When autumn approaches near Labor Day in the States, it’s time for pool owners to start thinking about winterization. Usually the pool is kept up and running through the holiday, but afterwards, it is time to close up shop. If you own an above-ground pool, there are some important steps to keep it clean and fresh from the long winter, and also to keep corrosion from setting in. The steps I will provide will also help with the expansion as the water freezes. Let’s get started. The first thing you want to do is make sure that your chemical has all been used in the chemical feeder. If not, refer to the owner’s manual on how to remove chemical that has not been used. It’s much easier to let it drain through use, but this cannot always be done.
Two-speed pool pumps have become increasingly popular becuase they use less energy and therefore save so much on electrical cost. A two-speed pool pumps operates at 1725 RPM on low speed – a satisfactory speed for many pools and spas. If necessary, the speed can increase to the standard 3450 RPM. Many spas are equipped with two-speed pumps, using the low pump speed for filtration and the higher speed for water cartridge filter therapy and fast jet action.
OToo much backwashing of the filter. Backwashing causes pool water to be flushed out of the pool, remember after major backwashing and addition of fresh water to the pool to check your pool chemistry.
The next several steps deal with winterizing your filter system. First, remove jet eyeballs and fittings. You can twist these out with your hand but if tight use channel locks. Be careful if you have to use channel locks, jet eyeball fittings are made of plastic and can crack easily if too much pressure is placed on them.
Once a month, clean the water cartridge filter with a good cartridge cleaner. A dirty water filter not only inhibits water flow in it, it helps create an environment that bacteria love. If the water filter is still dirty after a cleaning or two, you may have to replace it entirely.
Think about it this way – aquarium fish are dependent on the water chemistry in their tank. They can’t jump out of the tank and drive of to the store to get more or better water. They are stuck with whatever is in their tank. This is why the filtration media in aquarium filters need changing so often. If that filter material isn’t changed, the fish will die.
Lower water of pool below returns and skimmer. Never completely drain a pool – Hydrostatic pressure can cause damage. Using an air compressor or shop vac (attached to the blower side of the vac), blow water out of system by forcing air down skimmer and through the plumbing. Add Anti-Freeze to plumbing and install threaded winter plugs to return fittings to keep water out of lines. Anti-Freeze is a non-toxic formula. DO NOT USE AUTOMOBILE ANTIFREEZE.
You’ll find that many brand name water filters boast about having carbon-free filters and water filter cartridges. They are filled, instead, with mineral salts, coconut shell, coal and a copper and zinc alloy mixture. They are sold under rather fancy names like Kinetic Degradation Fluxion (usually shorted to KDF or KDF-55). Chlorgon is the name of one of the most popular mineral salt filtration media. Some believe that Chlorgon works best when it’s mixed with KDF-55 and not on its own. This is because KDF works best in warm water only.