Should I Hire Someone to Close my Pool?
No one is excited about closing the pool for the season. It means the end of summer fun and the onset of cooler weather. But winterizing your pool is an extremely important step, particularly in harsh climates, to keep it in good condition and prolong the lifespan.
Failing to winterize a pool can lead to burst pipes, a damaged or failed filtration system, cracked tiles or walls and more. The cost of repairing those problems will be far more than you would have paid for a professional to do the closing.
DIY vs. Hiring a Pro
Pool services usually charge anywhere from $150 to $400 to close and winterize a pool. A small above-ground pool will fall on the lower end of that price range, while a large in-ground pool will fall on the higher end. Your location and the pool’s condition also impact price.
Closing a pool can also be a DIY project - if you know what you’re doing. That’s a big IF because skipping even one important step can lead to major damage. If you decide to tackle the project, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s step-by-step instructions. First-timers might want to hire a professional to explain the process and/or handle the first closing.
How to Close a Pool
The process involves dozens of steps, including preparing the water and adjusting the chemicals, cleaning and storing all equipment, draining some (but not all) of the pool water, draining all pipes and equipment, shutting off the filter and covering the pool.
Here’s some additional information about some of the most important steps. However, this should not replace your step-by-step manufacturer’s guide or, in the case of a custom-built pool, professional instruction.
- Make sure the pH level is above 7 - ideally, 7.2 to 7.6.
- Adjust chlorine levels and add a chlorine stabilizer.
- Remove and clean accessories like ladders.
- Clean the pool walls with a brush. For vinyl pools, which are more susceptible to damage, be sure to use manufacturer-approved cleaning equipment.
- Clean skimmer baskets and remove all debris from the pool.
- Remove and clean the filter.
- Drain the pool anywhere from 1 to 24 inches, depending on the type of pool and whether you use a cover. Be sure to check the appropriate level of drainage for your type of pool.
- Install freeze pumps.
- Shut off the filter pump and drain all equipment and pipes.
- If you live in an extremely cold climate, you’ll need to add swimming pool antifreeze, which is not the same as car antifreeze.
- Install the pool cover. Avoid mesh covers in cold climates. Buy a solid, heavy-duty cover designed to withstand snow and extreme temperatures.