Can You Leave an Intex Pool Up All Winter?

Written by Michael Dean
August 28, 2023

Intex pool during winter

Intex pools are increasingly gaining popularity due to their price and convenience. But these pools are not as permanent and durable as other above ground pool options. One question that comes up a lot when I talk to Intex pool owners is, “Can I leave my Intex pool up all winter?”

In this article, I will delve into several reasons why I don’t recommend leaving your Intex pool up in the winter, the potential risks involved, and the essential steps to ensure your pool remains in top condition season after season.

Main Takeaways

  • I do not recommend leaving an Intex pool filled during winter, as it can’t withstand cold temperatures below 41°F (5°C).
  • If temperatures do not drop below 41°F, you can winterize the Intex pool instead.
  • Some more permanent above ground pools can be left up all winter.
  • Make sure to properly store all pool equipment in a dry shed over the wintertime.

Can You Leave an Intex Pool Up All Winter?

Intex pools are made up of thin, lightweight PVC material that simply can’t withstand low temperatures. While most above ground pools can be winterized and left up during the winter, Intex recommends tearing down the pool and storing it when the temperature falls below 41°F (5°C). Leaving the pool up all winter puts your Intex pool at risk of damage due to ice formation.

You can leave the Intex pool up throughout the year if the temperature in your area will not drop below the 41°F threshold. However, you should still be cautious to minimize any risk. I recommend taking down your Intex pool as soon as it is no longer in use to get the most out of your pool.

What to Do With an Intex Pool in the Winter?

As I mentioned above, you don’t always have to tear down your pool. If you are blessed to live in a region with mild winters, you can leave the Intex pool up all winter. That said, you aren’t off the hook even if the temperature doesn’t drop below 41°F (5°C) and you’ve decided to keep your Intex pool up during the winter months. Your two options for Intex winter pool care are: winterizing if the temperatures are mild and taking down the pool if you experience cold winters.

Option 1: Winterize the Intex Pool

If the temperatures don’t drop below 41°F in your region, you can get away with simply winterizing your above ground pool. With that said, I generally recommend storing the Intex pool over the winter anyway to extend the lifespan of your pool, but this is still a feasible option.

Here is my step-by-step guide on winterizing your Intex swimming pool.

Step One: Clean the Pool and Pool Area

Before covering the pool for the winter, remove any leaves, twigs, or other debris from the water. Clean the pool thoroughly to ensure there are no contaminants that will affect the water quality while the pool is closed.

Step Two: Balance the Pool Water

Test and balance the water chemistry before closing the pool. This step is crucial to prevent algae growth and other water-related issues. Use a pool winterizing kit to add the necessary chemicals (chlorine, algaecide, stain prevention, shock), and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Step Three: Lower Water Level

Slightly lower the water level in your Intex pool. This prevents potential damage caused by freezing and ice expansion. Be sure not to drain the pool entirely, though, as this could damage the pool’s structure.

Step Four: Discard the Filter Cartridge

Intex pool filters are affordable, making it more convenient to replace them rather than trying to clean and reuse them. It’s best to have replacement filter cartridges on hand for the next season to maintain optimal pool water quality. These filter cartridges will realistically only last two pool seasons at the absolute max, but in most cases, they only last a single season.

If you want to extend the life of your filter cartridge, you can use a filter cleaner on it. However, once it becomes difficult to clean thoroughly, it’s time to replace it with a new one.

Step Five: Remove and Protect the Pool Equipment

If your Intex pool has any equipment, such as a filter pump, heater, or ladder, you should remove, clean, and store them in a dry and safe place for the winter. Freezing temperatures can damage these components, so it’s best to keep them indoors until you’re ready to use the pool again.

Step Six: Cover Your Pool

A sturdy and reliable pool cover is also required to protect your pool. It will shield your Intex pool from harsh weather and debris during the winter. Make sure to choose a cover specifically designed for above ground pools and ensure it fits snugly over the pool to prevent any openings. Keep the cover secure and tight using a winch or with straps.

Step Seven: Regularly Inspect the Pool

Throughout the winter, make periodic inspections to ensure the pool cover remains secure and intact. Check for any signs of damage or water leakage, and address any issues promptly. 

