Winter is Coming! Winter is Coming!

Winter is coming! Winter is coming!

Ok, maybe that’s a little dramatic, but unfortunately the swimming season here in New England IS drawing to a close. Winter can do some serious damage to an unprotected pool, which is why it is so important to winterize your pool properly. We thought some of you could use a little refresher, so here is a quick outline of the process:

In-ground Pools:

  1. Clean pool – Remove all leaves and debris and balance chemicals
  2. Add winter chemicals to the water and circulate 2 – 4 hrs.
  3. Drain pool water to 1” below skimmer – Not below the returns. (Pools using mesh safety covers should be drained 6” below skimmer.)
  4. Disconnect filter and pump, drain. Clean filter element and store in a temperate, dry place.
  5. Blow water out of the lines and plug – Use a good Shop-Vac or small compressor.
  6. Add antifreeze to lines.
  7. For a solid cover, fill water bags and place around the pool.
  8. Put the cover on the pool and secure with water bags or anchors.
  9. Regularly clear debris from the cover during the winter. For a solid cover, periodically drain accumulated water from the top of the cover.

Above Ground Pools:

  1. Clean pool – Remove all leaves and debris and balance chemicals
  2. Add winter chemicals to the water and circulate 2 – 4 hrs.
  3. Drain 1” below skimmer and plug the return. Leave the skimmer housing open on the bottom to prevent water from accumulating & freezing in the housing.
  4. Disconnect filter and pump, drain. Clean filter element and store in a temperate, dry place.
  5. Inflate pillow 75% FULL and tie or velcro to the center of the pool.
  6. Put cover on pool and secure with cable.
  7. Regularly clear debris from the cover during the winter. Periodically drain accumulated water from the cover during the winter.

Of course, if the process is a little intimidating or you’re nervous about winter damage, consider having your pool professionally closed for the season. Your pool professionals not only have the tools and experience to ensure the job is done right, they also usually have a guarantee that your pool will be protected against winter damage.


Contact us today to learn about our Professional Pool Closings or to choose a day for your service!

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The Most Common Pool Mistakes

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The Most Common Pool Care Mistakes

With summer right around the corner, we here at Vernon Poolman want to address some of the most common pool care mistakes we encounter. We know a pool is a major investment of your time and money, and you should be able to enjoy it. Unfortunately, some very common mistakes can cause problems with the immediate enjoyment of your pool and also risk damaging or shortening of the lifespan of some of your components. When it comes to your pool, a little knowledge can go a long way in preventing costly and frustrating problems. Here are some of the most common mistakes we come across.

1. Not winterizing properly

Where we live in the northeast part of the country, pools need to be properly winterized in the off-season. Even underground pipes run the risk of freeze damage over our cold winters, and those repairs can cost thousands of dollars and often require digging up the patio around the pool. Proper winterization is a MUST. If you aren’t confident in your ability to do it yourself, please consult a pool care professional. This is where an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure!

2. Not brushing your pool

Brushing your pool walls and floor is an important part of algae prevention. When algae attaches to a surface, it can create a protective barrier over itself that is impermeable to sanitizing chemicals and algaecides. Brushing breaks up that barrier and allows the chemicals in your water to kill the algae. Even if you do not have enough dirt and debris to justify breaking out the vacuum every weekend, take a few minutes to brush your pool surfaces regularly.

3. Bad water chemistry

More shock is not always the answer! Maintaining good water chemistry is the most important part of maintaining your pool. Haven’t we all at one time or another been in or near a pool that smelled strongly of chlorine, burned our eyes, and made our skin feel tight and itchy? Most people are quick to blame that on too much chlorine in the pool, but those are common symptoms of chemical imbalance.

Poor pool chemistry can:

  • Cause vinyl liners to fade or wrinkle
  • Metal components (such as heater elements or salt sanitizers) to degrade
  • Cause mineral deposits to build up reducing the efficiency of your system.

To be sure you get the longest possible lifespan out of your pool components, test your water chemistry weekly and adjust your balance as needed to keep all your levels in the recommended ranges.

4. Poor filtration

Poor filtration might be the number one problem we encounter in pool owners who have trouble getting or keeping their pool clean. Adequate filtration for most pools requires running the filter system 8-12 hours out of every 24 hour period. These should be consecutive, daylight hours, and should be considered a minimum level to maintain under normal operating conditions. The filter should run between 12 and 24 hours at a time if the pool has developed an algae bloom, a bacterial growth, or the water temperature is over 80 degrees. Effective water filtration helps to reduce the number of contaminants in the pool water and reduces the amount of chemical sanitizers and oxidizers it will take to keep it clean, clear, and safe.

5. Not trusting your pool care professional!

When in doubt, ASK! Your pool professionals want you to enjoy your pool, not see it as a burden. Our goal is to help you maintain your pool easily and effectively. Aside from gaining a lot of experience dealing with a wide range of situations, we attend conferences and continuing education courses to constantly broaden our knowledge of the best tools to help you with your pool.

We hope pointing out these common mistakes can help you avoid falling into these traps and get more enjoyment out of your backyard paradise! For more tips, inspiration, and special offers follow us on Facebook at

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