In South Africa, we enjoy a very pool-friendly climate. Our long, hot summers mean we can usually enjoy our pools for at least 6 months of the year – especially if you have a heat pump. But there will come a time when winter wins, and swimming is something we do without for a few months. That doesn’t, however, mean we can neglect caring for our pools for the whole of winter! Swimming pool care is something we have to do all year round. And keeping your pool looking good all winter means there’ll be very little to do when summer rolls around again – except put on your cozzies, of course!
Winter Swimming Pool Care Tips
We are fortunate that our pools don’t freeze in winter. They don’t even ice up. But they do find themselves covered in a lot more leaves and other blown-in debris. Unless you frequently clear this from the surface of your pool, it will sink to the bottom. This looks unsightly, can discolour the water, and clog up your automatic pool cleaner. This is why covering your pool is a great option to reduce winter pool care.
Before you cover your pool, however, it’s important to thoroughly clean and vacuum it. Then backwash it thoroughly – and by thoroughly we mean for five minutes! Make sure the pH is within the ideal range and then shock treat with three cups of dry granular chlorine. The last job before putting the cover on is to remove your automatic cleaner. This should be thoroughly dried and stored in a clean, dry place.
Don’t forget to adjust your pool pump timer – your filter only needs to run for between six and eight hours a day in the winter, instead of the 12 hours it usually runs for in summer. Add a cup of dry chlorine once a week.
If you don’t plan to cover your pool, you can still reduce the timer from 12 to eight hours. You can also turn off your heat pump if you have one as this saves considerable electricity. Backwash and rinse your pool once a week, the same as you would in summer. This helps to prevent a build-up of dirt in your filter sand.
Try to scoop off any leaves or other debris from the pool surface as quickly as possible, and keep your automatic pool cleaner running for the entire time the pump is on. Remember to empty the weir basket at least once a week, and check the pump basket regularly too.
If you’d like any help or advice on how you can keep your pool summer-ready all through winter, chat to Pool, Spa and Filtration Supplies.