Here’s our travertine pool deck pros and cons including colors, cost, sealing and cleaning travertine stone.
Ever so popular, travertine remains one of the most favorable stone tiles because of its unique aesthetics and functionality where it is also used as indoor, patio, and path walk tiles for both residential and commercial use.
What is a Travertine Pool Deck?
A travertine pool deck is an outdoor decking system that utilizes the unique natural beauty and function of travertine tiles.
This gorgeous stone material is a type of limestone formed beneath the hot springs over millions of years. When geothermal groundwater heats up, water shoots up, thus creating the pits and unique character on the surface of each stone.
Travertine pool decks offer a rustic appearance, but with the color variations available, you will find that travertine tiles as versatile options that can work on any style you are aiming.
Color variations include but are not limited to white, gray, beige, silver, rustic black, ivory, walnut, and cream. Travertine tiles give a homey feel to your pool deck area and the subtle differences in the color of each stone will surely make your pool area stand out.
Since ancient times, travertine has been widely used in masonry works. The most notable architectural and engineering marvels are made from travertine tiles include The Colosseum, Hierapolis, Basilique du Sacre Coeur, Tonto Natural Bridge, and Willis Tower.
Like any natural stone tile, travertine is quarried and collected in large stone blocks then cut to desired size and shape. You can find travertine stones all over the world. The majority of these quarried natural stones from Turkey, Mexico, and China are, yet the best quality travertine tiles come from Italy.
Now we’ll share our travertine pool deck pros and cons starting with the advantages.
Travertine Pool Deck Pros
A beautiful weathered look
A beautiful weathered look. Travertine tiles are undeniably gorgeous. Investing in a travertine pool deck will add curb value to your property. You can easily create a comfortable, cozy-looking pool deck with travertine tiles as the graining and primary tile colors have a warm natural color tone.
Helps to keep feet cool – A travertine pool deck keeps your feet cool under the summer heat. You get the beauty of stone tiles without sacrificing comfort as travertine pool decks remain comfortably cool under your feet, making it possible to walk around your pool even under the sun.
Travertine tiles allow the low temperature underground to flow upon the surface and at the same time reflect the sunlight. It is best to choose lighter colors, especially when located in areas where temperatures reach more than 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
It won’t crack in cold temperatures. While it performs well under hot climates, your travertine decking will remain pristine even when temperatures drop. The stone tiles survive the freeze-thaw cycle due to the unique vertical capillary action, which allows the moisture to escape through the flooring material.
It can last a lifetime. With proper care, correct installation, and is not subjected to extreme wear and tear, average-grade travertine tiles could last over 100 years.
Looks great even with hairline fissures. Cracks on some of your tiles may happen, specifically when dropping heavy furniture or planters on the surface. If this happens, hairline cracks or even large vein-like cracks can appear.
Fortunately, these damages are not noticeable as each travertine tile is unique and has natural veining itself. These cracks can also add a rustic appeal to your pool decks. For a long-lasting crack-free travertine pool deck, install a quality brand of anti-fracture membrane for your underlayment.
Easy work-ability. Travertine tiles are easy to cut and shape in any design you want. This advantage makes it easy to work with, especially with uneven surfaces and irregular layouts of pool decks.
Easy and low maintenance. You do not need a little more effort in maintaining your travertine tiles compared to ceramic or marble. See examples of marble pool decks here.
Nonetheless, it is still considered one of the easiest floor surfaces to maintain. Regular sweeping and light setting on your power wash for removing stubborn dirt.
Travertine Pool Deck Cons
Can be dented and scratched – Travertine pool decks have a soft surface that is more prone to scratches and dents. Though generally very durable heavy impacts can dent and scratch travertine tiles, it resists damage better than wood decks. These scratches and dents on travertine tiles are hardly noticeable because of their natural surface pits and graining, which is a good thing.
Can be a slippery surface. Remember that travertine tiles, in general, are skid-resistant, specifically with a brushed or tumbled finish.
However, like any other stone tiling, there is no guarantee that travertine tiles will not become slippery, especially when wet. See more popular types of pool finishes here.
Not all travertine tiles are equal. In addition, shoe traction should always be taken into consideration. To make sure you get a skid-free travertine pool deck, check with a specialist before purchasing your chosen travertine tile product.
Check for the COF or static coefficient of friction of your travertine tile. It is recommended to of a minimum of 0.5 COF where the higher COF, the better.
