How To Remove the Above Ground Pool Cover in Winter: An Easy and Quick Process

See our article on how to remove your above ground pool cover in winter. It’s not hard at all and you will be able to enjoy it again next spring. Read more here.

With the return of spring comes the arrival of pool season. These methods will assist you in ensuring that you remove your above ground pool cover properly without a large amount of debris getting into the pool during winter.

Above Ground Swimming Pool with Trees

How to Remove an Above Ground Pool Cover in Winter

First, you’ll need to gather all these supplies;

  • Pool cover pump
  • Soft broom or pool skimmer net
  • Start-up chemical kit, 
  • Cleaning soap (car wash soap would do!) 
  • And of course, someone else to help you

Step 1: Clear Out Any Debris That’s Accumulated on Your Winter Pool Cover

Whether you’re using a regular above ground pool cover or a winter above ground pool cover, your first task is to get rid of the water, leaves, and debris that’s settled on the cover. Using a submersible above ground pool cover pump will help you efficiently remove any excess water that’s gathered. If you don’t own an above ground pool cover pump, a standard sump pump will do the trick.

Employ a soft brush or a skimmer net to gather leaves and other debris from the cover. It’s essential to handle your above ground pool cover with care. Avoid using sharp tools or being too forceful, as this can damage your protective cover.

Do your best to eliminate as much debris as possible. Cleaning thoroughly now will minimize the risk of debris getting into your pool when you’re ready to take off the cover.

Step 2: Remove the Cover With the Help of Your Friend

Once you’ve ensured the above ground pool cover is clean, it’s time to remove it. Enlist the help of a friend for this step. Make sure to lift the cover rather than dragging it, and be careful to prevent any remaining debris from entering the pool.

A little dirt or debris in the water isn’t a catastrophe, but being cautious now can save you time and effort later when you’re working to get your pool back to its pristine summer state.

If you’ve used an air pillow alongside your above ground pool cover, remember to remove it too. After taking it out of the pool, make sure to deflate the air pillow for storage.

Step 3: Place the Cover in a Location That Allows for an Air Dry

Locate a big, easily accessible area, such as your lawn, deck, or driveway, and lay the cover out completely flat on the ground. Ensure the site is free of sharp objects and other items that might damage or tear the pool cover.

Clean your pool cover with water, a cover soap (car wash soap also does the trick), and a pool cover brush or rubber broom.

Man with Bucket on Pool Cover

Scrubbing the above ground pool cover must be done with painstaking care to prevent damage. You’ll extend the life of your pool cover, which may save you a significant amount of money over time because you won’t have to replace it. Make sure that your cover has completely dried out before storing it to minimize damage from moisture and mildew.

Store your winter cover in a sturdy, well-sealed plastic tub or other large storage containers to keep it safe from the environmental elements. This will prevent rats and other animals from building a nest in your costly cover or, even worse, from chewing it into pieces as they would otherwise do.

Step 4: Start Removing Winter Pool Plugs and Ice Compensators

Once the above ground pool cover is securely removed, dried, and stored, you can proceed with the next steps in preparing your pool for summer. Begin by removing the winterizing pool plugs, ensuring to check all around the perimeter of your above ground pool. Carefully remove the plugs from the corners, focusing on the return jets (also referred to as eyeball fittings) and the skimmer basket.

If you utilized an ice compensator in your skimmer basket during the winter months, now is the time to remove it as well. Following the removal of the plugs and ice compensator, proceed to reattach the jets to the return line and reinstall your skimmer baskets. If you have been using a skimmer plate or skimmer cover, remember to remove it to allow water to flow freely when you reactivate your pool’s filter system. Ensure that all elements related to your above ground pool cover are properly stored to prevent any potential damage.

Step 5: Put Back Your Deck Equipment

Moving forward, ensure all deck equipment associated with your above ground pool is put back in place and ready for use. This encompasses the reinstallation of ladders, steps, and lifts, along with any other relevant accessories. Conduct a thorough inspection of each piece of equipment, checking for any signs of rust, wear, or damage.

In the event that you discover any components that appear fragile, broken, or excessively worn out, seize this opportunity to replace them before utilizing the pool. Remember, the safety and integrity of your pool setup, including the proper management of your above ground pool cover and associated equipment, is paramount.

Step 6: Prep Your Pool for Summer

With your deck equipment securely in place, turn your attention to preparing the pool itself. Begin by filling your above ground pool with water, taking care to ensure a smooth and uninterrupted flow. Initiate your filter system, and proceed to adjust the water chemistry as necessary to achieve optimal balance and cleanliness.

