Is there a “best” method for winterizing my vinyl liner pool?
Every pool dealer has their own “best” method for winterizing vinyl liner pools. It varies greatly by region, so I recommend going with whatever method your local dealer uses. While there are several different types of Winterizing Kits, I think it’s always best to winterize without chlorine if you can. Algaecide is not really necessary when winterizing your pool given that algae does not grow when the water is below 60 degrees or so anyway. Also, remember that ph is the most critical issue of all, so be sure to close the pool with the ph at 7.2 or higher.
There are a few things that you don’t want to do. The following information comes from a vinyl liner manufacturer.
WINTERIZING THE POOL
- Never add chemicals directly to the pool! Dilute them first in a bucket of water and add them to the pool by pouring them into the skimmer, while the circulation system is on.
- Circulate the pool water for a full 24 hours after the final addition of the chemicals. Even liquid chlorine can concentrate in the deep end and cause bleaching of the liner.
- The chlorine level should not exceed 2.5 ppm.
- Do not lower the water below the skimmer. Place a gizmo or a weighted plastic milk carton in the skimmer to protect it from freeze damage. Once a pool has been filled with water, the liner begins to lose its stretching properties; therefore the pool should be kept full of water at all times. The water acts as a protector for the liner and holds the liner in its proper position, thus eliminating any re-stretching and drying out of the vinyl. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations concerning the winterizing of the pump and filter.
- Use a good fitting winter cover that is sealed around the entire perimeter. An uncovered pool accumulates debris, such as leaves and worms. The debris absorbs the chlorine in the pool, leaving a potential risk for staining or bleaching of the liner.
- Do not use abrasive cleaning aids, i.e: steel wool, sharp bristled brushes, scouring pads, etc. We recommend using alkaline base cleaning agents for cleaning the area above the water line. Acid base chemicals can leave a residue which causes the vinyl to fade out.