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Put your swimming pool to bed

A family sitting on the side of a garden swimming pool dangling their legs in the water
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A step-by-step guide to preparing your pool for winter

Helping your swimming pool into hibernation is as important as putting your garden to bed, especially if you want it to flourish again in the spring. Once the days lose their warmth, and well ahead of the first frosts, it’s time to act.

  1. Remove your summer cover and clean it. Once it is thoroughly dry, pack it away. If you are leaving it on the roller for the winter, make sure it has a cover so the mice and other little creatures can’t get in.
  2. Switch your skimmer valve off and drain some of the water from your pool to prevent it overflowing with winter rain. Take the level down to four to six inches below the skimmer.
  3. Check the chlorine level is between 6ppm and 10ppm and add a long-life algicide, to keep the algae at bay while the pool is covered and unused. Run your pump for 6-12 hours to make sure there is an even mix of chlorine and algicide throughout the pool.
  4. Find something to float on the surface to prevent expanding ice damaging your pool’s sides. You can use old chemical containers half-filled with water, or lumps of polystyrene. Tether these in various positions – so they don’t all end up in one corner.
  5. Now, to protect your pool machinery from winter freezing, drain the water out of your pump, filter and heater, using the drain plug at the bottom.
  6. Put on your winter cover – you may have to adjust it a few times during the winter to keep it tight and keep the leaves out. Remember that these debris covers are not safety covers. It’s worth looking into a proper safety cover, especially if you have young children or pets.

Protect your inflatable pool during winter

Paddling pools have become more and more elaborate these days. Some are pretty large and can accommodate a whole family at once! Some have frames, pumps and filters. For the winter, empty your inflatable completely and make sure everything is thoroughly dry. Then you can pack it all away somewhere dry, either in its box or up on a shelf or pallet, and away from pets or mice looking for a winter home.

The greenest way to dispose of old inflatables

If you have a giant pink flamingo ring that has seen better days or a massive inflatable family pool that has reached the end of its life, be aware that they cannot easily be recycled through normal waste streams.

But take a look at Wyatt and Jack’s colourful website – they make all sorts of fashion accessories out of old inflatables. They also run an inflatable amnesty, with drop off points all over the country, where you can leave your old inflatables to be upcycled.

Self storage

If you don’t have a lot of storage space at home, consider using a self-storage facility, for your summer pool cover and large inflatables for instance. You might be surprised how little it will cost to keep your pool favourites in good condition over the winter. Of course you will also need insurance for your goods whilst they are being stored. So, how much is self-storage insurance? Store and Insure can offer you very reasonable rates, and we insure by the day with no minimum period of time – so the moment it’s warm enough to open your pool you can get all your equipment out of storage. Get a quote today.