Winterising Guide for Swimming Pools

Winterising Guide for Swimming Pools

December 1, 2023

Ensure the Safety and Protection of Your Pool!

As the winter season approaches, it becomes necessary to protect your swimming pool or hot tub from the harsh weather conditions. Winterising your pool is essential to prevent freeze damage, algae growth, and other issues that can arise during the colder months. Follow this comprehensive step-by-step guide to ensure your pool stays safe and in optimal condition throughout the winter.

Step 1: Balance the Water’s Chemistry.
Start the winterisation process by testing the water’s chemistry. Use a reliable pool testing kit to measure the pH, Free Chlorine, Total Alkalinity, and Calcium Hardness levels. Aim for a pH level between 7.6 and 7.8, as the pH naturally tends to lower during colder temperatures. Adjust the chemical levels accordingly to achieve the recommended balance.

Step 2: Shock the Pool Before Closing.
Shocking involves adding a concentrated dose of chlorine to eliminate bacteria, algae, and other contaminants that may be present. It’s best to perform this step around three days before continuing the winterisation process. This allows enough time for the chlorine levels to return to normal.

Step 3: Add Winteriser Algaecide.
To prevent algae growth during the winter, add Lo-Chlor Winteriser Algaecide to the pool water. These specially formulated products offer long-lasting protection against algae for up to three months. Additionally, consider using a phosphate remover such as Lo-Chlor Starver® X to remove phosphates. By reducing the presence of phosphates, you can further enhance the effectiveness of your sanitiser and algaecide.

Step 4: Clean and Sanitise Pool Accessories.
Before closing your pool, thoroughly clean and sanitise pool equipment and accessories. Remove items such as ladders, handrails, baskets, fittings, vacuums, and toys. Additionally, inspect pool fittings for any signs of corrosion and replace them if necessary. Taking care of these details will help you avoid any potential staining when reopening your pool in the spring.

Step 5: Lower the Water Level Before Winterising.
It’s important to lower the water level in your pool. This prevents overflow during periods of heavy rainfall. The ideal water level should be lowered by approximately 10-15 centimetres below the water return line and below the skimmer intake. By lowering the water level, you’re safeguarding your pool against potential damage and ensuring peace of mind during the winter months. It also prevents water getting into the pipes and freezing.

Step 6: Scrub the Pool.
Give your pool a thorough cleaning by using a pool brush to scrub the walls and bottom of the pool. This step removes any dirt, debris, or algae that might be clinging to the surfaces. For hard-to-reach areas, consider using a telescoping pole to ensure thorough cleaning. Scrubbing the pool before winterisation creates a clean environment and prepares your pool for a seamless reopening in the spring.

Step 7: Draining and Cleaning Your Filter.
For pools that run on cartridge filters, you should remove and clean these before shutting down your pool. For pools with sand, glass, or diatomaceous earth filters, it’s vital to properly clean and prepare the filter before winterising. Start by backwashing the filter to remove any trapped debris. Before disconnecting, ensure that there is no water left within the equipment, as freezing temperatures can cause damage. Thoroughly clean all filter components and inspect them for any signs of wear or damage. Once completed, disconnect the filter and store it in a safe area. A well-maintained filter will provide optimal performance when you resume pool operations in the warmer seasons.

Step 8: Cover the Pool.
The final step in the winterisation process is to cover your pool. A high-quality pool cover shields your pool from the elements and prevents debris from entering the water. Invest in a cover specifically designed for winter use, as they are thicker and more durable. Ensure the cover fits snugly over the pool and is securely fastened to resist wind and snow. Regularly remove debris from the top of the cover during the winter to maintain its effectiveness and prevent damage.

Step 9: Monitor the Pool.
Though your pool is closed for the winter, it’s important to maintain regular monitoring to ensure everything is in order. Periodically check the pool cover to ensure it remains secure and undamaged. Observe the water level as excessive rain or snowfall could cause it to rise. Additionally, monitor the water chemistry throughout the winter, especially during periods of severe weather. If necessary, adjust the chlorine levels and add algaecide.

By following these detailed steps, you can effectively winterise your swimming pool. Proper winterisation safeguards your pool from potential damage, algae growth, and other seasonal challenges. Take the necessary precautions now to ensure a smooth and worry-free reopening in the spring. Your diligence in winterising your pool will pay off, ensuring years of enjoyment and a healthy swimming environment for you and your family.  Visit the Lo-Chlor Website for more information on pool care.