Remember that the pool cover is not a substitute pool safety cover. So keep an eye on your pets and children.

Option 2: Disassemble and Store the Intex Pool for the Winter

During the winter, another option is to disassemble the Intex pool completely and store it for the winter. If you live in an area where temperatures regularly drop below 41°F (5°C) during the winter, opt for this option.

Follow my steps below to disassemble and store your Intex pool for the winter.

Step One: Clean and Drain the Pool

Before you drain your Intex pool, skim the pool and vacuum up the debris so that you don’t clog up any pipes when you drain.

Then drain your Intex pool according to the manufacturer’s directions. Use a garden hose to drain the water, ensuring it diverts to a legal and acceptable location. Obtain a draining permit if you need one. Avoid allowing water to pool around your home’s foundation, as it can cause significant damage.

Step Two: Clean the Pool

Clean the entirety of your Intex pool with a soft cloth, mild cleanser, and water. After cleaning it thoroughly, rinse it and drain the leftover water.

Step Three: Remove the Pool Equipment

Remove the skimmer, ladder, and any other accessories attached to the pool. Fully clean and dry the equipment before storing it for the winter in a shed. Remove, clean, and drain the pump, filter housing, and hoses as well. If your pool has a filter cartridge, discard the old one and allow the remaining parts to dry thoroughly.

Step Four: Disassemble the Pool

Carefully disassemble the swimming pool. Take down the frame, if you have one, and make sure each piece is clean and dry before you move it to the shed. As a top tip, when you remove each piece, use a permanent marker to label each pipe to avoid confusion during reassembly. If you’re unsure about the process at any point, consult your owner’s manual for step-by-step instructions specific to your model.

Step Five: Prepare the Liner for Storage

Since the area underneath the pool may be moist, move the liner to a dry location, preferably on top of a tarp or patio, to keep it clean and dry. Then, spread it out and let it air-dry until completely dry.

Step Six: Store the Pool

Fold the pool liner tightly and roll it up into a cylinder. I also recommend storing it in a large bag to further protect it. After you have folded up the liner, you can store it for the winter. Keep everything in a dry location. Intex recommends a storage area that maintains a temperature between 32 and 104°F to prevent damage.

Can Other Above Ground Pools Be Left Up in the Winter?

It depends on the above ground pool and your climate. Many above ground pools are sturdier than an Intex pool, so in some cases, it can be left up in the winter. As a general rule, if you have an Intex or Bestway above ground pool (or another type of above ground pool that is easy to take down and store), store it away for the wintertime. However, if you have a more permanent above ground pool, winterize it instead of storing it.

Another consideration is the climate. If you live somewhere with very mild winters where freezing temperatures are rare, there is no need to store your above ground pool. As mentioned above, even with an Intex pool, as long as temperatures don’t drop below 41°F, you can get away with simply winterizing the pool. Winterize the pool as soon as temperatures drop consistently below 65°F. However, you may still consider storing your pool for the winter. By storing your pool for several months of the year, you expose it to fewer elements, and, in turn, it will likely last longer.

What to Do with Your Pool Equipment During Winter

Properly store above ground pool equipment indoors in the winter to avoid freezing and damage. Disconnect and drain the filter pump, and clean and store it safely. Remove the heater, ladder, skimmer, and hoses to prevent rusting or damage. 

If you are winterizing your above ground pool, ensure the pool cover is secure and fitted to prevent debris and water buildup. If you are storing your above ground pool, make sure to store the cover properly as well.

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Keeping Your Intex Pool in Top Shape

Everyone loves a pool in their backyard but remember that all pools need proper maintenance. Whether you have an indoor pool, outdoor pool, inground pool, or above ground pool, you need to take proper care of them to enjoy a relaxing and refreshing swimming experience throughout the year. This includes properly winterizing or storing the pool when the weather cools down! When it comes to Intex pools, I don’t recommend leaving it up all winter, as freezing temperatures can cause significant damage to its thin PVC material. By properly taking care of your Intex pool over the winter, you can ensure it stays in good shape by the time the warm weather rolls around again!

If you need help determining whether or not to store your above ground pool for the winter, drop me a line. I am always happy to help!

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