Gunite pools are renowned for their durability and longevity, often being a top choice for homeowners who seek a long-lasting swimming pool solution. The construction of gunite pools involves spraying a mixture of concrete and sand onto a rebar framework, allowing for a highly durable structure that can withstand various weather conditions and wear over time. Maintenance plays a critical role in the longevity of gunite pools.

Overall, the longevity of gunite pools is fantastic, often reaching up to 100 years when well-built and properly maintained. Resurfacing is commonly required every 10 to 15 years to maintain the pool’s integrity and aesthetic appeal. Pool builders typically express confidence in the resilience of gunite by offering long-term or lifetime warranties on the pool shell, which underscores the material’s reliability and the industry’s trust in its lasting performance.

What Factors Affect Gunite Pool Breakdown

Material Quality

The longevity of gunite pools heavily depends on the quality of materials used. High-grade steel rebar and a quality mixture of concrete and sand ensure a more resilient structure. The better the materials, the longer your gunite pool lasts (which is why we strongly advise to not cheap out on your pool). In fact when it comes to gunite vs. shotcrete pools, gunite is believed to be higher quality with the right team.

Material quality can also rely on the skills of the crew during pool construction. Since gunite is mixed on the spot, if it is not properly mixed, the materials won’t be as strong as gunite typically should be. That’s why having a great crew build your pool matters the most. You’ll get the best pool possible!

Construction Practices

Proper construction is crucial; proper application of gunite and thorough curing times help prevent structural issues. Inadequate construction practices can greatly reduce your gunite pool’s lifespan.

With the uniqueness of gunite’s application during the construction – having a proper crew that is trained on how to use gunite is required. Laying gunite without proper knowledge will result in a poor pool quality. That’s why it’s important to check the background of your pool builder company and make sure they know what they are doing.

Climate and Weather Exposure

Exposure to extreme weather—including freeze-thaw cycles, excessive heat, and heavy rain—can impact a gunite pool’s condition. Protective measures should be taken in environments with harsh weather conditions.

Maintenance and Upkeep

Regular maintenance, including balancing water chemistry and inspecting the pool for damage, helps to preserve a gunite pool’s structure. With a proper maintenance schedule you can expect a longer pool life. That’s why we recommend budgeting your maintenance costs into the cost of your pool. In fact, choosing the right pool financing options will allow you to have plenty of budget for proper maintenance. 

Resurfacing will also be a part of maintenance and upkeep for your gunite pool. Typically every 10-15 years is expected but it could be before or after that period depending on how well your pool is built.

Pool Usage Patterns

Finally, how often and in what manner the pool is used can affect its durability. We see this all the time and is usually not a big deal. It is something to think about – using your pool more will require more frequent maintenance to prevent wear and tear. So if you love your pool and use it a lot, it may need more love and care on the maintenance side.

Average Lifespan of Gunite Pools

The durability of gunite pools is highly regarded, with an average lifespan of up to 100 years (assuming that no major repairs are needed). Technically with resurfacing needs for your pool, the lifespan may look more like 15 years depending on your perspective. Typically, gunite lasts longer than fiberglass or above-ground pools. 

Despite their durability, the integrity of a gunite pool can be compromised without great maintenance care. Many pool builders back the longevity of their gunite pools with extended or lifetime warranties on the pool shell. However, non-structural components, like liners and equipment, will require replacement more frequently.

Signs Your Gunite Pool Need Resurfacing or Repair

Surface Cracks

Small cracks in the gunite may appear as the pool ages. These superficial cracks are often a cosmetic issue, but they can evolve into larger structural cracks if not addressed. Cracks that widen or increase in number should be inspected and repaired promptly to maintain the integrity of the pool’s structure.


Discoloration often presents as stains or uneven fading of the surface. This can be due to a variety of factors such as chemical imbalances, algae growth, or metal staining. If the pool’s surface has large or stubborn stains that cannot be removed through cleaning, it might be time to consider resurfacing.

Structural Damage

Structural damage goes beyond the cosmetic and requires immediate attention for pool owners. Signs include:

  • Leaks: A drop in water level or an inexplicably high water bill may indicate a leak.
  • Loose tiles or coping: These are often tell-tale signs of underlying issues.
  • Eroded surfaces: Evidenced by bare gunite showing through or an excessively rough texture when touched.

Prompt repair or resurfacing of the pool in the presence of these issues helps avoid more extensive and costly damage in the future. Regularly maintaining your pool should help you avoid any surprises or emergency damages. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to your pool regularly.

Maintenance Tips to Extend Pool Lifespan

Regular Cleaning

  • Debris Removal: Perform daily or weekly removal of leaves and debris using a net to prevent staining and reduce the risk of filtration system blockages.
  • Brush the Walls: Weekly brushing of the pool’s walls and floor prevents algae growth and the accumulation of mineral deposits.

Proper Chemical Balance

  • Test Water Frequently: Check the pool’s pH and chlorine levels at least once a week to maintain a range of 7.4 to 7.6 for pH and 1 to 3 parts per million for chlorine.
  • Adjust Chemicals: Add necessary chemicals, such as algaecide or stabilizer, systematically to maintain the balance and protect the pool surface and equipment.

Timely Repairs

  • Surface Inspection: Inspect the gunite surface annually for cracks and address them immediately to prevent water loss and structural damage.
  • Equipment Check: Service pool pumps, heaters, and filters regularly, and repair or replace these components as soon as any malfunction is detected.
  • Contact your pool service company as soon as needed for repairs, since waiting can cause even more parts to break and cause more damage to the pool.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the typical lifespan of a concrete swimming pool?

The typical lifespan of a concrete swimming pool is generally observed to be decades long, with the expectancy extending up to 50 years or more, depending on the maintenance and local conditions.

What is the life expectancy of a gunite pool?

If constructed and maintained properly (meaning it won’t need any major repairs), it may last up to 100 years. Of course resurfacing is needed more frequently than that but your pool will still remain in great condition that long. We’ve built 1000s of pools for customers and know exactly how to build a pool that lasts.

How often do gunite pools need to be resurfaced?

In our experience, gunite pools typically require resurfacing every 10 to 15 years to maintain their structural integrity and appearance.