Don't simply turn the filter off and forget the pool for 3 or 4 months. This is false economy because the time, effort and money needed to get the pool water correctly adjusted next season, will be far more than the little needed to maintain it during winter.

Thoroughly backwash the filter and clean it with a recognised filter cleaner and degreaser. Ensure that the skimmer basket and hair and lint pot are free of debris. Lubricate all o-rings with a silicone based lubricant. If there is not a strong flow of water returning to the pool when the filter is turned on, ring your local SPASA poolshop or service company.

Adjust the total alkalinity level with bicarbonate of soda, if the level is below 80 - 120 parts per million.

Adjust the pH to 7.2 to 7.6 by adding acid if the level is too high or soda ash if it's too low. It is a good idea to mix all chemicals with a full bucket of water before adding to the pool. Remember, always add the acid to the water and never in amounts more than 500 mls.

Mix 500 grams of granular chlorine or 750 mls of liquid chlorine with a bucket of water and add it to the pool.

Mix 750 mls - 1 litre of a long life algaecide that is specifically designed for winter and add it to the pool.

Adjust the timer to allow the filter to operate for 2 to 3 hours each day.

If the pool is equipped with a salt chlorinator, clean the cell with a recognised salt cell cleaner. Adjust the control to the 1/2 production setting. It will be necessary to check the chlorine level in the pool for the next 2 weeks, to ensure that there is a constant level of 1 - 2 available chlorine at all times. The production control on the salt chlorinator may have to be adjusted to increase or decrease its output.

Having carried out these procedures it should only be necessary to check the chlorine level every 2 weeks and empty the skimmer basket if it has a build up of leaves etc.

Check occasionally to ensure the water level is half way up the skimmer box opening and that the pressure gauge on the filter is not indicating backwash.

This simple procedure will ensure that your pool will be ready for the first warm days of next summer.

For more information on pool maintenance see SPASA Fact Sheets: WATER BALANCE, SANITISING YOUR POOL