Tiles Coming Out Of Bottom Of Fiberglass Pool

by Linda Truluck
(Colcord, OK)

Home was empty for two years when we bought it. Has a fiberglass pool and we emptied it. No problem but the tiles began to loosen and come out of the design at bottom of pool.

This happened after we refilled the pool.Want to replace tiles but keep getting warnings never to empty pool ever again. Have been told we would need to hire divers to come out and repair. That seems extreme and costly.

Can we drain pool completely to repair the tiles?

Thanks for the question Linda

Many fiberglass pool installers will tell you to not drain the pool. I tend to agree with them and here's why.

Some, if not all, manufacturers will not warranty or repair damages caused by external pressure on the walls of a pool.

This means when the pool is empty, the outside pressure is greater than the inside pressure and may cause the walls to split, crack, or buckle. Damage from bulging side walls and floors can be repaired but at a greater cost.

When draining a fiberglass pool, you must have the proper braces. Pools are meant to hold water.

The design of the pool will determine where and how many braces to use but must be placed in the right locations. An experienced pool installer can do this.

If you must drain your pool, I'd at least get a qualified pool installer to take a look at your pool and give you an expert opinion. And be sure if they do drain it they warranty the work.

You can also contact the pool manufacturer and they may someone in your area that can do the work. Otherwise, you may need to get some divers to take care of the tile issue.

To post a reply, or if you have a similar question, you can see your post on the Q&A page in the "Fiberglass Swimming Pool" category.

Check back to this post for updates or answers.

If you need immediate assistance (within 24 hrs) or for emergency personal assistance, you can make a donation of your choice and I'll answer your questions by phone.


Hope this helps and have a great Summer.


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Fiberglass Particles In In-Ground Fiberglass Pool

by Pasadena, CA

What can we do about minute fiberglass particals that settle in the bottom of the pool? Particles get onto skin while swimming and cause itching and discomfort.

This happened recently when a large group of adults and children were swimming and began to feel skin itching, redening and discomfort.

One of our guests with more experience indicated it was aged fiberglass particles that needed to be vacuumed out.

Thanks for the question John

From my vantage point it can be difficult to determine with any degree of certainty why there are fiberglass particles, or something similar, floating in the pool. What I can do is tell you that fiberglass pools are relatively tough and with good pool chemistry can last upwards of 20 years.

For the fiberglass to come through, be visible, and start disintegrating, it would need to go through about 3 - 4 layers before the actual fiberglass is showing.

Fiberglass Inground Pools

There could be other reasons as well why you're feeling particles and/or roughness on the bottom of the pool. Do you have a sand filter? The sand might be coming back into the pool through the returns. This indicates the possibility of a broken lateral. If this is the case, you can email back and I can send you some links to remedy that situation. An extremely old sand filter can crack and disintegrate as well. I've seen that happen before.

Do you have a DE filter? The DE might be returning back into the pool and settling to the bottom. Any torn grids needs to be replaced.

Was this the first time it happened and how long have you had the pool? It may have been a one shot deal. Did you vacuum it up and what happened? Did the particles return? What I'm looking for is a pattern. Say you've had the pool for years and you never had the grit on the bottom, then you did. You vacuumed it up and 2 days later you went swimming and the grit was back. Vacuumed it again and 2 days later the same thing happened. Now we can see a pattern developing. We can rule out kids playing tricks or throwing dirt in the pool, dust or wind bringing dirt or sand into the pool.

It is possible that the top layer of gel coat on the fiberglass is coming off. This can settle to the bottom and cause irritation. Many fiberglass pool have multiple layers. 1 - 2 gel coats, an epoxy layer, a resin layer, etc... Do you know that the particles are definitely fiberglass or is it something else?

Gel Coat Problems & Cracks In A Fiberglass Pool

Normally the gel coat won't come off evenly. You'll have white or blue streaks and cracks. Water can get into these cracks and cause damage to the underside of the fiberglass. Have you noticed any streaking or cracks in the pool? A darker fiberglass is easier to see than white. If it is a gel coat issue, you're much better off getting a qualified fiberglass pool tech to repair it rather than doing it yourself. Any work done by you may void any applicable warranties.

Read over this again and answer all of the questions you can. Again, it could be just an annoying one time issue, or something bigger. It's hard to tell right now. This is where a little detective work comes in. We can't jump to conclusions about what the grit is. Verifying these things now can save you alot of time and frustration later on.

If you need immediate assistance (within 24 hrs) or for emergency personal assistance, you can make a donation of your choice and I'll answer your questions by phone.

Contact Me


Hope this helps and have a great Summer.


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Calcium Hardness In Fiberglass Pool

by Omer

Could you be of help? I see so many levels from 100 to 350 recommended as optimum. I have a fiberglass relined pool - 2 yrs ago. The current calcium is 170. Is that too low? What is optimum? I have a Leslie's store want to sell me 45 lbs of calcium raiser for a 40,000 gal pool. Everything else is in balance except CYA and I just bought BioActive to fix that. Current CYA is about 250.

Hi Omer. You always want to go on the manufacturer's recommendations due to warranty issues. With that being said, I'll give my opinion and personal experience. We need to understand what calcium does for a pool. Plaster pools have a compound called calcium carbonate that is mixed into the plaster. The CH needs to be between 150 - 250ppm. If it's not the water will draw the calcium carbonate from the plaster causing pitting. The plaster loosens and chunks are taken out. Higher CH levels, over 350 - 400pmm, will cause calcification and hard water rings at the water line.

Some fiberglass pools need a bit of calcium to help with the gel coat and some fiberglass pools do have calcium carbonate. Most of the time I'd say that keeping a CH level of 150 - 250ppm is a good number regardless of the kind of pool you have. But again, check with the manufacturer for your specs.

BioActive is not a one-shot deal. You will need to manually add it in. It doesn't "remove" the CYA. It simply keeps it from being active. Once it's down to 30 - 50ppm you'll need to keep it there. If you choose to stop using it the CYA will go back to the original levels. Your best and most effective alternative is to do a near full drain and refill.


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