Winter is that time of the year when you have to say goodbye to your pool for the next few months. However, it does not mean you have to leave the pool uncovered for all kinds of elements to damage it. Cold weather can cause great deal of destruction if you don’t take proper care of your pool. Similarly, you need a pool cover that provides an extra bit of protection against harsh weather and debris and this is where the best winter pool covers come to your rescue.
Benefits of Using a Winter Pool Cover
You don’t frequent your pool in winters as much as you do in summers. Some people go to the extent of totally ignoring their swimming pools. As a result, the pool gets dirty, messy, and contaminated, requiring a lot of cleaning and maintenance before using it in the summers. However, you can avoid all the trouble just by properly covering your pool in cold weather. As a result, you won’t require much maintenance both in terms of cost and effort when the weather starts to heat up.
The following are the top three benefits of using winter pool covers.
Keeps the Pool Clean
Well, the biggest benefit of pool covers is that they keep your pool clean. They keep things like bugs, twigs, branches, leaves, and insects out. Similarly, they will also prevent animals or even their leftovers to go through.
Save on Pool Chemicals
You usually need a lot of chemicals to balance the water in the open pool. However, it is not the case with a covered one because the wind cannot blow its water off.
Improved Pool Security
An open pool is a big risk if you have kids and pets in your house. This is also the reason most people give preference to above-ground peoples over in-ground pools. However, animals and children are very curious in general which in turn can lead to drastic consequences. Therefore, it is important to install the best pool cover to ensure the safety of your family.
Best Pool Covers for Winters
We have chosen the following best pool covers for winters after extensive research and testing. They are the sturdiest, most reliable, and handy pool covers you can use to keep your pool safe in winter.
So, we start our guide without any further ado.
Pool Mate Heavy-Duty In-Ground
Robelle Winter Round Above-Ground
Pool Mate Sandstone Round
Winter Block Above-Ground Cover
Blue Wave Bronze Round Cover
Pool Mate Sandstone Oval
WaterWarden Safety Center Step
Robelle Oval Above-Ground Platinum
Blue Wave Gold Rectangular
Blue Wave Rectangular Leaf Net
1. Pool Mate Heavy Duty In-Ground Pool Cover: Best Budget Winter Pool Cover
If you are looking for a budget-friendly winter pool cover that meets all your requirements, you must consider Pool Mate 352040RPM Heavy-Duty In-Ground Pool Cover. The polythene pool cover offers a lot of features such as a 5 feet overlap to prevent water leakage and debris to contaminate the pool. Similarly, it restrains algae growth by heat-sealing the pool.
The pool cover is available in different sizes ranging from 12 x 24 feet to 30 x 60 feet. It is also very easy to install and comes with a 10-year manufacturer warranty. However, longevity is an issue as the pool cover does not last for more than two years according to some customer reviews.
2. Robelle Winter Round Above-Ground Pool Cover: Best Pool Cover with Grommets
Robelle pool covers are an excellent choice for covering your pool in winter. The Robelle Winter Round 3524-4 Above-Ground Pool Cover is very easy to secure thanks to the four feet of overlap. You can either choose from a winch or cable design. Each of these designs features unbreakable grommets every four feet to protect the cover.
The winch is designed to be durable and the cable can easily withstand any weather condition. The pool cover has a black base to prevent any type of algae growth whereas the surface can easily keep the UV rays at bay. Not many pool covers feature grommets, to begin with.
Made of high-quality polythene, the pool cover also has 8 x 8 scrim, making it extra strong. Therefore, external debris and dust cannot penetrate it no matter how long you use it. Similarly, it is available in 20 different colors and 8 different sizes.
3. Pool Mate Sandstone Circular Winter Above-Ground Pool Cover: Best for Round Pools
Pool Mate 5724-4 Sandstone Circular Cover is the best pool cover for circular above-ground swimming pools. Although the cover only comes in a light brown color yet it is a strong and durable cover to protect round pools during winter.
The brown color easily blends with the fallen leaves and the ground. Similarly, the additional 4-feet overlap makes it a breeze to install the pool cover. The overlap prevents even the tiniest of creatures to creep into the pool besides ensuring zero water leakage. Just like Robelle 3524-4, the Pool Mate 5724-4 also has a winch and cables to properly seal the pool.
Depending on the size of your pool, you can choose from 8 different sizes. You will also get a 15-year manufacturer warranty. However, many customers complain that it starts to deteriorate after two to three years.
