Pebble in SoCal

mikemendozaSeptember 1, 2010

First, I want to thank everyone on this forum. It has been an invaluable tool I have used throughout my pool construction process. I am almost done with my pool. Tile and stone are getting installed and should be done by Tuesday.

The problem I am having is choosing a pebble company. I was leaning towards Kerber Brothers or Jeff Kerber. After doing some research, I will not be using either. Kerber Brothers lost their license. Jeff Kerber has far too many complaints. Can someone please refer a reputable pebble company? I interviewed Alan Smith pool Plastering. They seem good and I can't find any dissatisfied customers. Any advice or direction would be greatly appreciated!

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we used a great company out of San Fernando in the San Fernando Valley. I dont remember their plastering companys name but their parent company does gunite as well and they are called Precision Gunite. All of their employees were very professional and did an awesome job.. Danny Garcia is the owner and they have been in business for 17 years. you can reach them @ (818) 898-1141 ... I was an O/B and this company was one of only a few of the diferent contrators involved in my 125k project that I would highly reccomend. hope this helps

    Bookmark   September 1, 2010 at 11:36PM
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I'm in Huntington Beach and got quotes from several different PB's for my pool remodel. There are only two companies in SoCal that handle Pebbletec products: Alan Smith Pool Plastering is one and Baron Pool Plastering is the other. While Alan Smith ran a close second, Baron's the company I decided to use. They are based in San Bernardino, but they go all over SoCal.

Baron's customer service is top-notch. I used several contractors for my remodel and Baron was the best. Dan is the guy I dealt with primarily and he is very accommodating and just wants to make his customers happy. You see, I can be a bit picky. I had Baron come back to redo a few things such as swap out some spotter tiles ('cos I changed my mind about the colors) and they came out 3 separate times to replace coping that had been damaged by my decking contractor. Although this remodel took way longer than expected, Baron did an excellent job.

here is before

and here is after

I chose Grigio Pebble Fina -- its a medium-to-dark gray smooth plaster but with sparkling (abalone?) glitters in it.
You may not be able to see it so well in this picture but at the far end is a 6-foot by 12-foot reef deck where the deep end used to be. This pic was taken right at the beginning of start-up so the water wasn't that clear yet (plus it was overcast that day) but it is crystal clear now! Baron built the reef deck and installed an umbrella sleeve, raised the deep end from 8 feet to 5 feet, mounted the IntelliBrite light, installed automatic pool filler and new plumbing all the way around with dual drains, H-valve, new skimmer, 3 returns, and a dedicated line for The Pool Cleaner.

As I mentioned, I receive quotes from several contractors for the pool remodel and decking. I ended up hiring a separate contractor to do the decking, another to re-do the wiring and install the new equipment which I purchased from another vendor, and then the pool remodel contractor (Baron). Nothing wrong with that, I think its good to see what your options are. And don't let the pricing be your selecting factor! You're heard "you get what you paid for" right? I found that out on another project before the pool remodel! But that's a story for another time...

    Bookmark   September 3, 2010 at 2:53AM
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Hi Mike,

Thank you for the opportunity to bid your job. Let us know if you have any questions concerning your proposal. Good luck in your search!


Here is a link that might be useful: PebblePictures

    Bookmark   September 3, 2010 at 9:17PM
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Welcome to the forum.
I hope you'll find time to drop in occasionally.
The membership here is a great bunch of people looking for answers to the same questions we get out in the field every day.
I find it very rewarding to enlighten them with little bits of knowledge I've picked up over the years.

Although I've never met anyone from Alan's company and am removed from his market by well over 1000 miles I've heard good things about their work in SoCal within the industry.

See ya,

    Bookmark   September 6, 2010 at 10:21AM
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mastiff_lover, thanks for the information on Precision Gunite. I had them come over and give me a bid. The proposal had their business license on it. I looked it up and it showed that it is expired. They have several other business licenses under four different names with two active and two expired. I am a little uneasy hiring a company that uses an expired business license on their contracts.

Alan Smith does not use Pebble Tec but uses another brand. A very nice salesman from Alan Smith gave me a bid. Unfortunately, he is charging a premium Pebble Tec price for a non Pebble Tec product.

Baron used Pebble Tec and their price was in the same neighborhood as Alan Smith. They are at the top of my list right now.

Kelly, I did a lot of research on Alan Smith Pool Plastering. Sounds like a top notch company. I am not disputing that. However, their prices are not competitive with other companies doing pebble finishes in the area.

Thanks again for all of the input. Hopefully I will be done with my pool next week.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2010 at 10:46PM
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Baron has done my work for the 31 years I have been in business. Can't say we never had any problems in all those years but they always stand behind their work.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2010 at 10:28PM
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Oops! My mistake in recalling past quotes and you're right: Alan Smith is *not* a PebbleTec installer.

I think Baron will do a great job for you. If dapooltec has been using them for over 30 years, that says something.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2010 at 6:00PM
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Terri Olsen,

I saw that you put Gregio Pebble Fina in. We are considering either that or French Grey Sheen. We did see a pool that had the Grigio Pebble Fina and loved it. Couple concerns we had: was mottling/marbling an issue down the line...and also it felt a bit gritty as well.

At the same time, we are concerned about Sheen possibly being too rough on our feet being that we have a sports shallower pool.

Can you please send me some feedback? Thank you

    Bookmark   April 15, 2011 at 1:22PM
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Hi pool4kar,

I just love the Gregio Pebble Fina -- it is georgeous! Part of the reason it was selected was because we wanted something smooth, like our plaster used to be, but we wanted a color too (not just more white plaster). At that time 3M had discontinued their colorquartz because of all the problems they were having and pebble tec or pebble sheen just wouldn't cut it. Too rough. So the Pebble Fina was suggested and since they matched the price that they would have charged for 3M, we jumped on it. But yes, the Gregio has color variations.

About a month after my install was done I had Baron come back out because I was not happy with the mottled sections. They had a guy in a wetsuit and scuba tank with a power sander go underwater for half the day, sanding the whole bottom of the pool. It smoothed it out -- its not gritty feeling at all now, but I'm not sure if it ever really was to begin with -- and it also did, to some degree, remove some of the mottling but not all of it.

I don't know if the Gregio even can remain in a smooth even gray tone. I say this because a solar contractor who came to see me two months after it had been smoothed out commented that the mottling would only escalate over time, based on his observation of other pools he has worked on, and it sure enough has. I've also heard from others on this forum and other forums that that's what it does. It even talks about that on Pebbletec's website -- to expect the marbling as part of the aesthetic appeal: "Any Pebble Fina variations in texture, color and appearance are inherent characteristics that are part of the unique beauty of the pool finish."

That doesn't mean its not beautiful, its just not a smooth even tone of gray throughout. It is kinda marbled looking, all over. But with the seashell pieces sparkling in the sun or at night with the pool lights on... I tell you, I don't regret choosing this product at all. I love it!

    Bookmark   April 20, 2011 at 8:01PM
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Greetings everyone,

We are finally ready to re-surface our pool. Our home was built in the late 60's, and it is a kidney shaped pool from that era. Does anyone know generally the price range for resurfacing with Pebble Tec? We will get some quotes but wanted to get a ballpark idea for budgeting purposes. Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 3:37PM
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I had pebble put in about 7 years ago in the L.A. area by a company called San-Rock from Canyon Country. They seemed to do a good job.

I just have a couple of thoughts on pebble. While I love the way it looks, the hard water line is really hard to clean. It also produces algae like crazy and it's hard to get out of the nooks and crannies. It's also hard on the feet, especially if you like doing water aerobics, and hard on pool vacs.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 4:11PM
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