Trouble can arise when working beside a filled pool, in all sorts of ways. BBs from a shot blaster, for instance, can get into the water and leave rust stains. To protect pools, some contractors fashion floating drop cloths. Bubble Wrap taped to the tiles can do the trick. Other contractors prefer working on emptied swimming pools.
Ken Tyson, owner of Tyson’s Complete Repair in Hawaii, usually has his customers drain their pools before he begins work. He figures he’s going to have to clean up after he’s done anyway, and cleanup is just easier in a dry pool.
Emptying a pool isn’t always feasible, though. Such was the case on a job Tyson had working on bridges over a hotel’s dolphin pool, in which the dolphins remained at home the whole time. Tyson fashioned a drop cloth by wrapping plastic sheeting around children’s elongated floats. “It worked fine,” he says. “Although the dolphins weren’t happy with us being there at all.”