A new coat of paint can transform the look and feel of your swimming pool in no time at all. Whether you’re shopping for paint for a brand new pool or because yours is chalking, fading, bubbling, or blistering, this guide has you covered!
Choosing the right paint, tools, and accessories will help ensure you get the job done and get it done right. In this detailed pool paint guide, you’ll discover five of the best pool paints on the market today and plenty of swimming pool painting tips to transform your pool into an oasis in record time.
So, if you’re ready, let’s dive right in.
Best Pool Paint 2017
|Product Name||Type||Sq ft per gallon*||Lifetime||Colors|
|In The Swim|
Super Poxy Shield
|Epoxy||125 - 150||5 - 8 years ||White|
Epoxy Pool Coating
|Epoxy||125 - 150||Up to 8 years||White|
w/ Acr. Resin
|75 - 150||White|
|Epoxy Acrylic |
|Up To 300||Up to 20 yrs**||White|
|In The Swim|
|250 - 300||3 - 4 years||White|
* Coverage is approximate.
** Such result only for concrete fresh water pond.
1. In The Swim Super Poxy Shield – Best Epoxy Pool Paint
Best of all, a single application of super Poxy will last for up to eight years, which is all you’ll need because it’s one of the best one-coat epoxies being sold today. That’s right, it’s designed to go on in only one coat. Since there’s nothing worse than having to do the same job twice, this is a definitely a nice feature.
However, like other epoxy pool paints, it’s not the easiest to apply. It will require scrubbing, acid washing, and priming before being applied. That being said, you’ll only need one coat and with the right instructions, tools, and accessories, you should be just fine.
|CHOOSE YOUR COLOR & CHECK PRICE|
2. Olympic Zeron Epoxy Pool Coating – Best Swimming Pool Paint
Olympic Zeron Epoxy Pool Coating is recommended for professionals in need of a seriously durable paint with a fantastic finish. This epoxy is excellent for refinishing plaster pools, covering stains, and even sealing cracks.
In terms of durability, Olympic Zeron Epoxy Pool Coating is in a league of its own. In fact, when applied correctly, it provides a perfectly smooth pool surface that will last for up to eight years. This makes it one of the longest lasting pool paints around.
Zeron Epoxy looks great as well. With a sleek and chic high-gloss finish that can add a resort feel to any backyard, it’s designed to make you want to dive right in and never leave.
The good news is all of your prep work will pay huge dividends as you’ll enjoy nearly a decade of swimming in a beautiful pool before having to do it again!
|Choose your color & check price|
3. ZINSSER Pool Paint – Best Concrete Pool Paint
This Rust-Oleum pool paint is one of the fastest drying pool paints you’re going to find anywhere. Developed to dry to the touch in under six hours, you can be swimming in a newly coated pool before sundown. It even dries faster than water-based pool paint, which is known for its quick drying time.
This quick-drying paint is also incredibly versatile and can be used to seal and waterproof concrete, masonry, gunite, and plastered pools. Plus, it’s ready for use right out of the can with no mixing or anything else required, aside from the basic prep work that is.
It’s also not ideal for fiberglass pools. Nonetheless, if you’re looking for a great all-around pool paint for your in-ground pool and want one that’s quick and easy to apply, this quick-drying Rust-Oleum may be just right for you.
|CHOOSE YOUR COLOR & CHECK PRICE|
4. AdCoat Swimming Pool Paint – Best Paint for Fiberglass and Gunite Pool
This AdCoat Swimming pool paint has amazing coverage, goes on easy, and is friendly on the wallet, making it a terrific pick for everyone, especially the budget-conscious. From fiberglass to plaster, gunite, and concrete, the two-part epoxy and water-based acrylic is also designed for every variety of pools.
What’s really impressive, however, is the AdCoat’s unique acrylic resin formulation. While other swimming pool coatings chalk and fade in the sun, its cured finish defends against solar rays to minimize any signs of degradation.
With up to 300 square feet of coverage, you’ll also find you won’t need much to get the job done. In fact, it has better coverage than 99 percent of the other pool paints on the market. Combined with its reasonable price, this makes it a great value and an awesome buy as well.
|CHOOSE YOUR COLOR & CHECK PRICE|
5. In The Swim Aqua Coat – Best Acrylic Pool Paint
In The Swim’s Aqua Coat Pool Paint goes on easy and dries fast, making it an ideal option if you want to have a great looking pool with minimal downtime. The premium water-based swimming pool paint can be easily applied to a variety of dry or damp surfaces.
