Above ground pool covers: your technique please

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by John_Bonner, Sep 8, 2003.

  1. John_Bonner

    John_Bonner Supporting Actor

    Oct 25, 2000
    Likes Received:
    I will be covering my above ground pool this weekend and was wondering what technique others used to do so. For the last 6 years I've always bought those air pillows and strung them across the pool then pulled the cover over the top so the cover doesn't touch the water. The problem with this method is that if I put too much air into the pillows or don't lower the water level enough the cover just barely fits and I have a tough time getting the cover over the whole pool without it dipping into the water.

    I've seen pictures of covers just sitting on the surface of the water where it looks like not too much water has been drained from the pool. Does anyone use this method and how has it worked?

    With the pillow method I always wind up getting rainwater and snow in certain spots, so throughout the fall and winter I have to go out and periodically siphon the water off the cover. Without pillows, what happens to the rainwater, snow and ice? Does the cover go underwater? Is this ok?

    Any help/advice is appreciated.
  2. Greg*go

    Greg*go Supporting Actor

    Jun 14, 2002
    Likes Received:
    My family has had an above ground pool for about 18 yrs now. When winter comes, we lower the water level below the water intake and outtake level, throw 2 tires in the water, and put a winter cover on top. You have to at least lower the water that low or else the tubing will have water in it and when it freezes your pump, filter and tubes could explode, much like a can of beer that is left in the freezer too long. We put the tires in the water just so the ice is broken in some parts, which helps the sides of the pool from getting damaged. The pool cover always ends up in the water somewhat by the time spring gets here, but we've never had any problems. If you lower the water too low, then the wind can wrek havoc with your pool and mess it up to the point of having to buy a new one.

    My dad is a firefighter so when sping get's here he borrows a pump and empties the pool in about 40 minutes, then we clean it and fill it up. If you don't do this all in 1 day, the liner will shrink from the sun and lack of pressure on it, which makes it unusable.
  3. DougWright

    DougWright Stunt Coordinator

    Mar 24, 2000
    Likes Received:
    I do not keep a cover on during the winter.
    I use a leaf cover until all the leaves are done falling,then take it off and then keep it uncovered for the winter.

    I do lower the water below the return and have no problems, the pool that was here when I bought my house was destroyed from the cover filling with water (thaw then a refreeze I guess). It actually collapsed a wall.

    When I replaced it I decided to do this method, been 3 seasons and no problems yet.

    Just another suggestion...

  4. Steve Berger

    Steve Berger Supporting Actor

    Sep 8, 2001
    Likes Received:
    We've had our pool for 16 years and have never used anything under the winter cover. We lower the water to just under the skimmer and disconnect the pump (and take it inside for the winter). Buildup on top of the cover just displaces the water underneath and pushes it out the skimmer hose. It's a gradual process so there isn't any runoff problem. I'd pick up a little portable sump-type pump to remove water from the top of the cover whenever there's a thaw instead of trying to get a siphon going. We stick it in a plastic storage crate on the cover to keep it from trying to suck up and stick to the cover, it also keeps leaves from clogging the pump.

    The more often you clear the cover off , the less water you need to add in the Spring. Supposedly it costs less in chemicals to treat the existing water than to treat a complete change of water in the spring.

    The cover doesn't go under water , water builds up on top of it, unless the raccoons scratch holes it.

    In the Spring fill the pool (with a hose through the skimmer) before you try to take the cover off (after removing snowmelt and rain and hooking up the pump and filter). The cover comes off much easier if the water level is up.

    If the cover is reasonably clean then it doesn't matter if it dips into the water a little as you are putting it on. In fact they recommend that you put some water on top of the cover to keep it from blowing around until it rains or snows a bit.

Share This Page