The days of hot sun and cool water are behind us. Summers are long gone, and amidst fall, we need to prepare for winters. Better make a to-do list before the temperature drops! If you own an above ground swimming pool, winterize it.
You never know; with increased global warming, the temperatures may hit a new low. So, it is wise to be prepared beforehand and make necessary arrangements to safeguard your assets.
Let’s first discuss the gravity of this situation. Read on to find out why it is important to close the pool properly.
Why Should You Winterize an Above Ground Pool?
Regular maintenance is easy during the summers since the pool is used almost every day. The real task is its preservation during months it is left aside.
The most important reason for winterization or closing up of the above ground pool is to minimize the cleaning for the coming spring. In all honesty, lazing around at this point would do more harm than good. Plus, you will go insane while opening the pool next season. So it is better to close it properly to make opening easier.
Not closing the pool can lead to an imbalance of water and ice, damaging the framework. Rectification of this issue will be heavy on the pocket. It is better to avoid this circumstance by investing your time and a small chunk of money in the winterization of your pool.
Here are 13 easy steps to winterize your above ground pool to get you started.
Gather your equipment
- Water balancing chemicals – algaecide, calcium hardness increaser, pH leveler, etc. or
- Pool closing/winterizing kit
- Above ground pool winter cover
- Vacuum, skimmer, and brush
- Leaf net
- Expansion plugs
- Air pillow
- Skimmer plug
- Winter plug
Step 1 – Thorough Cleaning
Just like you shock your pool at the season-opening, closing it with deep cleaning is equally important. If you winterize your above ground pool without a good cleanse then the presence of debris can lead to algae, mold formation and also cause problems with the filters, pumps etc.
The more you clean now, the lesser the burden would be during the opening season. It is best to vacuum the above ground pool, wash down the walls, and skim the surface. Cleaning makes it easy to get properly balanced water.
Step 2 – Test the Water
Testing water is important to ensure that the pH, alkalinity, and calcium hardness are in the required ranges. If not, then balance the levels. Testing kits are available in the form of strips. Use them to get an accurate image.
The overall goal is to have water of 7.4 to 7.6 pH. Depending on the type of primary sanitizer, alkalinity level should be 80-120 ppm with calcium hardness 200-350 ppm and chlorine level between 1-3 ppm ranges.
Step 3 – Balancing Water
Balancing water before winterization of above ground will help it get on its feet when it is time for opening. It helps in optimization of the chemicals used. Add or subtract according to bring them in desired ranges.
Step 4 – Addition of Winterization Chemicals
Adding winterizing chemicals can make your pool remain algae free throughout the hibernating season. Add the chemicals directly to the above ground pool water. Place the winter tab dispensers at approx. 10-12 inches deep. Make sure not to tie ice equalizer and winter tabs together. Run the filter after 4-8 hours for best results.
Step 5 – Chemicals to Prevent Stains and Scale
The stains surely do not look pleasing. Alongside winterizing chemicals add stain and scale preventing chemicals to your above ground pool water.
Step 6 – Prevent Algae Growth
Make sure to add algae-preventing chemicals when you winterize your above ground pool.
Step 7 – Pump Protector
Add a pump protector through the skimmer. Make sure you run your pump for at least ten seconds, then shut it off. Let it rest for an hour. This will ensure inner seal lubrication, which will prevent drying and cracking due to the chemicals.
Step 8 – Protect the Return and Skimmer
It is best to seal the return and skimmer. Reducing the water level alone won’t help. Get the skimmer and winter return plug and seal them up.
Step 9 – Work with the Filter
Detach the filter hoses. Firstly drain, then clean the filters and store them inside.
Step 10 – Clear Off The Above Ground Pool to Winterize It
Move any mats, external stairs, alarms, etc., fit in the pool. Make sure to have only winter tabs and ice equalizer in the swimming pool center. Skim for any leftover debris.
Step 11 – Ice Equalizer
Set the ice equalizer in the pool using a rope on the side and attach it to the pool cover.
Step 12 – Turn Off the Power Socket
Once you are done with the equipment of the pool, turn off the socket and break the circuit.
Step 13 – Cover the Pool
Make sure you get the right size cover for your above ground pool. Use cover cables and clips to fasten the cover.
By following these steps, you now know how to winterize your above ground pool. For getting the best chemicals and other consultation, call Town and Country Pools in Magnolia Tx 77354 and Montgomery Tx 77316 at 281-252-6337.