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Thread: Leave the cover off all winter?????

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    Shelley N's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    199

    Leave the cover off all winter?????

    I've seen posts that say you should close as usual even when planning to replace a liner in the upcoming Spring. Due to living in the dry climate of Colorado, the water level is going to drop at least half way down over winter due to the evaporation we experience. If I put a regular cover on, it will pull the sides in and down as it lowers. The draining cover (that I love) can't be more than 10" above the water level or it will do the same thing (I added water all winter last year). What happens if you just leave it without a cover?
    Shelley
    Denver, CO

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    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    SE Pennsylvania
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    6

    Re: Leave the cover off all winter?????

    Hi Shelley,
    I do not know what your winter climate is like (moderate vs extreme) and I am not sure what you mean by a "draining" cover. My first thought is that you mean a mesh safety cover? If that is the case then yes, those will allow a pretty normal evaporation rate for the pool. If you already have a "regular" pool cover I would think that it would cut the evaporation down to a minimum considering water vapor can not pass through it, or at least not nearly as much as long as it is properly installed.

    When the liner is replaced, the pool will need to be drained anyway so I would not worry much about the water level unless it drops to a point that creates a problem and I believe a cheap solid (regular) cover will do the job with only minimal effort.

    As far as not covering, I honestly have no idea. My first thought is that the water is exposed to sunlight (algae) and debris such as leaves and such making it a mess to deal with in the spring. There may also be other concerns I am missing so hopefully someone else can chime in to help.

    Hope something in this helps.
    16x38 L shaped, 26,000 inground with Pentair FNSP 36 and Centurion pump.

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    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Seattle area
    Posts
    17

    Re: Leave the cover off all winter?????

    I'm in Seattle with an in-ground pool. Over the wet winter months, my pool generally GAINS water rather than loses. During the warmer part of the year, I use a solar cover when the pool temp is above 60 and more susceptible to algae growth. After the pool temp drops below 60 and I can cut way back on the chlorine, I take the cover off and leave it off all winter. I used to leave it on but, being a floating solar cover, it would not keep leaves out and I would have a lot of leaves to clean up in the spring. By leaving the cover off, I'm continually aware of any debris accumulation and simply run the pool sweep occasionally to keep it clean. I suppose I could install a mesh safety cover, but I haven't really seen the need for it.
    32,000 gal. IG plaster (circa 1967); 24" dia sand filter; Jandy Lite 2 (250,000 BTU)
    1 hp circ. pump (Single speed, 53 gpm); 3/4 hp booster pump (Polaris 380)
    1 bottom drain, 1 skimmer, 2 return lines from circ pump, 1 return from booster pump, all 1-1/2" PVC plumbing

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    Re: Leave the cover off all winter?????

    You could use a mesh leaf cover. That's what we did last summer instead of a winter cover and I think we will do it again this year. Of course I am in FL, so different situation… but much easier than dealing with a solid cover.


    (
    Sue

    18' round Sharkline Matrix AGP / 8600 Gal. / sand filter / Aqua Trol SWG
    Pool owner since 2001. Thanks to TFP for helping me convert off Baquacil after six years!

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    Shelley N's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    199

    Re: Leave the cover off all winter?????

    My issue is evaporation over the winter will be almost 100% without a cover. Since we closed the pool last week, the water level has dropped 2". Dry, Autumn, days.

    The top 6 inches of the pool does turn to ice when under a winter cover. When I used to use a solid cover, it would sink below the surface and be almost like no cover at all evaporation wise. We switched to a drainable cover last winter which has 3 slits of screen lengthwise and rubber bungie cords securing it to the uprights about mid way down. As the snow piles up, the cover lowers to the water level, as the snow melts, it springs back up to flat, and tight across the top. The water level has to remain within 10 inches of the top so as not to pull in the sides.

    I really don't want to be adding water all winter, but I don't want to wreck the sides either.
    Shelley
    Denver, CO

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