What To Do If Your New Pool Plaster Has Streaks

Written by Michael Dean
July 5, 2023

pool plaster with streaks

You’ve just finished your pool plastering project and are excited to take a dip, but when you look at the finished product, you notice streaks running along the plaster. Pool plastering is a long process, and the last thing you want is for issues to pop up during the curing process that cause streaks to form.

Streaks are a common issue during the curing process, and there are steps you can take to remedy it. Just follow my easy tips and tricks, and before you know it, your pool should be looking good as new!

Main Takeaways

  • Streaks in pool plaster are caused by improper mixing, application, poor-quality plaster, and improper curing.
  • To prevent streaks, mix the plaster properly, apply it smoothly, and use high-quality plaster.
  • You can also prevent streaks by keeping your pool clean and well-maintained.

What Causes Streaks In New Pool Plaster?

There are a few possible causes of streaks in your new pool plaster. Let’s investigate each of these causes further so you can troubleshoot your problem and make your pool look sparkly and brand new!

Incorrect Mixing and Improper Application

A lousy plaster job is one of the most common causes of streaks in new pool plaster. If the plaster isn’t mixed correctly, it can cause uneven distribution of color pigments, resulting in streaks.

pool plaster streaks

To avoid this problem, mix the plaster thoroughly according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use a power mixer if possible – it will make the job easier and help ensure the plaster is mixed evenly.

Improper application of the plaster can also lead to streaks. When applying the plaster, use even strokes and avoid overlaps. Also, ensure the entire surface is covered – any exposed areas will be susceptible to streaks.

Poor Quality Plaster

If you use poor-quality plaster, it is more likely to streak. To avoid this problem, buy high-quality plaster designed for pools from a reputable supplier. Of course, it will cost a bit more, but ensuring a perfect finish is worth it.

Algae Contamination

If your pool plaster has streaks, it could be due to algae or other contaminants. Clean the pool thoroughly before applying the plaster. Shocking the pool is also important in the pool plaster prep process. You’ll need to shock the pool and then brush the entire pool surface with a stiff-bristled brush.

Weather Conditions

Weather conditions can also contribute to streaking. If it’s humid outside, the plaster will cure slower and may be more susceptible to streaking. Similarly, the plaster will be wet and more vulnerable to streaking if it’s rainy.

Extreme temperatures can cause streaking too. If the temperature is too hot or too cold, it can affect the drying time of the plaster, thereby causing streaks to appear.

Follow the drying time and temperature instructions, apply the plaster during mild weather and keep the area well-ventilated.

Water Chemistry

Proper water chemistry is crucial for preventing streaks in pool plaster. The pH level of the water should be between seven and eight, and the alkalinity should be within 80 to 120 parts per million (ppm).

If these levels are not balanced, it can cause problems with the curing process and result in streaking. Test your water regularly and adjust as needed.

What To Do If Your New Pool Plaster Has Streaks

Unfortunately, even if you take all the necessary precautions, streaks may still occur during the curing process. But don’t worry – you can take steps to fix it.

First, wait for the plaster to adequately cure before attempting repairs – usually about 28 days. Then, use a pool brush to scrub the affected areas and remove any loose plaster. After scrubbing, use sandpaper to remove the remaining streaks. You may need to repeat this process several times for the best results.

If these steps don’t work, consider resurfacing your pool with a high-quality plaster. And consider hiring a professional to plaster your pool to avoid improper plaster application that can lead to streaking.

How To Prevent Streaks In Pool Plaster

The best way to avoid streaks in your pool plaster is prevention. To prevent streaks, you need to make sure the plaster is properly applied in the first place.

Surface Preparation

The plaster is more likely to streak if the pool’s surfaces are not prepared according to professional advice.

To prepare the surface, ensure it is clean and free of dirt, debris, or oils. Once the surface is clean, use a pool acid wash to etch the surface and create a rough texture for the plaster to adhere to. The acid wash is significant as it also will kill any algae hiding in little cracks in your pool surfaces. The last thing you want is for this algae to grow and not only create streaks in your pool but also eventually damage the foundation.

Pool Plaster Mixing And Application

Ensure correct plaster application to avoid streaks in your new pool plaster.

To do so, prepare the plaster by adding it to the mixing tub, then add water slowly while stirring until you achieve the correct consistency. Use a drill with a paddle attachment to mix the plaster for the best results. Refrain from overmixing the plaster, or it will begin to set too quickly.

First, check the ratio of plaster to water used when mixing the plaster. If too much water is used, the plaster will be too thin and is more likely to streak.

Add more plaster and stir to get the required consistency to fix this. If the plaster is too thick, it will be more challenging to apply evenly and is more likely to crack. To fix this, add more water to the mix and stir until it reaches the correct consistency.

Once you’ve achieved the correct consistency, apply the plaster to your pool in even strokes using a plaster trowel or applicator. Gently smooth out any air pockets or bubbles.

Stop and call a professional if you have any doubts or concerns during the plaster application! Plastering is time-consuming and expensive, so you don’t want to go through this process again due to improper application!

Prevent Streaking From Algae And Other Contaminants

The best way to prevent streaks from algae and other contaminants is to keep your pool clean and well-maintained. Be sure to clean your pool’s walls and floor regularly and vacuum any areas that seem to be collecting debris.

Prevent Streaking From Weather Conditions

Apply a pool cover whenever your pool is not in use. This will help protect your pool’s surface from the sun and other weather conditions. Although you should be using a pool cover anyway, this is especially important while your plaster is curing in the first 28 days.

Tips For Properly Curing New Pool Plaster

Here are some of my top tips in the pool start up process to ensure that your new pool plaster cures properly.

  • Once the plaster has been applied, fill the pool with water as soon as you can.
  • When filling the pool, avoid any sudden influxes of water that could cause cracking or streaking. Similarly, do not halt the pool filling process.
  • Maintain proper water chemistry during the curing process, as imbalanced levels can contribute to streaking.
  • Keep the area around your pool clean to avoid dirt or debris from marring the plaster’s surface.
  • Brush the pool twice a day for at least two weeks to remove excess plaster dust and prevent algae from growing.
  • Avoid walking on the new plaster for at least two weeks. This will prevent damage and ensure a smooth, streak-free finish.

These simple tips can help prevent streaks from forming in your new pool plaster. Just remember to be patient and give the plaster plenty of time to cure properly. With a bit of care, your pool will look fresh in no time! To solve more plaster issues, check out some of my related advice below.

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