With winter in full swing, you’re sitting back, enjoying a nice drink or snack inside the warmth of the heaters confident that you’ve properly winterized your pool for the off-season. Or have you? Before you go rushing out to check your pool, we’ve put together a list of things common swimming pool mistakes made during winter.
Winter Mistake #1: Did you brush your pool?
One of the things that people conveniently forget to do when winterising their pool is to brush all the surfaces thoroughly before closing. Why? Aside from the obvious issue that algae clings to pool surfaces like koala bears sticking to trees, non-organic contaminants that aren’t thoroughly brushed off and left there over the winter can leave permanent stains, or at the very least making them very tough to remove once you reopen your pool in the spring or summer.
So did you remember to brush your pool before closing it? If not, then spend a few minutes doing a quick brushing. Don’t let a few minutes of inconvenience turn into hours of stain removal in the spring/summer!
Winter Mistake #2: Not checking chemical levels
Winterising pools in Australia isn’t a one time thing. Meaning, you can’t balance your pool once and expect it to hold during the winter months. At the very least, you should check your pool chemical levels and do small adjustments every two weeks. Don’t worry too much though, since the pool isn’t being used much over the winter months, the adjustments will be very small and it shouldn’t take too much of your time to do.
Think about it this way, a few minutes checking and balancing the pool water every other week during winter is nothing compared to cleaning out pool stains (or heavens forbid) or dealing with a green pool when spring or summer rolls on by.
Winter Mistake #3: Not running the filtration system every day
Although no one is using the pool over the winter, that doesn’t mean that you don’t have to filter the water daily. Even with the perfect pool balance, stagnant pool water can still lead to algae growth and not running your filtration system or pool pump during winter can lead to a nasty surprise when you open your pool come spring or summer.
Use a timing system or manually run your pool pump at least 8 hours a day or at the very least long enough for your pool to turn over all of the water in it.
Winter Mistake #4: Not monitoring your water levels during winter
If you don’t have a pool cover and you’re not monitoring your pool water levels because it’s cool / cold outside then you may run into troubles. The reason for this is that even if it feels cold outside, water evaporation from sun exposure still occurs! It just doesn’t feel like it! Do you have an automated pool timing system? Then the best option for hands-free water levelling is to install an automatic water leveler for your pool! It’s cheap, it’s easy to install, and the best thing is, if you order it from Mr Pool Man’s online shop, you can get it delivered straight to your doorstep in just a couple of days!
Why should we be worried about water levels? Well, if the water level drops below the skimmer box (and that’s a real possibility) and you’re automating your pumping system over the winter, this can cause your pump to run dry and burn out without you noticing it! Do your pool a favour, install an automatic water levelling device and forget about the water levels till spring/summer!
Winter Mistake #5: Not checking your filters during winter
Just like your chemical levels and water levels, many people neglect to check their filters over the winter. Don’t worry though, no need to keep opening up your filters to check. Just take a look at the pressure gauges and if the pressure is still within range then there’s nothing to do. If they’re above the recommended pressure readings then a quick backwash if you have a sand filter fill do. If you have a filter cartridge then a quick hose down will take care of it. If a hose down of your filter cartridge doesn’t do the trick then you may need to give it a good soak in some filter cleaning solution.
Why do this? Simple, clogged filters aren’t that efficient. And running your filters below their efficient operating levels is just a waste of time and resources. I mean, you have those amazing pool filters for a reason, and that’s to grab on to dirt, debris, and other organic waste in your pool, so don’t waste their potential! Keep them clean over the winter!
Winter Mistake #6: Leaving pool equipment in the pool over winter
While all of the equipment sold on Mr Pool Man are designed to withstand the elements and pool chemicals, they’re not designed to be left in the pool for months at a time! If you don’t plan on using your pool equipment and cleaning tools over the winter, then give them a good rinse with tapwater, allow them to dry, and store them somewhere away from the elements. These small steps can add months, if not years to your pool equipment!
So there you have it. Six very common mistakes many pool owners make over the winter. And you know what? These mistakes have very easy prevention tasks but will take a long time to fix if ignored!
Bonus Section: Using your pool over the winter
Do you live in an area with relatively mild winters? Why put your pool to sleep then? You can always get an energy efficient pool heat pump so you don’t have to close your pool over the winter! By keeping your pool open during the winter, you’re still going to be doing the maintenance tasks that are outlined above, but the main difference is, you and your family will be enjoying the pool when you do it! Need more information on how you can keep your pool open over the winter? Check out this helpful post on different types of pool heaters and how they can keep your pool open!
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Happy swimming :)