How to Close Pool for Winter

Ned Kampmann

As the winter months approach and you are preparing to winterize your swimming pool, there’s a few common steps you must adhere to. Proper storage and shutdown of your in ground swimming pool for the winter can help maintain and protect the investment that is your in ground pool.

Before closing your pool for the winter, it’s always a good idea to get your pool cover out and clean it. Properly cleaning and storing your pool cover keeps it in good shape, and keeps unwanted clutter from floating into your pool during the winter months.

how to close pool for winter

Follow these simple steps to keep your swimming pool clean and in good condition. Proper storage and maintenance is critical to ensure that you pool serves you for years to come.

One of the first steps before you clean or cover anything, is to set the chemical balance for your swimming pool before long term storage. By matching the proper water balance, you can combat some of the long term algae problems and issues that may plague other pool owners.

Because your pool will be inactive for long periods of time, you don’t want calcium to build up and possibly cause your pumps or surge tanks to fail. Using your swimming pool test strips, apply the right mix of chemicals until you reach the optimum balance, as listed below :

  • pH – 7.2 – 7.6
  • Total Alkalinity – 80-125 ppm
  • Water Hardness(Calcium) – 175-225 ppm
  • Free Chlorine 1.0-4.0 ppm

*parts-per-million (ppm)

Once you have reached the proper water balance, you can begin winterizing your swimming pool. Now that your water is prepared, you can begin to remove all of your pool accessories. All of your ladders, diving boards and hardware should be removed, cleaned and properly stored.

Also find out how to drain a pool for winter

how to service pool filters

Now using your skimmer or pool brushes, clean the surface and floor of your swimming pool thoroughly. Remove any debris that is present in your swimming pool, and clean out all of your skimmer baskets.

Once you have your pool cleared, you can add any long term additives that you may have chosen. These long term water additives help control scale of water, and helps curb staining. These additives may range from granular chlorine to algaecide, but their purpose is basically the same. To keep your water and swimming pool from becoming overrun by algae or hardness.

How to Service Pool Filters

The filtration system in your swimming pool is an important piece of the puzzle, and when you are closing your pool for winter the proper cleaning of your filters goes a long way. If you are trying to learn how to close a saltwater pool for winter this can especially be important.

Typically there’s a few different types of swimming pool filter, each with its own steps for care and storage. In ground swimming pools may feature sand filters, which need to be flushed and cleaned according to manufacturer specifications.

how to service pool filters

If your sand bed requires replacement, remove it now and prepare to have another one ready next summer. When your diatomaceous earth filter requires a new filter, or the existing filter cleaned, always make sure to shut off all pressure to the multi-port inlet.

Also read about pool liner installation DIY

How To Winterize Inground Swimming Pools

Before you close up shop for the winter, your inground swimming pool must be cleaned. Once you have cleaned and set the water balance, go ahead and drain the water until it’s well below the skimmer openings.

If your pool is a vinyl lined unit you can stick to just around an inch below your skimmer inlet. If your poll does not feature a mesh cover or any cover at all, go ahead and drain until well past the 2 foot mark from your skimmer opening.

how to winterize inground swimming pool

Remove all of your directional fittings from your inground swimming pool and install your freeze plugs. Turn off all of your pumps and drain all of your equipment before storing. Make sure to follow manufacturer specifications when draining or cleaning your hardware.

If you live in a cold climate area, make sure to add swimming pool antifreeze so that the water in your pipes do not freeze over. Once this is done, you can go ahead and install your pool cover to winterize your inground swimming pool.

If you live in a warm climate area, run your pump for roughly 2 hours a day to maintain proper pressure and flow.

How To Winterize Above Ground Swimming Pools

Convenient and easy to use, above ground swimming pools are great additions to any backyard. If you want to learn how to close Intex pool for winter, it’s a fairly easy procedure. Because most of these pools are constructed and put up, it’s a good idea to tear them down for storage.

How To Winterize Above Ground Swimming Pools

Most above ground pools utilize a standard cartridge filter system, which are easy to use and relatively inexpensive.
Standard cartridge style filters can be removed from your filtration unit and sprayed clean before storage. Once you have the filter cleaned and removed, you can unhook all of your water pump lines and fittings, and disassemble your above ground swimming pool for storage.

Congratulations you now know how to winterize your swimming pool, and have taken the steps to store and protect your swimming pool hardware for next year’s summer.

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