Pebble Tec vs Plaster pool: Pick The Right Type Pool Surface

You are in the market to get pool finishes or surfaces for your backyard pool. There are different pool finishes in the market. Among them, Pebble Tec and Traditional Plaster Finishes are the talks of the town. 

Pebble Tec has a killer look, and you heard it lasts longer than plaster. But plaster is more comfortable on the feet compared to Pebble, and it’s affordable. Indeed, you get conflicting opinions both on Pebble Tec and Plaster pools. 

That’s why you can’t decide which one will be best for you. And this comparison guide on Pebble Vs. Plaster Pool will let you know which pool finish will be profitable for you. So, keep scrolling and stay in tune with us. 

Pebble Tec Pool

Pebble Tec is on the trend, and it attracts pool owners like a magnet. Yeah, the up-front cost is higher than the plaster one. But people love the Pebble Tech for its ability to hide dirt & residue and the longevity it adds. 

It’s specially made of cement blended with pebble aggregates. Most of the surface uses Pebble aggregates, and that’s why its surface looks like the bottom of a riverbed. The floor feels a bit rougher than the plaster on the feet. In this case, you can go for the Pebble Sheen. It’s similar to Pebble Tech but uses smaller pebble aggregates.

You can find Pebble Tec comes in multiple pebble aggregates, and their color range will be between tan to blue or green.

Are Pebble Tec Pools Good?

Pebble Tec Pools have uncountable benefits. Among them, durability and the ability to hide dirt & residue are the two upsides every pool owner loves the most. 

It uses the strength of pebble aggregates, which makes it unbelievably durable. Like a standard plaster pool, it doesn’t degrade over time when Pebble Tech is exposed to chemicals. If you take care of it properly, it will last for 25 years. 

Secondly, Pebble Tec comes in various colors and helps you by hiding defects like chemical residue. Therefore, Pebble Tec is stylish, slip-resistant, and allows you to design your pool custom. 

Pebble Tec Pool Cost

Expensive! Yes, Pebble Tec is a little bit pricey compared to other pool surfaces. You need to spend between $8000-$15000 depending on the pebble type, pool size, and the cost of materials and labor. 

Plaster Pool

The plaster Pool is the conventional pool surface type. It has been on the market since the 1960s, and most older pools have a plaster finish. 

A plaster pool finish is blended with water, Portland cement, silica sand, or marble dust. To gain dimension and drama, it mixes different color pigments. Most pool owners craze it due to its affordable price, feel comfortable on its feet, and give a classic appearance.

Though it’s inexpensive compared to Pebble Tech, it has several downsides. It tends to discolor, stain, and harbor bacteria because of its porous nature.

Is There Any Good in Plaster Pool

Pool owners who are on a budget love the plaster surface most. It doesn’t cost you a leg and arm like the Pebble Tec pool bottom. Plus, it’s durable, and this pool surface will serve for years if you keep the pool’s chemistry balanced. 

On top of this, a standard plaster pool has a smooth finish, and you don’t feel rough on your feet like the Pebble Tec. In short, it’s comfortable on your feet and never hurts your kid’s feet. 

Lastly, the look of the classic plaster pool is breathtakingly beautiful. The white plaster gives a bright look from which the blue water will sparkle and reflect. 

Cost of Plaster Pool

You should spend $2500-$5000 to get the plaster pool finish depending on the pool size, labor, and types of plaster finishes. 

Pebble Tec Vs. Plaster Pool: What’s The Difference Between These Two?

Now, it’s time to discover the distinction between the Pebble Tec and Plaster Pool.


Pebble Tec is aesthetically beautiful and comes in various colors & tints. You can decorate your pool according to your need which complements your home decor. The plaster pool also comes in different finishes, but it’s not as striking as the Pebble Tec. Therefore, Pebble Tec hides imperfections. 


In terms of durability, Pebble Tec just beats the plaster surface. It uses pebble aggregates, which adds durability. Chemicals of your pool can’t bring any effect to its finish by discoloration and staining. In contrast, Plaster will have discoloration and mottling, whereas Pebble Tec will look the same 10-15 years down the line. 


