"Plaster Dust"--- What is it?

Let me start by saying plaster dust is not a scientific term, nor is it something you should worry about your children smoking. When a new cement pool finish is applied and hardened, there is a very fine film of cement “dust” on the surface that reacts with the pool fill water. These particles become moist and swell up in size. At this point, they are not bonded to the finish surface. But, if left alone after a few days, those once loose and slimy “dust” particles will harden and become bonded to the cement finish. Very bad situation! That’s why as soon as your new or resurfaced pool is filled, the new cement surface needs to be brushed thoroughly to remove that “dust” layer. By methodically brushing, vacuuming, and filtering out the “dust”, your new pool finish will remain smooth and pristine in appearance. (By the way, “plaster dust” is really just calcium carbonate.) So, what will happen if the brushing process is neglected or inadequate? Best case scenario is when only a very thin, opaque film remains. Any color specks in the finish may still be faintly visible and a slight sandy texture can be expected. When a pool is not brushed at all, a layer of whitened and hardened film will sit on top of the finish and any color specks cannot be seen. This will feel rough and can only be feasibly removed by a strong acid washing after complete draining. On a partially brushed pool, sometimes you can visibly see brush strokes where someone attempted to brush, and in other areas you can see such a thick build up of dust, usually in the deep end, it can lift up in chunks giving the appearance that the actual finish is coming apart. 

Chemically speaking, the presence of this dust will make it nearly impossible to keep the ph down even if total alkalinity is ok. Small doses of muriatic acid need to be added daily to gradually get it down. Also, high ph will cause chlorine to get used up rapidly, so stock up on extra jugs.

The maintenance of a new pool can seem daunting, but proper instruction and understanding will make it less difficult. Contractors that understate this process to their customers are doing a disservice to them. I’ve seen countless new pools in dire need of acid washing. Most of these customers are completely unaware of the importance of daily brushing and filtering of “plaster dust”. Nasty stuff. Just say NO to plaster dust!

Pro-Cite is located in southern Brevard County Florida which includes the communities of Melbourne, Palm Bay, Viera, Suntree, Satellite Beach, Indian Harbour Beach, Indialantic, Melbourne Beach, Eau Gallie, West Melbourne, Malabar, and most of the Space Coast.

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Pro-Cite, Inc.
P.O. Box 372457
Satellite Beach, FL 32937

 

321-777-5599


Email: info@pro-cite.com