Painting a pool with concrete showing through the plaster

I just bought a house with a pool and would like to get it ready for summer. I drained it for painting and am now concerned about several eight inch patches of concrete where the plaster is worn completely away.
Can I get away with just painting over the concrete or do I need to patch these areas? If I need to patch them, does anyone have any pointers or links to pages with instructions? Does the pool need acid washing if it's free of alge and other scumminess?
Also, I am not concerned with having a perfect looking pool and, since we just bought the house and are a bit short on cash, I would like to avoid any unnecessary expenses. However, I am interested in properly maintaining is so that I minimize future problems.
Thanks in advance for any advice.
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I would guess that the plaster will just continue to wear away if you don't fix it. You'll have plaster chips floating around. You'll have to repair the plaster at some point - I seem to remember hearing that plaster needs to be redone every three years or so, and continually needs to be brushed.
Now, I have worked at a facility that opted to not even put plaster on. I think it's just asthetic. Could you get rid of all the plaster and paint all the concrete?
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My first reaction is to tell you to stop fooling around, and get the job done right. A plaster pool should never be painted except as a last resort. I'm doubtful you will be able to get a good bond between the paint and the plaster. As ugly as the plaster might be, large sheets of paint floating around will be even worse.
To address the bare concrete, I would suggest cleaning it, and putting on a layer of plaster. Then stopping. Painting over peeling plaster is NOT a solution, it's going to cause further problems.
I can fully appreciate the cash flow problems that occur when moving into a new - to you - home. I would suggest the best move would be to do as little as possible until you can afford to have the pool professionally resurfaced. This is NOT cheap, and isn't really a do it yourself project. A number to throw around: Three years ago I spent $6000 to have a 35,000 gallon pool resurfaced, including new 'diamond brite' plaster, tile, and the deck resurfaced with 'cool deck'. The work carried a 10 year warranty.
PlainBill
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EdS writes:

Painting is not cost-effective because of a very short lifetime.
I did it myself, and also came up with a workable patching technique:
http://www.truetex.com/pool.htm
But from your description, it doesn't sound like patching would be cost- effective, either; you need a complete replaster.
At about $1000/year in amortized maintenance alone, now you know why residential pools are an extravagant luxury. Divide by the number of annual swim sessions to get a cost per swim, and things start to look exorbitant.
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Richard J Kinch wrote:

That's a remarkable bit of work you folks did Richard. Looks nice.
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My parents in New England have one of the very first inground Vinyl Liner pools ever installed. It was put in in around 1959. 16X32 feet with an eight foot deep end. It is still there. The original wooden walls were replaced with steel around 1975. The liner was replaced twice since 1959. The filter is the third one.
So, in 45 years, it has probably cost a total of maybe $25,000., including the original installation and excavation. It gets almost daily use for about 5 months a year, by a number of people. We never felt it was exorbitant at all, considering the value of all that socializing and enjoyment. It was cheap. People go on one luxury cruise for two weeks and spend more that that for just two people.
rusty redcloud
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Red Cloud writes:

That's an exceedingly rare level of usage.
Every other house here in SE Florida has a pool, and the most common number of swim sessions per year is zero.
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wrote:

I installed my own 20x40 foot pool using a kit in 1973... fiberglass walls, only 2 inch thick concrete bottom..... Total cost was under $6000 including the rental of a backhoe which took a few ours to figure out how to use.. (lol)...
Pool is on its 3rd liner... also self installed with the aid of a good size shop vac....and I have replaced the diving board as well as the plastic steps on the ladders... The $1000 a year cost figure stated honestly is a little high in my own case but given the prices I have heard today to have a pool company come in and install a pool well to be honest 1000 a year may be low... Chemical costs alone will be 3-4 hundred dollars a year..
I live in Maryland 65 miles north west of Washington DC and I do get to float around (not swin) in my pool form the end of May thru the middle of September thats about 5 months.... I am retired and you can usually find me floating in the pool ,reading the evening paper smoking a cigar with a Bloddy Mary at my side most evenings...
Cheap form of relaxing in my opinion... but then again I did not pay 30K for the pool
Just my opinion... If I ever did it over My pool would be 4- 5 foot deep almost flat bottom no diving board, no ladders... and equipted with bar stools...
Bob Griffiths
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I'm in New England, the land of steady habits. It isn't rare at all here.
rusty
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Thanks for the advice. I have decided to wait for the replaster until next year. I agree that Richard's pool work is inspiring, but I have a habit of taking on projects in which the first half is done with patience, but the second half brings on impatience and a race to the finish. I admire the act of bravery and patience that this must have taken!
So the pool is full, it lost a half inch in the first day that it was full with the pump running, so I will do a leak test with a bucket. But if all that is wrong this summer is a that I have to add a bit of water here and there I will be happy.
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FWIW, I had my pool replastered a couple of years ago. I have a friend in the pool business, and he came and looked at it. He said painting would be like burning up money, as would patching. The plaster had to come off down to the concrete, and new plaster put on.
7AM, a crew of about 15 men speaking a foreign language came and started chipping out the old with about ten air chisels. They were cleaned up and gone by noon. I have a 35,000 gallon 25 year old pool. Two guys stayed and did some small daubing patches. They left about 3. The next morning, about 15 more showed up. They were spraying at 7:15. They finished up about 10, and two guys stayed again to finish the small spots. At 1:30, I was filling up the pool. So, about 36 hours start to finish. I had what I would rate at zero to clean up. They swept and picked up every piece of bagging.
For anyone who is considering this, I highly suggest going with a pro. My friend had me call a specific plasterer. The one I had gotten a bid from was a joke, but I didn't know it at that time. The one who did the job was a pure D pro. So ask around and check references. Ask for completed jobs and talk to the homeowners, not the salesmen.
It is beautiful and worth every penny. If it lasts another 25 years, I just hope I do to.
Steve
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pool and had the same job done, not plaster, DiamondBrite :-) I had to wait two days before filling with water to let the DiamondBrite cure, otherwise it would have broken down. You may start noticing that with brushing as you see white cloudy water around your broom. Your installer may have recommended something different but I have never seen a concrete/gunnite pool filled the same day it was finished.. My pool is 42,000 gallon and it took the better part of a day and then some to fill, plus the water had to be treated along the way as that much water coming from the city supply eventually hits the bacteria stage and your pool will turn green in a matter of hours. You have to be extremely careful with liquid chlorine on a newly finished pool. I also opted to double the capacity of the filtering system and put in a new larger D.E. filter, and a stronger motor. My pool enjoyment has been all the better for the investment. My pool finish job, start to finish was $3,200.00 add $600.00 for a new filter and another $185.00 for a new pump/motor. I did all the electrical and installation plumbing myself, took me about an hour to get it all in. A savings over the pool joint that wanted a thousand dollars to install it. I also bought the filter and pump over the internet and saved over 60% than buying retail locally.
As to the original poster - two years ago we painted this pool with pool paint from National. We had to drain the pool, power wash, and the paint, after rolling on, had to cure for four full days before adding water again. It did indeed last the two years, gave me time to save up for the real job and the paint cost a total of $425.00 including shipping (ordered over the net), my labor to put it on, and the cost of re-filling the pool from city water supply, about 50 bucks. Two of us painted the pool in about 3 hours. The labor was cleaning and patching where needed. When they drained the pool to start the resurfacing job, the painted surface looked almost like the day we put it on.
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