Before you know it, it won’t be as hot when you get in your pool. That will spark the thought of when to close your swimming pool in Iowa. But before your brain starts rocketing through the winterization checklist, take a breath. You don’t need to close your pool now or even soon. If you are an Iowa pool owner, start by setting a weekly reminder for yourself: “Check calendar and weather.” This simple first step will put you on the path to a timely pool closing.
In the meantime, keep the following tips in mind. They will help you determine the best time to close your pool before the inevitable Iowa chill.
The point of timing your pool closing effectively is to keep the water clean and at the appropriate levels for as long as possible. If you close your swimming pool too soon, the winterization chemicals in the water won’t last until the warmer months, making algae blooms and other contaminants more likely to thrive. Close the pool too late, and you run the risk of frozen pipes in the dropping temperatures should your pump lose power.
As a general rule, you want to close your pool when weather temperatures consistently fall below 65 degrees Fahrenheit during the day, unless your pool is heated. In Iowa, this weather typically hits in mid autumn (i.e., late September to October). If you have a reliable pool heater, you can usually extend your swim season into the late autumn. So as the days become increasingly mild, keep that weather app handy. You’ll need to keep a close eye on those temperatures and be ready to winterize your pool before the first cold days.
Check Your Calendar
As mentioned earlier, setting a weekly reminder for yourself to check the weather trends is a healthy habit to have in place for your entire pool season.
A good time to start watching your daily low temperatures seriously is after back-to-school time. That’s when you get hints that sweater weather is just around the corner. Around this time, you should mark your calendar for a full week of pool closing activities when the low temperatures during the day are in the mid 60s.
Most winterization tasks can be performed in one day. However, a phosphate treatment about seven days prior to your putting the winter cover on will help prevent algae from growing in the coming months.
Know What You’ll Need to Close Your Swimming Pool
Now it’s time to start gathering all the necessary supplies. In Iowa, pools need to be completely winterized, not just closed with a pool cover. Here’s what you need to know.
- Water. There’s a persistent myth out there saying that you should completely drain your pool at closing. Don’t drain your pool! It’s important to keep a level of chemically-treated, balanced water in the pool to prevent contamination and damage to the structure.
- Cleaning. One final cleaning before wrapping up the year is a great idea. Scrub pool walls, steps, and any tanning ledge or in-pool seating areas. Then, vacuum all debris from your pool. Clean skimmer baskets and backwash your filter. Your water will be ready for its dose of winter water care.
- Chemicals. Yes, your pool still needs chemicals in the water even when it’s not being used. Otherwise, you’re likely to find a swamp under your cover when you reopen in the spring. Winterization chemicals will help your water stay cleaner through the winter months. Make sure you have a water testing kit to balance your chemical levels, and let the addition of chemicals have time to circulate before your pump is turned off.
- Equipment removal. Next, disconnect and remove ladders, sports accessories, and pool equipment. Then, blow out water lines and seal with winterization caps. Make sure all pipes are clear so that there won’t be freezing water in your pump, heater, returns, filter, or other plumbing lines. You can remove water from the plumbing with an air compressor.
- Winter cover. With freezing temperatures and snowfall on the horizon, it’s time to take your winter cover out of storage. Snow accumulates fast and often in Iowa winters. Make sure your winter safety cover is attached to your deck area properly and that the springs and straps are fitted correctly and are tight. This will help keep your pool protected all winter long. If your cover is a mesh cover, drainage will happen automatically. If you have a solid winter cover, watch for melting snow so that water does not pool and freeze. Either way, keep your cover clean of snow as often as you can by using a soft broom or brush. Your pool will be ready and waiting for a fantastic opening in the spring.
When to Close Your Swimming Pool in Iowa
No date is set in stone for your pool closing, but it needs to be done before the first freeze. Keep a watchful eye on your calendar, weather, and supplies, and you’ll be able to time your pool closing like a pro! If you need help closing your pool, contact us at Speck USA. Our pool maintenance & service team can professionally winterize your pool with the utmost of care. They will expertly take care of everything from chemicals to equipment removal and cover placement. With Speck USA on your team, your pool will be protected from all that an Iowa winter brings.