When it comes to safety in and around your pool, not all covers are created equal. While it may be tempting to save a few dollars with a cheaper option, the safety of your family, friends and pets should be foremost on your mind. Any pool cover worth considering needs to be ASTM certified for both safety and quality.
When it comes to the different types of pool covers, most fall in to one of two categories, either floating or safety covers.
Floating Covers Create Dangers
Floating covers float on the surface of the water with no tether to the surrounding deck. They may resemble bubble wrap or plastic blankets. The function of these types of covers is pretty straightforward and simple. They take the sun's energy and transfer it to the water below, keeping the water warm and saving you on energy costs.
However, floating pool covers such as solar covers or thermal pool blankets are far from safe. Without an anchor to the side of the pool, there's nothing to stop someone from falling in. Worse yet, studies have shown that these covers will return to their original position 10 to 20 seconds after something has fallen through, hiding a potential drowning victim from view.
Pets or small children may see the cover and not realize the danger, stepping out onto the cover only to have it give way under them. The cover may also serve to disorient whomever has fallen through, so they can't find their way to the surface.
False Sense of Security
While water-bag winter covers often anchor to the sides of the pool, unlike solar cover or thermal blankets, they are no safer. Their fastening system is more concerned with keeping leaves and debris out, not humans and pets.
Simple tarps fall under the same guise. Even when weighed down by sandbags, they don't provide anywhere near the safety required to keep everyone safe.
Safety Covers, the Best Option
While the initial investment of a safety cover is more, they provide peace of mind.
If you're looking for a safety cover to close your pool for the season or help protect your pool during extended leave look no further than Coverstar or Latham solid and mesh safety covers. Both are fully ASTM certified and provide the best protection for your pool.
Coverstar along with Pool Cover Specialists offer ASTM certified automatic covers, giving you easy one-button operation that protects everyone in your home when the pool is not in use. Either covering or uncovering your pool is as simple, and when not in use automatic covers can disappear under their built-in lid. Manual pool covers require a little more labor, but still offer the same security via a D-ring hook and loop system that allows easy installation and adjustment.
Safety covers that meet ASTM certification can be either automatic or manual in nature, but they all provide you peace of mind. Available in mesh or solid vinyl, such covers must be able to support 485 lbs. of weight per 3 square feet, meaning if a child or pet mistakenly wanders out on them, the risk of them falling in to the pool is largely negated.
For the best in covers, get in touch with an independent Latham dealer in your area. While it's always sad to cover up your pool after a delightful season, make sure to cover it safely with either an automatic pool cover or a winter safety cover.
Editor's note: Originally posted 9/2017