Unless you live in a region with warm temperatures year-round, you will need to winterize your pool to protect it against the harsh temperatures that winter brings. Winterizing your swimming pool ensures that when warm weather arrives that you can practically jump right in and start enjoying the cold water.
Checking the Water
You can find and purchase water testing kits at any home improvement store or pool store. After taking a sample of your water, you add the included chemicals to determine the PH balance of the water. This also lets you know if you need to add any chemicals or shock your pool. Test the water prior to shutting down your pool for the season. Ensuring that you have the right balance keeps stains from forming during the winter. You may also want to use a winterizing kit from your pool store to treat the water. This keeps the water clear until you use your pool again.
Cleaning Your Pool
Whether you have an above ground or an in ground pool, you always want to clean it before winter. Use your skimmer to remove any litter or debris on the surface of the water, and make sure the sides are clear too. Using a pool vacuum lets you remove any debris inside the pool, including algae on the bottom and mildew on the sides. Once you finish cleaning your pool, you can go ahead and remove the pool ladder and any other features or tools that you won’t use.
Taking Off the Drains and Hoses
It’s especially important that you remove any drains or hoses attached to your swimming pool. The cold temperatures that occur in winter will freeze the water left behind. As the water expands and contracts due to changing temperatures, this can cause the hoses and drains to crack. Leslie’s Pool recommends that you use the strainer basket to store your drain plugs. Simply place the drains inside the basket and set the basket back in place. When it’s time to use your pool again, you’ll know exactly where those items are.
Draining and Covering Your Pool
Depending on how cold the temperatures are in your area, you may find that draining your pool is a good option for you. Removing a portion of the water reduces your risks of the pool developing cracks in the winter. Some pool owners drain the entire pool and replace the water in the spring or summer. You also want to take the time to cover your pool. If you keep the water, place some type of flotation device on the top of the water before adding the cover to keep the cover from freezing against the water. Following these steps ensures that your pool will be ready when summer arrives.