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My Pool Deck – A Two Year Follow Up

My Pool Deck – A Two Year Follow Up

Three years ago, my husband and I were hit with every pool owner’s worst nightmare when we discovered that our in-ground pool, installed by the previous homeowners of our 1980’s fixer upper, was going to have to be excavated and demolished.

Noticing considerable water loss in our pool near the end of 2016, we sought the attention of multiple experts to diagnose the issue. Ultimately, it was determined that the pool had been installed improperly and the steel walls were rusting through to the liner- causing the water to leak.

Not only was this a devastating blow to our family because the pool,  along with the private lot, had been one of the major appeals to the property when we first decided to purchase the place almost five years ago. It was also a shock when we were quoted upwards of $60,000 to replace and properly install a new in-ground pool. Hell to the no!

After scraping our chins off of the floor, my husband and I decided that an investment of this scale would be quite foolish (we would never get the money back upon resell), but we also acknowledged that our pool had become an important summer staple not only to us, but to our kiddos.

Ultimately, we decided to compromise with an above ground pool. (You can read the details of the initial build and install here).

Given my aesthetic-obsessed personality, however, I felt like I was committing a major crime. My main concern was executing the pool deck design so that it didn’t look like your typical, eyesore of an above ground pool (I had to keep it classy).

So…how am I feeling about everything two years later?…

Our first in-ground pool (and no ..I am not responsible for the lovely sunflowers on the fence):

ranch house pool makeover

Our Above Ground Pool:

above ground pool deck ideas

How I feel about my above ground pool two years later…

While the shock of dropping $32,000 ($25,000 for deck + $7,000 for pool) on an expected project was initially one of the most stressful experiences we have ever encountered on our renovation journey, looking back, I can honestly admit that it was for the greater good. With the more tastefully executed design of the deck and the fence, our backyard oasis looks sooo much freakin’ better!

In fact, images of my pool deck have gone viral on the internet – with lots of you guys sending me your questions and concerns. So.. I wanted to take the time today to let you know how everything is holding up after two years (approaching our third summer with it).

Last summer,  we stained the deck and fence in Behr’s “Chocolate”. Because the wood was nice and fresh, we were able to go with a transparent stain finish…

deck for above ground pool

The transparent stain gives the wood a hint of warmth and color while also providing the necessary protection for longevity.

Speaking of longevity, I am sure you are curious to see how the unique design of the pool deck is doing (you can read the details of the deck build here).

While I am still thrilled with my two-year-old pool and deck ( I have all the details on the pool in this post), I did want to show you some minor issues with the trim we used to disguise the plastic pool coping along the perimeter of the pool…

above ground pool deck ideas

As with any wood decking exposed to outdoor elements, the decorative trim pieces are warping upwards a bit (pictured above).  This could potentially pose as a toe-stump hazard. To avoid risk of injury, however, we make sure our boys wear swim shoes when running around the pool (which they should be doing anyhow to avoid splinters).

Newly Built Pool Deck (Two Years Ago):

patio furniture for under $300

Pictured directly above was our newly built deck (two years ago). See how beautifully the coping was disguised from within the pool with 2×6 boards?

modern deck for pool

Unfortunately the upward warping/cupping of the 2×6 trim pieces makes the coping more visible when you are actually standing in the pool (pictured above).

Nonetheless, I am still happy with the design of the pool deck. Sure…it may not be as perfect as the day it was built, but it still looks a hell of a lot better than having plastic pool coping draping over the entire perimeter of the deck.

modern farmhouse pool deck

While trim warping is really the only issue I have experienced with the pool or deck, I wanted to address a question I have been receiving lately…

How will you change the pool liner without having to rip off the trim pieces of the deck?

Well…we went with a beaded liner which means we will not have to remove the coping of the pool to replace the liner (or so we have been told). So far, we have not had to test this as we haven’t had to replace the liner yet (praise the Lord!).

Was the investment worth it?

In summary, I am super pleased with how we approached this sh*t show of a conundrum.

Would I have loved to put that $32,000 into bathroom overhauls or a garage build-out? Sure. Then again, a fancy bathroom isnt nearly as thrilling as watching the laughter on your babies faces as they splash around in the pool all summer long. There is no doubt about it, we have already gotten our investment back in laughter and memories.

Be sure to tune back in next week, as I will be revealing more of my backyard in a Summer home tour blog hop I will be collaborating in (my tour goes live next Friday).

Now get out there and design some good vibes, and thank you for supporting this little blog of mine by sharing with a friend or on social media. It truly makes all the difference.

above ground pool deck ideas

** Updated June 2021**- I wanted to follow up with you another 2 years later on our pool. We have yet to had to change the liner, so I cannot attest to how easy this will be, but the liner we purchased is beaded which means we should not have to remove the pool coping to access the liner track. As you can see in the photo below, everything has held up nicely (we just re-stained the deck a few weeks ago as well)…

above ground pool deck review



My journey in interior design and home improvement began with transforming my first fixer-upper home, all while managing a budget and raising two young boys. My work, a reflection of my passion for creating beautiful, uplifting spaces, has been recognized by top publications like Better Homes and Gardens Magazine, HGTV, and more. I invite you to explore my site and witness the transformation of my home and the vibes we've designed.Read more...


Wednesday 5th of June 2019

Looks great! Does your horizontal wood slat fence go all the way to the ground covering up the sides of the pool?

Designing Vibes

Thursday 6th of June 2019

Hi Sue! Thank you so much. At the time of the deck build, behind the fence was just woods, so we did not take the fence down to the ground. This fall we built a fire pit area behind the deck, so I am now wanting to find a tasteful way to hide the back of the pool (just one that one side). But other than that, the pool walls are not visible because the sloped grade of the yard.

Bridgett Farner

Wednesday 5th of June 2019

Your pool/deck is beautiful and so well done. So spacious and great for entertaining. I am so proud of you and for you and Jon. Love to the boys❤ Bridgett

Designing Vibes

Wednesday 5th of June 2019

Aww..thank you so much, Bridgett! I hope you are doing well. Miss seeing your beautiful face.

Marty@A Stroll Thru Life

Tuesday 4th of June 2019

Love your pool, and I so agree. Well worth the investment.

Designing Vibes

Wednesday 5th of June 2019

Thank you so much, Marty! So excited about the home tour next week.