The days are getting shorter, the temperature is dropping fast and the kids are back in school. It’s time to close down your pool!

Last year, we blogged about the critical components of successfully winterizing your pool. In this blog, we want to share with you a step-by-step guide on how to close down your pool. Ready?

1     Balance the water chemistry

Even if you’re ready to bring the pool season to an end, make sure your water chemistry is perfectly balanced. Aim for
● pH level: 7.2 – 7.8
● Total alkalinity: 80 – 120 ppm
● Water hardness: 180 – 399 ppm
To give your pool the best shot at keeping its balance during the winter.

2     Remove your pool equipment

Remove and properly store your skimmer baskets, wall fittings and automatic pool cleaners, and lay the hoses out straight in an area protected from harsh winter conditions. Your solar cover, ladder and hand rails also require proper storage to avoid freeze damage.

If you have a pHin, it’s also time to take it out of the water. Fill the sensor cap with water and screw it back onto the end of the sensor to protect it. Keep it indoors or in a warm location as freezing temperatures will damage the sensor.

3     Shock your pool

Add the winter shock and brush to disperse. Don’t let it settle to the walls or floor as it may cause staining.Wait at least an hour, then add a Winter Pill or a winter algaecide. If you’re not using a winter pill, add the stain and scale control an hour later to prevent metals from staining the pool surface and minerals from forming scale. You’re welcome to use your own chemicals or purchase them from us online.

4     Clean your pool

Clean the pool of all debris, including leaves, dirt and algae. Vacuum it if needed. We recommend vacuum to waste if possible to avoid overloading the filter with dirt. Since cartridge filter systems are unable to vacuum to waste, you may rent or purchase a poolside pump to vacuum to waste if you’d like.

5     Drain all pool equipment

Remove the water from all your pool equipment, such as pumps, filter, heater, chlorinator, and so on, to avoid freeze damage. For Diatomaceous Earth (D.E.) and Cartridge Filters, take out the grids or cartridges from tank, and thoroughly clean and store them for the winter.

6     Drain your plumbing

Don’t forget about your plumbing!

Inground pools require draining all your plumbing. Use a shop-vac to suck or blow out all the plumbing lines to prevent damage during freeze periods. Once free of water, plug all plumbed openings with expansion plugs or cap them inside your pool. Make sure that you plug or cap your surface skimmer, main outlets (“main drains”) and infloor cleaning system outlets tightly.

Above ground pools usually just require plugging the wall inlets with an expansion or threaded plug. When you’re done, remove the hoses from the filter and pump.

7     Prepare to cover your pool

If you choose to cover your pool with a mesh cover, we suggest that first, you lower the water level by 12” to 18” below the mouth of the surface skimmer. This will help avoid the overflowing of your pool when the snow starts to melt.

If you have a solid pool cover, lower the water level about 6” below the tile line to prevent the cover from collapsing.

8     Cover your pool

Make sure that the covers fits tightly and there are no holes or gaps to allow foreign matter to enter the pool. If you have a solid cover, remember to drain off rain or melted snow periodically. In addition, we recommend that you place a winter cover pump, also known as a small submersible pump, on the cover. Use it when needed to avoid the cover from caving into the treated pool.

Properly winterizing your pool will make all the difference next season and enable you to spend less time preparing and more time enjoying it!

Live in a mild climate?

If you live in a climate that allows you to keep your pool uncovered during the winter months even though you don’t use it, follow the steps above and continue your cleaning routine. Reduce the filter cycle to half of its swimming season setting, and clean the skimmer and pump basket regularly.

Keep an eye on your water chemistry and adjust it as needed. If you have a seasonal pHin subscription, consider switching to an annual subscription so you can keep your water balanced during the winter months as well. Once it gets out of balance, it’s harder and more expensive to bring it back into balance.

And finally, you may decide to cover your pool after all to keep the debris and waste out of your water.

Need help?

Properly winterizing your pool will make all the difference next season and enable you to spend less time preparing and more time enjoying it!

If you have any questions about your pool or need help closing it, feel free to book a pre-qualified pool technician through our Pool Service On Demand network.