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Preparing your pool for winter

Preparing your pool for winter

When autumn draws in it becomes time to shut down your pool for winter. Here are some tips on what to do. The following advice applies to inground pools and hard sided above ground pools. For soft sided splasher pools skip to the bottom of the page.

Your water

Make sure the pH is in the range 7.2 to 7.6. Add Dry Acid or Soda Ash if necessary.
Shock dose your water with unstabilised chlorine - raise the chlorine levels to 6 to 10 ppm. Keep your pump running for 6 to 12 hours to distribute the chlorine to all parts of the pool.
Add a winterising product – this is a long life algicide designed to keep your pool free of algae over the winter months. Keep your pump running for 6 to 12 hours to distribute the algicide to all parts of the pool.
Assuming there are no leaks in your pool, switch your skimmer valve off and drain the water down to 4 to 6 inches below the bottom of the skimmer. This is to allow for the winter rainfall to bring the level back up otherwise the pool could overflow.
Protect your walls from damage by expanding ice by floating something on the water surface to absorb expansion. This can be polystyrene or used chemical containers half filled with water. It is a good idea to tether them around the pool because they can all end up in one corner.

 

Recommended Chemicals


Perfect Super Concentrated

Winter Algicide £24.00

5kg Chlorine Shock

£27.50

 

Your Covers


Take your summer cover off and give it a thorough clean with fresh water. If possible jet it off with a pressure washer but don’t use too much intensity if your cover is quite old. Either fold it up and pack it away somewhere dry or leave it on the roller but cover it over with a winter storage cover. Make sure mice don’t decide to nest in it!
Put your winter debris cover on the pool to keep as many leaves out as possible. Always tension it as tight as possible. You do not want it dangling in the water. You may need to re-tension it after the first two or three days. Remember normal winter covers are not safety covers. Pets and children can still end up in the water if they walk on the cover. You can get combined winter / safety covers though.

Your Equipment

Once you have circulated your chemicals and drained down the top level it is time to drain the water out of your pump, filter and heater. Each should have a drain plug at the bottom to let the water out. This is so it does not freeze inside it and damage it.

Early Spring

As the days get longer and the weather gets a bit warmer in late February/March keep and eye on your water. As the long life algicide starts to wear off you may need to run the pump to circulate a bit of chlorine or algicide in the pool to keep the algae at bay until you are ready for the spring open up.

Soft sided splasher pools.

Soft sided inflatable “easy set” pools and frame pools should be emptied and allowed to dry out. Pack them away somewhere dry, not in contact with the ground. Back in their box or on a pallet or on a shelf. Make sure mice don’t nest in it or that the cat chooses it as a bed. To get the last bit of water out when emptying an easy set pool you can deflate the top ring and stand on it or put something heavy on it. Drain all the water out of the pump and pipes and take the filter out. Make sure you keep the bungs in a safe place so you can find them again next year. In the space vacated by the filter is a good place. If you have a solar cover give it a thorough clean with fresh water. If possible jet it off with a pressure washer but don’t use too much intensity if your cover is quite old. Fold it up and pack it away