Closing an AGP - To drain or not to drain


Apr 16, 2010
Syracuse, NY
I closed my AGP last weekend. This has been my first season of pool ownership. I've had a great summer with the pool using the BBB method. I balanced out the water properly, brought it to shock level, and added algaecide prior to closing. My concern is with the water level. The pool store insisted that I should not drain any water from the pool prior to closing. They insist that I could damage my pool if I lower the water level. As part of my new pool purchase, I was supplied with a cover for the skimmer that fits like a tupperware lid as well as a plug to put in where the return outlet is. The water level was just a tad under halfway up the skimmer opening. I took their advice (which is a document they provide) and closed the pool. Cover and cable lock are on and I used the shrink wrap material as an additional protection against the wind. Pump and filter all are stored in the basement. Now that its all closed, I'm second guessing whether I should have taken their advice or drained the pool below the skimmer level. Have I made a mistake or am I ok with my closing? :?


LifeTime Supporter
Aug 21, 2010
Mentor, Ohio
First things first as a former Buffalo guy: "Go Orangemen!". What can I say - no Bills or Browns success in the NFL for yet another year (decade?).

I see draining (if so how much?) or not draining to be at the discretion of the pool owner.
I have seen Hayward doc talking about draining 6" below the skimmer line.
I have seen other doc that talks about 2-6" below the return line.
I have followed 2" below the return line with a plug in the return and a skimmer cover (like yours).
I will be raising the height of my water at next year's closing (starting with the halfway point between full level and return opening) since I hate filling it every opening.
Just watch the snow or water on the cover as that weight can cause displacement of pool water (you no longer have the skimmer open with the hole in the top of the skimmer basket as an overflow at this point).
Having come from Buffalo, never kept up on the amount of snow that you folks get hit with (no lake effect for you guys?).
Just watch for any freezing temps that could freeze water that is too high/overflowing over the pool top due to too much snow or water on the cover.
I drain water up to three times a year off the cover here in N.E. Ohio with a half HP pump to make me feel better and reduce the weight on the cover.
Your call. No right or wrong answer IMO. Depends on amount of snow and displacement combined with your continuous freezing temps.
Good luck from this Newbie to the forum!

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