Your pool provides endless hours of enjoyment on hot summer days, but as those summer days begin to wind down, storm season approaches in many regions. We’ve compiled a list of some important steps you should take to protect your pool – after all, it is an investment in your home and deserves proper attention too.
1. Maintain Proper Water Level
Never empty your pool when anticipating a storm or hurricane. In almost any design, proper drainage has been taken into account. Maintain normal water level prior to the storm to provide the necessary weight to hold the pool in place in the event that high winds from the storm create pressure beneath the ground. This pressure could cause your pool to pop out from the ground without that extra weight. As a bonus, the water can prtoect your pools interior from being damaged by flying debris, and will make it easier to correct any possible contamination after the storm. Clear around any deck drains to ensure the excess water can drain away.
2. Turn Off The Power
Turn off the circuit breakers at the main electrical panel to prevent pump motors, lighting, chlorinators, heaters, and any other pool equipment from running.
3. Protect the Equipment
Tightly wrap any exposed electrical equipment such as those mentioned above in plastic wrap and secure with rope to prevent water and sand from entering. If you expect flooding, remove these items completely and store them in a dry location – especially the pump. if the pool pump is submerged it is likely to be destroyed.
4. Clear The Area
Remove all items from the pool area, including chairs, tables, pool toys and floats, cleaning items, and any other loose items. Not only can they be blown away if left unsecured, but they may also become dangerous weapons when whipped around in the high einds of the storm. Store these items inside buildings if possible, and never put them in the pool – the items can cause damage and staining to the interior of your pool. Secure bulkier, heavier items by tying them to a stable structure if you cannot bring them inside.
5. Shock Your Pool
Adding extra chlorine to your pool prior to the storm can help to prevent contamination from debris and storm waters. Follow manufacturer’s instructions and shock the pool as you would under normal circumstances. It’s recommended to repeat this step after the storm as well.
6. Leave The Pool Uncovered
While your instinct may be to cover your pool, this can do more harm than good. Falling branches and flying debris from the storm can damage your pool cover. Additionally, the excess water on top of the cover will make it difficult to clean up to remove the cover after the storm.
7. Prepare Your Screen Enclosure
If you have a screen enclosure or pool safety fence, some damage may be prevented by allowing air to flow through via a “vent”. Remove some panels or doors on opposite sides of the pool. If significant wind damage is inevitable, you may also choose to cut slashes in some screens to allow for even more air flow. While this won’t be covered by insurance, it will be less costly than replacing damaged or missing frames.
Hurricane season takes place June 1 through November 30. Keep a list like this in a handy location so you will be prepared whenever a storm is expected.