Winter care for above-ground pools is crucial to ensure durability and readiness for the next season. Neglecting your pool during the colder months can lead to significant damage, including torn liners, cracked pipes, and a filthy pool when spring arrives. This article will guide you through essential steps to properly winterize your above-ground pool.

Preparing for Winterization

Start with a thorough cleaning of your pool. Remove all debris, leaves, and dirt using a net and vacuum. Next, balance your water chemistry a week before closing the pool; adjust the pH, alkalinity, and calcium hardness levels. This balance prevents corrosion and scaling on pool equipment and surfaces.

Water Treatment

Before covering the pool, treat the water with winter chemicals to prevent algae growth and preserve water quality. Add an algaecide and shock the pool with a large dose of chlorine or a non-chlorine substitute to kill any lingering bacteria and algae.

Pool Equipment Care

Drain water from your pump, filter, and hoses to prevent freezing and cracking. Clean the filter thoroughly according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Detach and store all pool accessories, such as ladders and toys, in a dry place to prevent weathering.

Covering the Pool

Invest in a quality winter cover that withstands harsh weather, including heavy snow, rain, and wind. A tight-fitting cover not only keeps out debris but also prevents water accumulation, which can be heavy and strain the cover and pool structure.

Physical Structure Maintenance

Inspect the pool liner for rips or tears and repair them to prevent water loss. Additionally, add air pillows underneath the cover to distribute the weight of snow and ice evenly, protecting the pool walls and liner from stress and potential damage.

Monitoring During Winter

Periodically check the pool and cover throughout the winter. After heavy snowfall, gently remove snow from the cover to avoid weight accumulation that could damage the cover or pool structure. Also, monitor water levels to ensure they do not drop significantly, which can cause the cover to sag and potentially tear.

Preparing for Spring Reopening

Before refilling the pool, remove the cover, clean it, and store it properly. Reinstall all equipment, refill the pool to the proper level, and treat the water with the necessary chemicals to rebalance. A thorough inspection of the equipment and structure will ensure everything is operational for the upcoming season.


Proper winter care of your above-ground pool is essential to maintain its longevity and ensure it is ready for enjoyment when warm weather returns. By following these steps, you protect your investment and save time and resources when reopening your pool. Happy winterizing!