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Thread: Cover Question while I am away.

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    AV8TOR's Avatar
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    Cover Question while I am away.

    We live in Fort Worth Texas and our pool is open and running through the winter. I maintain all levels and the pool looks great. We have two Oak trees that keeps me busy with the net and cleaning out the skimmers but I don’t mind. We are going to me gone for a week and a half over Christmas and I am unsure of what to do.

    •Option one is Shut off the skimmers and reprogram the pump for maybe 3 hours a day and deal with the clean up when I return.
    •Option 2 is buy a cheap 8-year economy pool cover and just cover it up when I am gone. With this option I am unsure if I run the filter or not under the cover.

    Please pass along your recommendations even if there not what I posted. Thanks
    BTW I am too new to the area to trust anyone yet to watch the pool while we are gone.
    16,000 gal IG Double Roman Plaster Pool (16yrs - plaster redone 2014)
    Pentair FNS-48 DE filter with WhisperFlo 2HP single speed pump
    Polaris 280 robot
    BBB all the way and tested with a TF100 kit
    Pool Calc user

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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    If it were me, I'd slap the cover on and use the drain for suction. This way, if - God forbid, the water gets a little low for the skimmers, you don't burn out the pump, etc. Letting the leaves just settle to the bottom is asking for some major cleanup when you return. I'd also make sure the pool is clean and up the cl level before the cover goes on (some polyquat 60% wouldn't be a bad idea)

    Have a great trip, enjoy the family! - if something goes awry while you're gone, we'll be here to help fix it quickly 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

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    AV8TOR's Avatar
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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    Quote Originally Posted by waste
    If it were me, I'd slap the cover on and use the drain for suction. This way, if - God forbid, the water gets a little low for the skimmers, you don't burn out the pump, etc. 8)
    Would you also cut back on the pump time? I am new to the Polyquat 60%, just follow the bottles instructions? Robot on or off? I forgot to add that.
    Thanks
    16,000 gal IG Double Roman Plaster Pool (16yrs - plaster redone 2014)
    Pentair FNS-48 DE filter with WhisperFlo 2HP single speed pump
    Polaris 280 robot
    BBB all the way and tested with a TF100 kit
    Pool Calc user

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    AV8TOR's Avatar
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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    I have a follow up question; instead of a winter cover can I use one of the Solar Covers instead? Being in Texas we really don’t have to winterize our pools so draining it down is not necessary. The solar covers if I read this right float on the water and don’t require water tubes or tie downs. I am thinking I could buy one larger than by pool and cut it to the exact opening because I have a roman duel end pool. I am thinking that this will be effective on keeping the bulk of the leaves out of the pool. I will still turn off the skimmers and robot though.

    Is the surface friction with the water all that keeps it from blowing away?
    16,000 gal IG Double Roman Plaster Pool (16yrs - plaster redone 2014)
    Pentair FNS-48 DE filter with WhisperFlo 2HP single speed pump
    Polaris 280 robot
    BBB all the way and tested with a TF100 kit
    Pool Calc user

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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    Quote Originally Posted by AV8TOR
    I have a follow up question; instead of a winter cover can I use one of the Solar Covers instead? Being in Texas we really don’t have to winterize our pools so draining it down is not necessary. The solar covers if I read this right float on the water and don’t require water tubes or tie downs. I am thinking I could buy one larger than by pool and cut it to the exact opening because I have a roman duel end pool. I am thinking that this will be effective on keeping the bulk of the leaves out of the pool. I will still turn off the skimmers and robot though.

    Is the surface friction with the water all that keeps it from blowing away?
    Yes, the water holds it in place. As long as it is cut so that the edges aren't sticking up the wind won't grab it.

    You'll still have to clean up all the leaves when you get back, but the cover will prevent the majority of them from falling down and clogging up the works while you're gone.

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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    Quote Originally Posted by spishex
    Yes, the water holds it in place. As long as it is cut so that the edges aren't sticking up the wind won't grab it.
    So what it the proper way to cut it then so it sits on the water flush to the sidewalls or should it roll up the sidewalls any?
    16,000 gal IG Double Roman Plaster Pool (16yrs - plaster redone 2014)
    Pentair FNS-48 DE filter with WhisperFlo 2HP single speed pump
    Polaris 280 robot
    BBB all the way and tested with a TF100 kit
    Pool Calc user

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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    I've been thinking about this for the past few hours.

    While the solar cover will keep most debris out of the water, is it worth the investment? If you think you;ll use it ~ year round anyway, GO FOR IT! A lot of the solar covers I install end up rolled up in a corner of the yard and not be used because they can be a pain to put on and removed

    With your Gunite pool, you may want to just place the cover you already have on the pool and use a couple of water tubes on it in conjunction with some boards or other to keep it in place for a couple of weeks.

