If you happen to live in Texas or the Dallas/Fort Worth area, where we get temperatures around 40°-65° in January, you might think pool maintenance is painless, and it’s ideal for keeping your pool open through winter.
Even though freezing might seem uncommon here, the average overnight low in January hovers at 37°, which is dangerously close to a frost.
Pool ownership entails a lot of responsibility and does not end when the swimming season ends! You should winterize a pool in Texas during the off-season (fall, winter, and early spring) in order to maintain its cleanliness and ensure a successful opening.
A single night can certainly profoundly affect the likelihood that your pool care equipment will be damaged if you are not prepared.
Why do you Need to Winterize Pools in Texas?
Winterizing a pool properly is an essential part of pool maintenance. By doing so, you increase the life of your pool and save money in the long run. Your pool’s chemistry must also be checked on a regular basis during the summer so it remains crystal clear, and during the winter, it constantly requires an inspection.
In addition to creating more work for you next year, ditching your pool will be less conducive to relaxation. There may also be serious consequences for your pool cleaning and its filtration system. Clogging drains and skimmers will be caused by leaves, bugs, and twigs that rot over time, and the pH levels of your swimming pool will be thrown off by decaying debris.
When Should I Winterize my Pool?
Timing is everything. The lower the temperature, the fewer algae will grow. Clean, test, and balance the pool until the colder days have ended for the season. After a long, cold winter, you’ll be grateful when the weather is warm enough to swim again, and it takes fewer chemicals to open up your pool! Texas rarely experiences freezing temperatures for very long.
Typically you should winterize the inground pool when you start experiencing the temperature drop below 32 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid pipes and systems damage.
Tips to Winterize a Pool in Texas
Clean the surface and structure of the pool
Keeping your pool clean is essential. Get rid of any debris that floats on top of the water. Be sure to remove leaves, bugs, and twigs with your skimmer if you can see them.
As a next step, you should also begin brushing the foundation of your pool with a pool brush. It is important to pay particular attention to the areas of your pool where algae and dirt tend to accumulate. Then, run the pool vacuum, preferably destined for waste, after you finish brushing the pool. Dirt and algae will bypass the filter, preventing clogging and the need for additional filter cleaning.
Shock the pool
Prepare your pool for winter by shocking it several days before closing, and check the pH level. The pool must be shut off if the chlorine level drops below one to three parts per million. Adding algaecide means adding chlorine, so if the chlorine level is too high, the algaecide will break down and damage the cover.
Drop water level
To lower the water, use a submersible pump or a filter pump. In the case of solid pool covers, lower the water by 3 to 6 inches below the skimmer, and for mesh covers, go as low as 12 to 18 inches below the skimmer. You need to close the skimmers first and drain the water to waste if you have a separate main drain.
Lower the water with a self-priming or submersible pump if your pool doesn’t have a dedicated main drain. Avoid reducing the water levels too much, as it could damage the pool base.
Remove and drain all equipment
The chlorinator and heater are to drain of all water by blowing out the drain plugs and caps. When water remains, it can freeze and cause cracks within the equipment. Prior to storing any equipment, make sure it is clean.
Likewise, when you winterize a pool, you should remove all the equipment attached to your swimming pool, such as rails, skimmer baskets, diving boards, ladders, etc. The items must be stored in a dry, safe place, and these items will deteriorate during the colder months if they are left outside.
The pump and filter should be cleaned and then disconnected
Make sure you backwash and rinse out the filters and pumps. Put it into winterization mode and turn the power off. You should also unplug the water pump and turn off any hoses you are not using.
Clear pool water lines
All plumbing lines must be blown out with a blower. Inject air into the swimming pool by pushing it through the skimmers and through the equipment. Seal all lines. You can add antifreeze to pipes to prevent them from freezing in certain circumstances.
Apply winterizing chemicals
You will need to add winterizing chemicals after your pool water has been balanced. Algaecide is the most effective chemical to use, but do not add chlorine simultaneously. If the pool is concrete, you can attach a chlorine floater to the poolside with a long string.
During the colder months, algaecide and chemical floaters are typically put in the pool disinfected. Your pool storage shed should already contain these chemicals, as they are essential to keeping your pool healthy during the open season.
Set up the pool cover
Finally, protect your swimming pool from precipitation, sunlight, and debris by covering it with a winter cover or safety cover. Using a safety cover with kids and pets can also add an extra level of security.
It’s important to note that these steps give an overview of the steps involved when you winterize a swimming pool in Texas. Depending on your pool’s features, the area you live in Texas, equipment systems, and form, the sequence, steps, and process may vary.