Comparing Materials for Pool Decks
Swimming pool decks add charm to your home and therefore, selecting the right materials to build them is important. Your choice will be guided by personal preferences and circumstances:
• Whether your pool is above-ground or in-ground
• Maintenance requirements
• Local climate
• 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 situation. Your pool contractor will typically help you with solid advice, but here is a list of materials you can consider, with their pros and cons.
Flat stone is one of the most luxurious and expensive materials for decks. It has a uniqueness and splendor that simply can’t be replicated. But for flat stone to keep its beautiful aspect, it has to be sealed and protected from corrosive chemical elements and weather. It has a long lifespan and it has a wide color variation to choose from. Natural stone comes in two styles, all offering a unique look.
For a rugged and traditional look, flagstone pool deck is the answer. For a geometrically perfect look, you may prefer engineered stone. Repairs can be made by replacing individual stones. However, installation is labor-intensive and stone decks require resealing at least 3 times a year. Grout maintenance is important when temperature changes are extreme. Also remember that water from a salt water pool will cause the stone to chip. Therefore periodical sealing of the stone is necessary to protect its looks.
Concrete Pool Decks
Concrete decks have been the choice of budget-conscious owners since the 50s. They are cost-effective and enable homeowners to design a pool deck according to personal tastes while keeping a low budget. To enhance the look of concrete, you can taint it or stamp it. Texturing concrete will help you create a less slippery surface. Pool decks made of concrete can be customized with various designs and patterns. They are very easy to install is not complicated and they are more affordable than natural stone. On the downside, installation needs to be done altogether at a single go because it is difficult to find the same color match. Concrete eventually cracks 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 very suitable for hot climates as it stays considerably cool under the feet. Note however that discoloration is possible with travertine just as it is possible with concrete. It is a stone of choice among homeowners, owns a consolidated look, is offered in many patterns, and is not slippery. Travertine does not discolor rapidly, and most importantly this versatile stone withstands extreme temperatures. Just as natural stone, installing travertine requires a lot of labor, so cost can run out of control.
These pavers are a good option as they have the natural look of real stone. They resist salt corrosion, they are slip-resistant and their color is not sensitive to chlorine. They do not allow growth of algae and mildew especially when a good sealant has been applied on them. Pavers work well in all types of meteorological conditions. The good thing about them is that they are affordable to install and durable, and they won't 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 weed-killing products. Pavers come in many colors and shapes and their surface feels rough on hands.
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