    The solar cover will cost you $$ and, as you said, you'd have to trim it down. If you want to get the solar and trim it down, leave ~ 2" up the walls and pour some water ~1" on it to try to prevent it from blowing off.

    I think you'd do best by using the cover you have and skip the expense of buying a solar cover
    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

    POOL SCHOOL, TF Testkits, Jason's Pool Calculator, CYA vs. cl chart, (Just a few DARNED handy links!)

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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    I believe he's buying the cover either way.

    The cover should be perfectly cut, so that it doesn't curve up at the edges and has no visible gaps. Get as close as you can to that. Big curls up the wall will let the wind grip and move it. Big gaps will let debris through. Avoid either, keeping in mind that you can always trim a little more here or there so when in doubt leave it big. Just be sure to let the cover sit on the pool for a day or two before you cut it so it will be as close as possible.

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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    Quote Originally Posted by waste

    With your Gunite pool, you may want to just place the cover you already have on the pool and use a couple of water tubes on it in conjunction with some boards or other to keep it in place for a couple of weeks.
    Waste I do not have any cover right now. My first thought was to use the winter cover but they require tubes or some weight. Then I saw that the solar covers stick to the water. They are basically the same cost as a winter cover and you don’t need tubes. I am basically looking for a solution while trees are still dropping leaves and I will be out of town.
    16,000 gal IG Double Roman Plaster Pool (16yrs - plaster redone 2014)
    Pentair FNS-48 DE filter with WhisperFlo 2HP single speed pump
    Polaris 280 robot
    BBB all the way and tested with a TF100 kit
    Pool Calc user

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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    I am east of Dallas, same winds and temps as you
    . While a cheap winter cover seems not too bad price-wise, all the extras- water tubes, inner tubes for the middle, weights, etc put me off, plus the likelihood of it ending up shredded by high winds and/or critters.
    My solar cover is off now, but when we had it on, it stayed on during some amazingly high winds. We cut it to an exact match to the pool (which in our case is round). I even cut it into three long sections because the one big 28 foot cover was too much for me to handle alone, and the sections still stayed suctioned down to the water in 40 mph winds.
    It really cut down on evaporation, I ran the pump normally with no problems, and it caught leaves and junk that fell. It did interfere with the auto cleaner, so had to remove it to use that.
    When we got ready to remove it for the winter, we pulled it off carefully and most of the junk came off with it. We then hosed it down and dried it by hanging it over a flat bed trailer. The solar cover extended our swim season by about 4 weeks this fall, and with our planned solar heater, should start us early in the spring. We used just a basic clear "bubble-wrap" type- nothing fancy.
    I had read in some places in here where people tried leaving a solar cover on all winter, and it got waterlogged and was a mess, so that is why I opted not to go that route. (I could see leaving it on for a couple of weeks while we were out of town to keep the pool clean.)
    Instead, I removed the solar cover end of October when we were definitely done swimming and put on a leaf net.
    A leaf net may be another option for you. It did a great job of catching leaves and junk, but did not reduce evaporation much. It also did not interfere with running the pump. It did not catch Mesquite leaves (which are almost like needles), so those Mesquite trees near the pool are goners. But it caught all the regular-sized leaves- which we then scooped off with a leaf basket on a pole occasionally- very easy. We removed it too soon, and now am fishing for leaves- much harder. I suppose I could have left it on all winter, but I like seeing the blue water.
    I am using polyquat for algae prevention, but the water temp is 45 degrees, so I do not expect to see much growing in there right now. Chem geek explained to me how to use the polyquat- add a full dose in front of the return and run the pump for 24 hours. Once a month add a maintenance dose to keep the levels up. Chlorine breaks down the polyquat, so it is an either/or sort of thing. Makes winter maintenance of an open pool easier- not having to mess with chlorine levels.
    28 ft round Doughboy Sand Dollar II AGP, Aug 2008: 4 ft shallow, 6ft deep end: 24K gal approx Hayward Power-Flo Matrix
    1&1/2-HP 2-SPD Pump, Hayward 27-Inch Sand Filter with a little DE -(2) 4ftx20ft Solar Bear AGP Panels w/ Goldline auto-controller, 50ppm Borates And some day, maybe this year, a DECK!!!

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    AV8TOR's Avatar
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    Re: Cover Question while I am away.

    Thanks everyone for the replies. I am going to purchase a solar cover and go that route.
    16,000 gal IG Double Roman Plaster Pool (16yrs - plaster redone 2014)
    Pentair FNS-48 DE filter with WhisperFlo 2HP single speed pump
    Polaris 280 robot
    BBB all the way and tested with a TF100 kit
    Pool Calc user

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