Concrete vs. Pavers for Your Pool Deck – Which is the better choice?
Our customers often ask the question, “Which is better for my pool deck, concrete or pavers?” Choosing the pool deck material that’s right for you is a huge decision with many factors, and as Indiana’s top leading builder of inground pools, Pools of Fun has 35 years of experience helping our customers navigate the tough decisions that go hand-in-hand with pool ownership.
First, let’s look at the pros and cons of concrete.
Cost — Concrete is the least expensive decking available.
Versatility — Concrete can be stamped, patterned or stained to integrate colors into the entire mix. It is the most prolific of all materials used around pool decks in the Indianapolis area. Most stampings are patterned after pavers or a slate-like finish, which due to cost is usually the only option for most homeowners.
Cracks — This is the biggest issue with concrete. Tending to your concrete usually requires yearly maintenance with sealing no matter what type of finish you have. Stamped concrete is especially prone to yearly re-sealing. It will dull and fade quickly, making you pool appear dated when it is only a year old. The truth is that cracking concrete is consistently an issue. When homeowners pay additional money for stamped concrete decking (or any concrete decking for that matter), it will crack. This is natural and uncontrollable. A finished stamped deck will get very hot in the summer, and has a sealer that must be used as a part of the coloring process.
Slippery When Wet — Possibly the most important consideration is how slick stamped concrete is when wet. Additives are used to lessen the slipperiness, but it doesn’t always work well. A slippery pool deck is a serious safety issue around pools. Both adults and children are both equally subjected to the issue of slick wet feet.
Inconsistencies in Design — With concrete, more times than not, the finisher has one opportunity to correctly assemble the pattern, color, control joints and overall finish. If there is an issue, the repair won’t match. Tearing out the affected areas are sometimes the only option, but even then it’s no guaranteed to match color or finish.
Heaving — Concrete can heave, especially in the Midwest with the freeze and thaw cycles. With heaving, both a “toe stubber” or a depression from a crack or control joint can appear, causing an unsightly and unwanted feature to appear in your pool. The fix for heaved concrete is to tear it out and replace your concrete or to have it “mud jacked” if needed.
Tune in next time for our rundown of pavers, and for a conclusion on which works best for your pool deck. And, as always, give us a call at Pools of Fun to schedule a meeting with one of our design center professionals to finally put a pool in your backyard this spring!