How to Use a Winch for Pool Cover? 3 Easy Steps

Closing your above ground pool is a task that may be necessary at times. Especially during or near winter time, closing your pool is an effective way of protecting it from the elements. Usually, your pool cover kit is designed to be tightened with a winch. The cable tightener can easily be fastened and secured with a winch so you can expect a clean pool when you open it up. Though easy as it may be, not everyone knows how to use a winch for pool cover.

In this article, I will outline a step by step, basic instructions on how to effectively and efficiently use a winch to cover you pool. But first, check out our recommended Winch Pool Cover.

Recommended Winch Pool Cover

Why Use a Winch to Close Your Above Ground Pool

Closing or covering your pool is important if you want to make sure that it will remain clean and free of debris during a prolonged time period of being unused. This typically happens from near the beginning of winter to after the spring showers. If done, properly, covering your pool ensures that it will be ready for use once summertime rolls around.

For a lot of pool covers, they come with winch-like cable tighteners. To make the entire easier and more effective, the right use of a winch is necessary.

Step 1  – Winterizing the Pool

Before securing your pool with a cover, you must first prepare it for the winter. This preparation process includes a thorough cleaning of the pool, disconnecting all of the pumps and filtration systems and reducing the water level.

The water must be at least 4 inches below the skimmer level. This is to avoid overflowing the water once the cover tightening process begins. Once the proper water level is achieved, you must be sure that the return and skimmer sittings are properly sealed.

After all of these are done, you should then apply the proper pool closing chemicals. Such chemicals include rust protector, pool winterizer, pool shock and other chemicals necessary to preserving the integrity of the pool.

Step 2  – Laying the Pool Cover

Once all of the initial pool preparations are done with, it is time to lay the pool cover on it. This part of the process is pretty much self-explanatory, but there are just a few reminders to keep in mind.

Make sure that the pool cover is not the exact size in perimeter or diameter as that of the pool. Your cover should be at least 3 feet wider so it can totally cover the top of the pool and has enough material hanging on the sides.

When laying the pool cover, make sure that the extra material hangs evenly at all sides. This will make the winch tightening process so much easier.

Step 3  – Securing with a Winch

Once the cover is properly placed around the top, it is time to secure it with the winch. Weave the cable through the holes around the edges of the cover. Once the the entire perimeter of the cover is laced with the rope, pull the rope to tighten it.

Secure the ends of the rope to the opposite sides of the winch you are using. Then slowly turn the winch. Turning it slowly is important if you don’t want to damage the pool. 

While tightening the cable, check if it is evenly tightened all around the sides of the pool. Also endure that it remains underneath he pool rail.

For this process, I would suggest you use either a portable winch or a hand winch.

If you don’t know how to get the best winch for you, see our detailed guide here. Or if you don’t know what type of winch to use, check out this informative article.

The Most Basic Steps

When it comes to securing a pool cover with a winch, this is as basic as it can be. I understand that there are a lot of other steps to make sure that you pool is properly covered and secured. But this is the essence of the matter. You can secure the sides of your pool, sure, but it is not really necessary unless strong winds are expected.

This guide is meant to help you get started on the process of securing your pool with a pool cover and a winch. If you feel like you need to take more safety measures, then I suggest you go for it. But for those lacking the basic know-how, this is how to use a winch for pool cover.

Do you have any questions? Are you looking for the best portable winches? Do you have any thoughts about the matter? Share them in the comments section below. I’d love to hear your thoughts.