4. Winter Block Above-Ground Winter Pool Cover: Pool Cover with Maximum Strength
Winter Block is not very well-known brand but they have made some of the best winter pool cover above ground covers. The Winter Block Above-Ground Winter Pool Cover is very easy to install thanks to a winch, a steel cable, and perimeter grommets. Similarly, it offers superior durability and tensile strength because of its laminated polythene construction.
The pool cover provides extreme resistance to detrimental ultraviolet rays. It keeps your pool in perfect condition and ready to be used next summer by keeping out melted snow, water, and external debris. It can easily withstand the harshest winters as it features a tightly woven 7 x 7 scrim.
The pool cover is available in plenty of sizes and all three shapes that are rectangular, circular, and oval.
The only complaint about the pool cover is the very thin tarp.
5. Blue Wave Bronze Round Above-Ground Pool Cover: Best Protection against Weather Risks
Blue Wave Bronze 8-Year 24-Feet Round pool cover is another great option for covering above ground pools in winter. Made of premium polythene, it provides extensive protection against all kinds of weather risks including snow, ice, and wind.
The 4-feet overlap, unlike 3 feet, minimizes the stretching which can damage your cover in the long run. Similarly, it also ensures a proper fit and easy installation. You can expect the cover to last long because it can also combat intense sunlight.
The underside of the pool cover eliminates or reduces algae growth. The fully sealed seams and heavy-duty cables also mean it is one of the best winter pool covers.
6. Pool Mate Sandstone Oval Above-Ground Pool Cover: Best for Oval Pools
Pool Mate 571015-4 Sandstone Oval is yet another excellent swimming pool cover. The professional quality pool cover can withstand very harsh weather with the utmost ease. As the name suggests, it has been designed to protect small to medium-sized oval pools in the winter.
Made of tough polythene, the pool cover also comes with a 12-year manufacture warranty. However, I doubt it can last for such a long time. The grommets and 5-feet overlap make installation a snap. The heat-sealed cover restrains algae growth and debris entering the pool apart from preventing water leakage.
The lightweight cover is available in many different sizes. However, you only have one color choice that is sandstone.
7. WaterWarden Safety Center Step In-Ground Pool Cover: Best Step Pool Cover
Crafted from high-quality materials, the WaterWarden SCSG1632CS Center Step is one of the best winter pool covers of its type. The world-class anchors, hooks, and springs tightly secure the cover. Besides, it is a very durable pool cover because each cover or step is strapped from top to bottom besides stitched in 3 layers.
Similarly, the pool cover has more enforcement on the sides thanks to the exclusive X-Tacking technology. It is a very sturdy pool and even kids and pets can walk on it.
8. Robelle Oval Above-Ground Platinum Winter Pool Cover: Pool Cover with Largest Scrim
The best thing about Robelle 331840-4 Pool Cover is that it has a 12 x 12 scrim unlike other pool covers with 8 x 8 scrim. Weighing only 3.26 ounces, it is also very lightweight and easy to install.
This Robelle ultra winter pool cover is made of commercial-grade polythene. It tightly secures your pool, not allowing water and anything else to go through. Similarly, it prevents algae growth because of its black underside. It inhibits ultraviolet radiation thanks to the dual-interlocking technology. The cover comes with a winch and a cable to install the grommets.
9. Blue Wave Gold Rectangular In-Ground Winter Pool Cover: Best In-Ground Pool Cover
Blue Wave BWC960 Gold Rectangular Pool Cover is built to last. Blue Wave offers a whopping 15 years warranty for this product. It is made of the tear-resistant and strongest materials you can think of. The pool cover keeps the snow, ice, and water at bay as it employs U.V. stabilized woven polythene scrim.
The heat-sealed cover allows you to open a crystal clear pool the next summer. Similarly, the black underside inhibits all kinds of algae growth. This Blue Wave pool cover also has 5 feet of overlap to minimize stretching and ripping.
10. Blue Wave Rectangular Leaf Net In-Ground Pool Cover: Best Pool Leaf Net for Winter
Blue Wave BWC564 Rectangular Leaf Net Pool Cover takes the pool protection to the next level. Made of commercial-grade material, it is not a true pool cover but a leaf net that you can combine with a swimming pool cover for an extra level of security. This is particularly a great option for verdant areas where a lot of leaves fall into the pool.
