Is it worth the cost to add an automatic pool cover to your swimming pool?
When we built our in ground swimming pool, I wavered back and forth about whether or not to add a retractable cover. Let’s talk about some of the pros and cons of having an automatic pool cover.
Positive Aspects (Pro’s) of Having an Automatic Pool Cover
5.) Being able to cover the pool so leaves, pollen and debris do not get in the water. But on the other hand, instead…those things sit on top of your cover…which would you rather prefer?
4.) If your pool is heated, you can close the pool when not in use and the water will retain a lot of the heat if it’s covered.
3.) If you have an automatic pool cover, it can also be used as your winter cover (with a caveat). If you choose to use an automatic cover as the winter cover, there will be maintenance involved during the colder months. A true “winter pool cover” is a different material than the automatic cover. A winter cover is porous and allows water and snow to seep through the cover. An automatic cover does not allow water to get through into the pool. Big difference! Since that water can not seep into the pool, it needs to be regularly maintained and pumped off the cover.
Also, if you use the automatic cover as your winter cover, you won’t need to drill holes into your pool surround for the winter cover to attach to.
2.) Having an automatic pool cover may eliminate the need for a fence around the yard. Depending on your state’s laws governing pools, you may be able to opt out of having a fence around your yard if you have a pool cover. I know that is the law in our state. We already had a fence and added the cover when the pool was built.
1.) Child Safety is the number one reason you should opt in for an automatic pool cover. Being able to close the pool when not in use is a huge sigh of relief when you have little ones running around your home. The peace of mind a pool cover gives you is immense, and reducing the dangers of accidental drowning is the #1 reason! If child safety is your main reason for wanting a cover, then 100% it’s worth the cost.
Negative Aspects (Con’s) of Having an Automatic Pool Cover
5.) Maintenance involved with owning a cover. As mentioned earlier, the cover is not porous, so sitting water needs to be pumped off the cover.
4.) Limited pool shape options if you want to have a cover. Keeping in mind, the aesthetics of the cover on the pool, you will be limited in choosing a pool shape (rectangular).
3.) They break and at the most inconvenient times. You may be having a party, go to open the cover and it won’t open! Then what…
2.) Some pool covers are quite frankly speaking super ugly! It’s much more attractive to look at your pool’s water than an ugly cover. And depending on how it’s attached to your pool, the cover can be super unsightly. For instance, trying to retrofit a rectangular pool cover on a kidney shaped pool is not going to look good! Deck mounted tracks have to be used and are placed on both sides of the pool and just looks unattractive and appears to be a tripping hazard too. In this case, putting a fence around the yard may be a better idea, if the main reason is for safety.
1.) The cost involved in purchasing the cover is the biggest drawback. Pool covers aren’t cheap. You will spend anywhere from 6K-15K depending on the pool. They are custom made for your pool’s shape and size but again if child safety is a concern, cost should not be a factor.
Our Automatic Pool Cover
Our cover was installed during pool construction and I love the fact that it is completely hidden.
We had a choice of colors from which to choose and I picked one closest to the color of the surrounding stone.
Generally speaking pool covers are not attractive. My goal was to make it as least unattractive as possible 🙂
With our pool design, the spill over area is not covered.
During the winter months, this area is left open as well. This open area is where rain and snow can sneak inside the pool. The important part is to ensure that the water stays below the waterline tile during the coldest times of the year. Lots of rain and snow can fill the pool up quickly and if the water level comes above the tile and freezing occurs, there is danger of the tiles falling off. I was very aware of this fact during the winter months and would check the levels often.
In Conclusion, My Thoughts on Owning an Automatic Pool Cover
Is it worth the cost to invest in an automatic pool cover? If you have young children around the pool than 100 percent YES!
For us, our kids are older so their safety was not a huge concern when we were building the pool. But when we have friends over with younger children, I do feel better knowing we can close the pool and the kids are safe. The cover is also an investment in the pool and makes me feel better about pool ownership. I tend to be more on the conservative side of things, so safety was an important factor for me.
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