One of a swimming pool’s purpose is to be a refreshing oasis where people can cool down. But what if you dive in and realize that it feels more like being submerged in a stew being warmed up slowly on a stove? Disappointing, indeed. Because the pool sits under the sun for long hours on any day, the heat of the sun is enough to heat the water up. Also, pools with covers tend to retain heat so when the cover is pulled out, the water is warm to the touch. Before you purchase all the ice in the world and throw them into your pool, try out these cool ways to cool down the pool area.

Hire a Cool Deck Resurfacing Pro

cool deck resurfacing orange county

If the pool deck is hot, the heat it absorbs could be transferred to the pool, making the water warm. A hot pool deck is also dangerous for bare feet as it could cause minor burns underfoot. To prevent both of these issues, cool deck coatings like kool decking and spray texture may come handy. A cool deck overlay is applied on the existing deck through a spraying process. The splattered material is knocked down with a trowel, creating a texture that features air pockets, keeping the surface cool.

Install a Pool Cooler

A pool cooler is a device that lowers the temperature of a pool by about 10 to 15 degrees Fahrenheit. This works by removing the heat of the water that flows through it. This is a highly popular solution because it helps make the chemistry of the water easier to maintain. It can be used along with any existing pool system and it comes with temperature controls, making sure that the water does not get too cold for comfort.

Run a Water Fountain or Aerator

A running water fountain helps circulate the water, lowering the temperature a few degrees. The cooler temperature may not be as significant as that from a pool cooler but it is enough to make the water refreshingly enjoyable. It is highly recommended to let the fountain or aerator run overnight for maximum effects.

Create Shaded Areas

Add some shade on or near the pool to create a shaded area where the water stays cool no matter how hot the day gets. You can use set up umbrellas, hang a fabric shade, have a permanent roof over the pool or extend eaves over some part of the swimming pool.

Clear the Landscaping

Any large or abundant foliage right beside the pool can hinder cool air from circulating around the pool area, trapping heat on the surface of the pool. Keep landscaping far enough from the pool to allow cool air to travel in and around the pool.

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A brand new pool deck always looks divine and works impressively well. However, as time goes by, it may soon look worn and may not function just as well as it was first used. Fruit drinks that have spilled on the deck could stain it. Weather changes and aging can weaken the concrete deck, too, causing cracks and spalling. If the deck is only suffering from cosmetic issues, redoing the whole area would be a waste of money. Cool deck resurfacing might be the best solution.

cool deck resurfacing orange countyWhat are Cool Deck Coatings?

Resurfacing concrete pool decks is not something new. Although it provides a ton of benefits, there is just one issue that needs to be addressed: hot surface. When a pool deck gets exposed to tremendous heat all day, the surface gets pretty hot. Too hot, in fact, for bare feet. Imagine having to wear and remove flip flops each and every time you need to get in or out of the pool. Very inconvenient, indeed. Many concrete companies have created their own versions, such as Kool Decking and Sundek Classic Texture. The most common and most recommended method is a spray knockdown texture.

Cool to the Touch

There is a reason why it is called a cool deck overlay. It maintains a cool temperature despite exposure to sunlight for long hours. The coating has the ability to reflect heat back instead of absorbing it. For a spray finish, the texture also features air pockets that allow air to circulate around the foot.

Safe to Walk On

Aside from maintaining low temperatures, another cool thing about a cool deck repair is that it improves slip-resistance. The spraying only broadcasts some of the materials, then the troweling creates a comfortable, yet textured surface to walk on. A non-skid surface is very important on pool decks especially because it gets wet all the time. Children and adult alike will surely be safer from slips and falls.

Easy on the Pocket

A spray-down concrete resurfacing with a cool deck overlay is a lot more economical than installing expensive materials or redoing the whole thing. More often than not, pool deck damage is only cosmetic. Cracks, pits, and spalling are often caused by age, foot traffic, and weather changes. Taking the weak surface off and replacing it with a better one should restore the slab, improve its appearance, and enhance its function.

