Welcome to Tips n’ Tricks Tuesday, your dedicated source for valuable insights, clever hacks, and expert advice that will empower you to tackle masonry challenges with finesse and efficiency.

TTT #4 OGWe often receive inquiries about applications and best practices for installing pool coping with concrete units, and Dean Cavicchi of Ardex Co. has generously shared his extensive field experience with us to address these queries.

When it comes to pool coping with concrete units, the typical applications are as follows:

  • Substrate is Concrete: If your substrate is concrete, you have the option to go directly over the cleaned, porous concrete with X-32 or X-90. Afterward, set your stone in place. If needed, you can use AM-100 as a preliminary step to prepare the surface and ensure it is flat.
  • Substrate is PVC or Metal: When dealing with PVC or metal substrates, it’s crucial to roughen the surface using heavy-grit sandpaper. After roughening, clean the surface thoroughly. Next, apply Ardex 8+9 using a 3/16” V-notch trowel and trowel it in. Then, embed the SK-mesh into the Ardex 8+9, centering it over the seam where PVC, metal, and concrete meet. Depending on the size, you may need more than one piece of mesh. Allow it to dry and then apply a second coat of 8+9.
  • Installing Coping: With the surface prepared, you can now install the coping. Use X-32 or X-90 for this purpose. X-90 can be used, but the substrate must be flat. If not, set it with X-32 to account for any undulations.
  • Alternative for Wide PVC or Metal Substrates: If the PVC or metal substrates are wide enough on their own to support the coping, you can skip the above steps and use WA Epoxy Grout/Adhesive. Keep in mind that this epoxy does not have the sag resistance of X-32, so you may need to use plastic shims or wedges for additional support.
  • Grouting: For grouting the coping, use FH Grout. Ensure you incorporate soft joints every 8-12 feet or as dictated by the layout, connecting them to the closest grout joints. Ardex SX silicone caulking is ideal for creating these soft joints.

If you require coping materials or have further questions about installation, please don’t hesitate to contact Camosse for a quote. We’re here to provide you with the materials and guidance you need for your pool coping project.