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3 Reasons Why You Need Pool Tile and Coping

During the process of renovating your backyard, you’re likely to hear a lot of claims about what products or projects are right for you. Maybe you’ve heard that stainless-steel outdoor appliances are a must, or that you absolutely need to install a brand-new fire pit. Whatever it may be, the renovation process is usually accompanied by a long list of recommendations. However, all these recommendations seem to be a bit saturated. At Imperial Wholesale, we recognize this and are committed to giving our customers sound advice—what you actually need, rather than advice we simply think you need. Here, we’re discussing why you—actually and truly—need pool tile and coping, starting with the basics. 

What is pool tile?

Pool tile is pretty self-explanatory—it’s tile, for your pool. But more than that, pool tile is a great way to customize your space. With pool tile, you can incorporate unique designs into your waterline, steps, finishes, floor, and more. Implementing custom pool designs can make a big difference on the overall appearance of your backyard. When looking for the perfect pool tile, one element that’s important to think about is material. We believe that the perfect pool tile material is something that’s both sturdy and beautiful. When browsing for this, we recommend selecting any of the following tile materials:

  • Porcelain
  • Slate
  • Glass
  • Mosaic
  • Stone
  • Pebble


What is coping?

If you’re not familiar with the flooring and tile industry, you may not know what coping is. To clarify, coping is a term used to describe materials, typically stone or tile, that caps or borders the exterior of a pool. The material is placed around the top rim of a pool, placing boundaries around the area. This creates a smooth and seamless look and gives your backyard a modern feel. The designs and applications of coping varies. Most homeowners prefer neutral materials and colors that blend into their deck flooring. However, a large benefit of coping is that you have complete control to customize your space however you’d like. To give you insight into where you can take your project, the most common ways to install coping include:

  • Bullnose coping: Concrete is poured up to the swimming pool edge, leaving a round border on the exterior of the pool.
  • Cantilever-edge coping: This is the most common coping application. The coping is mounted to the top of the pool wall, creating an edge that hangs slightly over the pool water.
  • Flat-mount coping: Like cantilever-edge coping, flat-mount coping is installed to the top of the pool wall. However, this coping installation is flat. Meaning, there’s no edge that hangs over the pool water.

The benefits of pool tile and coping.

Now it’s time to cut to the chase. What are the benefits of pool tile and coping? Or, in other words, why do you need them? Although there are many benefits to installing both pool tile and coping, the top three benefits we see include: 1. Aesthetics 2. Safety 3. Maintenance

1. Aesthetics

First and foremost, pool tile and coping give your outdoor area a clean look. Coping that’s around the exterior of your pool, and pool tile that is on the interior of your pool makes a difference from a design perspective. These materials help complete your yard, providing a clean and cohesive look. Pool tile and coping are also great because they’re very customizable from a design perspective. Both items come in a variety of colors, ranging from neutral tones to vibrant blue and green tones. We find that most prefer neutral colors for coping, and blue colors for pool tile. But, you have the flexibility to customize these designs however you’d like. Just stop by to see us at Imperial Wholesale to get started on your custom design.

2. Safety

In addition to adding a finished feel to your backyard, pool tile and coping also help with safety. Both materials play an integral role in keeping you and your loved ones safe. For example, pool tile and coping provide a non-slip surface, which is especially important for getting in and out of your pool or spa. These materials also work to protect you from a hot pool deck in the summer. Think of all the times you’ve run across the yard in the blazing heat, trying to find shade to cool down your feet. Those that live in Arizona, most likely know this struggle first-hand. Pool tile and coping assists in this common summertime problem. Pool materials, like travertine, stay cool to the touch, even in direct sunlight. This means that with pool tile and coping, you’ll be able to enjoy your pool deck without the fear of burning your feet.

3. Maintenance

Pool tile and coping are also both functional pieces, as they work to maintain your outdoor area. Pool tile and coping provide an additional sealant in your pool. This helps secure the foundation of your pool, so there are no leaks or cracks. What seems like a small hairline crack now, can quickly turn into a much larger problem down the road, which is why this additional sealant is crucial. Pool tile also helps keep your pool clean. Pool skimmers and automatic pool vacuums respond better to porcelain, ceramic, or travertine surfaces than to surfaces that are left unfinished. Keep this in mind when contemplating whether pool tile and coping are right for you.