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It is quite a challenge having to maintain outdoor concrete surfaces. A concrete patio, for example, is often exposed to harsh weather changes. While it is possible for it to acquire damage and lose its original beauty, it is not impossible to make it look as good as it was, if not better. Here are things you can do to breathe new life to ugly and damaged patios:

Resurface with a Coating or Overlay

stamped-concrete-patioOne of the most popular and decorative solutions is to resurface the patio. Resurface means to add a new layer to the damage patio. A stamped overlay is applied thinly on the surface and then stamped by mat or by hand with your chosen pattern. Some of the popular patterns include:

  • Slate
  • Flagstone
  • Brick
  • Cobblestone
  • Ashlar
  • And more

Another resurfacing solution is a spray knockdown finish. A professional concrete contractor sprays the acrylic concrete coating on the old patio and then knocks them down manually with a trowel. The effect is a textured surface that is highly heat-reflective.

Refinish with Concrete Staining

stained concrete patio orange county

If the surface of the patio is still intact but with ugly stains and discolored areas, then refinishing it would be an ideal solution. Acid or water-based stains can update the look of a concrete patio almost instantly. These do not peel, flake, or peel, especially if a sealer is applied on the stained concrete.

  • Acid stain – This is a reactive stain that creates random effects and shades of the chosen color. The result is a mottled, stone-like look that is unique and can never be replicated. The colors of this solution are semi-translucent.
  • Water-based stain – This is a non-reactive solution that produces opaque, more consistent colors. This is a perfect choice if you plan to customize the patio with a pattern or image.

Score, Engrave, or Cut

concrete patio orange county

Scoring, engraving, or saw-cutting a concrete patio is an effective method of dealing with working cracks. Working cracks are those that keep recurring and are caused by something unstoppable, like soil movement. Cutting along the direction of the cut gives the slab more space for movement. As a result, it does not create more cracks. Just make sure that an experienced contractor does the cutting for it to be decorative and efficient in addressing the cracks. Popular designs for scoring or engraving are vines, swirls, repeated patterns, and the like.

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Concrete floors used to be these gray, industrial-looking surfaces that are meant to be topped off with paint, tile, carpets, and other flooring materials. Until concrete stains came and changed the game. Now, concrete floors can transform to luxurious-looking surfaces almost instantly and less expensively. Here are some concrete staining tips for unbelievably stunning interior floors:

Think Out of the Box

stained concrete orange countyOften, floors are stained in earth tones, such as browns, reds, and the like. But if you feel adventurous, why not try some bolder and more vibrant hues instead? Concrete stains come in a wide range of colors. Some cool colors include aquamarine, orange, and even metallics. You can even mix two or more to acquire more interesting ones. A professional concrete contractor can help you with mixing and deciding on interesting colors.

Complement the Indoor Color Scheme

stained concrete interior floors orange county

One of the safest ways to choose a stain color is by using a complementary shade. For example, if your living room has a blue theme going on the walls, furniture, and decor, choose a contrasting yet complementing color like dark brown or beige. Do not ever use the exact same color to prevent a single color overload. It would definitely be an eyesore to see blue everywhere you turn your head.

Seal the Stained Concrete

stained concrete orange county

Applying a layer of sealer is crucial after staining concrete floors. This will seal in the color, make it last longer, and protect it from damage. Another advantage in applying a concrete sealer is that it has the ability to enhance the colors further. After sealing, the colors look shinier, deeper, and more luxurious. Sealer coats often last a couple of years or more, depending on usage and foot traffic. If it fades, it needs to be reapplied to revive the protective and enhancing function.

Rely on a Pro

Water-based and acid stain solutions may seem like an easy product to install. Although there are hundreds of DIY tutorials on how to stain concrete, nothing is as efficient as having an expert do it. Why? A licensed contractor understands concrete better so he will know if the floor could still be stained or not. A highly trained pro with several years of experience would be able to come up with effective workarounds and remedies in case something does not work as it should. A pro would be able to do apply the stain quickly, effectively, and with zero bloopers.

