Pool Tile Coping

Pool Tile Coping

 

How Pool Tile Coping has Evolved and Developed

While the remains of swimming pools built more than 5,000 years ago have been found in Egypt and India, pools as we know them today have evolved over the past 100 years or less.  One of the most interesting elements is how swimming pool tile coping has evolved and developed during this time.

Of course manmade ponds and water features have maintained their popularity for centuries, from the formal pools in the courtyards of the so-called “gardens of Islam”, and the incredible water features built during the Renaissance, to natural pools and ponds incorporated in many Japanese gardens, both public and private. While not generally intended for people to swim in, some of these pools did in fact have edgings, which is what in effect pool coping is.

The word “coping” means, strictly speaking, the top, usually sloping course of a wall, and it is usually built from the same material as the wall, for example brick or stone.

Swimming pool coping is a little different, particularly in terms of function, although it is usually laid so that it slopes slightly away from the pool edge. The reason we incorporate it in pool design is because it neatens the edge, provides a solid surface to walk on (often extending to an adjacent paved or tiled patio), and also provides a kind of hand grip that can help swimmers get out of the water.

Many of the earliest “modern” pools were built out of concrete that was plastered and then painted to make it waterproof. These pools often had a shaped coping that was moulded from concrete that was mixed using a very fine coarse aggregate (stone), making the final product smooth, like terrazzo.

When pools were made with reinforced concrete that was poured, builders would sometimes include poured concrete coping in the pool design.

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Even though the industry made great strides after the gunite method of construction was developed in the mid-1950s, even a mere 25 years ago (in the late 1980s), the most common types of pool coping was made from precast concrete coping stones and poured concrete. However, designers were beginning to suggest using flagstones, brick and other masonry materials.

By the year 2000, tiled surrounds were commonplace, but pool tiles were generally only applied around the water line, and sometimes to steps and ledges. Fully tiled pools were considered reasonably unusual.

Pool Tile Coping | Counter rim inner glazed

Times have changed though, and today an increasing number of people are opting for fully tiled swimming pools, and the manufacturers of swimming pool tiles offer a range of different types of coping that you can use around the rim of your pool. These include:

•Natural stone, including travertine, granite, slate and bluestone.

•Fake stone, which is made of the same sort of concrete as the original concrete coping, but is moulded to look  like the real thing.

•Brick coping that often has what is known as a bullnose, on the edge that faces the water (although some people lay ordinary brick pavers right to the rim of the pool, sometimes even overlapping the rim). Some companies manufacture what they call a safety grip brick, which has a more pronounced, curved edge that is easier to hold onto. The colours of brick coping are varied, but mostly earthy, ranging from brown to grey.

•Pool tile, which are rounded or “capped”, and like the tiles manufactured for use inside the pool, are available in a range of colours and finishes.

•Porcelain handholds that can be laid in place of the usual pool tile coping.

So you can see that today there is lots and lots of choice. You will also find that many companies that make coping from different types of tiles also sell other types as well.

Pool tile clening

Pool Tile Coping

Related posts:

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  2. How to Choose a Swimming Pool Tile to Make Your Pool Unique
  3. Pool tile cleaning
  4. Mosaic Pool Tile – Tips & Redecoration Ideas!
  5. How to Clean Pool Tiles

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