When the colder months draw in and your pool is closed, there are some things you can do to protect your cover and extend its life. If you have a solar cover, you need to remove this over the winter as if left on the pool, it will become brittle and become useless for next season. A winter cover should be installed in place of a solar cover for the colder months.
- Store Your Solar Cover
When you close your pool for the winter, wind your solar cover back on the reel, hosing off any debris as you reel. Then you should use some tarpaulin or a specialist cover for your reel to protect it. If you don’t have a protection cover, try and store your reel in a garage and get it away from the elements. This will help extend the life of you cover.
- Install a Winter Cover
One thing you should never do is leave your pool exposed to the elements in the winter. Without a winter cover, your pool will become a magnet for leaves, trigs and animals which will become a huge job for you when you come to reopen the pool in the spring.
- Make Sure Your Cover Pump is Working
If you have a safety cover, you will not need a winter cover as the nature of the safety cover will stop leaves and debris from getting into the pool. However, this doesn’t mean you do not have to do any maintenance during the winter. Periodically you should be investigating to make sure the cover pump on your pool is working and removing water from your cover.
If the pump is not working water will gather on the cover and push it down into the water causing stress on the stitching and seams making it likely to break. This is an expensive replacement and well worth 5 minutes of your time checking every so often.
To check if you cover pump is working simply turn it upside-down. The pump will start to run. Replace the pump back into the middle of the cover positioning it with a pool pole in necessary.
- Protect your Winter Cover from Wind
If you have a winter cover, one of the biggest threats is the wind. Check that the tension straps are bow tight and do not have any sag. If the cover sags too much it will allow wind to get under and start blowing the cover around, thereby loosening other straps, soon enough you will have a parachute instead of a cover! If you have problems with this you can buy sand bags or even water tubes which you can fill up and lay over the cover to stop it from slipping.
- Protect your Cover from Trees
Any overhanging tree branches and limbs are a danger to any pool. It is important to keep on top of this and employ a specialist tree surgeon to remove these sooner rather than later. The catastrophe of a tree branch falling onto your cover and ripping it is not a cheap one to rectify so prevent this from happening early.
- Remove Snow That Settles on Your Cover
Snow can be a big threat to a cover, It is important to not let it settle too long as the weight of the snow will rip the cover by stretching it. I can also pop out winter cover anchors or worse dislodge your coping stones.
You can remove snow from your cover by using a long broom and push the snow off your cover. Whatever you do, do not use a shovel or spade. The sharp edges will almost guarantee you rip your cover. An alternative that has worked in the past if you don’t like the sound of manual labour is to use a leaf blower. Your mileage may vary here but it’s worth a shot!
If you have any problems with your winter cover you can ask in the comments below and we will do our best to answer any questions you may have.