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Concreations, LLC in Millersburg, IN

Pool deck repair brings new life to your concrete. If your surface has damage like cracking, spalling, or discoloration, but is still structurally sound, it could be a candidate for repairs. Options range from a simple color enhancement to total resurfacing.

WHAT ARE SOME COMMON POOL DECK PROBLEMS?

Problem Repair Options
Cracks Filler
Patch
Joint sealant
Spalling Patch
Overlay
Discoloration or stains Pressure washer
Cleaners
Coloring agents
Sealer failure Strip and reseal
Slippery concrete Grit additive
Settlement Slabjacking (lifting)

How does each repair option work?

  • Filler — fills small cracks to add strength to a weakened area of the surface
  • Joint sealant — prevents moisture from getting into joints or cracks and causing further damage
  • Patch — used to fix larger cracks, or smooth areas of spalling
  • Overlay — creates a fresh new surface for the entire pool deck
  • Pressure washer or cleaners — used to clean the surface of various stains
  • Coloring agents — surface applied colors such as stains can help camouflage imperfections
  • Strip and reseal — chemicals are used to remove the failing sealer and a new one is applied
  • Grit additives — added to the sealer to improve slip resistance
  • Slabjacking foam — injected beneath settled concrete to raise it back into level

Tip: Some coating manufacturers sell patch kits, so check with them first. Be sure to ask about color matching.

Find concrete repair products


WHY IS MY POOL DECK CRACKING?

Minor cracking is very normal for a concrete pool deck. Hairline cracks are only a problem if they detract from the appearance of the surface. If you are concerned that the cracks around your swimming pool are more serious, have a concrete contractor out to assess the damage.

Here are a few reasons that your concrete surface may have cracks:

  • Freeze-thaw damage — Concrete is porous, which may allow water to get in. When that water freezes small flakes from the surface can break off.
  • Deicing salts — Salts applied in the winter can release alkaline chemicals that can make the freeze-thaw damage worsen.
  • Not enough control joints — Without properly placed expansion joints, your concrete won’t be able to expand and contract with the weather.
  • Lack of reinforcement — Without any steel in the structure, cracks can occur, as the rebar holds the concrete together.
  • Weak concrete — If there was too much water in the mix when it was poured, the concrete may be weak, and susceptible to cracks and surface problems.

HOW TO FIX CRACKS IN YOUR CONCRETE POOL DECK

If you need to fix a crack in your concrete, you can either patch or fill it.

In order to fill a crack, follow these steps:

  1. Chisel out the crack to remove loose pieces of concrete
  2. Clean the debris, including all dust and chips with a broom, shop vac or air compressor
  3. Apply filler directly into cracks, checking periodically to see if it has settled
  4. Allow the filler to cure over a 24-hour period
  5. Seal the filled area for long-lasting results

HOW DO YOU PATCH A POOL DECK?

Patching is primarily used for fixing spalling or larger cracks. Spalling is when your concrete surface starts to chip and flake. When this happens, you have two options: resurface the entire pool deck or patch the problematic spots.

Patching makes the most sense when there are only a few small areas of spalling. If a majority of the surface is affected, resurfacing is the best solution.

The patching process is very similar to filling. First, prepare and clean the damaged area. Then apply the patching material and allow it to cure. Finally, seal your repairs or have an overlay applied to the entire deck.

HOW DO YOU FIX SINKING CONCRETE AROUND YOUR POOL?

If your concrete surface is sinking, a contractor can use a technique called slabjacking to fix the problem. This option can prevent you having to remove your pool deck altogether.

The slabjacking process follows these steps:

  1. A pattern of holes are drilled through the sunken slab.
  2. A grout mixture is pumped under the slab, lifting it to the desired height.
  3. The holes are patched using a concrete mixture.

SHOULD I TRY TO FIX MY POOL DECK MYSELF?

