Owning a pool comes with maintenance and sometimes repairs. When you own an in-ground pool, you need to be aware of the condition of the plaster in your pool. Over time, you may notice some cracks in the plaster leading you to wonder are cracks in pool plaster normal?
This may especially be the case if you’re new to owning a pool or if it’s the first time you’ve ever noticed cracks. Let’s take a closer look at what causes pools to crack and what you can do to fix them.
Types of Pool Cracks
The first thing to understand about pool cracks is that they are generally normal. Cracks can happen in your pool for several reasons. It’s important to understand what these reasons are and why they’re happening.
Many people think that because they notice cracks in their pool, their pool must be leaking. That’s not true. Determine whether your pool is leaking is going to depend on the type of crack.
Shrinkage or Surface Cracks
These are the cracks that are normal and ones you generally don’t have to worry much about. Shrinkage cracks, or surface cracks as they can be called, are shallow and are part of the curing process that happens when gunite and shotcrete are first used in a pool.
Surface cracks can be seen in the plaster and generally don’t mean that you have a leak. Surface cracks don’t usually run through the shell of the pool and cause leaks. These are also pretty normal and can be repaired easily.
Structural cracks can also occur but are more serious. When you have a structural crack, it usually means your pool is leaking or is going to leak.
You’ll notice these cracks in the shell of the pool. They can be vertical, horizontal, or on the sides or bottom of the pool. The problem with structural cracks is that they run through more of the pool than the shrinkage cracks. Structural cracks run through the concrete as well as the plaster coating or any tile that may be over them. If you are pool is not level and is also cracking, you may have structural cracking and leaks.
What Causes a Pool to Crack?
Pools crack for different reasons depending on the type of crack. When you’re talking about shrinkage cracks, the culprit may be excessive temperature, improper curing, or wind and excess water that got into the concrete mix.
Surface cracks can happen over time. Often they’re seen as hairline cracks in the plaster walls. A popular spot to see these are in the top step or anywhere close to the surface. Pool surface cracks can be caused due to excessive temperatures as well.
For more serious cracks, like structural cracks, improper design or engineering may be to blame. When the pool is first put in, the engineers need to test the soil to see its bearing capacity and stability. If the soil is not stable or the overall design around the pool is poor, it can lead to structural cracks and leaking. While it’s not uncommon for these types of pool cracks to happen, they’re not ones that you want to deal with or have to have repaired.
Some people also notice “v-shaped” cracks on the walls of their pool. When the crack is wider at the top than the bottom, you probably have a more serious problem on your hands. If this happens it could be due to not having enough support for the pool bottom in the area where the crack occurred. Another thing that could have happened is that the pool had an uneven settlement. There could also be expansive soil that is causing the crack under the pool. Any of these issues need to be addressed immediately to prevent further problems.
How Do You Fix Pool Cracks?
Fixing pool cracks is best left to the professionals, like the team at Flower Mound Pool Care & Maintenance. Our experts can assess the damage and determine what type of crack you’re dealing with and how you should fix it.
If you have a surface crack, some water will likely need to be drained so the crack can be thoroughly seen to fix it. Any rough spots around the crack will be smoothed down and loose particles will be taken away.
If you have numerous surface cracks around your pool in different areas, it may be best to have your pool resurfaced. Resurfacing your pool will make the entire pool uniform and get rid of any cracks. This is a more time-consuming project and a more costly one than just fixing a crack here and there. When you call Flower Mound Pool Care & Maintenance, we can determine the severity of your problem and recommend the best solution.
When you have structural cracks, it is a more serious issue and one that requires greater repair. To repair structural cracks, the entire pool needs to be drained so that technicians can get to the source and determine the exact cause. From there, they will recommend the best course of action.
When you first notice any cracks in your pool, it’s best to call the experts at Flower Mound Pool Care & Maintenance to assess the problem. Waiting to get any cracks repaired will only make the problem worse. Getting them fixed as soon as possible can prevent more cracking and even leaks.
One of the best ways to spot cracks right away is to hire a weekly pool service. At Flower Mound Pool Care &Maintenance, we look over your pool during each service. Our technicians know what to look for when it comes to pool cracks. This can help to find them before they get more serious.