You can also apply non-slip coating when you have already sealed off your travertine tiles. To add the interval of reapplication of your non-slip coating, you can add nano non-slip beads to your travertine tiles. For a more effective non-slip surface check out aggregate pool decks on this page.
Porous surface. As travertine tiles are very porous, it can be both an advantage and disadvantage. The porous surface will allow water and moisture to pass through preventing puddles, and mold build-up on the surface. But it can also easily absorb stains.
To avoid permanent staining, wipe off spilled liquids immediately. Finishes can also be applied to prevent staining and on top of this coating is a non-slip coating.
Sensitive to acids. Be mindful of your cleaning agents as travertine tiles can be damaged with strong cleaning agents and other liquids with acid content. Thus, it is a challenge to install natural stone in kitchens and bathrooms.
Travertine Pool Deck Colors
Pool decks with travertine tiles can make a visual impact as it offers a unique and interesting display of organic texture and warm earthy tones. There is a wide range of colors to choose from to match your existing or desired design and the most common color tones in the market for travertine tiles are silver, ivory, white, gold, walnut, and multicolored.
Ivory color – One of the lightest travertine colors are perfect for pool decks that are constantly under the sun as it absorbs lesser heat and is visually cool.
Walnut color – The color is still a light hue but looks warmer than the ivory color tone. It makes an ideal pool deck surface as it stays cool under the feet but has a cozy appearance.
Multicolored or Scabos – This type of travertine coloring combines gold, grey, silver, white, green, red, and other several colors beautifully. When you add a sealant, these color tones stand out even more.
Silver or gray– If you want a more neutral tone, the silver travertine tiles are just perfect for a more contemporary pool deck. The varying shades of gray with white look absolutely stunning.
Gold – If you love the walnut color but desire a warmer and darker version, the gold travertine tile is your perfect choice, as the earthy tone makes a rich texture on your pool deck surround.
White – As the lightest color hue for a travertine tile, it can make a pool deck area luxurious and refined when you decide to have a polished look. The slight gray veining makes subtle variations on each tile.
Travertine Pool Deck Cost
The cost of travertine tiles without installation can range around $5.00 – $30.00 per square feet, where $15 is the average price, is considered as having a mid to high range tile pricing.
It is cheaper than limestone, slate, granite, and marble but more expensive than ceramic, concrete, porcelain, and soapstone.
The disparity of the prices is due to the many factors that can affect your pricing: such as the location it was quarried from, cut, size, and installation process, and more. If you want to get a better idea of the cost, compare quotations to form at least three different suppliers.
See more types of natural stone pool decks here.
Sealing Travertine Pool Deck
To maintain the visual appeal of your travertine pool deck will require a sealer that will act as a protective layer between the natural stone and potential stains.
Aside from protecting your flooring surface from unwanted liquid staining, you also protect it from loose soil from being trapped through its pores.
Though sealing off your travertine tile is not required, your contractor will likely recommend this application when installed near a pool or garden.
Sealing off your travertine pool deck is typically done twice but consult your product manufacturer and contractor as they may have their methods that work with their travertine tile product.
First sealing is done with a primary seal before tiles are grouted but will reduce the porosity of your stone tile. The second seal is applied after the tiles are grouted to further add protection to the surface.
How to Clean a Travertine Pool Deck
Use fiber brushes for regular cleaning and a soft broom to remove dust and debris on the surface. You can further remove dirt by brushing with water and a mild detergent.
For stubborn dirt, you may need to power wash your travertine pool deck in a light setting in which you may need to reseal. Don’t use cleaning agents with acid content as it can damage your travertine tile.
Make sure to follow recommended cleaning and maintenance from your product’s manufacturer.
Travertine Pool Deck Problems
Like any other natural stone, travertine tile can break down when subjected to saltwater. The salt content can leave a chalky white residue but can be swept with a broom.
A more damaging effect of salt is when salt is present within the stone and when water is absorbed in the stone, salt is dissolved causing empty pockets beneath the material. This can weaken the structure of your tile causing it to break or have hairline fissures.
The best way to prevent this is by application of salt-resistant penetrating sealer to protect your travertine tiles which can give you reasonable protection of about 5 to 10 years.
As mentioned from its disadvantages, your pool deck has the potential to become slippery when it is constantly wet and when using footwear with poor traction.
It is recommended to apply nano nonslip beads on top of your sealant, as it is five times more durable than ordinary non-slip coatings, which will save you more on periodic sealing costs.
What do you think about these travertine pool deck pros and cons? Let us know if you like travertine for around the swimming pool. For more information like this visit our page about travertine patio designs here.