Inspect all hoses connected to your pool, ensuring they are clear of any debris or kinks that could impede water flow. With these tasks completed, your above ground pool is now ready for use, inviting you to indulge in a refreshing dip. Enjoy the fruits of your labor, confident in the knowledge that your pool, and its above ground pool cover, have been properly cared for and prepared for the summer season.

Tips to Folding a Pool Cover

Folded Pool Cover

Accordion fold or fan-folding is a convenient way to fold your pool cover. This makes it super easy to reinstall in the next winter season, so to fold your pool cover properly, this technique is something worth learning. It’s done in the same manner as folding a piece of paper to form a fan out of it.

How to Get Rid of Snow?

“I’m sure you’ve heard the expression “a stitch in time saves nine.” This concept applies when it comes to removing snow from your pool cover.“

Zagers, Pool Professionals

The deeper and heavier the snow becomes, the more difficult it is to clear away. If you deal with less snow sooner, you can prevent a situation where the snow becomes too tough to remove later. You may remove the snow from your pool cover in a variety of methods, including:

  • Use a vacuum pole with a brush attachment to reach the center of the pool, or use your leaf blower to blast away any light snow that has fallen on the surface cover.
  • Use a long-handled broom if there is a lot of snow buildup.
  • A cover pump will remove the water from melting snow. (We recommend that you use an electric pool cover pump with an automated shut-off feature)
  • Never use a metal shovel or anything with sharp edges. (A plastic shovel with smooth edges, as well as a long-handled broom, could be helpful as long as you scoop out the snow gently.)

Choosing the Right Option for Above Ground Pool Safety Covers

When you’re in the market for an above ground pool cover, one of the primary considerations should be the type of cover that best suits your needs. Above ground pool safety covers are typically available in two variations: mesh and solid. Each type has its unique benefits.

Mesh above- pool covers are ideal for regions that frequently witness substantial rainfall and snow during the colder months. They are designed to allow water to seep through, facilitating efficient drainage. Conversely, solid above ground pool covers, true to their name, are impermeable to water and snow. However, with these solid covers, there’s a need to routinely clear off heavy snow, and any standing water will need to be pumped out during the winter months.

Warranty and Above Ground Pool Size Matters

While shopping for an above ground pool cover, it’s crucial to pay attention to the warranty details. Premium solar above ground pool covers, for instance, are constructed to endure the elements and provide resistance to prolonged sun exposure. The most reliable covers are available in a range of sizes to fit various pool dimensions and usually come with an extended warranty. Such a warranty ensures that you acquire a cover that snugly fits your pool and has the manufacturer’s assurance against any potential defects.

Harnessing the Power of the Sun with Above-Ground Pool Covers

Solar above ground pool covers serve a dual purpose. Beyond acting as a protective shield, they are instrumental in retaining heat. These covers capture and store sunlight, potentially increasing your pool water’s temperature by up to 15 degrees. Utilizing this eco-friendly heating approach can lead to a reduction of 50%-70% in heating expenses, particularly when contrasted with gas or propane pool heaters.

Combatting Algae Growth and Addressing Wind Challenges with Above Ground Pool Covers

The issue of algae proliferation is a common concern among pool owners. A well-maintained above ground pool cover, especially solar variants, not only prevents external debris like leaves from entering but also plays a role in staving off algae formation. By blocking detrimental UV rays, these covers help maintain chlorine levels, ensuring your pool remains free from algae.

For those residing in areas prone to strong winds, a frequently posed question is, “How can I prevent my above ground pool cover from being swept away by the wind?” Affixing your cover using weights, water bags, or dedicated clips can significantly enhance its stability.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

When is the right time to remove my above-ground pool cover in winter?

The best time is after the last frost when temperatures consistently stay above freezing, usually in late winter or early spring.

How do I prepare for removing the pool cover?

Before removal, clear off any debris or water accumulated on the cover. This prevents contamination of the pool water.

Should I pump off all the water from the cover before removal?

Yes, remove as much water as possible to prevent it from getting into the pool and to make the cover lighter and easier to handle.

What should I do if the pool cover has a tear or hole?

If there’s a significant tear, be extra cautious to prevent any debris or water on the cover from entering the pool.

Bottom Line

Pool covers are a cost-effective way to keep your pool clean and help protect it from winter conditions. In addition, a pool cover can extend the life of your swimming pool and save you significant money in the long run. Make sure to take a few extra precautions and follow a few basic guidelines we’ve listed above to ensure that you properly remove the pool cover before opening up for the swimming season. 

Hopefully, these tips will help you extend the life of your pool cover and save you from maintenance costs in the long run. Below are more pool articles that you will definitely find useful too. Check them out!

To view more pool guides, click here. Happy Swimming!

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