Plaster is the way to go if you or your family member has sensitive feet. The finish of plaster is smooth, and you feel comfortable when you walk on the plaster surface. On the other hand, Pebble Tech is rough due to its pebble aggregates. Consequently, it feels like the surface bleeds your feet when keeping your feet on the Pebble Tec surface. Indeed, plaster is the winner when it comes to comfort. 


Maintaining the plaster pool is way easier than the Pebble Tec. The surface of the plaster pool finish is smooth. As a result, you can sweep and vacuum the bottom with ease. On the other hand, Pebble is a bit tricky to clean as the crap settles. 


There is a huge difference between the Pebble Tec and Plaster in terms of price. Pebble Tec takes a leg and arm to get and costs you around $8500-$18000 depending on the pool size and labor. On the other hand, plaster pool finish is affordable and doesn’t cost you more than $5000. 

Is Pebble Tec Better Than Plaster?

Yes, Pebble Tec is better than Plaster finish. It lasts longer because of the strength pebble aggregates deliver. The Pebble Tec finishes don’t affect by discoloration, staining, and mottling. Indeed, Pebble Tec is long-lasting. Therefore, the look of this pool surface is enticing, and you have the opportunity to pick the Pebble finish according to your entire home decor. 

The only downside of the Pebble Tec Pool is it feels a bit rough on the feet. It feels like walking on a whole bunch of small pebbles or slightly coarse sand. If your feet are sensitive, it will be better to go for the Pebble Sheen or Fina. However, Pebble Fina has a smoother finish than Sheen and would be fine on sensitive feet. 

Though Pebble Tec is pricey, it lasts for a long time. It means it will save you money in the long run. 

Commonly Asked Questions

Is plaster cheaper than pebble Tec?

Yes, plaster is cheaper than Pebble Tec. You need to spend just $4 per square foot to get a plaster finish. On the other hand, it costs you around $10 per square foot to install Pebble Tec finish. 

How long does pebble Tec pool plaster last?

Generally, the Pebble Tec pool plaster will last for 20 years if you take care of it properly. The strength of the pebble aggregates adds longevity, and you don’t need to replace them frequently. 

Is Pebble Tec really worth it?

It’s worth having Pebble Tec. The stunning look of this pool finish will last for decades. It uses pebble aggregates for its construction, which isn’t affected by chemicals like plaster. Indeed, it’s durable, and it’s ok to spend extra bucks to get the Pebble Tec. 

Does pebble Tec hurt your feet?

Yes, Pebble Tec hurts your feet. This pool surface type is a bit pricier and rough than the plaster finish. So, you will feel hurt when walking on the pebble aggregates. In this case, you can go for Pebble Fina, which is smoother than Pebble Tec. 

Which pool finish is best?

Pebble Tec pool finish is the best. The pebble aggregates this surface type uses will provide superior durability. It comes in different color ranges and will give a stunning look to your pool. And the best part is- the Pebble Tech pool finish can hide imperfections.

Can algae stains Pebble Tec pool?

Yes. Algae stains can occur in Pebble Tec pool, It’s very common to get algae stains in any pool finishes from an algae bloom. To prevent algae stains from Pebble Tec you can use chlorine tablets and use algaecide twice a week. Make sure that you test the pH level before applying these chemicals. Also, you should clean the filter regularly. Cleaning the filter helps remove the debris from the water and slower the algae growth.


So, Pebble Tec vs. Plaster Pool: Which one is the best?

Undoubtedly, Pebble Tech is the best. It’s durable and provides you with 20 years of longevity. It doesn’t get damaged by chemicals. Therefore, it’s breathtakingly more beautiful than the plaster finish. 

On the other hand, if you are on a budget and looking for a smoother surface, Plaster will be best for you. It’s affordable and feels a bit soft on your feet. 

However, we recommend you go for the Pebble Tec. Though its up-front cost is higher, it will save you money in the long run. Though you should consider your yard’s surroundings, pool maintenance effort, how much you can afford.

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