Protecting your children, pets, and loved ones near the pool is the most important responsibility you have as a pool owner. The good news is that there are many devices and pool accessories now that make that job a lot easier for you.
Pool safety covers are an essential addition to any pool, especially ones that close in winter and for pool owners with small children. These handy contraptions are truly lifesavers and have lots of other benefits to boot. So, how do they work?
What Are Pool Safety Covers?
You may have heard of solar covers that float gently on the surface of the pool or vinyl covers that are simply draped over a pool. Pool safety covers are different in that they are tightly secured to the deck by anchors so that nothing that falls on top of them will be submerged below the water’s surface.
The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standard requires that a pool cover be able to hold a minimum of 485 pounds per five square feet in order to qualify as a safety cover.
The main purpose of pool safety covers is the prevention of drowning and other water-related accidents by providing a strong, taut barrier over the water’s surface. They are meant to be used for long periods of time, like when you close your pool for the winter or go away for an extended vacation.
The Benefits of Pool Safety Covers
Pool safety covers aren’t just one-trick ponies. They wear a lot of hats and can protect your pool while at the same time keeping your family out of harm’s way.
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), unintentional drowning is the second leading cause of death for children up to 14 years old in the USA. This is a scary statistic and one that you don’t want to ever be a part of. Pool safety covers are a great way to keep your pool completely off-limits when it’s not in use.
Not only can pool safety covers protect your family and pets but they can really save you some dough in maintenance expenses during the months you’re not using your pool. Weather damage, dust, rain, and other contaminants are constantly trying to ruin your day, but with a pool safety cover, your pool and water chemistry are safe from harm too.
Protection For Your Pool
In the on-going battle to keep your pool clean during swim season, the good news is that with a pool safety cover you don’t have to worry as much during the off-season. A pool safety cover can give you peace of mind when it comes to your family’s safety but it can also protect your pool when you’re not giving it your full attention.
Yard debris, rainwater, dust, and sunlight are all working hard to wreak havoc on your pool and a pool safety cover is here to save the day… and to save you a bit of money. All of those contaminants can decimate your sanitizer and breed algae and bacteria growth in your pool.
Some safety covers work better than others to defend your pool from the elements, but all are going to reduce the amount of work you have to do to keep your pool clean in the colder months.
Types of Pool Safety Covers
So, now you’re probably sold on the necessity of a pool safety cover for your backyard pool. (If you’re not, keep reading, we like a good challenge.)
Pool safety covers come in three main flavors: mesh, solid, and hybrid. Hybrid safety covers are the new kids on the block but are shaping up to the best of both worlds for pool owners that gotta have it all.
Mesh Safety Covers
These bad boys are going to be the best option for pool owners on a budget. They are lightweight and maneuverable, less expensive than the other varieties, and still offer a crazy amount of safety benefits and protection for your pool.
They’ll do the hard work of keeping debris out of your pool all winter long, while not accumulating rainwater or snow on the surface. The mesh material lets water flow right through, so you’re not going to need to sweep or pump the cover after heavy rain or snow.
While not completely opaque, mesh safety covers do come in a wide variety of specifications to keep out the sun or UV light. As you probably know, sunlight obliterates the chlorine in your pool, practically as fast as you put it in. Having a tinted cover or some kind of UV protection is going to help keep your pool cleaner, longer.
With all of the benefits of a mesh safety cover, it’s hard to imagine any downsides. Unfortunately, mesh covers don’t keep out the rainwater and dust that can contaminate your pool water over time, leading to a change in water chemistry, and a bit more work on your end.
Solid Safety Covers
Solid safety covers are not only invincible when it comes to protecting your loved ones, but they are also the ultimate heavyweight challengers when it comes to protecting your pool from the elements. This type of cover is an impregnable fortress in the battle of weather damage to your pool.
There’s no doubt that solid safety covers provide a complete barrier for the water, protecting your family (and family pets) from an unscheduled swim, but they’ll also keep your pool water safe from contamination too.
While you’re enjoying a cup of hot cocoa by the fire, your pool cover is taking the beating of Jack Frost, all so your pool doesn’t have to. All of the water, dust, and debris (that you’d normally fish out with a skimmer net) now just sits quietly on top, waiting to be swept away, no chemistry required.
Since solid covers are, well, solid, the downside is that you’ll still have to pump away the water that collects on top every so often. A small price to pay for superior pool protection.
Hybrid Safety Covers
Hybrid safety covers are a great option for pool owners that want the debris and sunlight barrier but don’t mind the rainwater too much. They are solid safety covers that come with mesh drains, so no pumping required.
These mesh drains can either be at the center of the cover or in different areas with removable panels used for drainage. They are literally the best of both worlds and will protect your pool with hardly any effort on your part.
Pool Safety… Even When You’re Not Swimming
Gone are the days of worrying about your pool during the harsh winter months or stressing out over the possibility of an accidental fall into a freezing cold pool. Pool safety covers give you peace of mind for the safety of your family, as well as provide great protection for your pool all winter long.