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You’ve probably had daydreams about a luxury redo for your backyard swimming pool. Maybe adding giant bowls that look like mini-waterfalls or changing the pool shape completely. Or maybe you don’t have a pool right now, but you’d like one of those vanishing-edge pools that looks as if you can swim your way over a cliff.

Like many pool owners, you probably only need to give your current pool a “facelift” in order to improve its appearance and increase your enjoyment of your daily swim.

By “facelift,” we mean that your pool is showing its age, is looking uglier all the time and probably needs to be resurfaced. That’s because most of the swimming pools in Arizona have a plaster finish inside, and that plaster just won’t last forever.

Besides looking a little dingy, as the plaster surface wears off, it gets very rough and starts feeling sharp and scratchy when you walk on it. In addition, the plaster has become porous and has lost its protective coating. The walls of the pool literally start “eating” the chemicals that the pool service puts into the water to kill bacteria and other pathogens and prevent algae from growing. Sometimes the pool service company “declines” to maintain your pool anymore, because their technicians have to keep pouring gallons of very expensive chemicals into the pool on every visit they make.

Re-plastering is one of the most common renovation jobs homeowners request for their pools, according to Michael Sandoval of Above and Beyond Pools in Gilbert. Even pools that were built in the early 2000s may need this kind of redo. However, some older pools seem to have fewer problems than others.

Another fix you might want in your pool is to have a special cleaning done on the tiles lining the top of the pool. That would be needed to remove the so-called “bathtub ring,” caused by the calcium and other minerals in Arizona’s hard water. Or you might even want to replace that border of tiles around the edge of your pool.

If you have the interior of your pool redone, you can do plaster again just as most homeowners tend to do, according to Sandoval. Other popular choices that may be more costly include quartz and pebble-style finishes. An all-tile interior finish or an all-fiberglass interior could also be more costly.

To replace the plaster finish on the average-size swimming pool, it could cost $3,500 to $5,000; larger pools can cost $6,000-$8,000. It all depends on the size and depth of the pool.

Of course, if you’re going to all this trouble, you might want to put in one of those special pool features you’ve been dreaming about – copper pots with flames shooting out of them or stone pots with mini-waterfalls or water gushing out of tiny mountains of rock beside your pool.

And while you’re doing the pool itself, you should think about what other items need to be replaced or repaired eventually. Redoing the deck, changing the lighting and replacing the pool pump are a few items to consider. If you don’t do it now, when will you do it? And maybe it will cost more next year than it will now? Price out what you want to accomplish so you have a full scope of the “facelift” you really want for your pool.


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