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A cool decking is an outdoor pool deck that stays cool to the touch even after baking under the sun for hours. It makes it a lot easier to walk on or lie on when sunbathing. In Orange County, family and friends will surely love gathering over barbecue and some cool drinks on a pool deck that is heat-reflective, slip-resistant, and durable. Although a cool deck overlay is beneficial as it is, aesthetics is one feature you should not forget. Having an appealing deck also helps the outdoor pool experience to be a lot more enjoyable. Here are some tips on how you can enhance the look of cool deck coatings:

1. Add Color

cool decking orange county

 If the resurfaced or refinished pool deck looks plain and boring, why not add a splash of color? It is important to ask the cool deck resurfacing contractor first about painting or staining it. The surface would need to have cured well enough to accept a change in color. While painting is an easier way to do it, it is highly recommended to use concrete stains. This penetrates deep into the deck so it does not peel, flake, or fade away.

2. Add Patterns

cool decking orange county

There are many different patterns available today that can be used on pool decks. For a cool decking, the pattern can be applied through stamping, engraving, or the use of stencils. You can choose a design based on the exterior of the home, the theme the pool area is going for, or to make the pool deck look like real, natural stone.

3. Seal the Surface

cool deck resealing

Cool deck resealing is highly recommended not only to add a layer of protection to the surface but also to enhance its aesthetics. Sealers come in a variety of gloss levels, from flat to high gloss. If you are worried about compromising sheen for slip-resistance, you can incorporate a fine aggregate with a high gloss sealer to enhance its shine while improving traction.

4. Use with Other Systems

cool decking orange county

There are other decorative concrete options out there for pool decks. The great thing about cool decking is that you can use it with other systems. For example, you can have a spray knockdown finish in certain areas and then some stamped concrete overlay patterns on the other areas. Mixing and matching them creates a unique, but highly aesthetic pool deck that pool owners will truly adore.

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Swimming pools are popular areas of fun and recreation in Orange County. However, everyone should be wary of the possible dangers lurking in every pool area. Here are some of the most common and some tips on how to prevent them.

Slips and Falls

slip and fall

It is common for pool users to walk barefoot on the pool deck. However, knowing that water often splashes on it, it can get pretty slippery. People who have been in the water get worse injuries. Why? Soaked skin acquires wounds and scratches easier. The best possible solution to this is a cool deck resurfacing. There are several cool deck coatings available that promote cooler surfaces to walk on despite long exposure to sunlight. These are either sprayed or stamped, creating a textured surface that is slip-resistant.

Drowning

drowning

There are many causes for drowning aside from the lack of swimming knowledge. Sometimes, even strong swimmers have close encounters. One cause is pool toys. Make sure that the toys you allow kids to play with in the pool should be made specifically for the pool. It is also important to check inflatable items and make sure that there are no holes whatsoever.

 

Sunburn

This is a common danger anywhere where people spend hours under the sun. In a pool area, there is more skin to burn. A no-brainer solution is to apply sunscreen before heading to the swimming pool. You may also add some sort of shade in some areas of the pool deck where people can relax away from the direct heat of the sun. Another part that gets burned is foot soles. Most pool deck materials absorb heat so much that walking on them hurts. It is highly recommended to apply a cool deck overlay to make it more heat-reflective. A cool decking stays 30% cooler underfoot than other deck materials.

Electric Shock

electric shock

If your pool has a heater, in-pool lighting, electric water features, or anything that makes use of electricity, the risk of electric shock is there. It is important to hire a licensed electrician to run all the cables to all these facilities, making sure that they won’t cause any danger.

 

Chemical Exposure

chemicalWater is often treated with Chlorine to kill bacteria. However, it is important to consult a pool professional to know the right amount of chlorine to put in the pool. Too much can be detrimental to swimmers as it gets into their skin and bits of it gets swallowed, too. It is also important to store the chemicals in a spot where kids can’t reach it.

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