Monday, July 13, 2015

DIY In-Ground Pool Repair: Part III–Repairing Crumbling Coping

Firstly, today I want to wish a very happy birthday to my mother-in-law. It sounds cheesy, but she is, very often, the wind beneath my wings :) She makes my life better, she loves and is loved by my kids, and our world is certainly lovelier for her being in it. Happy Birthday, Carol!

Now, back to the regularly scheduled programming…

With tiles back in place, my next pool repair task was fixing the crumbling coping stones. Here you see the raggedy and unattractive situation at hand.


We could have had someone come and replace the coping stones themselves for hundreds of dollars, but that is not our style, and not something we wanted to do at this point since we’re planning to have the entire deck re-poured in the next, oh, decade, and we’ll have the coping poured in as part of that process. I looked around for a while and did see some products that seemed specially made for this task, but they were also crazy expensive. There were a couple areas in our pool that looked like that had been repaired with a similar product… like short fibers embedded in concrete… but they weren’t the nicest looking of repairs and I wasn’t feeling compelled to follow in their DIY footsteps.

After some more targeted searching over the winter (when pool repair somehow sounded romantic and charming), I found a Pin showing (in limited detail) how to use sanded grout to rebuild the crumbly parts. The grout needs to be sanded, and it helps with strength for it to be enriched with some unsanded grout as well. Seems doable, accessible, and straightforward.


Having absolutely nothing to lose if this didn’t work, I first brushed and pried off chunks of crumbly coping until I got down to sound concrete. I then applied concrete adhesive (to really make the new repair stick to the old), and slowly troweled on the grout mixture (peanut butter consistency) until I could form a profile to match(ish) the existing coping stones. At certain points I had to wait for the grout to begin to harden in order to build it up bit by bit so it wouldn’t just fall in a massive lump into the pool.

Did some grout fall into the pool? Yes.

Did we survive ? Yes.

Is it better than it was? Hell yes.


Here are pool repair topics I have already covered in this series:

  • Safety
  • Replacing fallen tiles

And coming up:

  • Replacing old cracked caulk in pool deck expansion joints
  • Staining a pool deck

No comments: