Gunite pools, widely known as shotcrete pools, are one of the most popular options due to the durability of material and the opportunity to create a swimming pool in a standard or most peculiar shape. We shall see the pros and cons of gunite pools, why they are so popular and what are the benefits that they offer to their owners.
Owning your own pool is not a luxury, but quite a common thing nowadays. Long gone are the times when construction even a small pond was a major challenge and investment. Technology is constantly developing and there are many companies who will help you with the design, construction and finishing jobs once you have decided to build a swimming oasis in the garden.
How gunite pools are made?
Actually when we talk about gunite pools we describe the process of applying concrete under high pressure over a steel reinforced cage. The concrete gets hydrated at the nozzle which leads to lower moisture levels. That is why a shotcrete pool is about ten times stronger than one from poured concrete and considered as highest quality. When constructed properly, it will function for many years without a problem or a need of restoration or repair. The methods of construction feature dry or wet gunning and after the material is applied it requires a watering twice a day for a period of about seven days while drying.
Gunite pools are considered as a classic and many people choose them as there is no limit in the shape. The frame can be created in any size, with beautiful curves, additional water features, etc. This is a good option if you want to have an infinity pool or negative edge waterfalls or other original features to complement the design.
What are the advantages of gunite pools?
Why choose a shotcrete pool? With years poured concrete, for example, wears off, and water many cause corrosion of the protective pool layer which leads to increased porosity, leaks and other unpleasant and undesired effects. On the first place, gunite pools are extremely durable. Statistic observations show that for a period of 20 years, the surface of gunite pools can be damaged to a depth of about 10-15 mm and that is why these pools are ranking on one of the top positions. Lets look at the major pros and cons of gunite pools:
Durability of the structure and life span of gunite pools are highly valued by customers and homeowners find out that it is a worth investment. An advantage is that these pools are designed and constructed on site, which puts them in the category of custom pools. Due to the steel framework, gunite pools are exceptionally sturdy and retain their shape for decades.
In terms of design, the options are limitless. The approach provides a great flexibility and options to customize the design of the inground structure so that it fits into a budget and meets the personal requirements of the owner. You can choose any size, shape, or depth as a shotcrete pool can be constructed on any plot – large or small – and on any type of surface – sand, rock, etc.
Gunite pools add significantly to the value of the property and in addition, besides the usual maintenance, resurfacing will be needed after twenty or more years.
What are the disadvantages of gunite pools?
Although gunite pools are the most popular inground structure there is a number of disadvantages which you should keep in mind. Their construction is a slow process and may take some time for several reasons. One of them is that all the work is done on site and may last from one to three months.
The rough surface of gunite pools is abrasive can be uncomfortable and there is a possibility to scrape your feet. In addition the surface stains and discolors easily. The contact of the cement surface with water may lead to the appearance of algae which means greater maintenance costs. In colder climate areas with frost during winter the surface may crack and need repairs more frequently.
Why choose a shotcrete construction ?
After pointing out the pros and cons of gunite pools, the conclusion is quite obvious. Constructing one is a major investment as this type of pool is in the highest price range. The construction follows several steps and begins with digging the soil on site and installation of water supply system. Constructing the supporting cage can be a time consuming process. Spraying the concrete, waiting it to dry out as well as the finishing work will extend the construction time. Gunite pools are not recommended if you have a site where there is ground water, as the water will destroy the bottom of the pool. When choosing to construct a shotcrete pond, you should be sure that your site is accessible easily by the professionals. It is not a DIY project and you will definitely have to trust a reputable and experienced contractor or pool installer.
However these pools are exceptionally beautiful and this is the reason for their popularity. Different color additives may be added to the cement mixture and uniformly distributed to achieve a smooth appearance. These pools do not require additional waterproofing as concrete additives can increase the water resistance and life span of the pool. There is a variety of finishing options – plaster finishes or pebble applications – which will add to the overall appearance of your oasis.