LESLIE: Next up, we have Betty in Florida who has cracks around her swimming pool.
Betty, what happened?
BETTY: We have a brick trim around our pool, edging, and the cracks start from the edging all the way to the house. And we wanted to do some repair work and I’m not sure what procedure to take.
LESLIE: Is it just through the grout or is it actually through the brick as well?
BETTY: No, it’s not brick. It’s what they call Kool Deck.
TOM: Yeah, it’s like a concrete patio with a coating on it. And the cracks are probably more than just the surface. They’re probably in the concrete. So what you want to do is you want to try to avoid having water leak in there because that’s just going to make it more unstable and make it open up even more.
So what I would suggest you simply do in this case, Betty, is to go out and buy some silicone caulk. Silicone caulk is going to give you the best adhesion in this particular instance. Make sure you clean out any dirt that’s in there, first, and caulk this area with silicone. And then what’ll happen is it’ll stick real well to both sides of the crack and, most importantly, it will expand and contract as that pool deck starts to move around the house and it’s a lot less likely to come out.
Is this deck in full sun?
BETTY: Yes it is and when you’re talking about keeping it dry, you can’t because it’s full rain, too, when it rains. (Leslie chuckles)
TOM: Right. Right. So make sure you look at the UV resistance of the caulk, if it’s in full sun, and buy one that has the most UV resistance. Because that’ll stop it from drying out, too. OK, Betty?
BETTY: Yeah. Well, I was thinking – we were thinking about that but then the caulk would probably be kind of an eyesore, too. Right?
TOM: Well, you can buy silicone caulks in different colors. You can buy it clear, you can buy it white, you can buy it brown, you can buy it black. So I would buy the color that’s going to be the least obvious and go with that.
BETTY: OK. Well thank you. We’ll try it.
TOM: You’re welcome, Betty. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT, 888-666-3974.
Leslie, it sounds like Betty was hoping for a more complicated solution.
LESLIE: (chuckles) I think she really was looking to do some more work rather than something quite simple.
LESLIE: And it’s always better to start off with the easiest stuff. You can get more complicated from there.
TOM: That’s a good point. You can always get the jackhammer out later, Betty. (Leslie chuckles) Right now, try the caulk gun, will you? Thanks for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT, 888-666-3974; the email address, HelpMe@MoneyPit.com.
LESLIE: Hey, you know what, Tom?
LESLIE: If she’s got a large area to cover to get in there and fill things up with, what about that new battery-powered caulk gun?
TOM: Oh, that’s right. That was really cool. That was made by Ryobi; 18-volt, battery-powered caulk gun.
LESLIE: No more wimpy wrist problems.
TOM: It shoots 200 tubes of caulk on a single battery charge.
LESLIE: (chuckles) That’s a ridiculous amount.
TOM: You know, isn’t it kind of cool to be the guy that got to test that? I wish I was that guy, you know? Just keep bringing me more caulk guns. More caulk tubes. Just keep emptying it out. “How many you up to, Tom?” “A-hundred-and-sixty-four.” (chuckles)
LESLIE: God forbid you lose count. You’ve got to start all over.
TOM: “But I think she’s got some more power in her.” (chuckles)
LESLIE: Well, that might be something good for Betty to try out when she tackles that huge job.
1-888-MONEY-PIT. Leslie, who’s next?