A saw cut with a diamond masonry blade is used to cut under the tile line preserving the pool tile, and then the plaster chipped. Where new tile is being installed, the saw cut is not needed. We will simply set the tile out by about ½ " inch. The pool is checked for loose plaster by sounding, which determines where we need to remove the "plaster pops" down to the structural shell. We will then bond coat the pool. While bond coat is the preferable way to prep your pool for plaster, sometimes the old surface is in such poor condition that all the old plaster has to be chipped off. This cannot be determined until the pool is empty and inspected. All plaster chips and waste material will be cleaned up and hauled away.
We use air driven hand held chipping tools to remove the existing plaster down in a narrow band or "keyway" under the tile and around all penetrations of the plaster shell. The purpose of this wide grove is to give a nice smooth even transition where the new plaster end at the tile and other in pool fittings. Any other work or improvements to be done on the pool, including transition tile, drains or fitting replacements, should be done prior to the pool being plastered.
When the work is completed, we start filling the pool. A protective cloth will be placed on the end of the hose. The pool fill lines should not be used until the water is within 6 inches of where the water comes into the pool. Water must fill continually without interruption. It is preferable, and sometime necessary to fill the pool with water trucks. The water should be shut off when it is in the middle of the tile line. It is important that all irrigation sprinklers that may spray on exposed plaster are turned off during the pool filling sequence. Nothing should be added to the pool until it is finished filling. Nothing should be dragged across the pool surface nor should anyone be allowed to walk on the new plaster while it is filling with water. Once full, the pool is now ready for our start up or "break in" procedures.
The most common interior surfaces, and the three we recommend you consider, are "plaster", "quartz" and "pebble". Quartz and pebble surfaces were developed as solutions to the shortcomings of plaster. However neither is perfect and, like most upgrades, they cost slightly more than plaster. Here's how they compare:
When you think of pool plaster, you normally think of the smooth, white plaster surface that turns the water a sparkling blue when filled, but there are actually many choices that can be made. We offer many different colors of dye that can be mixed with the plaster. Plaster is not the best, but is the most common pool surface. People are familiar with it and it's the least expensive of pool surfaces. Plaster is white cement mixed with marble dust. By its nature, plaster has certain limitations. Its porous surface is the most susceptible to staining and bacteria growth. Because plaster constantly reacts to water, plaster pools "use" more chemicals to maintain a balanced water chemistry and plaster typically does not last as long as other surfaces. A new plaster surface will give 5 to 10 years of good service.
A quartz interior pool surface is actually a plaster surface with quartz aggregate mixed in. There are two benefits with quartz. Quartz is a very hard material. When used a percentage of the pool interior surface is now covered with a hard, non-porous, stain-resistant material. The net effect is a more stain-resistant, durable and longer-lasting surface than conventional plaster.
Second, people like quartz because you can introduce a variety of colors into your pool interior with it. Quartz is priced slightly higher than traditional plaster. You can expect a new quartz surface to give you 10 to 15 years of good service.
A pebble pool surface is a plaster surface with pebble aggregate mixed in. The pebbles actually cover the majority of the surface of the pool. A pebble surface has the greatest available stain resistance and durability in the industry. Pebble surfaces are more costly than traditional plaster. However, in the long run they tend to be more economical to maintain. You can expect a new pebble surface to give you 12 to 20 years of good service.
At Continental, we offer the family of PebbleTec pebble finishes, including the original PebbleTec as well as PebbleSheen and PebbleFina. They have all been proven to be the finest in the industry. A variety of colors are offered which create unique finishes and water colors in your pool. The pebbled finish is reminiscent of a mountain stream or lakebed.