This leaf net prevents the leaves from accumulating on the pool surface and turn into a mess. Similarly, it does not let even the smallest of leaves to go through because of its very tight net. As a result, the pool surface remains neat and clean throughout the winter.
How to Buy the Best Winter Pool Covers?
It is not easy to buy a pool cover for the off-season. You need to consider many factors while purchasing a new cover. Well, we are going to discuss all these factors in the following lines.
The Size of the Pool Cover
First and foremost, you must know the size of your pool as well as the size of the pool cover you want to buy. The measurement depends on the shape of your pool and its type that is whether it is in-ground or above-ground. You just have to measure the length and width of a square pool but the proposition is different for other types of pools.
Just keep in mind that the size of your pool may not be equal to the size of the pool cover. The pool cover should be slightly larger, having some extra material. It is necessary to compensate for lower water levels. It should also have at least 4 feet of overlaps to eliminate stretching. For example, a 28 feet round pool should have a 32-feet pool cover.
The thickness of the Pool Cover
Best winter pool covers will always be thicker than their substandard counterparts. Thicker pool covers are better equipped to withstand harsh winter conditions. It is pertinent to mention that thicker pool covers are more expensive than thinner covers and as such, they also have longer warranties. However, you don’t have to buy another pool cover for years to come.
Does the Pool Cover Come with Accessories?
You must buy a pool cover that comes with all the essential accessories. For example, all the pool covers on our list include winch, cables, and grommets for you to attach them properly. Therefore, you don’t have to buy these items separately.
Last but not least; the pool cover should be able to filter all kinds of leaves, branches, twigs, snow, dust, and insects, etc. Similarly, it is a necessity for a pool cover to have a black underside to inhibit algae growth. Otherwise, algae and moss will develop quickly inside the pool. As a result, you will have to drain all the pool water and fill it with fresh water.
Some winter pool covers also feature a separate leaf catcher to catch leaves. A leaf catcher gives you peace of mind as you won’t have to clean heaps of dead and rotten leaves from your pool.
How to Install Your Winter Pool Cover?
The next step after purchasing your pool cover is to install and use it. The following are some important steps to install and secure the pool cover properly. It will help you keep your pool in the perfect condition before the summer.
Let’s get to work.
1. Close the Pool
You always close your pool before installing a cover. However, you should also prepare the pool to be closed. This step normally involves lowering the water level below the skimming point, cleaning the pool, and adding necessary chemicals. Subsequently, you should install and inflate air pillows before putting them in place.
2. Spread the Cover Out
Ideally, you should take the help of another person to spread the cover out. However, you can complete the job alone albeit it will take more time and effort. As mentioned above, the pool cover you buy should have at least 3 to 4 feet of overlap on all sides of the cover. The extra material or slack enables the cover to dip into the lower water level after overlapping the pool wall. Also, ensure that you place the cover evenly over the entire length of the pool.
3. Install the Leaf Net over the Pool Cover (Optional)
Whether or not you want to use pool cover is entirely up to you. In our opinion, they make it easier to clean and maintain the pool. However, simply move to the next step if you don’t use a leaf net.
Installing a leaf cover is a breeze. All you have to do is to lay it on top of the pool cover. Just ensure that you place it evenly without messing up your main cover.
4. Winch and Thread the Cable
This is a very important step. Carefully thread the cables through the grommets or loops. Now pull the cover tight with the included winch. Tuck in all the extra material before winching the pool to prevent wind from getting hold of it.
5. Protect the Pool from Wind-Whip
The final step in the installation of the winter pool cover is to protect the pool from wind-whip. Wind can reduce the effectiveness of the pool cover, causing considerable damage to your pool. You can place wall bags around the perimeters on top of pool covers in case of the above-ground pools. You can also prevent or minimizes wind-whip by using pool clips.
How to Clean Winter Pool Cover?
Even the best winter pool covers require cleaning after every 3 to 6 months. You don’t need any special tools to accomplish this task. All you have to do is to remove the heavy muck that may accumulate on the cover.
Take a pool pump or garden hose and spray water on the pool cover surface. You can also clean the surface by using dish soap or any other extra mild detergent. Gently scrub the pool surface with a push broom or pool brush. You can ensure more natural cleaning by placing it on the pool liner. Rinse as much as you want and leave the cover to dry under the sun.
A pool cover is an important item to keep your pool clean and well maintained during winters. We hope our guide to the best winter pool covers has helped you find the right one for your pool.