Our inground pool came with two ladders which consist of plastic steps
mounted to what appear to be stainless steel tubes. The pool company
supplied the ladder anchors which are now buried in the concrete deck,
flush to the deck surface, and they appear to be aluminum. The
concrete deck has small colored stones set into its entire surface.
Over the years, the insides of the anchors have become more and more
corroded, and they have now reached a point where I can no longer
insert the ladder tubes.
The pool company's suggested solution to this situation is for me to
call the company that did the deck, have them come out and cut out the
old anchors and replace them. But I would like to avoid this if
possible...I don't believe they would be able to do this without it
looking like a patch.
I am thinking that if I had a proper tool, I could perhaps bore out
the insides of the anchors to remove the corrosion and get an internal
diameter that would again accommodate the ladder tubes.
Does anyone think this is a viable solution? Would anyone have a
suggestion as to what tool would be appropriate?
Thanks very much.
Take the bolt out, remove the wedge, use a cylinder hone from the auto
parts store to buff out the inside of the cup.
If you do have them replaced, be sure they get hooked back up to the 8
gauge copper bond wire. That may be hard to do without chipping out a
pretty good sized chunk of concrete, being careful not to break the
wire. You will still be splicing on a piece and shoving it back into
the hole with the cup. Be sure to attach the #8 correctly to the cup.
What you refer to as "anchors".... aluminum pipe sections placed in
the deck concrete?
If that is true you have a stuation with two no-no's
Aluminim in concrete.... bad for aluminum
Aluminum contacting stainless in wet environment .... bad for
As per other post....cylinder hone with coarse stones
or change out the aluminum for PVC or stainless
These are ladder cups. They are required to be U/L (or other lab)
listed and as far as I know they only come in aluminum or bronze.
They are required to be part of the equipotential bonding system (the
solid 8 ga wire). Simply shoving a sleeve of pipe in the hole will not
meet these requirements.
On Jul 7, 10:23 am, email@example.com wrote:
I was unaware of the ladder bonding requirement.
I wonder how many pools in the US have unbonded metal ladders.
I wonder how many unbonded ladders have proven to be a problem.
I'm interested in hearing the scenario where a pool ladder gets
ahh, I can think of one...... overhead power line (more than 25')
breaks and falls to the ground energizing the ladder?
In any case, aluminum in concrete is a bad idea, esp around a pool
How good is the electrical contact going to be between heavily
corroded aluminum and stainless? Probably not great.
Of course PVC can't work as part of the grounding system but
allowing aluminum in this situation doesn't sound like a great idea
If one is really serious about bonding a stainless steel ladder, it
would seem that a means more positive than aluminum sockets should be
They are still required to be bonded and it is part of the
pre-concrete inspection. I think the question about how the ladder got
energized but how bad it would be if it did. These are usually
considered "stray voltage" problems where a buried cable causes a
voltage gradient in the soil. I was at a seminar a few weeks ago where
an instructors was saying you could get voltage gradients, just from
electrolysis. I am not sure I go along with that.
BTW I bet that ladder is chrome over brass, not stainless. This whole
"stainless" craze is fairly recent. If it is stainless it would
explain the aluminum going to hell. Stainless and aluminum together,
really hate water.
On Jul 10, 9:20 pm, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
The ladder in my parents pool (1959) was stainless tubing.
I saved when my mom had the pool replastered in ~1995.
The new ladder system was "pool wall toe steps" and aluminum ladder
arms cantilevered off the deck.
I saved the old ladder ( a hefty dude) thinking I might use it but my
wife convinced me to sell if for scrap. :(
I learned about galvanic corrosion in my teens when I clamped an 1/8"
sheet of alumimum to the ladder to divert the "pool sweep" so it
wouldn't get stuck.
The aluminum sheet was aluminum "lace" in less than a week!
I agree......buried cable or utility fault are way more likely than
Any idea when the ladder bonding requirement came to be?
Both replaster jobs I've been involved in 1995 & 2000 involved ladder
replacement but no one mentioned it.
This has been in the code since at least 1962, the earliest reference
I have found.
Mike Holt may have something on it.
This bonding thing has now (2008NEC) gone to the point that you have
to bond the water if there are no other metallic paths.
It requires 9 sq/in of metal, in contact with the water and bonded to
the equipollent grid, that now includes any paved surface within 3' of
the water. This is the steel in a concrete slab or a #8 copper ring
under pavers. In 2005 that was a 1'x1' grid of #8 copper but they
backed off of that.
You might be able to clean the anchor tubes out - try a circular wire
brush on a drill. The problem is these usually only come with a short
shank, about an inch, so they can't reach far enough into the anchor
tube. Try a short one just to see if it will do the cleaning well enough.
If it does, then try to find a longer shank or use a shank extension like
the ones that come with sets of screwdriver bits. The extension will be a
real pain because the wire wheel will constantly fall out into the hole.
Try gluing it in but best is to get someone to weld the two together. A
fast job for a welder.
If it is really aluminum then the corrosion will never end because
aluminum and steel form a galvanic cell where the higher noble metal,
aluminum, will corrode which protects the less noble metal, steel, from
corroding. Is the steel clean? If so that supports your thinking that the
anchor is aluminum. The good news is that aluminum is a soft metal and
thus easy to clean. It is even easy to grind up and remove, easier than
After grinding away corrosion a few times you may find that most of the
aluminum is gone. Clean up the hole nicely and get a piece of galvanized
pipe cut to length and replace with that. It, too, will corrode
eventually but you could slow it down with some lead in the bottom of
the hole. Get some scrap lead, wheel weights are good, pound and cut them
into a washer that fits the bottom of the hole and will contact both
pipes. The lead is the most noble metal and will corrode instead of the
steel. Could last for many years - the more lead you use the longer it
lasts. It's called anodic protection if you want to research it.
I recall learning that in very old city water pipes they would put a
block of zinc at each joint to prevent corrosion. Similar but the zinc
would react with any available oxygen before the oxygen could react with
the pipes and causing rust.
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