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Thread: Which is the right winter cover for me?

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    Which is the right winter cover for me?

    I need to buy a winter cover ASAP, and I am a little confused since I haven't bought one before.

    I looked at some of the options and the cheaper ones are like $60-$75 and they say there is an 8 year warranty. But I read that these lower end covers only last like one year in reality...?! Then the nicer ones for $85-110 apparently last a few years (and the warranty says 10 or 12 years).

    If that is true, then doing the math, I should spring for the better quality one. Also the ones for $110-$150 are mesh that let water pass through, but the cheaper ones aren't going to let water through? Or will they?

    Is there anything else I need to consider with buying a cover? I know some of the cheapest ones don't have loops for the water bags, and some better ones have water bags included in the price.

    I bet there are things I am not thinking of though, so help is very much appreciated. Cost does matter somewhat, money is a bit tight, so I definitely can't go more than like $160 and prefer to stay under $130 or $120.
    Inground oval approx 17.5' x 35' (with middle of deep end 9'?) so guessing 27000 gallons. Vinyl liner, BBB chlorine. Dolphin. Portable fullsize spa not currently in use.

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    spishex's Avatar
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    If you're going with a tarp, get a solid cover. It'll be sitting on the water so you don't want the water going through it. Then budget for the water bags and some way to remove the water from the top of the cover (a submersible pump may be needed if siphoning isn't an option).

    *Wait a minute.... Why do you need to buy a winter cover ASAP?

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by spishex

    *Wait a minute.... Why do you need to buy a winter cover ASAP?
    Wait until fall. They'll be on sale then.

    Like Spishex said, the solid covers have to be pumped off. We get enough rain over the winter that with a solid cover you'll either have to pump the cover off regularly, or drain/pump water out of the pool two or three times over the winter with a mesh cover. When comparing costs, be sure to add water bags and a cover pump.

    Remember that floating covers make the pool more dangerous than an open pool due to the potential for getting wrapped in the cover, so you have to make sure the pool is secure from kids and animals over the winter. A safety cover is far more convenient, safer and stays on the pool better. Unfortunately you are probably talking $1200 for one.
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    I've been using a old crappy tarp which is far too heavy, and don't want that heavy type anymore ideally. (The tarp that I have been using may not even be intended for pools, I am not sure. I got it from the previous owners who were cheap about things and often used inferior replacement items. Current tarp is black and seems like vinyl. It has grommets on the sides.)

    I was thinking that mesh is only $150 and worth it for me? Rather than $100 cover plus the need to siphon it off?

    I believe I need a winter cover NOW because my pool has become quite green and I need to follow the instructions here on how to get my swamp back to being a pool. Part of the instructions are to cover and uncover your pool every day while I am shocking it for the first week or two. And as I said, my current tarp is a major PITA so I wanted a cover now that I could put on and off easier, and the current one needs replacing anyway I figured. Am I wrong about needing one now?

    (Since it is the opposite of the time when people typically buy winter covers, I thought perhaps it might even be on clearance, but I suppose not.)

    (I know I don't want a safety cover because of money, and my yard is pretty secure for various reasons.)
    Inground oval approx 17.5' x 35' (with middle of deep end 9'?) so guessing 27000 gallons. Vinyl liner, BBB chlorine. Dolphin. Portable fullsize spa not currently in use.

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    spishex's Avatar
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    "Various reasons" sounds ominous. Barbed wire and armed guards?

    I think you might have been reading about an automatic cover or a safety cover. Taking a tarp cover on and off multiple times doesn't seem practical. I wasn't able to find anything mentioning that in the "swamp>oasis" thread. Can you post a link to the specific article you're talking about?

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by aquamarine
    I believe I need a winter cover NOW because my pool has become quite green and I need to follow the instructions here on how to get my swamp back to being a pool. Part of the instructions are to cover and uncover your pool every day while I am shocking it for the first week or two.
    Where did you see instructions to cover and uncover the pool to deal with algae?

    A floating cover will cause problems with the skimmer, and any winter cover would be a royal pain to deal with daily. Algae can be dealt with easily with nothing more than chlorine and a little attention.
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by aquamarine
    I've been using a old crappy tarp which is far too heavy, and don't want that heavy type anymore ideally. (The tarp that I have been using may not even be intended for pools, I am not sure. I got it from the previous owners who were cheap about things and often used inferior replacement items. Current tarp is black and seems like vinyl. It has grommets on the sides.)

    I was thinking that mesh is only $150 and worth it for me? Rather than $100 cover plus the need to siphon it off?

    I believe I need a winter cover NOW because my pool has become quite green and I need to follow the instructions here on how to get my swamp back to being a pool. Part of the instructions are to cover and uncover your pool every day while I am shocking it for the first week or two. And as I said, my current tarp is a major PITA so I wanted a cover now that I could put on and off easier, and the current one needs replacing anyway I figured. Am I wrong about needing one now?

