In our articles we typically highlight some of our more pleasant projects, but today we are going to discuss a tough project that has numerous issues. Looking at the before photograph of this pool deck, you can see where there is a deep crack along the left side of the pool. The reason for this crack is that they didn’t place a control joint around the pool to allow for movement. Normally, you would have a coping stone around the perimeter of the pool that separates the pool deck from the coping. Then, the joint between the coping and pool deck should be caulked to allow for expansion and movement. It was obvious that this pool hadn’t received this treatment, so when the deck began to move, it caused the deck to severely crack. Cracking is one of the major issues we needed to address when renovating this pool deck.
But the failures didn’t end here. There were no control joints placed in any of the pool deck, causing the entire deck to crack in random directions. This presents a problem with any type of concrete repair because the cracks tend to occur randomly. In theory, a control joint is placed in the concrete in the hopes that when the concrete moves, any cracking would occur in the control joint. With no control joints, the concrete will crack in random directions all over the concrete slab. The lesson here was that control joints are your friend. This concrete was also poorly finished and wasn’t attractive. The challenge was to make this pool deck beautiful and most importantly functional.
Dealing With The Existing Cracks: While this pool deck is fairly old and has settled about as much as it’s going to, the probability of these cracks showing through any resurfacing that you apply is very likely. The cracks are also random throughout the pool deck and we would need to incorporate that fact into our proposed solution.
To deal with the cracks, we chose to make them a part of the solution, taking a negative and turning it into a positive. There should have been coping stones installed separately from the pool deck and then a caulked control joint placed between the coping and the pool deck to allow for movement. Instead, there was a the cracked deck along the perimeter of the pool. Therefore, we used a crack chaser diamond wheel to clean up the existing crack. Then we used the same crack chaser and carved up the coping area into individual stones to look like large coping stones. We then caulked between the pool deck and the newly renovated coping stones.
Random Pool Deck Cracks: As mentioned earlier in this article, we have cracks running in different directions all over the deck and we know that if we don’t deal with these cracks, they will probably mirror back into the resurfacing application we install. The decision was made to open up the existing cracks with a crack chaser and make a random stone pattern all over the deck using these existing cracks as a starting point. It turned out great! After carving the deck up into a stone pattern, we injected epoxy into the cracked joints to make them stronger. Now if there is any movement, it will be in the stone joints and will not be visible.
Resurfacing The Deck: We chose to install a Quartz Aggregate System to finish this deck for its durability, ability to hide imperfections of the existing deck and for its slip-free surface. We ground down the entire pool deck with a walk behind concrete diamond prep machine. Then we applied the Quartz Epoxy System which we show above a sample of the Quartz System along with a color fan of the 3200 colors available to choose from for the final coat of tined polyurethane sealer. We then took the crack chaser again and opened up all of the joints of the stone pattern to make them crisp. We then took an exterior concrete dye and painted all the joints with an artist brush to have a contrasting grout joints around the stones for an awesome, durable and properly functioning pool deck.
This is where structural know-how and art come together to provide the ultimate in concrete restorations.
If you would like us to help you with your project, please click here to schedule a free consultation for creative concrete solutions.
This article was provided by:
Daniel Yalacki of Concrete Restoration Systems by Malibu Pools
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