The most common type of pool surround in Arizona is called “Cool Deck” or also spelled “Kool Deck.” It is one of the least expensive ways to finish off bare concrete for a more finished looking pool surround. Cool decking also performs another important function, it keeps your feet from burning on those HOT Arizona summer days! Most pool deck coatings have some heat reflective properties which keep the decking up to 15 degrees cooler than bare concrete. This is a welcome feature when you consider concrete temperatures can reach 140 degrees in the direct summer sun.
Similar to your house, the cool deck coating also needs to be maintained and re-coated, approximately every 8-10 years. If the decking is severely cracking or chipping you should contact a professional to handle this job. However, if its in decent shape any handy homeowner can save some money and re-coat the pool deck themselves.
The first step you will want to take is to rake away the surrounding rocks or dirt and dig around the decking, a few inches will be fine. Then, clean the existing deck, this is important because you do not want to apply the new coating over any dirty surface. The easiest way to clean the decking is to use a pressure washer, available at most local rental yards for about $50 per day. After the decking is clean and dry cover any surface you want to protect with plastic, you can never be too safe.
The product we recommend for the coating is from Xcel Surfaces, called Top Coat IR (heat reflective paint). We’ve had great results with this product, it adheres very well and resists heat and fading. Its available in 6 neutral colors so you can be assured you will find something that will complement your current color.
Start by applying the first coat at the farthest point of your pool area and work backwards, rolling the big areas with a 1/2″ nap paint roller and brushing the edges. Let this coat dry for 3-4 hours then repeat this process for the 2nd and final coat. After finishing the 2nd coat you should let the decking cure for 24 hours before walking on or getting the decking wet.