gunite and what can be set to the correct height during the plastering.
 

blakeusa

In The Industry
Jul 8, 2010
576
Ashford, CT
why couldn't they chip off 2" of it, plaster over that? Now if the rebar was set wrong, too high, which governed the gunite depth, then you're stuck, because rebar can only be so close to the surface, or else you get trouble, like rust-through.

All that said, I'm with Allen. If it's possible without compromising the shell, make the PB build your pool to spec. If it's in the plans, then that's what he needs to deliver. If it isn't possible, then he can always redo the shell (yikes!) or give you a very substantial refund. Or raise the deck. Tough call...
Why not chip 2 inches off your shotcrete... especially if it was just shot.
 

raindrop25

Silver Supporter
May 28, 2018
16
Las Vegas
The rebar is way low as it was originally planned for 9” of water. So there is about 12” or more of gunite on top of the rebar. Is it possible to trim off 2” of gunite? What equipment can be used to do that?

For the ‘raising the deck’ route, is it ok to shot new gunite on top of already cured gunite? Here are some photos. The wetdeck is our entry to the pool, then two steps down. Beside it is the spa.

742847DA-746F-433D-83A5-9D5E6E880162.jpg

8DD40551-18DE-43D6-A504-48832F0CB487.jpg

5ABE2C22-3C27-439B-AD88-7B5815E327D1.jpg
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
4,505
Northern NJ
What is the height of those steps? Standard steps should be no more than 7" - 8" high.

May be the camera perspective but those steps look too tall and too narrow.

So there is about 12” or more of gunite on top of the rebar. Is it possible to trim off 2” of gunite? What equipment can be used to do that?
Jackhammer? Then the plaster will smooth the surface out.
 

jimim

Bronze Supporter
Jun 20, 2016
2,016
NE/Pa
Those steps are high if 12 inches. So if u shave 2 inches off top that would give u a smaller riser but I would want the others fixed too. I would be careful with shaving. You don't want that rebar to be close to the surface or u will have issues with stains possible after plaster.

If u build up everything with more gunite the skimmers would still be off which would be the biggest issue I think. I swear my builder said to me when we talked about gunite vs shotcrete he said shotcrete can handle cold joints better vs gunite. I don't know how true that is.

If they shave the ledge edge I would have then completely redo steps. They might be solid gunite wsaid th no rebar. I know when they shot mine it was a slope that not and they formed the steps out of material. If urs is like that they. An just completely remove and redo.
 

SBall

Well-known member
Jun 27, 2017
187
Nashville, TN
Most vinyl pool kits have steps that are 11" tall. 44" total height...3.5" deck/coping plus 40" walls...call it an even 44" and three steps gives you 11" per step.
 

raindrop25

Silver Supporter
May 28, 2018
16
Las Vegas
The steps seem a little high, but I looked it up before and the requirement for our county is for as long as it’s not exceeding 12”. If I get the wet deck trimmed 2” though I would ask them to trim the steps too.

D5730FB7-9132-46FB-BC95-228AAC9AA9D4.jpg

Has anybody here ever used a concrete saw to trim gunite? I’m trying to see how feasible it is to shave off 2” of our wetdeck without sacrificing the the quality of what’s going to be left.
 

SBall

Well-known member
Jun 27, 2017
187
Nashville, TN
I had to cut out two ginormous rocks while digging my pool. I used a concrete saw to score it...think tic-tac-toe board, and then chipped out all the pieces. It worked, was a huge pain, and the final surface was not smooth, but will be covered by vermiculite. For you, assuming the rebar is significantly further than 2" down...it would work, be a huge pain, and the final surface probably wouldn't matter because you are plastering over it.
 

raindrop25

Silver Supporter
May 28, 2018
16
Las Vegas
Is your tread depth a minimum of 12 inches?
Yes they are 12”..thanks for looking out.

- - - Updated - - -

I had to cut out two ginormous rocks while digging my pool. I used a concrete saw to score it...think tic-tac-toe board, and then chipped out all the pieces. It worked, was a huge pain, and the final surface was not smooth, but will be covered by vermiculite. For you, assuming the rebar is significantly further than 2" down...it would work, be a huge pain, and the final surface probably wouldn't matter because you are plastering over it.
The rebar is way more than 2” down. I think this is the route I’m going to pursue with my PB. Thank you!
 

Dirk

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Nov 12, 2017
4,377
Central California
think tic-tac-toe board
I thought the same. Score it. But...

OP claims the rebar is set to accommodate the original 9" deep shelf, so shaving off 2" should be no problem. I'm sure these guys know how to adjust gunite, probably happens a lot. Scoring 2" deep cuts would seem to be a good way to go. But I bet it's simpler than that. The right bit at the right angle and chip away. The plaster will smooth it all out.

Steps are too high at 12". Hard to tell in the pic's if they're all the same height. They could all be lowered. But the height of each should be identical. People can trip on steps with as little as a 1/4" difference in height. You'd get called out on that if they were interior stairs. It's gotta be less critical in a pool, but for anything "above water", the distance from "bottom floor" to tread to tread to "top floor" should be identical. Four steps (counting the shelf) would have been more comfortable, but in this pool, that would mean the last step would stick out from that adjacent wall, or the steps would not be deep enough.

Uhg, what a stupid mistake. It's not like they got a 9' deep end wrong by a couple inches. It's the difference between a 4" depth and a 6" depth!! That's 33% off!! (Thanks Mr. Obvious!) Just makes me mad to hear of this kind of thing.

It's weird that he suggested raising the entire deck. Would that have been less work for him? Less expense? Are we missing something about chipping out 2" of gunite? Maybe, but I say that's his problem, not the OP's. Make him fix the shelf and the steps.
 

kimkats

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 10, 2012
37,590
Tallahassee, FL
Have them remove aka chip out ALL of the steps and the top of the shelf. The other idea of pushing everything else up is *silly* (don't like the word stupid). The reason he suggests that is all he as to do is say "Pour more concrete". The chip out will be a bit more work than a repour.

Steps should be no higher than 9" for comfort and ease.

Kim:kim:
 
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