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Asbestos in swimming pools can be more common than you might think, find out more information about Marble-sheen & Asbestos here.

Can a pool have Asbestos?

Yes, a pool can contain asbestos.
Marblesheen is the most widely known swimming pool product to contain asbestos.
However many swimming pools have asbestos products such as cement sheeting from the 60's & 70's that was used to hold the top of the skimmer box into place, in most cases the sheeting was tiled over making it hard to notice until the removal / demolition is done.

What is Marblesheen?

Marblesheen is a pool interior coating that is rendered over the pool concrete, marble-sheen consists of crushed white marble and white cement or offwhite cement.

Marblesheen in many cases is also known in the pool industry to contain asbestos, many pool owners are unaware.

It is not common for Marblesheen to get installed in swimming pools anymore & it has a reputation for deteriorating, becoming unstable, and crumbling away from the pool surface. While Marble-sheen surfaces did last a very long time, it wasn't without issues.

Where is Marblesheen found in pools?

Marble-Sheen is rendered over the top of the concrete pool shell. 
Abestos can also be found in other places in or around a pool.
Sometimes when installing pebblecrete coping, an asbestos cement sheet was used over the swimming pool skimmer box as support for the installation of the pebble, the cement sheet would stay embedded under it, usually the pool tiler would tile over it making it difficult to spot and unintentionally making it a secret danger.

Marblesheen diagram

How was Marblesheen installed & where is it located?

Marblesheen was usually mixed in a cement mixer by the pool, the installers would open the bags of asbestos fibres and shake the bag into the marblesheen mix, which consists of white crushed marble and cement, once mixed they would carry the marblesheen into the pool with buckets and trowel it onto the surface.

Marblesheen diagram

Asbestos in Marblesheen

Prior to 1984 asbestos mixed within the marblesheen was very common practice, however asbestos has been found in Marblesheen pools built up to around the mid 90's, so any marblesheen pool should be tested for asbestos.

The most common type of asbestos found in Marblesheen is chrysotile also known as white asbestos, while it is the most common in Marblesheen it is not the only type of fibre that can be detected, in some instances organic fibres including horse hair can be found in cementitious products or worse blue asbestos.

For more information regarding asbestos, you can learn more here Asbestos Information

What does Marblesheen look like?

Identifying Marblesheen

Marblesheen can be tricky to identify.

It can take many forms and develop many colour patterns over the years. The first step is your pool colour, a white/grey Marblesheen when filled with water typically makes your pool look like a light sky-blue colour, though this alone means nothing unless the pool is emptied.

  • The most dangerous and highly disguised Marblesheen pool is a painted pool, Painting a swimming pool will hide the marblesheen making it difficult to recognise until a piece of the pool surface is taken for testing, in some cases the paint may be deteriorated enough to identify the marblesheen.
  • Greenish stains, from chemical burns or metals in the water can sometimes disguise Marblesheen.
  • Deteriorated spots is usually a good indicator only if a pool surface has never been renovated. (Though this can also occur in Quartzon)
  • Little spiders web cracks or larger cracks throughout the pool surface.
  • Marblesheen started as white, and can still be white or greyish, greenish white/grey, stained and offwhite / yellow-ish, Unless painted.

How likely is a pool to have asbestos?

It is recommended to have an expert look at the swimming pool to make this determination.

If the swimming pool was built in the mid 1990's or earlier, it should be treated as highly likely to contain asbestos and you should get in touch with a swimming pool professional.

Marblesheen zoomed in has small crushed pieces of white/greyish Marble.

Asbestos_Marblesheen_magnified_Close_detection_recognition_compare_see_What_is Asbestos in Swimming Pools

How to recognise Marblesheen

Here are some photos to help find / detect or recognize Marblesheen in a swimming pool, it is important to know that Marble-sheen can have these features individually as well as a combination of some or all of them!

Marblesheen & Asbestos advice

Grey Marblesheen

Marblesheen was intended to be white since the main ingredient in the Marble mixture is white cement, many factors can come in to change the look of Marblesheen, time is the biggest culperate for any changes in the look and feel of the Marblesheen. 

Pool Chemicals can also affect the colour of the Marblesheen.

Swimming Pool Expert

For expert advice regarding asbestos in swimming pools.

Melbourne, VIC

0407 666 999

You can also get in touch via email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Images of your swimming pool are recommended to be attached to your emails, you can also include asbestos reports.