Arizona Pool Decking Options And How To Choose
Can you imagine your dream pool in your backyard? Are you picturing the shape of the pool, the waterline tile or special features you might include?
What about the decking that surrounds the pool? You may even find yourself wondering why pool decking is important and which deck material is right for you.
This might be a design element that doesn’t seem like a big deal on the surface, but in reality it frames your entire pool and creates usable space in your backyard. Your pool deck often becomes the largest focal feature, other than the pool itself, in your outdoor living area.
California Pools & Landscape has been building custom pools in Arizona since 1988. With over 35,000 pools built, we understand that pool decking is a unique design choice for every pool. We are going to walk you through what options you have, how to choose it and how to pick the one that’s right for you.
By the end of this article, you will have a good idea of what type of pool decking you’ll want for your backyard project.
What Is Pool Decking?
Pool decking is the surface installed around the perimeter of your pool and creates space for poolside furniture or lounging out of the water. For inground pools like we build in Arizona, it is a durable material like stone or concrete. Pool deck is water resistant and the materials used are designed to endure extreme weather elements.
The pool deck creates a barrier between the pool from the yard which helps prevent dirt and debris from getting into your pool. It can infuse your backyard design with style and also create a cohesion with your outdoor environment.
What Pool Decking Options Are Available In Arizona?
There are a handful of pool decking options that are available for use in the Arizona climate. The choice between these materials comes down to your design style, budget and aesthetic that you are creating in your outdoor oasis. All of these factors will play a part in choosing the right pool deck.
The most popular pool deck materials used in Arizona are:
- Cool Deck
- Concrete Pavers
- Acker-Stone Pavers
- Travertine Pavers
- Porcelain Pavers
All of these products are commonly used in Arizona because of their durability and performance in our hot and dry weather. We are going to examine each type of decking to help you figure out what pool deck material works best for you!
Cool deck is a traditional pool deck surface, used for many years around residential, hotel & community pools. Cool deck is an acrylic topping that goes on top of concrete to improve footing when wet and help absorb heat. The acrylic layer is textured and is available in a wide variety of colors. Cool deck is the most affordable option per square foot, but will also need to be replaced every five years or so.
What are the benefits of Cool Deck?
- Great for traditional pool designs or remodels
- Multiple color options to match your outdoor environment
- Lowest decking cost
Concrete pavers are manufactured in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be made to look like stone or brick. These types of pavers are water-permeable and made to interlock without grout in the joints, thus a great choice for pool decks.
The sheer variety of sizes, colors, and textures means that concrete pavers look good with nearly any type or shape of pool. Concrete pavers are a smart choice for buyers who want something with a classier look than poured concrete but whose budget may not allow for the higher cost of natural stone pavers.
What are the benefits of concrete pavers?
- Several colors, sizes and textures available
- Classier look than cool deck
- More affordable than natural stone pavers
- Lifetime warranty (At California Pools & Landscape)
If you’re looking to add a touch of elegance to your pool decking without a big hit to your budget, Acker-Stone pavers are a great choice. These pavers feature a variety of looks and finishes such as stone, slate, and tumbled finishes that mimic the look of natural rock for a fraction of the cost.
Besides their pleasing appearance and overall aesthetic versatility, Acker-stone pavers have a durability advantage over concrete because they are made with a higher PSI rating, so they rarely develop cracks. They are also more stain resistant than Cool Deck and easy to repair if a chip or crack does happen.
Although they are generally more expensive than standard concrete up front, their durability spreads that extra investment across a longer time period.
What are the benefits of Acker-Stone pavers?
- Several looks and finishes for a custom design
- Great durability compared to concrete Cool Deck
Travertine Pool Deck
A popular choice in Arizona for pool decking is Travertine, which is a type of limestone. This natural stone comes in several different sizes, patterns and hues. The different sizes of pavers that are available offer endless design options with step pads and pathways around your pool.
What are the benefits of travertine pavers?
- Natural tones for your backyard design
- A sophisticated look
- Unlimited design options as the pavers are cut in different sizes
- Lifetime warranty (At California Pools & Landscape)
Outdoor Porcelain Pavers
Porcelain pavers are our most versatile decking surface option because they are available in various interpretations of stone and wood and in multiple sizes! Outdoor porcelain pavers are similar to indoor porcelain tiles, only thicker and more durable.
Porcelain pavers typically come in 12×24 or 24×24 size and can be used on almost any surface out of the water. They are available in planks and large modular shapes to create outdoor spaces with latest style trends, including cohesive indoor/outdoor designs.
Due to their size and cut, they look best on a geometric pool design versus a curvy, freeform look. They are the decking option with the highest price point but the lifetime warranty can make the investment worth the price.
What are the benefits of porcelain pavers?
- Perfect option for geometric pool designs
- Luxurious look for modern designs
- Lifetime warranty
How To Choose The Right Pool Decking For You In 3 Simple Steps
Now that you are familiar with what pool decking is and the most popular materials that are used in Arizona, it’s time to decide which pool decking is a fit for you! There are three major questions to evaluate when you are trying to narrow down your pool decking choice.
1. What is the style of your backyard project?
If you have a modern design, Acker-Stone pavers, travertine pavers or porcelain pavers will infuse a luxurious and modern touch to your design.
If you have a retro design, cool deck or concrete pavers will likely be the best fit for your project.
If you have a Tuscan design, travertine pavers or concrete pavers will provide the natural tones and appearance to tie in with your other design elements.
If you have an organic design style, our travertine, Acker-Stone or concrete pavers will be the best fit! You will have a variety of organic color tones to choose from with travertine pavers and concrete pavers.
2. What is the color palette of your home?
We know that every outdoor living environment is a unique space that should match the feel of your home. All of the materials that are available for your pool deck should have a color that fits into the design aesthetic that you’re looking to create.
For natural tones, natural stone pavers are the best pairing. Travertine and Acker-stone pavers will have brilliant organic looks to coincide with the colors of your outdoor oasis.
For contemporary tones, start with concrete pavers or travertine pavers. There are also color options available in Porcelain pavers, cool deck and Acker-stone pavers.
3. What decking material fits into your budget?
As mentioned above, the cost of our decking does vary based on the materials you select. We have quality products available that have been proven to work in the dry Arizona heat year after year.
If you are looking to keep your decking cost on the lower end, Cool Deck or concrete pavers are a great choice.
If your budget has more room to spare, travertine pavers and Acker-stone pavers add an extra level of elegance to your pool decking.
If your taste and aesthetic vision prefers the Porcelain pavers, you will need to have a larger decking budget available.
What Pool Decking Is Right For You?
As you can see there are several ways to personalize your style with your pool deck! By taking into consideration your project’s design style, your taste for aesthetics and your budget, the right pool deck should be a choice that you are now comfortable making.
If you’d like to see more examples of pool decking options, download our Dreambook App so you can have a better understanding of what each decking type might look like in your backyard.
At California Pools & Landscape, we offer a wide variety of decking options in each of our four showrooms throughout the Valley. We encourage you to take the time to visit a showroom, touch the materials and see how they look in person. This is oftentimes the most helpful to see any shade variations in the product and to feel how a decking product might feel on your bare feet.
Any of the time tested materials in this article are a great choice to surround your pool! Now that this decision is out of the way, you are one step closer to swim time!