Benefits of Pebble Tec® vs Plaster for Your Swimming Pool

Pros and Cons of Pool Plaster and Pebble Tec® Pool Surfacing

Your kids’ begging has finally paid off, and now, you’re getting a pool. However, if this pool’s going in your backyard, you want to make sure that it’s going to look good too.

We get that.

Your pool’s surface plays a huge role in the impression you want to make. Do you want to convey young fun in the sun or an exotic getaway? Take a look as we compare Pebble Tec® vs plaster pool surfacing to help you decide between two very different end products.


Pool plaster is the traditional pool interior finishing. This classic marble-based style has seen some updates since it became popularized in the 1960s. However, it still maintains the same white, simple, smooth, and chalky-looking appearance for the most part.

The prevalence of Pebble Tec® pool surfacing has taken off in the last few decades. That’s because in desert regions like Phoenix, Pebble Tec® pool finishing blends in with the natural landscape.

It’s made up of a bunch of little pebble aggregates, ranging in colors from tan to blue and green. These pebble pieces completely cover a thick layer of cement. Because of this, it looks a lot like a creek or river bed.

While it’s beautiful, a Pebble Tec® pool surface can be rougher on your feet. If that’s going to be an issue, we suggest looking into Pebble Sheen® instead. It’s a similar-looking alternative but with a duller surface for less abrasion.


Pool plaster is not as durable as Pebble Tec®. Over time, it discolors, stains, and collects bacteria. This is due to its porous surface material being difficult to fully clean. To keep pool plaster looking fresh, you’ll need to get your pool replastered every 5 to 8 years or so.

Considered to be the superior-quality pool surfacing material, Pebble Tec® pool finishing lasts as long as 15-20 years: with the right care. It easily conceals chemical residue as well.


Thanks to its relatively simple look and material makeup, pool plaster is a lot less expensive than Pebble Tec®. White plaster costs about $4 for every square foot of pool surface. Meanwhile, a pebble finish, like Pebble Tec® or Pebble Sheen®, can easily cost $10 or more per square foot.

This means that, in regards to pebble tec vs plaster surfacing, an average-sized inground pool at 1,088 sq. ft would cost you $4,352 minimum instead of $10,800.


Since pool plaster is more susceptible to issues, you’ll need to brush it weekly to remove stains, dirt, and other bacteria that are stuck on or hard to reach. You’ll also need to keep a close eye on whether or not your pool water chemistry is balanced. If you stick with your maintenance routine, it will delay the need to replaster your pool.

The same can be said for upkeeping a high level of maintenance with your Pebble Sheen® or Pebble Tec® pool surface. Regular scrubs and balanced water chemistry are the best way to prevent scaling so it looks bright and clean. Top it off with an acid wash to extend this effect.

Pool Installation Services by Emerald Pools and Spas

Emerald Pools and Spas is a Phoenix leader in premium pool installation services. Family-owned and operated, our pool care experts have been serving the Valley since 2000. It means we know a thing or two about quality. That’s why, when you call us to install your family’s brand-new pool, we’ll recommend superior Pebble Sheen® and Pebble Tec® pool surfacing. That way, you get to share at-home moments with your family as beautiful as our finished pool surfaces.

Contact us today to get an estimate on your upcoming pool installation project! Together, we can determine what’s the best fit for your home and family.

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