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tens of thousands of small, sharp dots all over pool.

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New gunite pool as of July 2015.  Opened this season 2 weeks ago and found tens of thousands of small, sharp dots all over pool.  Perhaps calcium nodules, but so many.  Everywhere.  Cut knuckles on them.   Help? Plaster bonding massive failure? 

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Comment by Kevin Misley on June 6, 2016 at 4:56pm

I'm not sure if the problem came back. I dumped the customer after I was accused of the scale problem when in fact it was their lack of responsibility for properly maintaining the water chemistry.

I mentioned to them about balancing the TA and they had no idea what I spoke of. But the local pool store was happy to sell them more crap to put in the pool.

May have been too much calcium in the mix. It's important to check the calcium levels after filling and running for a 24 hour period.

There's no way to reduce calcium chemically. Partial drain and refill is the only option.

Contact me privately so I can give you rough costs to expect.

I'm guessing this is not a polished finish.

Comment by Ethan on June 6, 2016 at 4:32am

Thanks again, Kevin!  After the pool was drained and re-polished on that Hydrazzo finish, did the problem come back?   What should draining the pool and sanding cost in the tri-state area - ballpark? Not including the water to re-fill.

The odd thing is that water chemistry was maintained.  The thought was that the plaster mix on this marble dust finish had too much calcium, and/or that it was a bonding issue.  Regardless, it needs to be taken care of.  Thank you for your comments.  Very Much Appreciated!

Comment by Kevin Misley on June 6, 2016 at 2:25am


A "hot start", a method of lowering the pH and TA to 0 with acid is another alternative but can be tricky. You would want the levels low enough to loosen the scale but not damage the finish.

Last year we had similar situation with a Hydrazzo finish. The customer did not maintain the water chemistry and scale was produced. After much finger pointing, the customer realized it was their fault. The pool was drained and re-polished. This removed the scale. All at their expense.

Draining it is probably the safest way to go plus you have better control over the acid/water proportions.

Comment by Ethan on June 5, 2016 at 10:29am

Thanks, Kevin.  Are you talking about draining the pool to do the light acid wash and/or power wash?   If I have to I will, but around these parts you have to truck in the water and the cost to fill the pool is around $1800. 

In your situation, after you did the acid wash, did the problem come back the next season?

Much Thanks!

Comment by Kevin Misley on June 5, 2016 at 9:56am

Probably calcium. Had a similar situation about 15 years ago. The pool was plastered end of the season and come spring, it had this same situation.

A super light acid wash and/or lightly power wash. Diamond polishing pad used for polished plaster finishes will break it up also-a bit tedious though.

Check your fill water chemistry. Most definitely add something like Jack's Magic to head off further scale problems.

Use it as a maintenance item as well.

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