Although Aqua Coat dries remarkably fast, at least two coats are needed for the initial application. However, the overall downtime for most pool owners is only three days. Plus, it’s able to cover up to 275 square feet per gallon, which is quite impressive, especially for a water-based paint.
Despite being water-based, Aqua Coat is a durable acrylic enamel designed to look great and withstand years of abuse. Along with its easy application and budget-friendly price, it’s a great option any way you slice it. If you want a decent finish in a short time and at a fair price, In The Swim Aqua Coat might be for you.
|CHOOSE YOUR COLOR & CHECK PRICE|
Pool Paint – Buyer’s Guide
Pool paint can make or break your swimming pool. Choose the right paint and your above ground pool will look like Shangri-La. Choose the wrong paint and your sprawling in-ground pool will look worse than before, if not now, sometime in the near future.
To choose the right paint and make your swimming pool look like a million bucks, you need to know a little about pool paint. Wouldn’t you agree?
Keep reading to learn all you need to know!
Types of Pool Paint
There are basically three different types of pool paint: epoxy, acrylic, and water-based acrylic. Not long ago, chlorinated rubber paints were a popular option, but they’ve been done away with due to their negative environmental effect.
Epoxy Pool Paint
Epoxy swimming pool paint is solvent-based and the most durable of the bunch. They’re resistant to abrasions, chemicals, stains, and more. In fact, they’re so durable most epoxy pool paints are developed to last for up to eight years.
Some epoxies have a silky satin finish, while others have high-gloss finishes for those desiring a super clean and stylish look. In term of materials, epoxy pool paint can be applied to unpainted concrete, gunite, plaster, and fiberglass. They can also be used on pools with existing epoxy coatings for a fresh look and to smooth rough surfaces.
Most epoxy pool paints come in two-gallon kits, which must be mixed prior to application. The drying time of epoxy is also the longest of all pool paints. In fact, most outdoor pools take up to a week to properly dry, while indoor pools can take twice as long.
Epoxy paints also have a tendency to chalk over time due to exposure to the sun and pool chemicals. The best epoxies, however, are much more durable and UV-resistant.
Acrylic Pool Paint
Acrylic paint has an appealing high-gloss finish that looks great on almost any pool. It also has a drying time of five days for outdoor pools. It may be tempting, but acrylic paint should not be used on fiberglass surfaces or hot tubs and spas. It’s more susceptible to chemicals than epoxy and may chalk over time. Therefore, most acrylic pool paints have a life expectancy of about four years.
Water-Based Acrylic Pool Paint
On the other hand, water-based acrylic also has the shortest lifespan. In fact, commercial pools will need to be repainted annually and residential pools every other year.
Back on the bright side, water-based acrylic paint is surprisingly versatile. It can be used on plaster, unpainted concrete, and pools previously coated with epoxy, acrylic, or synthetic rubber. If you have a gunite or fiberglass pool, however, it may not be for you.
Water-based acrylic is also usually available in only one color: eggshell white. While you can find certain brands offering a few different color selections, it certainly won’t have a dramatic effect on the color and clarity of your pool water.
How to Test for the Right Paint
While there are some high-quality pool paints that can do a good job and look great overtop of another type of paint, it’s best to repaint a pool with its current paint type. For instance, if your pool is coated with an epoxy pool paint, repaint it with epoxy. If acrylic was used, then use acrylic. You get the drift.
If you have no idea what type of paint is on your pool, you can find out by performing a paint chip test.
- Chip off a tiny piece of paint.
- Rub the paint chip in a few ounces of epoxy or acrylic paint solvent.
- If the chip begins to dissolve in a solvent within a minute or so, you have a match. For example, if the chip dissolves in epoxy paint solvent, it is epoxy paint.
A lot of people neglect to think about this step, but it could be the key to a great looking pool rather than a DIY project gone wrong.
How Much Paint Should I Buy?
The answer to this question depends on a variety of factors, such as the size of your pool, the paint you’ve chosen, and how many coats you’ll need to apply. Some paints have better coverage than others, so it takes less paint to get the same effect.
