Each year, many pool owners throughout the world attempt to properly winterize their inground swimming pool.
Unfortunately each year many pools sustain damage over the winter because pool owners make simple mistakes when attempting this task. This being said, I wanted to write a brief article on the 5 most common mistakes we see from pool owners who attempt to close their own pool.
1. Clean the salt generator- Over the course of a pool season, scale of some type typically develops on the metallic plates found within the cell of a salt chlorine generator. Such scale is removed my mixing a water/muriatic acid solution and letting it soak in the cell, dissolving any scale that has built up over time(see factory directions with your salt system for details). Customers will often forget to this at the end of the pool season and then find that their salt systems to not work properly in the spring.
2. Heater Winterization- With their long coils, heaters can easily hold water if not properly blown out and drained. If the water freezes over the winter inside a coil and it busts, the repair is very, very expensive. Do yourself a favor and do not forget this important step.
3. Clean the Filter: Whether it’s the grid of a DE filter or the pleats of a cartridge, your pool’s filter needs to be cleaned well at the end of the season. When filters of any type are allowed to set all winter with waste and debris caked within them, they are often rendered nearly useless in the Spring. This is especially true with cartridge filters.
4. Gizzmo in the Skimmer Line: Many pool owners put a regular plug in their skimmer line but clearly the ideal gadget for this task is a Gizzmo, which is a long, green tube that threads into the skimmer line and is hollow in the middle with a cap on top (watch video below). This inexpensive device allows for all the air to be pumped out the skimmer line without the chance of water getting back in.
5. Turn off all electrical components!!!: It amazes me how often I see pool owners forget to turn off the electrical to their filter system. When this occurs, the pool pump will turn on after the pool has been winterized, which in turn means the pump will run without water running through it. This burns up the motor quickly and obviously will not be covered under warranty. This is why all breakers having anything to do with the pool should be set to off position over the winter, along with the pool’s timer.
Although there are many more mistakes that can be made with an inground pool winterization, these are the most common mistakes to be aware of if you decide to close your own pool. Also, because each pool is different, some pools are much more complex to winterize than others. If you have any questions or comments regarding pool closings, please don’t hesitate to make a mention below.
And as always, happy swimming!