Winter NON-safety cover for IG with kids and dogs...

l1ltaral1l

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2019
374
Walnutport, PA
Sooooo. We just an IG pool installed. PB came over yesterday to review the final things with us. We purchased a safety cover, but he told us he did not feel comfortable installing it this year. He said he had a similar situation last year (new build and covered shortly after) and the area where the cover covered the concrete left a line due to the concrete not curing fully. So he said he's going to tarp it with water bags for this winter. We have kids...and dogs. Anything I should be concerned about with going this route for one winter?
 

bmoreswim

Mod Squad
Gold Supporter
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 16, 2012
5,578
Central MD
Yes, safety. You will need a cover pump on the tarp but it's still not safe. Any child or dog that falls on it will easily create a pool of water... Unless the cover pump does a perfect job of removing all water. But it will get frozen, etc. so there's no great solution. Ideally the pump works, but they work much better on autocovers where the cover is more taught while a tarp has a lot more looseness to hold water in spite of the pump. All of this is my opinion of course, and never personally used a tarp.

I also don't disagree that there could be some line formation on the concrete. You could look at it this way. If you get the safety cover and it creates marks/lines on the concrete, at least you still have your kids and dogs. I'm just a worrier regarding those covers and kids/pets.
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
1,675
NY
Yuck. This is not going to be good either way. The PB is justified that the concrete will take a while to cure. Even if you convinced the kids to stay away, the dogs will need to go out all winter. They will consider the tarp as a shortcut. It’s ugly when they do. My bloodhound tried to run across my solar cover the first time he saw it. He sunk in instantly and was trapped in the cover and 500 gallons or so of water. Luckily his head was above the water in his cover cocoon so he could breathe for the 15 minutes it took to drag him to the side to free him. I’m a big dude and it was hard to fight the cover and get him out. I’m with @bmoreswim. You need the kids and dogs. Period.

The only way to keep safety and the patio is to put a lockable gate on the deck stairs so nobody gets down. If the dogs need to go out, take them on a leash. As much extra work as it would be to walk the dogs, it would ensure nobody gets trapped in the tarp cover.
 

Pool_Medic

In The Industry
Apr 1, 2018
1,197
Bangor Maine
Safety covers are routinely installed in the fall after a build. If the straps will leave marks then so will those god awful black tarps and water bags. Sounds like a wild story......
 
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l1ltaral1l

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2019
374
Walnutport, PA
Safety covers are routinely installed in the fall after a build. If the straps will leave marks then so will those god awful black tarps and water bags. Sounds like a wild story......
I'm not sure what the reasoning is behind him wanting to do a tarp though instead? I can't see how it'd benefit him. But who knows!
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
1,675
NY
@Pool_Medic gets much worse winters than we do down here. So if he isn’t worried, he’s probably right. I still vote for the deck gate. My kids were about your guys size when we built the pool. They understood and treated the pool area with the proper respect. Friends kids didn’t and kept me on edge for another 5 years even with the locked gate.
 

l1ltaral1l

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2019
374
Walnutport, PA
We have a gate at the top of the steps (just one we mounted ourselves, not a fully built in one). I can def keep the separation, just thinking how much that will suck! Kids can play out front - dogs cannot (no fence). If we didn't foster and board dogs in our home, I wouldn't be as concerned.

I think I'm going to say go for the safety cover anyway.
 

l1ltaral1l

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2019
374
Walnutport, PA
Just talked to the PB (he secretly loves me and my 8000 questions/comments). We are going to leave the pool open til the end of Oct then close it with the safety cover :)

Phew. Thanks for reaffirming my original concerns when this was brought up!
 
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l1ltaral1l

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2019
374
Walnutport, PA
Soooo. Apparently the PB called my hubs yesterday and asked about closing our pool now. He said he talked to the safety cover dealer (Loop-Loc) and they recommended putting a tarp down over the safety cover. Hubs agreed. I had no idea until I got home. I guess this will work? They covered the concrete a bit extra and went to the saw cut joint (long length edge in the bottom of the pic). I don't know. I'm not sold. They were still there when hubs got home yesterday and one of them walked across it with no issue. Def still better than JUST a tarp, but... 🤷‍♀️

cover.jpg
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
1,675
NY
The key is it’s safe. You will start the spring with all of the kids and dogs. I understood their concern about not using the safety cover too soon. Not sure if it’s true, but I understood where they were coming from. So they wanted the tarp *instead* of the safety cover. I can’t for the life of me understand how using the saftey cover and putting a tarp over it would matter. Now you’ve paid twice (less for the tarp, but still) AND the safety cover is still rubbing on the uncured patio (according to them). I don’t get it.
 

l1ltaral1l

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2019
374
Walnutport, PA
Me either. Doesn't make any sense, but whatevvvvver. No charge for the tarp (he was smart on that one, lol). I was fine waiting until the end of the month, but apparently he wanted it done soon.
 

Newdude

Well-known member
Jun 16, 2019
1,675
NY
No charge for the bags either ?? For my pool that was the expensive part. Much more for the HD bags than I wanted to spend for a temporary solution until we recovered enough financially to get the safety cover. So we bit the bullet a 15th(?) time and got the safety cover.
 

JamesW

TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
17,018
I don't see the point of the extra cover. You could have just used a solid safety cover.

Check the anchors in the deck to make sure that they didn't chip up the deck when drilling the holes.

You need to have an automatic cover pump on the cover to keep it pumped off.

It's actually required for the cover to be considered to be a "Safety" cover.
 

bmoreswim

Mod Squad
Gold Supporter
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 16, 2012
5,578
Central MD
I don't see the point of the extra cover. You could have just used a solid safety cover.

Check the anchors in the deck to make sure that they didn't chip up the deck when drilling the holes.

You need to have an automatic cover pump on the cover to keep it pumped off.

It's actually required for the cover to be considered to be a "Safety" cover.
+1

This is the one we have...

Amazon.com : Little Giant APCP-1700 Automatic Swimming Pool Cover Submersible Pump, 1/3-HP, 115V : Swimming Pool Water Pumps : Garden & Outdoor
 
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l1ltaral1l

Bronze Supporter
Jul 16, 2019
374
Walnutport, PA
Thanks! Will do that when I get home today.

This is still boggling my brain. The Loop-Loc is mesh, and the tarp is, well, a tarp!

Appreciate the link to the pump. I'm wondering if we should just remove the tarp ourselves and be done with it...