How to close a pool for the Winter in 4 Steps

Do you want to know how to close a pool properly to ease your workload come spring and the next pool season? Here are 4 steps to take to be sure that your pool is closed properly, along with links to relevant pool supplies you’ll need to get the job done.

How to close a pool step 1: Balance the water chemistry

Photo credit to Joe Shlabotnik
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Test your water so that you know how you need to adjust your chemicals to get them to the right levels. Those levels for a winter pool closing should be:

● pH – 7.2 and 7.6
● Alkalinity – 80 to 120 ppm
● Calcium hardness – 180 to 220 ppm
● Chlorine – 1 to 3 ppm

After using the pool supplies that will get your chemical levels right, shock the water with chlorine following the direction on the package. Use a strong treatment option, no one is going to be swimming in this afterwards as you’re closing the pool! Let the chlorine level return to its normal 1 to 3 ppm before proceeding.

Add an algaecide that is appropriate for winter. This pool supply will kill whatever algae is in the water and prevent further growth.

How to close a pool step 2: Clean the pool

Photo credit to Ash Kyd
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Remove everything in the pool that isn’t water: ladders, baskets, hoses, filters, pumps and yes, pool noodles. Rinse this equipment and leave it out to dry. Once it is dry you can store it.

Now skim the pool with your skimmer for all debris floating on top: leaves, insects, sticks and anything else that isn’t water.

With everything off the surface you can scrub and vacuum the pool. Use a skim bag to collect debris before vacuuming if you have a lot. You’ll give the pool one more cleaning the day you shut it down, but be thorough.

How to close a pool step 3: Drain the water from the pool and equipment

Lower the water level to a place below the skimmer, take it as far down as is recommended by the pool cover you’re using. The typical recommendations for a mesh cover are 12 to 18 inches below, a solid cover is 3 to 6 inches below.

Now all pumps, filters, heaters and chlorinators must be drained. Water can freeze inside them over the winter and burst them. Be sure to remove the filters and clean them well before storing them somewhere dry.

Use a shop vacuum to winterize the plumbing. Blow air through the skimmer and back into the pool. Water freezing over the winter is not your friend at all!

How to close a pool step 4: The last winterizing steps

Give your pool that last skimming as debris could have fallen in while you’ve been working. Now cover the pool with a cover which does not leave any gaps. You can use water bags and aquablocks to help the cover fit as tightly as possible, a leaf net will also help if you have a tree nearby.

If you have an above ground pool use an air pillow. Inflate them, tie them down in the centre of your pool and use 2 if you have a larger pool.

There you have it, how to close a pool in 4 steps! If you have any needs for pool supplies this pool closing period, or all summer long, we invite you to come to visit us at Oakville Home Leisure. Our friendly staff is ready to help answer your questions on how to close a pool, open a pool or do a sweet cannonball.