Oftentimes the first thing you see when you step out into a luxurious outdoor living space is the decking. From a classic brick paver to a more complex decking design that incorporates artificial turf inlays, you have almost unlimited options to choose from with your decking. If you would like to get more insight into the other pool decking options available, check out our previous blog post: “The 5 Best Decking Options To Consider For Your Pool Project”.
Today though, we will only be focusing on one of the longest used decking option available… Poured Concrete. Properly poured concrete can look amazing, is easy to install, and is one of the most cost effective solutions to install around your pool. While poured concrete is a material you should not discredit around your pool, we here at Island Way Pools have a hot take: we do not recommend and will not install a poured concrete slab around your swimming pool project.
From our 18 years of custom pool building experience we have found that poured concrete around your pool: is prone to cracking/sinking, is not easy to repair, and is not the most visibly appealing option for your outdoor living space. Today we will be breaking down why poured concrete is not recommended for your outdoor living space.
Why We Don’t Recommend Poured Concrete For Swimming Pool Projects?
Cracking: It is inevitable that concrete cracks, even with proper expansion or control joints. The expansion joints are where cracks in the concrete deck or pad are planned to occur, allowing for the patio design not to be affected by these cracks. This is oftentimes not the case and you will see fracture cracks spreading throughout the deck, especially here in Florida because of the heat and rain. Temperature changes and moisture are the main reasons you will see cracks occur in concrete (in addition to all of the oak tree roots we have to deal with as well).
These cracks lead to another one of our major complaints about poured concrete decking around your pool project…
Cracks or Other Issues Can Not Be Repaired: and that is due the installation process. Compared to most decking options which use lots of smaller pieces installed next to one another, poured concrete is installed in large slabs. Usually when cracks start to form, the only course of action is to replace the entire slab. Having to repair large sections of concrete or scrap it entirely eventually with a new material defeats the purpose of saving money on the initial install. Oftentimes when replacing an individual slab, you end up damaging/cracking the other concrete pads in the process as well!
When it comes to pool remodel and renovation projects, one of the biggest eye sores our clients want to eliminate is the poured concrete slabs around their pool. Not only are the cracks unappealing but poured concrete does not maintain the best appearance as it weathers and ages.
Decorative Options Can Be Slippery: In our introduction we mentioned how poured concrete is not the most appealing decking option you can have installed around your pool project and we know this comment upsets all of the decorative concrete lovers out there. While a stamped concrete deck or the other decorative concrete options available can look great, any reputable pool builder or contractor in Florida would not recommend these products around your pool for 3 reasons:
They are equivalent in cost or more expensive than the materials they are trying to mimic with no added benefits.
Many stamped or decorative concrete options are slippery when they are wet. To preserve the look of decorative concrete it must be sealed with a silicone or acrylic sealant; both of which get many complaints of being slippery when wet. Something you do not want to deal with around your swimming pool, especially if kids are going to be utilizing the pool!
Similar to non decorative poured concrete: cracks or chips to your decorative concrete pool decking can not be repaired without replacing the whole slab that was poured. Even if you replace the whole slab, a big issue that arises is getting the color of the replacement slab to match the existing decking that is there.
What do we recommend as your pool decking?
You will find many pool builders who will install poured concrete around your pool project but at Island Way Pools we will point you towards different options that are more appealing, easier to repair, and will still work with-in your budget! If you look through our portfolio you will see a lot of brick pavers and natural stone decking around our pool projects. These are two materials you can never go wrong with for your outdoor living space! We have samples of all of our decking materials at our showroom in Clearwater Beach. Feel free to stop on by to meet some of the Island Way Pools team and see some of the amazing products we carry!
Are you ready to start building the outdoor space of your dreams? Take advantage of your complimentary design and consultation today: (727)-488-2047. Thanks for taking the time to read our blog post! Do you have any future topics you would like us to cover in a future blog post? Email me at IslandWayThomas@gmail.com.