    (Since it is the opposite of the time when people typically buy winter covers, I thought perhaps it might even be on clearance, but I suppose not.)

    (I know I don't want a safety cover because of money, and my yard is pretty secure for various reasons.)
    Our instructions here don't mention a cover, but you may be referring to the use of a solar cover during shocking, or automatic safety covers that some fancier pools are equiped with. We do not mean winterizing tarps/covers.

    Read this article.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Well various reasons = probably not good enough for people here, lol. You would probably say I need the safety cover, but I don't think I should spend on that, as money is a bit tight. 1) Fence slightly over 6 ft high 2) Gates are locked and no tresspassing signs are up and the fence is basically solid where you can't see the pool too well 3) Never had a problem before, previous owners too surely never had a problem 4) Not really young kids around here, they are old enough to know, parents smarter and more responsible 5) Over a million in insurance if something happened 6) Will be installing surveillance cameras (and yes obviously I won't be watching them when I sleep, lol)... Maybe there is a relatively cheap alarm I can buy.

    I guess I am remembering wrong about the covering up the pool. Maybe I am just thinking of the advice to not use a solar cover when you do it? So I can just leave the cover off for the next months I guess, and optionally use a solar cover AFTER I get the pool back into swimming condition? Cool.

    Okay, so good, I feel better about buying a winter cover knowing that I don't need to remove it often. Still would like to know if I should NOT buy the mesh type...!? As that part confuses me.
    Inground oval approx 17.5' x 35' (with middle of deep end 9'?) so guessing 27000 gallons. Vinyl liner, BBB chlorine. Dolphin. Portable fullsize spa not currently in use.

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    A safety cover is a personal decision and I don't think anyone would dictate that to you. It's a matter of preference regarding solid vs. mesh. With mesh, periodically you have to pump out the water level to keep the water below the skimmer/return lines. Any and all covers have their drawbacks.

    You don't mention where you are located, is covering even a necessity? Many people even in areas with total freeze do not cover their pool at all, again a personal preference.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Oh wow, that's strange to think of not covering it. I didn't know people did that. I would guess that in my area the pool would fluctuate in a semi-frozen state, not sure.
    Inground oval approx 17.5' x 35' (with middle of deep end 9'?) so guessing 27000 gallons. Vinyl liner, BBB chlorine. Dolphin. Portable fullsize spa not currently in use.

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    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by aquamarine
    Oh wow, that's strange to think of not covering it. I didn't know people did that. I would guess that in my area the pool would fluctuate in a semi-frozen state, not sure.
    I know me too, I've always covered it and when I first heard that some don't I just couldn't wrap my brain around it. I look at it like this, either there is gooky stuff on top of the cover you have to clean or gooky stuff in the water you have to clean.

    Gooky stuff on the cover I almost always come in contact with . Gook in the water - the tools handle. Member TJ in nearby Tinley Park didn't cover this year, after having headaches every year from trying to cover....and reported excellent results. I think this next year I may forego covering myself.

    The thing with not covering is when the water is not frozen, getting out there with a leaf net and spending some time scooping. Also using something to circulate the water, adding some bleach if needbe (since the filter/pump would not be usable). So it's a tradeoff....nasty green water on top of the cover which might fall into the pool on opening....making nasty green water in the pool too....or just possible nasty green water in the pool. Which road to take? It's a personal preference I think.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Interesting. I like the idea already and it will probably grow on me. The neighbors will probably think it's very strange though! Is it slightly less safe without a cover? I would guess it is slightly more safe actually, if it's not frozen or lightly frozen.
    Inground oval approx 17.5' x 35' (with middle of deep end 9'?) so guessing 27000 gallons. Vinyl liner, BBB chlorine. Dolphin. Portable fullsize spa not currently in use.

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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    If I may toss in a 1/2 way suggestion regarding 'buying a new cover or not covering the pool...' - a leaf net may allow you to both keep the large leafy debris out of the pool (you take off the leafnet once all the leaves have fallen and before the water freezes, to prevent the captured stuff from making 'leaf pool tea'

    It's your pool and your choice how to deal with this, we'll be here to proffer advice as to which way will be best for your pool 8)
    Luv& Luk
    -Ted

    Having done construction and service for 4 pool companies in 4 states starting in 1988, what I know about pools could fill a couple of books - what I don't know could fill a couple of libraries :-D

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    Re: Which is the right winter cover for me?

    Ok, I may try that if there are many leaves. Thanks.
    Inground oval approx 17.5' x 35' (with middle of deep end 9'?) so guessing 27000 gallons. Vinyl liner, BBB chlorine. Dolphin. Portable fullsize spa not currently in use.

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