Whether you choose to tile just the edge of the pool, add whimsical mosaic creatures and patterns to the bottom or sides, or encase your entire pool, adding tile can give your outdoor space a distinctive look. The combinations of colors, textures and patterns are limited only by your imagination; just find something that inspires you, gather the tools you’ll need, and get ready to put a little personality into your family’s poolside experience.
7 Ceramic tiles are the most durable for use in pools in spas. There are natural stone tiles that may be used on pools, but they must be durable enough to withstand cleaning, chemicals and regular pool maintenance. If tiles are glazed porcelain, make sure the glaze is strong enough to withstand cleaning, chemicals and regular pool maintenance. Class I or Class II glazed porcelain tiles are not recommended. Rolled grip edge tiles are the safest and best choice for the pool’s coping. If you choose glass or metal tiles, uncoated, face-mounted glass mosaics are a better choice and stainless steel metal tiles will work best. The grouter should only be 6 feet or less in front of the scrubber so the grout doesn’t harden. Always wear safety glasses when cutting tile.
Place the tile. For all-tile pools, butter the tiles with adhesive and place. Using tiles on meshed sheets will make this process faster and easier, and you won’t have to use tile spacers. To place tiles on the inside edge of the pool, begin at the skimmer on the pencil line you drew. If the tiles aren’t on meshed sheets (in which case you can use the spacing already built into the placement of the tile on the mesh sheet), use a ruler or level on the bottom edge of the tile so each tile is placed at the same level and place a tile space in between each tile. Cut tiles, if necessary, using a wet saw or mosaic tile cutters. Many pool owners are opting for tiles surrounded by plaster; if so, install the tile on the tank by positioning the mosaic on the tank, outline the design in pencil and give the outline a thin coat of thinset. Butter the back of each mosaic tile and put it in place. Continue tiling until you’ve tiled the entire desired area and let the tile adhesive set up for 30 minutes.
Wipe down the surface using clean water and sponges to remove grout residue. Let cure for 28 days.