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How To Install A Winter Cover On An In Ground Pool August 15, 2012 02:00 AM

The vast majority of the information necessary to understand how to properly install an in ground winter cover can be found in the sister article "How To Install A Winter Cover On An Above Ground Pool ." In fact, steps one through five are identical with the exception of the water drop distance: in ground winter covers allow for a water drop of up to 18" below the deck.  If your pools water level is lower than that you can choose to partially refill it or purchase a larger size of cover. Refer to the below diagram for an image of a proper fit.  
How To Install An In Ground Winter Pool Cover
Step six is where the instructions diverge. In ground winter covers cannot be secured "around" the pool walls so another method is required. In ground covers are therefore weighted down with water tubes or other non-abrasive products such as Aqua Bloks. Note that water tubes come in single and dual/double varieties, but that dual water tubes may be preferable for some swimming pools as single tubes are more prone to "rolling". Regardless, never use bricks, concrete blocks, or other such objects to secure the cover.  These cause excess wear on the winter cover and could potentially cut or tear it. They are also in a position to easily damage the pool. For these reasons, PcPools recommends using water tubes for cover installation.
dual double tan water tubes for in ground swimming pool winter cover
The ideal method to installing water tubes or bloks is to fill them with water prior to pulling on the cover.  This enables you to distribute them around the swimming pool so they are properly located as you install the cover. In ground winter covers have loops every few feet for securing the water bags but there is some variety amongst the number and spacing of loops. Know your cover’s loop locations before you distribute and fill water bags. Once the bags or bloks are in the correct places, fill them with water until they are approximately 3/4ths full, but no more!  A standard garden hose does the trick. In most climates, filling beyond this point will cause irreparable damage to the tube: water expands when it freezes and the resulting increase in volume is likely to burst the tube.  
Arctic Armor covers, specifically, also have metal grommets at the corners for added security. Use the grommets to tie the cover down if you have a nearby fence or other permanent structure, but do not use a taught rope. A flexible cord such as a bungie cord is ideal because it allows the cover to shift slightly, without pulling out the corner tabs or straps, as precipitation accumulates. For the same reason, the flexible cord also reduces the possibility of damage during a heavy wind or snowstorm. 
Finally, note that some locations may require use of a cover pump during the winter. Installing an in ground cover pump on the center of the pool cover quickly and automatically removes excess water accumulation.  Though some precipitation weight helps hold the cover in place and prevent wind damage, too much water can pull the cover and all the tubes into the pool. It might also cause the cover to rip or tear.  Either results in a very messy cleanup, so use an automatic pump or plan a regular maintenance schedule to manually drain excess precipitation.