There are a few important things to remember when it comes to owning a pool or spa, and how you prepare for winter is one of them. A major difference between one and the other is that while a pool must be closed if your climate is cold and snowy, a swim spa can continue to be used throughout the winter. Below, we’ll provide a short guide to ensuring a proper pool shut down so you can successfully reopen it when the weather warms up again.
Steps for Closing Your Pool Properly for Winter
If you own a swim spa, like those from Hydropool that are designed to withstand harsh winter weather, then you won’t need to worry about closing it at any point. One of the many upsides of a swim spa is that it’s meant to be used year-round. However, if you own a pool, there are certain steps you will need to take to ensure it’s properly closed for the winter. Here’s what you’ll need to know.
1. Conduct a Thorough Inspection.
The first step is to inspect your entire pool, looking for any cracks, leaks, or other damage that may have occurred over the season. If you spot any problems, address them before proceeding with the closing process.
2. Clean† the Pool and Drain the Water.
Next, you’ll need to remove all of the pool accessories, such as ladders, slides, and diving boards. After that, you can proceed to drain the water from your pool. Make sure you drain just below the return line. It’s also ideal to wait until the temperature is just a little below 15 degrees when doing this. If it’s too warm outside, algae growth can occur. On the other hand, if the temperature is already too low, the pipes risk freezing. After your pool is drained, you should give it a good cleaning†. This includes brushing down the walls and vacuuming the floor to get any dirt or debris that may have settled during the season.
3. Take Care of the Filter, Pumps, and Heater.
Next up is disconnecting the pump and filter and ensuring they’re completely drained of water. Once the pump is disconnected, you can then pull it out of the drain plug and store it away. After that, keep the backwash valve open so you can clean† and drain the filters. This step might vary depending on your filter type, so a good thing is to ask your local pool or spa dealer for more tailored advice. Removing the jet fittings and turning the pump on momentarily comes next. To prevent damage over the winter, you need to ensure that there’s no water left before storing the pump and the filter.
4. Start Draining the Pool Lines.
You can now start draining the pool lines. Begin by shutting off the power to the heater and opening the drain plugs. You might need to use a garden hose to help flush out any remaining water. Once that’s done, close all the valves except the main drain to allow any residual water to drain out.
5. Proceed with Plugging the Skimmer.
Plugging up the skimmer will help keep any debris from entering and clogging the system while it’s not in use. Before you place the plug, remove the baskets and blow out the skimmer pipes with a vacuum or compressor.
6. Balance the Water Chemistry.
Even though you’re not using the pool, it’s still important to maintain proper water chemistry. This will help prevent any staining or corrosion from occurring over the winter months. Use the right pool chemicals to make sure that the pH levels, alkalinity, and calcium hardness are all within the ideal range.
7. Secure the Pool With a Cover.
The last step is to secure the pool with a cover. This will help keep debris and animals out as well as protect the surface from harsh weather conditions. If you live in an area with a lot of snowfall, it’s also a good idea to invest in a heavy-duty cover that can support the weight of the snow.
Closing your pool for the winter doesn’t have to be a daunting task. By following these simple steps, you can rest assured knowing that your pool is protected until you’re able to enjoy using it again when the warmer days come around.
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