While many quality pool paints can cover up to 150 square feet, some can cover up to 300 square feet or more. However, some of these paints may require an extra coat, so you have to keep that in mind as well. Rough, pitted, or unpainted surfaces will require more paint.
The goal should be to get all of it painted at once to ensure a nice and consistent application. If you have excess paint, you can start rolling it on more thickly as the paint begins to dry, especially on the steps and around the drains for added protection.
Pool Paint Calculation Guide
To determine how much paint your pool will need, perform the following equation:
• Length x Width x 1.7
If you’re applying two coats of paint, multiply the answer by two. This will give you the entire square footage that needs to be covered. Then, divide that number by the square feet one can of your paint is able to cover. For example, if you bought a can of premium acrylic with up to 300 square feet of paint coverage, you would do the following:
- Single coat: Length x Width x 1.7 / 300
- Two coats: Length x Width x 1.7 x 2 / 300
One of these simple equations will tell you exactly how many gallons of pool paint you’ll need.
Primer – Is It Really Necessary?
It may not be a must all of the time, but primer is ALWAYS a good idea. If you’ve never painted before, primer should be rolled or sprayed on the pool surface prior to the paint in order to maximize adhesion.
For unpainted pool surfaces, primer is a must for the best bond. However, if you’re using an acrylic or old school rubber-based pool paint, you don’t necessarily need primer as the first coat will serve the same purpose.
Epoxy paints, on the other hand, almost always need primer. But only one coat may be needed, so pick your poison. If you’re painting bare concrete, gunite, or rough surfaces with epoxy, primer is a must in order to smooth the surface and provide the best bond.
Avoiding Bubbles and Blisters
Bubbles and blisters are a common occurrence when painting a pool, but they’re almost always the result of improper preparation and poor adhesion. Your pool must be clean and dry before applying paint. If your pool surface isn’t dry, clean, and the right temp, or if the paint is applied too thick, the paint will bubble and blister.
If the paint does blister, the best course of action is to prep and paint the pool again, or at least the spots. So, it’s best to get it right the first time. If you clean the pool with a TSP degreaser, scrub it thoroughly to remove all of the oils and minerals, make sure it’s dry, and wait until it’s cool and sunny outside, you should have no bubbling or blistering issues with your new swimming pool paint.
Pool Painting Prep
The best paint in the world won’t turn out looking as good as it should if your pool is rough and poorly prepped. If your pool is in need of a little TLC, you’ll need to get the right supplies, roll up your sleeves, and get ready to clean.
Pool Painting Supplies:
- Paint mixer drill attachment
- Painter’s tape
- Paint roller with 3/8-inch nap
- Paint roller frame and extension pole
- Trim brushes
- White sand for steps
To properly prepare your pool surface for paint, you must first drain all of the water out of the pool. Then, remove any oils or grease you see on the surface. To do so and clean the surface, use a tri-sodium phosphate solution (TSP), flower waterer, and a scrub brush to thoroughly scrub the surface. Then, rinse thoroughly and voila!
After the surface is cleaned and degreased, it’s time for everyone’s favorite job: removing the mineral deposits. This is done by acid washing the surface. Don’t worry; it’s not as bad as it sounds. You can use Sulfamic Acid cleaner or diluted muriatic acid, both of which are widely available online and at most pool stores. In addition to removing mineral deposits, acid washing etches the surface for a better bond and paint adhesion.
How to Acid Wash a Pool
Fiberglass swimming pools must be sanded prior to paint. Rather than acid etching, the entire pool must be sanded with coarse sandpaper and then cleaned with TSP.
Before you rush to grab a roller and brush, clean the pool deck and surrounding area to make sure it’s clean of debris that may fly in the pool. Also, check the weather forecast. It’s never a wise idea to paint in windy or rainy weather.
How to Paint a Pool
Best Pool Paint – Bottom Line
Okay, you’re now armed with more than enough information to pick out a quality pool paint and turn your worn out pool into an inviting jewel just waiting to be enjoyed.
Painting your swimming pool is a quick and easy way of boosting your pool’s appearance. Best of all, it’s inexpensive too. In fact, most pools can be painted for under $1 a square foot.
Ready to paint? Great!
Browse the pool paints above one more time, check out the rest of our site to learn more helpful tips and tricks, and get ready to dive into a fresh sparkling pool in no time at all!