Some concrete repairs can be done as a DIY, but it is highly recommended to hire a contractor for more complicated tasks. There are many patching and filling products available that make fixing small cracks easy for a homeowner to do themselves.

However, if the job requires you to do a full resurface, or use materials that need to be leveled, a professional contractor will be the best choice for your project. A contractor is more likely to complete the job on time, without error, and with a finished look you’ll enjoy for years to come.

WHAT TO DO AFTER YOU’VE MADE REPAIRS

If you’ve patched or filled cracks in your concrete pool deck, and are unhappy with the results, you can resurface it with a concrete coating. This overlay offers an opportunity to update the decorative appearance of the concrete, as well as cover up any repair work.

Pool deck resurfacing

If your pool deck has extensive cracking, scaling or spalling, the best solution is to resurface it with a concrete overlay or microtopping. Resurfacing covers up existing flaws and upgrades the look of your pool by allowing you to add color, texture, and pattern. Some systems are designed specifically for resurfacing pool decks, and will improve the slip resistance of the surface and also reflect heat. (See What Type of Pool Deck Overlay Will Stay Cool?)

Here are the steps to expect when your contractor is resurfacing your pool deck:

  1. Prepping — The old surface is ground or treated with chemicals to help the overlay bond.
  2. Cleaning — Any dust or debris is removed with a broom and hose or pressure washer.
  3. Mixing — The overlay product is mixed, along with any integral colors, or tints.
  4. Applying — The material is sprayed or troweled on, and decorative treatments are added.
  5. Sealing — Once cured, a sealer is applied to protect your pool deck for years.

Tip: Some coatings are formulated to dry quickly, making it possible to give a pool deck a decorative makeover in as little as a day.

MORE REPAIR IDEAS FOR CONCRETE POOL DECKS

Concrete engraving

For concrete with minor cracking or discoloration, you can completely disguise the flaws by engraving or cutting a pattern in the surface. Depending on the pattern you choose, the flaws in the concrete can actually contribute to the look. With engraving, the concrete is stained first and then a special routing machine is used to cut the pattern into the surface, creating faux grout lines. See examples of concrete engraving.

Recoloring

Although most concrete stains, color hardeners, integral pigments and other coloring methods are long-lasting and wear-resistant, years of neglect can take a toll. Discoloration of concrete pool decks can be due to a number of causes including weathering, sun exposure, improper color application, and attack by pool chemicals. The good news is that in most cases the concrete color can be revived by applying a new coat of acid or water-based stain. By using a UV-resistant staining product and by protecting the concrete with a good sealer, your newly colored pool deck should maintain its beauty for many years. For more information on choosing and applying concrete stains, read these Stained Concrete FAQs.

See these concrete pool deck repair projects:

Correcting Someone Else's Mistakes

A microtopping enhanced by decorative brick-patterned borders and stenciled designs gave this dysfunctional pool deck new life. Before the topping could be applied, large cracks in the deck were repaired by stitching and filling them with mortar, and then a swale was installed to help correct a drainage problem.

Resurfaced Concrete Pool Deck Makes a Big Splash

A cast-in-place concrete overlay, stamped with a fieldstone pattern and a decorative medallion, completely restored this deteriorating concrete pool deck without the need for replacement. Because the existing concrete deck had extensive cracking and settlement, the overlay was poured at a 1 ½-inch thickness and reinforced to prevent failure.

Hotel Pool Deck Resurfacing

In addition to chemical and hard water stains, this indoor hotel pool deck had a rough surface that was unfriendly to bare feet. The solution was to resurface it with a durable and attractive acrylic topping and add a brick-patterned border to define the edge of the pool and improve the visibility.

"De-Vine" Pool Deck Revamp

For this pool deck makeover, vine designs colored with water-based acrylic stains were used to turn cracks into unique focal points. The surface was also given a random flagstone pattern created by sawcutting and staining.

POOL DECK REPAIR Q&AS

Decorative concrete expert Chris Sullivan addresses common problems relating to pool decks.