Many homeowners enjoy the convenience of having a swimming pool a few steps from their door. Swimming pools provide your family, friends and neighbors a great place to cool off on a hot and steamy day. above-ground-pools offer homeowners the benefit of a place to play and relax without the long term commitment and expense of a built-in or in-ground pool. Typically, above-ground-pools are less expensive to buy, install and maintain. Many cities and towns also tax homeowners for built-in pools, but there is no tax increase for an above-ground-pool.

above-ground-pool manufacturers make pools with metal walls that are usually powder coated to protect the metal from corrosion and rust. Most above-ground-pools are painted by the manufacturer in a stylish color or design. Over time the stylish design becomes an outdated eye sore. Lemon yellow walled pools don’t mesh well with the natural looking landscaping that is more popular. Some above-ground-pools also fade from exposure to chlorine and sun making the color on the walls look old, dingy and dull. Changing weather conditions also wreak havoc on the pool-walls. Some swimming pool paints may also peel from the harsh conditions.

Changing an ugly color, reviving a faded swimming pool or protecting the metal pool-wall will update the above-ground-pool and help you to keep it for a long time.

Preparing the above-ground-pool For Paint

Cover the ground around the pool and the deck with drop cloths or tarps.

Place light tack blue painter’s masking tape over anything that you don’t want to get paint on such as the intake hose covers or the water outlet cover.   

Wear rubber gloves and safety goggles.

Pour 1 gallon of hot water into a bucket. Add ½ cup liquid laundry detergent and 1 cup of chlorine bleach. Stir the mixture to blend the ingredients well.

 Dip a soft bristle nylon scrub brush into the bucket of cleaning water. Vigorously rub the top rails of the pool in a circular motion to remove any peeling paint, powdery coating, mildew and mold. Scrub hard until you remove all mold, mildew, residues and lifting paint.

Wet a rag with plain water and wipe away the soap residue. Rinse the rag often to avoid redistributing the soap residue over the top rails. Thoroughly rinse the rag and wipe the top rails again.

Dip the scrub brush into the soapy water and scrub the pool-walls in small, manageable 3 by 3 foot sections. Rinse thoroughly with a garden hose. Move to the next section, scrub the pool-wall and rinse.

Let the pool-walls dry fully.

Examine the pool-walls for corrosion.

Repairing above-ground-pool-wall Corrosion

Typically, above-ground-pools are manufactured from extruded aluminum which does not rust, but does form a white coating of corrosion.

Wrap a piece of 320-grit sandpaper around a sanding block and gently sand away the corrosion.

Wipe the sanded section of the pool-wall with a tack rag to remove the dust from sanding.

Priming the Swimming pool-walls

Choose the appropriate epoxy primer based on the type of metal from which the pool is made.

Submerge a wide paintbrush into the epoxy based primer and coat a 3 to 4 inch strip around the base of the pool, next to obstacles such as around the deck or around the hoses. Paint a 3 to 4 inch stripe under the top rail and prime the rails.

Pour the primer into a painter’s tray.

Twist a 3/8 inch nap paint-roller onto a paint-roller handle.

Roll the paint-roller through the primer and roll the primer onto the metal wall creating a “V” pattern that overlaps the “V’s” until the entire wall is coated with primer.

Let the primer dry for three to four hours. Clean the paintbrush, roller and painter’s tray while waiting for the primer to dry.

Painting the above-ground-pool

Buy two- two part epoxy marine paint in the color of your choice and in white made specifically for the type of metal the pool-wall is made of.

Pour equal amounts of each of the two parts of the white epoxy paint into the painter’s tray. Only pour as much of the paint as you can apply in about 20 minutes. Stir the two parts together with a wood paint stirrer until they are well blended.

Dip the paintbrush into the epoxy paint and paint the top rails.

Wash the brushes and painter’s tray.

Mix the epoxy paint in the color of your choice in the painter’s tray just as you mixed the white epoxy paint.

Submerge a wide paintbrush into the paint. Paint a 3 to 4 inch strip under the top rails, around the deck, around hoses and at the base of the swimming pool.

Roll the paint-roller through the paint. Roll excess paint off on the edge of the painter’s tray.

Roll the epoxy paint onto the pool-wall making “V” shapes that overlap each other until the entire swimming pool-wall has been coated with paint.

Let the paint dry for four to six hours.

Examine the swimming pool-walls looking for drips or globs of paint.

Gently sand down paint globs and drips with 320-grit sandpaper.

Wipe the sanded areas with a tack rag.

Mix more two part epoxy paint in the color of your choice in the painter’s tray.

Apply the paint in a 3 to 4 inch wide strip just as you did with the first coat.

Roll on a second coat of epoxy paint with the paint-roller.

Let the paint dry for four to six hours.


Wear disposable painting coveralls or a jump suit to protect your clothing from paint splatters and spills.

Consider adding a pattern to the side of your above-ground-pool. After allowing the second coat of epoxy paint to dry for two to three days, tape a stencil to the pool-wall with light tack painter’s masking tape. Choose a color for the stencil. Buy an epoxy based marine paint in the color of your choice. Mix the paint, dip a foam brush into the paint and dab it over the stencil openings.