Continued from Pool restoration pt3
The next step was the epoxy injection.
Basically this is a two part foam which needed to be injected into the cracks, where it would expand into there to fill any deep spaces and fill/prevent any leaks.
The way it works is you cover the surface with a surface seal epoxy, and attach injection ports every so often;
These are the places to inject the foam, so its important to block/seal the rest of the crack and be sure the foam will fill/flow inside.
Also interesting to note how the stale’s epoxy has changed color over the last week as it cured;
Lots of ports mounted, I did this for all the cracks in the pool surface as well as the split at the bondbeam;
Then I injected the foam itself,
I used three kits and did it in several passes,
The foam/epoxy made a big mess, but I think it got everywhere it needed to be (and then some)
This was in the middle of applications, as you can see the top near the bondbeam needed a bit of patching;
I also started doing some testing with hydraulic cement; patching over the exterior of minor cosmetic scratches, in gaps near the bond beam, and on exposed gunnite.
After the foam had cured for a week or so, I started removign the ports as well as the surface seal;, first pulling the ports and chipping away large chunks;
This is what I wore while doing that, feeling like a sci-fi character
Then hitting it with the grinder to knock back more of it, and leave a sort of ‘keystone’ shape and roughed up surface so that the plaster/cement over top the epoxy wouldn’t be able to pop/shear off.
It seems like everything near the pool has become covered in dust from the grinding, bit it was starting to look a lot better!
This took way longer than I expected/planned, I’ve now officially lost track of how many bucket loads of debris I’ve carried out of here
I knew better than to do too thick a coat of the hydraulic cement, its more there to provide a non-shrinking plug and seal, rather than structural strength, so I tried to keep it around 1/8 inch, and wet the surrounding area to prevent it drying unevenly
I couldn’t stand thinking of looking at the epoxy for another week, so I worked well into the night, patching and coating it with hydraulic cement.
Ended up using three buckets, about 30lbs of hydraulic cement
Its come a long way!
In case anyone is reading along for knowledge, I should re-state; I’m not a professional, I’m just learning as I go, and doing my research online as well as speaking to a few pool guys while gathering info/estimates…
So I’d left off I here;
Hydraulic cement patch/seal over the cracks and epoxy/foam. I figure the thinness of the cement will futther seep into the cracks and seal it more, and I made sure to leave a rough texture, so that the next layers would have something to grip.
Looking at the surface I started to notice a bit of discoloration;
A bit of a yellowish tint and some hairline cracking in there;
I knew the hydraulic cement wouldn’t be structural, but this isn’t right, and as soon as I started tapping it with the mallet/chisel I could see what was happening as it sheared off and crumbled;
I’ve never heard of this happening before, but the yellow seemed to be oils leached out of the sealing epoxy, which weakened the hydraulic cement, as well as the cement did not bond to the leftover epoxy much at all, so I set about knocking off all the problem spots to grind down the epoxy even more.
Very discouraging, but I kept at it, removing the bad material and going back down to get the surface epoxy off too. Very discouraging, but I keep telling myself, its better to go through this now then later when its filled with water…
Next I repacked it with a portland/sand mix, which should prove to be a lot stronger, and with the epoxy residue ground away it should provide a much stronger patch;
I left the texture pretty rough so the replaster would have something to grip.
Already feeling a bit better about this, and the portland/sand mix is pretty close to what I’ve been thinking of plastering the whole pool with, so I can see how dark it would end up being, also note the root that’d been hiding under the old deck, no wonder this was beginning to crack!;