Travertine pool decking and coping, freeze/thaw cycles, travertinemart - 7 winters later!

Ukie

Well-known member
May 29, 2012
87
Export, PA
Almost every year I get couple questions about my travertine deck, problems with travertine coping and decking in freeze/thaw cycles, etc.

It's a show off time, let me walk you through my deck, 7 winters after construction.

Watch This Video!

Overall, we are really happy with travertine, issues and maintenance are very minimal and we would go with travertine again, no doubts.

Here’s what we did:
  • Got travertine from travertinemart, lightest color.
  • Installed travertine on a concrete slab (glued) and filled joints with polymeric send.
  • We did not seal the stone.
Here’s what I would do differently:
  • Choose a darker stone.
  • Do not bother much with polymeric send, maybe just very minimal amount (you’ll see why below).
Over years polymeric send attracted some dirt (dirt kinda sticks to it) and the only way to remove that dirt is to power wash it and actually blast dirt/sand off. Besides, I power wash deck every spring after opening my pool. Polymeric sand was making power washing somewhat a “dirty job”. Once sand is gone, power washing is much cleaner - sand doesn't get blasted around.

Coping.

Every year I get and couple stones cracked because of freeze/thaw cycles. Note, those cracks are developed on coping row only, side facing pool water, nowhere else! Some of cracks is a simple glue job, some is replacement – pull out old stone, glue new one in. Simple. Freeze/thaw cycles affects coping stones which have horizontal voids at the bullnose end, so hopefully I’ve already eliminated majority of them, but again, it’s a simple repair.
See Image 1
See Image 2

I got couple coping stones cracked because of installation issues (uneven level between pool coping and deck) and human weight apply on top of the stone. Those cracked stones (I have maybe 3) don’t bother anyone, so they are not replaced. One stone was cracked by me when I tried to remove it and did not listed to the installer (lesson learned).
See Image 3
When ordering coping stone, get some extra!

Deck.

No major issues. Power wash it every spring. Had to glue couple stones this spring because polymeric sand is gone and I wanted to eliminate stone movement at some areas.

I think my “no sealing” approach works just fine even with my SWG. Why to waste extra $$$ on expensive sealer?

That’s about it. No other maintenance items or issues.

Still a happy camper on travertine deck!
duck.png
 

Ukie

Well-known member
May 29, 2012
87
Export, PA
Excellent post! Appreciate the review.

For your comment about choosing a darker stone, is that just for aesthetic reasons?
Yes, just aesthetics and my personal preference! At full sun, light stone looks very pale. Darker color will add some spark. As you can see on my video, coping row has more darker stones, which I like a lot.
 

jeflogan

Gold Supporter
May 23, 2012
114
Urbandale/IA
Thank you for the review we went with the silver travertine from the same place. We laid ours this year dry setting the field while using 1" of flex bond mortar per their instructions from Travertine Mart. I hope that helps with cracking since it would be a pain to remove with the mortar.
 

Aquaman7

Well-known member
Sep 15, 2019
242
NNJ
Glad to see Ukie & Jef having success with there travertine. I ordered from travertinemart for an outdoor kitchen and will be ordering from them for the pool deck.
Ukie when you say you glued the travertine is that with the flexbond mortar that Travertinemart recommends or another specific type of glue?
 

Ukie

Well-known member
May 29, 2012
87
Export, PA
Glad to see Ukie & Jef having success with there travertine. I ordered from travertinemart for an outdoor kitchen and will be ordering from them for the pool deck.
Ukie when you say you glued the travertine is that with the flexbond mortar that Travertinemart recommends or another specific type of glue?
Gator glue, used by my installers, nothing special. It's a very strong glue, and it's color matches travertine.
Had to glue couple loose coping stones just before 4th of July. See second picture how everything looks underneath.
 

Attachments

  • Like
Reactions: mguzzy and jeflogan

Bbowen

New member
Jul 18, 2020
1
SWOH
Great to see this feedback! Looking to replace a deteriorated cantilevered concrete pool deck on a Gunite pool. With Travertinemart, about how much in freight did you pay per square foot above material cost? (We have about 2000 sq ft of pool deck.) We’re probably going to remove the cantilever deck, pour a new cantilever coping, and lay natural stone over sand or a gravel bed for the deck itself. I’m leaning toward shellstone or travertine. Anyone lay their travertine/stone this way and if so, how is it holding up? Thanks!