After swimming in your pool or closing it for the winter, it can be easy to overlook the importance of covering your pool and the type of swimming pool cover you use – but it’s worth the extra attention.
Swimming pool covers offer various benefits for homeowners. As temperatures and leaves start dropping, you’ll need to winterize and cover your pool to keep it protected. However, protecting your pool from weather and debris during the off-season is not the only reason to own a high-quality pool cover.
Pool covers have made innovative strides over the years and now have more common uses beyond annual pool closings. As a residential pool owner, you have various swimming pool cover options that can accommodate your environmental and personal needs. Here, we’ve listed some of the top benefits of swimming pool covers as well as the options to consider when searching for the right cover for your home.
Cover Your Bases: Swimming Pool Cover Benefits
Covering your swimming pool can offer numerous benefits for your pool and your family. Depending on the type you use, pool covers can help your home:
- Reduce the risk of accidental drowning.
- Conserve water by reducing evaporation.
- Reduce chemical consumption by reducing water evaporation. The less you water you need to add, the fewer chemicals you will need to add.
- Save time on maintenance by allowing less debris in the pool and, therefore, less vacuuming.
- Reduce the energy costs of heating the pool water, since most pool covers retain heat.
- Maintain a better pool water temperature at night, allowing you to swim more comfortable.
Uncover Your Choices: Swimming Pool Cover Options
Nowadays, pool owners have many options to choose from when selecting a swimming pool cover. Each type of cover offers different advantages and disadvantages, so make sure you consider what features or benefits are important to you before making a decision on which pool cover to buy.
Winter Pool Covers
These are generally used to cover your pool for seasonal closings and to protect your pool from temperature extremes and debris. They are secured by water bags or weights and will not hold the weight of children, pets or heavy debris, so they cannot be used as protection against slips and other accidents. However, they are relatively inexpensive and easy to install.
Automatic Pool Covers
With automatic covers, you can open and close the pool cover with the push of a button. They are extremely easy to use and are much more secure, so they can be used as protection against accidents. They usually need to be installed by professionals and have tracks to guide them when opening and closing. Automatic pool covers come with a higher price tag, but are well worth the investment. They can also extend your swimming season in all types of climates by keeping the heat in your pool and preventing evaporation.
Hidden Pool Covers
If you are looking for a cover that is not visible when retracted, hidden pool covers might be the right choice for you. Hidden pool covers are available in automatic, semi-automatic or manual models. They can be tucked away in a stand-alone housing or a secure cantilevered area of the pool, which makes them more aesthetically pleasing. These also come with a higher price tag but are well worth the investment for some.
Thermal Pool Covers
These act as a blanket with an insulating material to keep heat in the water. They also protect your pool from the sun, reducing the chance of algae. It’s important to know they don’t heat the water, but they retain the heat in the water very effectively. These usually require professional installation and are one of the best ways to insulate your pool.
Solar Pool Covers
Perhaps the least expensive and easy-to-use pool cover is the solar pool cover. These can be installed by the homeowner and are essentially a bubble wrap blanket that is very lightweight. They absorb the sun’s rays to heat the pool during the day while keeping the heat from escaping at night. They are simple, efficient and only require one person to cover and uncover the pool.
Safety Pool Covers
Unlike some of the other pool covers, safety pool covers are specifically designed for protection against accidental drowning of children and pets. The straps are secured by springs and anchors in the pool deck. They are available in mesh and solid vinyl materials. Check with a professional pool cover company to find out which one is right for you. Most of these covers are approved by the safety ASTM F134691 regulations.
If you are in the market for adding a cover to your pool or simply considering replacing the one you currently have, consult your local pool service professional to gather the best information and advice for your specific project. If safety is your priority, ask about the covers’ rating with safety ASTM F134691 regulations.
About to close your pool for the winter? Check out our blog, “Winter is Coming: How to Close Your Pool.”