When it comes to sealing decorative pool decks, Richardson uses Elitecrete sealers. "We prefer solvent-based sealer on the pool decks; they seem to be more UV stable and hold up better and longer against pool chemicals than the water-based sealers," Richardson says. This is also true when sealing pools that use salt water, he adds.
One concern many customers might have is whether the overlay will be slippery. To solve this, Richardson always adds anti-slip beads to his sealer. And to make sure the beads are evenly spread in the sealer and over the pool deck, Richardson suggests mixing the beads and sealer in a 5-gallon bucket and using the mixer and paddle every once in a while to mix the sealer again. "If you don't, the beads tend to go to the bottom and you'll have some patches with more anit-slip in it," he says.
Maintenance on pool deck overlays is rather simple. Richardson suggests pressure washing at least once a year to keep the overlay and sealer in good shape. Resealing will be needed but varies depending on the pool deck. Residential pool decks should be resealed about every three to four years. Commercial pool decks usually need resealing every two years, Richardson says.
One last concern when it comes to pool deck overlays is the pool itself. It's probably safe to say no homeowner wants the overlay material to be dripped into the pool. If it is an existing pool that is not being updated, Richardson only requires that the water level be at least halfway down the tile line. And to prevent any spills, Richardson says he drags a pool float along the inside edges of the pool as he is working so any drips will drip onto the float.
"You don't want to plastic the pool off because you get debris onto the cover and when you go to remove the cover the debris falls into the pool. So we never mask off a pool," Richardson adds.
Like many decorative concrete services, pool deck overlays allow contractors the opportunity to create unique looks stamping, staining or creating decorative patterns. As Richardson points out, with pool decks, "the sky is the limit."