How to Prepare Your Inground Pool for Winter
Updated: Oct 27
There’s no better way to welcome warmer weather than having a pool that’s ready to enjoy right away. The best way to set your pool up for maximum self-indulgence in the warm months is to winterize it. Learning how to prepare your inground pool for winter saves you all the hassle when pool season starts, so all you have to do is relax and float on by.
Why You Should Close Your Pool for the Winter
Getting a pool ready for winter takes time and patience. However, it's essential, especially in areas that endure freezing temperatures. When preparing your swimming pool for the winter, you'll shield yourself against damage and future hassles. Once it’s pool season again, a fully winterized pool will be ready to go with no hidden surprises such as algae buildup or burst pipes. Prevent unanticipated maintenance repairs and unwanted headaches by learning how to winterize your pool.
How to Prepare Your Inground Pool for Winter
You can get your pool ready for winter by following these nine practical steps.
1. Ensure You Have All the Needed Supplies
This tip seems pretty straightforward, but you don’t want to start the winterizing process, realize you forgot some essential items and have to run back to the store. Supplies you will need include:
Ladder, pool vacuum, pool brush, pool cover, pool plug
pH and water test kit
pH increaser or decreaser
Calcium hardness increaser
Metal and mineral remover
2. Clean Your Pool
When you close your pool for the winter, it should be spotless and free from any debris to avoid dirt and bacteria when you reopen it next spring. Use a pool brush to scrape off any residue stuck to the walls or the floor. Once you finish brushing, clean the pool with a pool vacuum. The vacuum will suck up any debris or algae residue taken down from brushing. Be sure to remove every last bit of debris before continuing. Algae can grow in a closed pool, so ensure your pool is flawlessly clean.
3. Lower Your Water Levels
Once you've thoroughly cleaned your pool, it’s time to lower your water levels anywhere from a couple of inches to over a foot, depending on the cover you are using. A pool safety cover requires your water level to fall just below the tile line, about six to 12 inches. If you're using a winter pool cover, the water level only has to be three to four inches below the skimmer. Follow the safety cover manufacturer’s directions to get your water levels to the desired depth.
4. Test the Water's pH Levels
Before you start adding any winterizing chemicals, you need to know your water's pH balance to ensure you are adding the chemicals your pool needs.
5. Adjust Water Levels With Winterizing and Balancing Chemicals
Once you get the results back from your testing kit, you can adjust your pool with winterizing and balancing chemicals. First, you will need to shock your pool with a non-chlorine shock. Then, add the needed chemicals directly afterward. Shocking the pool first decreases your chances of opening your pool to an algae-filled infestation months later.
In addition to adding the necessary chemicals from the water test, you should also use algicide to prevent algae growth, and a metal and mineral remover to prevent metal lingering in the water.
6. Clean the Filters and Pump
It’s essential to clean your pool filters and pump to avoid bacteria growth over the winter.
7. Blow out the Water Lines
Winterizing pool pipes is especially crucial if your region's winter temperatures reach below freezing. Ice can damage your pool pipes and possibly burst them. Blowing out your water lines removes every last drop of water from the lines and pump to avoid issues that can happen when pool water reaches its freezing point. Using an air compressor attached to the drain plug opening is best for this step. Once your water lines are completely free of water, plug the lines with rubber plugs.
8. Shock Your Pool Again
Before officially closing your pool, you need to shock it again. Follow the instructions of your pool shock and run the pool pump overnight. It’s best to do this step at night to prevent sunlight from intervening with the pool shock process.
9. Put the Pool Cover On
Lastly, once you have completed all the other steps, it’s time to put the cover on to provide additional pool freeze protection. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions to fit your pool cover on properly. Now, your pool is ready to enjoy again when the weather warms up.
Benefits of Scheduling a Professional Winter Pool Service
If the steps above seemed exhausting or daunting, you don’t have to prepare your swimming pool for winter on your own. To close your pool without any headaches, hire a pool professional! At Quantus Pools, we have the expertise, tools and supplies to provide top-notch swimming pool winter maintenance. We can winterize your pool to protect it all season long and complete the entire process with high quality.
Contact us online or give us a call at 847-907-4995 to get your pool ready for the winter today!