Kenwood Pools

Close Your Pool the Right Way

September 21, 2013 2:05 pm0 commentsViews: 22
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ClosingThePoolMarina Cospito, owner of Kenwood Pools in Levittown, offers some helpful advice to local pool owners as fall brings an end to summertime fun.

As the leaves begin to change color and the air starts to grow a little more crisp, homeowners turn their attention to winterizing their pools. The goal is to begin the work early on so that you’re not facing the hassle of leaves all over the ground or in the pool. Many times, closing the pool requires a team effort, so enlist the help of a spouse, friend or family member before beginning the process.

The first thing that is essential to winterizing the pool is having all of your equipment ready. Depending on the type of pool you have, this equipment can vary. But have all tools, winterizing chemicals and water plugs at the ready. Although inground pools and above-ground ones have similar winterizing steps, there are a few differences between the two and it is important to be aware of the differences.

Thoroughly vacuum the bottom of the pool and clean the walls. You want to remove as much organic material, such as algae and dead insects, as possible prior to covering the pool so that there is a higher propensity the water will be crystal clear next spring or summer when you reopen the pool.

Once the pool has been vacuumed and cleaned, backwash the filter to remove any excess residue. Remove plugs or open drain ports on the filter and let all of the water flow out of the filter. Give the filter components, including skimmer baskets, a good rinse with water and allow them to dry.

Next, disconnect the pool’s pump and filter. Everything should be totally drained of any water. With an above-ground pool, remove intake and output hoses and drain. For inground pools, use an air compressor or a shop vacuum to blow out any residual water from the return pipes, and then promptly plug up the ports.

Some people prefer to plug-up the skimmer return as well and leave the water level of the pool as is. However, it is also possible to drain the pool water level below the skimmer level. Put duct tape or use some other blockage method on all exposed pipes or openings to the pools to prevent anything from getting inside — this includes any insects and rodents looking for places to set up winter camp.

While some people keep their filters disconnected and outdoors for the winter, the pump should be moved into a garage or shed. Do so with the filter if you have room in order to better safeguard the equipment.

Homeowners should also test the pool water chemistry and adjust the pH, calcium hardness and total alkalinity according to recommended levels. Then prepare to add the desired mix of chemicals to the pool to sanitize it for the season. Most people use a combination of algaecide and chlorine as their winterizing chemicals. However, if the chlorine level is high enough, algaecide may not be necessary. Raise the chlorine to shock level — much higher than the recommended level for when the pool is running. Thoroughly mix granulated chemicals to prevent them from settling on the liner and causing stains.

The cover should be placed on the pool and properly secured. This is where an extra body comes in handy so that the cover can be maneuvered easily. In above ground pools, an inflated pillow is often used to alleviate ice expansion and prevent the walls of the pool from splitting. It is not to keep rainwater from accumulating on the top of the cover.

Store all of the pool equipment for the winter season, and during the cold weather, periodically check the cover, air pillow and water tubes for any damage.

Although closing a pool is not terribly difficult, it can be for those who have never owned a pool in the past. When in doubt, it is best to consult with a pool service.

Kenwood Pools is at 8522 New Falls Road in Levittown. (215) 547-0400