Why you should NEVER use Sandstone for around the Pool and what you SHOULD

Published by Armstone, 13 July, 2019

Can I use Sandstone around the Swimming Pool?

The quick answer is No, you should never use sandstone around the swimming pool.

Sandstone is very porous and extremely vulnerable against acid or salt, this is the key reason why we do not recommend sandstone to be installed around the pool as the pool water will always have some kind of harsh chemical/minerals.

There is a fine line in saying is Sandstone suitable or not for purposes around pools. The fact of the matter is, some natural stone products are not suitable for use around saltwater pools – for instance many types of limestone products also do not meet the Australian Standard for use around pools.

Most people who have used Sandstone around their swimming pools are having issues only because they have used a stone that is not suitable for a pool and not because they haven’t used the right stone Sealant as many will say (this is a common misconception amongst most people, even ones in the stone industry)

The shocking after-effects of Sandstone around the Pool

Sandstone is a sedimentary rock and its main composite is sand particles (SiO2) the sand particles are bonded together with calcite (CaCO3).

As soon as any acid comes in contact, the bond breaks down as the calcium dissolves, this causes the sand particles to fall apart. Saltwater creates a low PH Hydrochloric Acid (HCL).

Sandtone Porcelain Pavers

Can I make my Sandstone coping salt Safe?

Some believe that sealing sandstone will make their sandstone ‘salt safe’.

This is completely incorrect. Sealers penetrate into the stones and simply reduce its porosity which helps resist staining from non-acidic particles. It literally cannot make any stone resistant to acid or salt-safe. It is up to the type and density of the stone that resists salt. It is not the sealer; in fact, it is the type of stone that is causing the issue.

What other stone pavers are not recommended around a pool?

There are certain types of Limestone pavers that are not recommended.

Armstone follows a particular process of testing limestone pavers for salt safety to ensure the best longevity for around a pool. Some salt-resistant natural materials that are best suited for around pools are Granite and Bluestone but the disadvantage of Granite and Bluestone is that they get hot underfoot.

We have written a detailed article giving 5 Important Tips on How to Choose Pool Pavers and Pool Coping

or watch this Video to make the right choice.

Nulla Bluestone Drop Edge

Nulla Bluestone Pool Pavers

What should you do if you still like to use Sydney Sandstone around your pool?

If you love Sandstone, it is wise to use Sandstone look Porcelain Pavers.

Take a look at the picture below to see how Sandstone design porcelain pavers can look so very natural without having to ever worry about deterioration or sealing (they never need to be sealed as they are only 0.5% porous)

Porcelain pavers, never permanently stain. Now, don’t think of this product in any sense as the inferior version of Sydney Sandstone pavers. You aren’t making a concession here, you are picking the right paver for your outdoors.

Sandstone Porcelain pavers that we stock at Armstone are made from super strong clay and are extremely dense, they are stronger than most of the toughest natural stones pavers.

Ideal for use in wet areas, specifically poolside – porcelain pavers are of commercial grade slip resistance.

Finally, the whole family can safely enjoy the outdoors and you need not worry about your pets staining your pavers, discolouration or mould and mildew attacking your sandstone.

Sandtone Porcelain Pavers

Sandstone-look Porcelain Pavers


You should never risk using sandstone around the swimming pool, as much as you may love this type of natural stone it, unfortunately, it cannot be made salt safe. The reality is there are some types of natural stone that just are not recommended to use around a pool. If you still want to use Sandstone around the pool, the best option is to pick a man-made product (like porcelain) that does the job of best matching the character and colour that you probably have fallen in love with. This way you achieve the best of both worlds, the look and the longevity.

To find out about suitable products for around your pool, contact the team at Armstone on 1300 560 560

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Arman Minas

Arman Minas

Director at Armstone
A committed and enthusiastic expert, Arman has more than 10 years experience in the stone industry and 20 years in the design space. Arman’s strong, customer focused passion has seen countless projects come to life. At the head of the Armstone team, Arman oversees all aspects of the business.