Protect Your Pool Cover in the Winter
The ice and snow that build up in the winter can be damaging to your pool, which is why having a pool cover on hand is always a good investment. Nevertheless, that same ice and snow can damage your pool cover, costing you money in repairs or possibly ruining your pool cover entirely. In order to avoid that fate, you can follow these simple tips to protect your pool cover in the winter.
Safely Remove Ice from the Cover
Ice can build up on your pool cover and weigh it down. This weight will eventually stretch or puncture the pool cover. The best way to remove ice from a pool cover is to wait for a warm day when the ice melts. Then you can use a cover pump to remove the water, just like you would if it had rained.
The important thing to remember here is NOT to remove ice from your pool cover when it is still solid. The jagged edges of the ice sheets can cut just like glass, leaving you with rips in your pool cover that you may not be able to repair. Keep the water level on your pool cover to a minimum to avoid large ice buildups, and you should be able to clean it up well throughout the winter.
Collect Debris from the Surface of the Pool Cover
Leaves and branches may fall onto your pool cover over time. It is important to clean those up regularly so they do not gouge into your cover or get mixed in with the ice as the water freezes. Your pool cover is there to prevent large pieces of debris from getting in your filter system, but that does not mean it should be left unkempt. Take care of the yard surrounding the swimming pool, especially during the fall months when debris levels are at their highest.
Pump off Water before It Turns to Ice
You may be able to save yourself a great deal of hassle by keeping water off your pool cover before it turns into ice. This is a tricky balance though, as there is some benefit to keeping a minimal level of water on the surface. Using this water to weigh down the pool cover will prevent it from blowing away in heavy winds, which will protect the overall integrity of the cover. Try not to let this water level go above a half an inch to be safe.
Teach Your Pets and Children to Stay off the Cover
If your pool cover is sprinkled with snow, it may seem like the perfect play area for your children or pets to run along on. You should train everyone in your household to stay away from the pool in the winter, as a safety precaution for them and your cover alike. You may want to put up a temporary or permanent fence surrounding the pool so you can ensure that nothing goes on the cover that you do not want on there.