Choosing the right material for my pool deck
Swimming pool decks add personality to your home and selecting the right materials to build them is important. Your choice will be guided by a variety of considerations:
• The pool is in-ground or above ground
• Maintenance requirements
• Personal taste
• Persopnal circumstnaces (active social life? children?)
It is important to keep in mind all these parameters to be able to make a wise decision regarding your deck. Your pool builder will typically help you with sound advice, but here is a list of materials you can consider, with their strengths & weaknesses.
Natural stone is one of the most luxurious and expensive materials for pool decks. It has a uniqueness and splendor that simply can’t be replicated. But for stone to remain splendid, it is important to protect it from harsh chemicals and the vagaries of weather. It will last for centuries and it has a full gamut of colors to choose from. Natural stone comes in several styles, all offering a unique look.
For a rugged and traditional look, flagstone pool deck is the answer. For a precise and neat look, you may prefer artificial stone. Repairs can be easily made by replacing individual stones. However, installation is labor-intensive and stone decks need resealing at least 3 times a year. Keeping your grout replaced is essential when temperature changes are extreme. Also remember that water from a salt-water pool will cause the stone to chip. That is why regular sealing of the stone is necessary to protect its aspect.
Concrete decks have been the choice of budget-conscious owners since the 50s. They are affordable and enable you to design a pool deck according to personal tastes while keeping costs under control. To enhance its appearance, you can taint it or add a stamped design. Texture will help you create a less slippery surface. Concrete pool decks can be customized with various designs and patterns. Build a concrete deck is not complicated and they are more affordable than natural stone. On the downside, installation needs to be done in just a day because it is difficult to find the same color match. Concrete will crack sooner or later and patches are noticeable. Lastly, concrete keeps heat and become really hot for bare feet in summer.
Travertine is extracted from natural quarries. Its beautiful look is very different from synthetic materials. Travertine is ideal for hot regions as it stays relatively cool under the feet. Note however that discoloration is possible with travertine just like it is with concrete. It is a highly popular option among homeowners, owns a uniform look, comes in a diverse range of color patterns, and is not slippery. Discoloration doesn’t comes in quickly, and most importantly this versatile stone withstands extreme temperatures. Installation is again labor intensive, so cost needs to be kept in mind.
These pavers may be a good choice as they imitate the look of natural stone. They are salt resistant, they are slip-resistant and chlorine does not impact their color. They are not prone to algae growth especially when a good sealant has been applied on them. Pavers are well adapted to all types of meteorological conditions. They are affordable to install and durable, and they do not crack when installed properly. Fixing a pool deck made of pavers is simple and maintenance only includes sweeping and rinsing for dirt and leaves. If left untreated, weeds will grow between pavers, but this can avoided by using polymeric sand or a pre-emergent weed killer. Pavers come in many colors and shapes and their surface feels rough on feet.
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