Winter brings its own set of challenges for above ground pool owners. At Bonnie & Clyde’s Pools and Spas, we’re here to guide you through preparing your cherished swimming spot for the freezing temperatures that winter can bring. Understanding the right steps to protect your above ground pool is vital to avoid the expensive damages that cold weather can inflict.
The Risk of Freeze Damage
Above ground pools are particularly vulnerable to freeze damage. Water expands as it freezes, and this expansion can exert immense pressure on your pool walls, plumbing, and equipment. Without proper precautions, you could face burst pipes, damaged liners, and broken pumps or filters come spring.
Running the Pump: A Preventive Measure
A common misconception is that pools, especially above ground pools, need to hibernate fully in winter. However, the truth is a bit more nuanced. While it’s not necessary to run your pool’s pump continuously under normal winter conditions in Texas, the equation changes when temperatures drop below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. To prevent water from freezing, it’s essential that your pool’s pump runs non-stop during these cold spells.
For those with variable speed pumps, we recommend setting the pump to run at a lower RPM during the expected coldest parts of the day or night. This approach ensures continuous water movement to prevent freezing while being energy efficient.
Power Outages: A Plan of Action
In the event of a power loss, your pool’s first line of defense—the pump—won’t operate, leaving your pool at the mercy of the freezing cold. To mitigate potential damage, removing as many drain plugs from the pool equipment as possible is advisable. This action helps prevent water inside from freezing and expanding, which could otherwise lead to costly damage to your pump, filter, and heating system.
Additional Steps for Pool Freeze Protection
To further safeguard your above ground pool from freeze damage, consider these additional precautions:
- Insulate Exposed Plumbing: Use foam insulation sleeves or heat tape to protect exposed pipes and plumbing from freezing temperatures.
- Maintain Proper Water Levels: Even in winter, ensure your pool has enough water to support the cover and counterbalance the pressure from ice and snow.
- Use a Quality Pool Cover: A good-quality pool cover is indispensable for winterizing your above ground pool. It not only keeps out debris but also helps retain some heat and prevents the surface water from freezing.
- Incorporate a Pool Air Pillow: An often overlooked but highly effective step is the use of a pool air pillow. Place this pillow under your pool cover in the center of the pool. The air pillow serves multiple purposes: it absorbs pressure from ice expansion, preventing the ice from putting direct strain on your pool walls and cover. Additionally, it creates a slope on the pool surface, encouraging water and melting snow to slide off the cover rather than accumulating and weighing it down.
- Periodic Checks: Regularly inspect your pool cover and equipment for signs of ice formation or damage, adjusting your preventive measures as needed.
Ready for Winter, Ready for Anything
At Bonnie & Clyde’s Pools and Spas, we believe that with the right preparation, your above ground pool can weather the winter without issue. By keeping your pump running during freezing temperatures, preparing for power outages, and taking additional protective steps, you can minimize the risk of freeze damage.
Our team is always here to help with expert advice, winterization services, and support to ensure your pool stays in top condition all year. If you have any questions or need assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out. Let’s keep your pool protected year-round!
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