If your swimming pool is not properly maintained during the winter break, then the development of algae, lime deposits or even the damage of your swimming pool accessories is yours. Whereas with the right winterizing strategy, you can protect your pool and ensure that you can enjoy swimming next season. If you carry out an effective wintering, you will avoid too tedious spring cleaning. So as soon as the water temperature in your pool drops between 12 and 15 degrees, think about wintering! You then have the choice between passive wintering and active wintering. But what is the difference between the two?
Preparing your pool for winter
Whatever wintering you want to set up – active or passive – the first steps are the same. Before actively or passively winterizing your pool, it is important to prepare it well. To do this, leave the water in the basin, clean the skimmer, the water pipe and the filter. To ensure optimal functioning of the maintenance products in the swimming pool, always ensure that the pH value is between 7 and 7.4. To keep your pool free from contamination during the winter, apply a chlorine shock treatment.
In short, the six most important steps are:
- Clean your pool floor
- Clean the filter
- Lower the water level
- Remove dirt from the edge of the pool, especially at the water line
- Correctly set the pH and chlorine value
- Close, cover your pool
Passive wintering of the pool
Passive wintering consists of shutting down the pool filter, emptying all the pipes and partially draining the pool, then covering it. Passive wintering is recommended when there is a risk of the water freezing (outside temperature below 5°C). Passive wintering is therefore suitable for swimming pools in areas with severe freezing periods and for swimming pool owners who do not wish to use and maintain their swimming pool during the winter.
After thoroughly cleaning your pool and filter, lower the water level and turn off the filter system. Then empty any pipes that may freeze. To prevent algae and limestone from accumulating in the pool, add a specific winterizing product directly to the pool water. Before completely covering your pool with a cover, wait at least 8 hours after the chlorine shock treatment to avoid any material damage.
To use your swimming pool as long as possible, how about installing a roof coupled with a heat pump or a solar panel system? So you could enjoy your pool until late fall. If the water temperature drops below 20°C, you can reduce the filtration time to 4 – 6 hours. However, you should check the temperature of your pond at least once every two weeks. Once the water in your pool has dropped to between 10 and 15°C, you can start wintering at any time.
The active wintering of the pool
Active winterizing involves slowing down the operation of your pool with slow filtration every day for at least 2 hours. Your pool should be closely monitored when outdoor temperatures approach freezing. Active wintering is recommended if there is no risk of water freezing (outside temperature above 5°C throughout the winter). Active wintering is suitable for regions with short, mild winters and for pool owners who want to enjoy their pool all year round. To protect your pool from freezing, it is important to let your filtration system run for at least 4 hours a day, preferably in the morning.
Briefly, Differences Between Passive Overwintering and Active Overwintering
Passive wintering = Putting the pool to complete rest
Passive wintering is intended for owners of swimming pools located in cold areas regularly subject to freezing, as well as for those who do not wish to have to maintain their swimming pool during the winter. This is the case for above-ground pools and those located in a second home.
- Lower the level
- Stop spinning the filter
- Empty all pipes and lines
- Add a specific winterizing product
- Cover your pool
Active wintering = Consists of running your pool in slow motion
Active wintering is preferred in areas with mild winter temperatures, if you want to enjoy your pool “visually” all year round. During active wintering, your pool is not covered. In addition, it is easier to put the pool back into service in the spring and during the summer months.
- Maintain the water level at that of the skimmer
- Check the pH of your water once a month
- Run your filter during the coldest hours to prevent the water from freezing
- Use long-lasting disinfection products such as slow chlorine tablets.
- Add a specific winterizing product