Winterizing pool in Wisconsin

TVC123

Member
Jun 25, 2020
22
Milwaukee, WI
Anyone ever left their intex prism frame pool up for the winter in Wisconsin? Is it too harsh out here to winterize and leave up from year to year? And if we can, what do we need to do to winterize it. (Also wondering about NJ - as my parents have one there too). Thanks.
 

mknauss

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Bronze Supporter
May 3, 2014
43,966
Laughlin, NV
Let's ask @jseyfert3 -- he leaves his Intex pool up year around.

We will be having a TFP Expert Discussion on Winterizing this Saturday at 11 AM EDT.
 

TVC123

Member
Jun 25, 2020
22
Milwaukee, WI
Let's ask @jseyfert3 -- he leaves his Intex pool up year around.

We will be having a TFP Expert Discussion on Winterizing this Saturday at 11 AM EDT.
Oh thank you. I'd love to hear from @jseyfert3
 

jseyfert3

Silver Supporter
Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Oct 20, 2017
1,790
Southern WI
I’ve only got one winter so far, and an Intex Ultra XTR, not prism, but I left mine up last winter. Drained about 4-6” below the lowest opening in the pool, removed all hoses and put the pump and filter inside. The filter is heavy and doesn’t need to go inside, put the valve in winter mode and remove the drain cap to let it drain before it gets to a hard freeze and it should be fine outside. That’s what I’ll do this year. I only put the filter inside because last year I waited until a hard freeze to winterize so the filter didn’t have a few days to drain properly before a freeze.

I also didn’t cover, got some leaves in there I had to net out after it thawed but otherwise no issues at all.

full
 

TVC123

Member
Jun 25, 2020
22
Milwaukee, WI
I’ve only got one winter so far, and an Intex Ultra XTR, not prism, but I left mine up last winter. Drained about 4-6” below the lowest opening in the pool, removed all hoses and put the pump and filter inside. The filter is heavy and doesn’t need to go inside, put the valve in winter mode and remove the drain cap to let it drain before it gets to a hard freeze and it should be fine outside. That’s what I’ll do this year. I only put the filter inside because last year I waited until a hard freeze to winterize so the filter didn’t have a few days to drain properly before a freeze.

I also didn’t cover, got some leaves in there I had to net out after it thawed but otherwise no issues at all.

full
Thank you. So you drained almost all the water, am I understanding correctly? And then you just left it uncovered? Or did you leave some water in, add chemicals so it wouldn't turn green and added pillows or whatever? Sorry, I'm not 100% clear on how much water was actually left in the pool. Thank you
 

jseyfert3

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Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Oct 20, 2017
1,790
Southern WI
No you need to leave most of the water or the pool will collapse. The pool has two inlet hoses to the pump. These are the lowest openings in the pool wall, besides the drain plus at the bottom. You need to drain a few inches below these holes. So about a foot or a foot and a half total draining. Leave the rest of the water.

I left it uncovered, mostly because I’m lazy and also because I didn’t have a good cover. You will have to add some chlorine occasionally and brush to mix as needed to keep it from going green, but chlorine demand is very slow at low temps. I recommend waiting till the water is below 50 with no warm days forecast before draining and disconnecting the pump.

Some polyquat 60 will also help prevent it going green after you disconnect the pump for the winter, but again don’t add this until the water is cold or it will go away too fast. I didn’t add this last year but my pool started going green almost as soon as the ice was fully melted, no big deal I just hooked the pump back up, refilled, and got chlorine in there but the algeacide should help with this.

I think not covering means you need to add chlorine later in the year and earlier next year than otherwise, but to me this isn’t a big deal. I’d rather look at a full clear pool I can’t swim in than a covered pool personally. As mentioned during these late year and early year sections with the pool pump running chlorine demand is very low, so it’s not a big deal to maintain until the weather starts warming up for swim season again.
 
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TVC123

Member
Jun 25, 2020
22
Milwaukee, WI
No you need to leave most of the water or the pool will collapse. The pool has two inlet hoses to the pump. These are the lowest openings in the pool wall, besides the drain plus at the bottom. You need to drain a few inches below these holes. So about a foot or a foot and a half total draining. Leave the rest of the water.

I left it uncovered, mostly because I’m lazy and also because I didn’t have a good cover. You will have to add some chlorine occasionally and brush to mix as needed to keep it from going green, but chlorine demand is very slow at low temps. I recommend waiting till the water is below 50 with no warm days forecast before draining and disconnecting the pump.

Some polyquat 60 will also help prevent it going green after you disconnect the pump for the winter, but again don’t add this until the water is cold or it will go away too fast. I didn’t add this last year but my pool started going green almost as soon as the ice was fully melted, no big deal I just hooked the pump back up, refilled, and got chlorine in there but the algeacide should help with this.

I think not covering means you need to add chlorine later in the year and earlier next year than otherwise, but to me this isn’t a big deal. I’d rather look at a full clear pool I can’t swim in than a covered pool personally. As mentioned during these late year and early year sections with the pool pump running chlorine demand is very low, so it’s not a big deal to maintain until the weather starts warming up for swim season again.
Thank you so much for explaining that. Definitely feels a lot easier than taking it all apart and putting it back up again (which is what we did last/this year).
 

TVC123

Member
Jun 25, 2020
22
Milwaukee, WI
No you need to leave most of the water or the pool will collapse. The pool has two inlet hoses to the pump. These are the lowest openings in the pool wall, besides the drain plus at the bottom. You need to drain a few inches below these holes. So about a foot or a foot and a half total draining. Leave the rest of the water.

I left it uncovered, mostly because I’m lazy and also because I didn’t have a good cover. You will have to add some chlorine occasionally and brush to mix as needed to keep it from going green, but chlorine demand is very slow at low temps. I recommend waiting till the water is below 50 with no warm days forecast before draining and disconnecting the pump.

Some polyquat 60 will also help prevent it going green after you disconnect the pump for the winter, but again don’t add this until the water is cold or it will go away too fast. I didn’t add this last year but my pool started going green almost as soon as the ice was fully melted, no big deal I just hooked the pump back up, refilled, and got chlorine in there but the algeacide should help with this.

I think not covering means you need to add chlorine later in the year and earlier next year than otherwise, but to me this isn’t a big deal. I’d rather look at a full clear pool I can’t swim in than a covered pool personally. As mentioned during these late year and early year sections with the pool pump running chlorine demand is very low, so it’s not a big deal to maintain until the weather starts warming up for swim season again.
One more question, sorry if I'm sounding dumb. Did you water freeze? And do you know what those pillow things do?
 

jseyfert3

Silver Supporter
Bronze Supporter
TFP Guide
Oct 20, 2017
1,790
Southern WI
One more question, sorry if I'm sounding dumb. Did you water freeze? And do you know what those pillow things do?
Yes the water most definitely froze. The entire surface was froze for many months straight last year. It was a cold winter.

I believe the pillows are for supporting a cover, if you use one.
 

Woodstock1234

Gold Supporter
Aug 4, 2020
232
Illinois
I have the Intex Ultra frame also and left mine up last year too. I did use a solid cover and a pillow. No extra chemicals and opened to clear water. If you use a solid cover, you will have to pump off the water occasionally. I think I did twice last year. I have a ton of trees, so I didn't want to leave it uncovered. There is no way I would take it down every year. Too much work!
 

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CT-Steven

Well-known member
May 26, 2020
205
CT
Here is mine that I closed last year. Did not drain, "winterized" it and came out sparkling in the spring. The only difference between last and this is now I have a Hayward filtrations system and 1.5" PVC piping. Other then the usual steps to close those items the pool wil be done the same.