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Thread: winter care in mild climate

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    tedinelkgrove's Avatar
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    winter care in mild climate

    I live near Sacramento, CA where it does not freeze and it appears everyone maintains their pools the same way throughout the year, except maybe decreasing pump run time during winter months. My question is, should I be doing anything else or is it just that simple? I am going to throw the solar cover on at least.
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    Mod Squad zea3's Avatar
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    Re: winter care in mild climate

    Basically you are keeping your pool open, so you monitor chlorine as usual and keep your water balanced. You may not need to run your pump as long and it will save you headaches in the spring if you keep the leaves and debris cleaned up.
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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: winter care in mild climate

    I reduce my pump runtime during the colder months. Currently, I am running at about 1 turnover a day and Dec-Feb will run about 1/2 turnover per day. When the water gets below 50 degrees, I will usually just shut the pump off until the weather warms up a bit. Also, I don't bother using freeze protection any more because the temps never stay below freezing long enough to freeze anything but maybe the dog dish.
    Mark
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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: winter care in mild climate

    Quote Originally Posted by tedinelkgrove
    I live near Sacramento, CA where it does not freeze and it appears everyone maintains their pools the same way throughout the year, except maybe decreasing pump run time during winter months. My question is, should I be doing anything else or is it just that simple? I am going to throw the solar cover on at least.
    Ditto to what zea3 has recommended. I've found that if I keep a solar cover on it just collects fallen leaves and debris that would normally be netted, find their way to the skimmer or sucked up by the vacuum, so I leave the cover off and just check and empty the pump and skimmer baskets regularly. With so little sunlight, water temperature hovering in the 50-60° F. range and higher humidity, you're not going to consume much chlorine and evaporation is minimal. Pump operation time for my pool is less than a third of summer usage.

    In late December it's not uncommon to get overnight air temperatures that dip below 38° -- that's when my automatic 'freeze protection' kicks in, alternating pump operation between pool and spa until the air warms up. I think last year this happened two or three nights. Not absolutely sure that this preventive measure is very much needed in Sacramento, but better to err on the side of caution, I suppose.

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985
    I reduce my pump runtime during the colder months. Currently, I am running at about 1 turnover a day and Dec-Feb will run about 1/2 turnover per day. When the water gets below 50 degrees, I will usually just shut the pump off until the weather warms up a bit. Also, I don't bother using freeze protection any more because the temps never stay below freezing long enough to freeze anything but maybe the dog dish.
    This approach makes as much sense, but I believe Sacramento/Elk Grove gets a wee bit colder during early AM hours than does Contra Costa or other east bay area counties...
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
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    Re: winter care in mild climate

    So long as there isn't freezing of the pool, keeping it open during the winter when it's colder is incredibly easy and inexpensive. The lower water temps of 45-55F have the chlorine usage drop considerably (even 70F and below is a lot lower chlorine usage -- basically all chemical reactions slow way down and sunlight losses become much lower). In my covered pool the chlorine usage is less than 1 ppm FC per week compared to almost 1 ppm FC per day during the summer (also with a cover, but with the pool used every day). I cut the pump runtime in half, but it's at a slow speed so the electricity cost is minimal -- I could probably cut down the time even lower if I wanted to.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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