Winterizing an Intex pool is one of the simplest things to do. This is the time when you will thank yourself for not building an above-ground pool and going with a portable pool. These pools are not really suited for winter and we are going to help you take care of it before you regret getting a pool in the first place.
What Does ‘Winterize a Pool’ Mean?
To winterize a pool means to get it ready for the cold months of the year. This is a simple process but you need to follow instructions carefully. This is what it’s like.
Remove the equipment or make sure the pipes are dry. This saves them from the cold temperatures. You must also add chemicals so that the water is free from bacteria, algae and mold which grows quite well in the winter when you are not using the pool.
Apart from the winter time, these steps can also be used if you want to keep your pool shut for a prolonged period of time. Now, why is this specifically for Intex pools?
Because they are different from the rest of them in the sense that a lot of them are at least partly inflatable. If you don’t follow proper procedures, instead of getting into the pool next summer, you will have to buy a new one.
Intex pools are preferred by many because they are light and easy to set up. But they also have pumps and filters that are badly affected when left unattended in the winter.
You might be thinking about closing down the pool but that just results in the pool turning green and demanding a massive cleaning job when you are ready to use it again. That is because of the growth of algae which is a major threat to your health and hygiene.
And it is not cheap to fix a pool that has been attacked by algae. Sometimes, it can’t be fixed at all. So, winterizing is not an option but a necessary step in maintaining an Intex swimming pool.
Pool Time’s Up
The best way to prevent ice damage, which is the whole point of winterizing a pool, is to store it well in freezing temperatures. Intex pools are meant to be drained with a garden hose which may take a few days.
So, if you get to it at the last minute (which can be just a couple of days before winter hits your region), you might not be able to save your pool. Don’t worry. We’ve broken down the process into 12 easy to follow steps so that you get it right and right on time.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Close an Intex Pool
At a glance, this may seem like a long-drawn process tempting you to give up. But they are fairly easy. So, don’t let your impatience get the better of you.
Step One: Check Your City/County Rules
The first thing to do is check if your city or county has specific rules about disposing off the water from a swimming pool. Some places do because a pool has a lot of water and you can’t just throw it out anywhere. This helps you do the job without hurting the environment and your property.
Step Two: Get Your Equipment in Order
Before you start the process of winterizing your Intex pool, make sure you have all the necessary equipment. This includes the Intex pool cover along with the clips, a cable and winch for the cover, a pool pillow, the pH increaser, pool shock, algaecide, alkalinity increaser and calcium hardness increaser.
Step Three: Clean Your Pool and Get Ready to Drain It
Once you check the rules, start by disconnecting the pool from all power supplies. Remove all the attached appliances and accessories from the pool. Clean them and store them in a dry place so that they are ready to use after winter.
You must also make sure the stainer grid which connects the pool to the filter is clean. If it is not, remove the debris and replace it. Then, clean the water and vacuum the pool on the sides and the bottom. This keeps the pipes free of debris.
If you live in a region with warm weather, you must make sure any loose debris in the water like dry leaves falling from the trees in the vicinity are removed. Remove the inflated parts and clean them well.
Step Four: Connect the Garden Hose to the Drain Connector
Check the drain plug that is inside the pool and make sure it is plugged in. Find the drain connector and attach its thin end to the female end of the hose. The side of the hose that is attached to the faucet is referred to as the female end.
Make sure the other end of the hose is not pointed towards anything that can be structurally compromised.
Step Five: Drain the Pool
To drain the pool, remove the cap from the drain valve and attach it to the drain connector and hose. Make sure the connector is tightly attached to the valve. Push the connector into the valve and let the water flow.
Be prepared to wait a while for the pool to drain. Check the progress every few minutes to make sure the connection is secure and the draining is happening smoothly.
Make sure the hose does not move while the pool water is still flowing out. Let this happen till the water in the pool can no longer be drained using the garden hose. As the water levels go down, start cleaning the sides of the pool with a soft cloth.
If you use rough materials, it will damage the liner of your pool. Once you are done cleaning, you can lift one side of the pool to drain the remaining water.
Step Six: Dry the Pool
Once the draining process is complete, you must leave the pool to dry for a bit. You can simply leave the pool standing and let the air dry it. You can also use a wet/dry vacuum and some dry towels to help it along.
Make sure the pool is dry on the inside and the outside so that there is no chance for mildew. You can also use talc powder to make sure there is no remaining moisture. Screw in the drain cap onto the valve.
Step Seven: Let the Liner Dry
If there is a frame to your Intex pool, make sure you follow the owner’s manual and take it down. Allow the different pieces of the frame to dry well before you can store them in a dry place. Meanwhile, let the liner air dry.
Step Eight: Fold the Liner
This is an important step and one that a lot of pool owners struggle with. Not to worry. There are quite a few ways to fold the liner and we got the easiest one for you. The idea here is to get the liner into a circle or square shape.
Start by folding one-sixth of the liner at each side of the pool. This will form a square. Then fold the two opposite sides on themselves two times to form a long rectangle.
At this point, the sides of the pool should be along the center seam. This indicates that the two sides are folded. Then fold the pool along the center seam in half.
If you look at the owner’s manual, this step is described as “closing a book”. Starting at one end of the liner, remove the air by pushing it out towards the other end. Roll and unroll the liner to make sure the compression is tight.
Then fold the bottom fourth of the liner up towards the center. The top fourth of the liner should go down in the opposite direction.
When you’re done, the ends meet at the center seam. Fold the liner along the seam. If you don’t find any edges exposed, you have done a good job. If not, don’t worry too much. As long as your liner is dry, any kind of folding that helps you store it safely works.
Step Nine: Secure All the Dried Items in Storage
Make sure your pool and its accessories are stored at room temperature, away from spaces that are visited by mice and birds. You must also look for critters that can chew through vinyl. You must also secure the pump and filter after thoroughly drying them out.
Before you head out, make sure you drain and sanitize the pump and filter chamber. They must be completely dry before you place them in storage. Also check on the pool liner, its frame, pump and filter hoses are stored in a dry space indoors.
If you keep all the attachments in one place, setting up your pool next summer will be an easy task.
Step Ten: Dump the Filter Cartridge
Your Intex pool filters are actually quite cheap. So it makes no sense to clean and store them for many months. It is a safer and more hygienic practice to get a new one when you are ready to get the pool back in the yard.
Although, if that doesn’t sound right, remember that you can reuse these cartridges as long as you can clean them completely. The moment you can’t do that, it’s time to dump the pool filters.
Your pool is now completely winterized and ready to be stored. Make sure there is no stagnant water in your backyard from all the draining activity. Little puddles are a welcome invitation to mosquitoes and other insects.
Some Hiccups along the Way
One of the common problems while winterizing an Intex pool is trouble with finding the drain plug. More often than not, these caps are just under the edge of the pool. But if you can’t locate it for some reason, there are other ways to drain the pool.
You can push a garden hose into the water, secure one end of it with a tape or string once it is full. Cap the other end with your hand and pull the hose over the wall of the pool. Place it as close to the ground as possible, release your hand and let the water drain.
This works as long as there is enough water in the pool. You can do the same with a vacuum hose. You can also use a small sump pump to drain an Intex pool. Plug-in the garden hose and place the pump at the bottom of the pool.
Winterizing your Intex pool is very important to make sure it is not absolutely destroyed (or repulsive) when you come back to it next summer. It also keeps your pool from falling prey to ice damage.
It also frees up space in your backyard for winter activities like building a snowman. And it makes sense because you will not be blocked by a giant structure that you have no use for.