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Proper Fall & Winter Pool Maintenance

Do you think there is less pool maintenance in the fall/winter season? Most will not swim in their pools/spas as much as they do in the hotter months. However, your pool still needs maintenance.

Proper pool care during the Fall and Winter seasons will save you a lot of time and work for the following summer. Emerald Pool & Patio want to provide some tips on how to carry out the proper Fall & Winter pool maintenance.

Ph-Balance Monitoring

Rain or other weather agents can alter the pH balance of your pool’s water. Even in the Fall, it is necessary to have the pH measured to maintain the proper functioning levels of the swimming pool.

Using a proper analyzer kit with a red phenol agent is a convenient tool for your pool’s maintenance. Add five drops of said agent to the water sample and observe the color change.

The optimal pH level of your pool’s water is between 7.2 and 7.4. The water in the pH tests will turn yellow if the pH is low (samples with less than 6.8), and red if levels are high (8.2 and up) when you add the phenol agent.

Keep in mind that, it will be necessary to increase the pH with products if the test results indicate low pH. On the other hand, if the tests result in a red color indicating a high pH, reduce the pH with products as well.

We at Emerald Pool and Patio carry all the chemicals you may need to keep the Ph level optimal. Check out the brands we carry here.

Chlorine Reduction

Your swimming pool needs smaller amounts of chlorine in the fall than in the summer. The primary objective for your swimming pool is to keep it clean and in optimal conditions for the next summer season.

If you plan to apply other types of treatments for pool maintenance, we do advise keeping chlorine levels between 1 and 3 ppm, because it tends to decay products and protective covers.

Use Enzyme Chemicals to Break Down Non-Living Organic Impurities

Using an enzyme product during the off-season (even poured through a mesh cover when the water is not frozen) will help to break down non-living organic contamination that will inevitably make its way into your pool during winter.

Some of this contamination includes bird droppings, pollen, or other contaminants left over from your pool season.

An off-season enzyme will help prevent the waterline ring that can occur through the winter, which would normally require a lot of scrubbing in the spring.

Any of our experts at Emerald Pool & Patio will be happy to show you which product will work best for your pool.

Add a Mid-Winter Algaecide

Use an algaecide or algaestat (preventive), particularly one that stays in the water for a good length of time.

On the last day that the pool will be open, add this to the water and run the pump for 24 hours to fully circulate. Then shut down the circulation system for the winter. By keeping the green stuff away makes the pool startup much easier.

Buy and Clean Your Pool Cover

External agents like dust, insects, and leaves are the real enemies, making your pool filthy and, eventually, change the water. Pool covers not only help to keep the water clean but also helps to maintain a warm water temperature.

If you are about to get lots of snow, you can open your pool cover to prevent it from tearing. Most pool covers are not built to endure heavy weight so plan accordingly to the weather headed your way.

Pump water off solid covers as well, for two reasons: 1) Many covers will collapse if too much water collects 2) The water will dump right into the pool and negates the benefits of the cover in the first place.

Keep Your Above Ground Winter Cover Free of Debris

If leaves, sticks, and other junk accumulate on your pool cover throughout the winter, you can end up with a vicious stew of stagnant water, which is a mess to remove and some of it often ends up in the pool.

Using an air pillow connected to the cover in the center of the pool not only protects your pool from snow and ice damage, it also disperses water and debris to the sides of the pool making cleaning easier. You want to keep some water on the cover to help stabilize the cover in the wind, but you do not want any debris.

Check Your System to Prevent Freezing

As winter approaches and you plan to close the pool for good, remember to check your pipes and motorized parts. Drain the water from the pump, pool heater and filter. You also want to drain the water 4–6 inches below the pool skimmer.

As the temperatures begin to dip to freezing levels, any excess water in these parts can freeze. If that happens, the pipes can crack, which can cost significant money in the long run.

Remember to also entirely remove any water that has accumulated on top of your pool cover to keep it from freezing. You can use a sump pump or a winter cover pump.

Have Regular Checks and Cleaning

Examine your pool for leaks and cracks regularly. The cracks should be repaired and healed right away.

Cleaning the pool does not only mean that you need to remove all the extra elements from your pool. Cleaning and pool maintenance require skimming of water, vacuuming of the pool floors and brushing the interiors of the pool. Also, letting the debris, cracks and other object rest in the pool can invite some serious problems when you re-open your pool next year.

Be Proactive with your Pool Chemistry

When homeowners do not maintain their pool or suspend their pool service over the winter to save money, it can end up causing costly damage to the pool itself. We understand the logic, but we hope this article emphasizes the inconvenient truth that cold water is more aggressive and can damage pools in the winter.

If you are looking for a second opinion on what to do with your pool/spa, contact us and we can come out to evaluate what needs to be done so that you can open your pool in the summer with a smile and not a frown.

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