How to Paint a Pool with Acrylic Paint

WRITTEN BY:  Inyo Pools

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Acrylic pool paint is versatile, able to cover almost all types of coatings and even damp surfaces, while also being more eco-friendly than traditional chlorinated rubber based paints.

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Step 1

Inyo Pools carries Ramuc AquaLuster Acrylic pool paint so this guide will be based on the instructions for that brand.

Step 2

If your pool is already painted, the existing paint type should be determined for compatibility before applying any new paint. This can be determined by sending a sample to Ramuc (or other paint manufcturer) if the paint type is unknown. There are also a few tests you can try. Take a 1 inch paint chip, immerse it in denatured alcohol. If the chip dissolves, it is a water-based acrylic. If it doesn't dissolve, immerse a new chip in 75% mineral spirits and 25% Xylol, wait 30 seconds and rub the chip between your thumb and forefinger. If it dissolves, the paint is a synthetic rubber-base coating. If not, try immersing one last chip in 100% Xylol. If it dissolves, the paint type is chlorinated rubber; if it does not, it is an epoxy. You can see our paint compatibility chart at http://www.inyopools.com/images/pool_paint_compatibility.gif.

Step 3

If you do not already know how many gallons of pool paint you will need, use the calculator at http://www.ramucpoolpaint.com/calculator.asp.

Step 4

You will need the following cleaning supplies: Ramuc Clean and Prep Solution or Tri-sodium phosphate (TSP) and muriatic or sulfamic acid solution; high pressure power washer with minimum 3000 p.s.i. and turbo tip attachment.

Step 5

You will need the following painting supplies: Roller with maximum 3/8" nap; paint brush; 5 gallon bucket to intermix paint; mechanical mixer (paddle attachment on a power drill can be used); soap and water.

Step 6

For joint and crack filler, you will need hydraulic cement or Durathane® polyurethane sealant or any other submersible polyurethane sealant (do not use silicone-based products). Durathane must be topcoated before submersing with chemically treated water.

Step 7

All surfaces to be painted must be power washed to remove any debris that could affect paint adhesion (dirt, chalk, oil, loose paint, etc). The power washer should be set at a minimum of 3000 p.s.i. and have a turbo tip nozzle. Using a solution of tri-sodium phosphate (TSP) and a stiff bristle brush, scrub all surfaces especially at the water line and around steps. Wash (etch) the surface with a 30 - 40% solution of muriatic or sulfamic acid (follow manufacturer's instructions on label). Following the acid treatment, neutralize acid-treated surfaces with TSP solution, flushing well with water and keeping all surfaces constantly wet. After this etching, the surface should feel similar to 120-grit sandpaper.

Step 8

Once you have prepared the pool surface, you will want to intermix or "box" all of the paint being used to achieve a uniform color. Pour all of the paint into your 5 gallon bucket and mix using a paddle attachment on a drill.

Step 9

Apply paint with a brush or roller. The roller nap should be no thicker than 3/8 inch. If pool is outdoors, you should paint when the surface is cool; early morning or evening is recommended and never in direct sunlight or when rain is expected. Two coats of paint are required with a minimum of 6 hours in between. If your pool is in an area with low humidity (less than 20%) and temperatures over 90 degrees F, you should dampen the surface with a mist of clean water. This will improve paint adhesion.

Step 10

After both coats are done, wait at least 5 accumulative dry days before filling an outdoor pool, meaning you add an additional day of drying time for each day of rain. You would wait at least 7 days for an indoor pool with proper ventilation.

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