How do I store my Intex pool for the winter?

Quick Answers

Here are quick answers to common questions about storing an Intex pool for winter:

When should I start winterizing my Intex pool?

You should start winterizing your Intex pool in late summer or early fall, before temperatures start dropping below freezing at night.

How do I clean my Intex pool before storage?

Thoroughly clean the pool, removing all debris and algae. Drain the pool completely and use a pool vacuum to clean the bottom and sides. Use a filter cleaner or degreaser to clean the pump and filter.

What steps should I take to winterize my Intex pool?

Drain and clean the pool. Disassemble and dry out the pump and filter. Use pool antifreeze in pipes and hoses. Deflate the top ring. Fold and store the pool liner. Store the ladder and other accessories.

Where should I store my Intex pool for the winter?

Store your Intex pool in a dry, protected area like a garage or shed. Avoid storing it outside where it could be damaged by weather and pests.

How can I prevent damage to my Intex pool while in storage?

Store the pool liner flat and smooth to prevent creases and cracks. Avoid folding the liner. Plug any openings in the liner with towels to keep out dirt, insects, and rodents. Store pool accessories in a dry plastic bin.

When to Winterize an Intex Pool

If you live in an area with cold winters where temperatures drop below freezing, you’ll need to winterize your Intex pool. This prepares the pool for storage during the winter months when it won’t be in use.

You should aim to winterize your Intex pool in late summer or early fall, before the first hard freeze arrives. This gives you time to properly clean, drain, and store the pool before temperatures get too cold. Trying to winterize the pool later puts you at risk of damage from freezing water.

Plan ahead based on your local climate. In northern regions, you may need to winterize as early as August or September. In warmer southern climates, you may be able to wait until late October or November. Monitor weather forecasts to determine when nighttime lows will start falling below freezing in your area.

As a guideline, you should winterize your Intex pool once daytime highs are in the 60s Fahrenheit and nighttime lows are in the 40s or below. Once temperatures are regularly below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s time to start winter prep.

Signs It’s Time to Winterize

Here are some signs that indicate it’s time to get your Intex pool ready for winter storage:

  • Nighttime temperatures are dropping below freezing
  • Daytime highs no longer get above 70 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Leaves are starting to fall and plants are dying back
  • You’ve already had a light frost in the mornings

Once you’ve had a hard freeze with sustained below-freezing temperatures, it’s critical to get the pool winterized right away. If you wait any longer, freezing water can damage the pool liner, frame, and accessories.

Preparing for Winter Early

It’s better to winterize your Intex pool a bit too early than too late. If you prepare the pool for winter in early fall but still get some warm days later on, you can always reopen it briefly if you want more use. However, if freezing weather hits when you aren’t prepared, the pool can be permanently damaged.

Keep an eye on long-range weather forecasts. If predictions suggest an earlier or harsher winter than usual, go ahead and err on the side of caution by winterizing your pool sooner.

Once nighttime temperatures start dipping into the 40s Fahrenheit, start planning the winterization process. And once you see any freezing temperatures in your area, it’s imperative to winterize right away.

Cleaning and Closing an Intex Pool

Thorough cleaning and preparation is crucial when you close an Intex pool for the winter. Follow these steps when shutting down your Intex pool for cold weather storage:

Drain the Pool

Draining the pool is one of the most important steps in winterizing it. You don’t want any water left in the pool or plumbing when freezing temperatures arrive. Complete drainage reduces the risk of damage from expanding ice.

First remove the drain cap from the outside of the pool wall. Attach a garden hose to the drain outlet. Route the hose to an area where the water can drain away from the house or shed. Turn the drain valve to open it and allow all of the pool water to drain out.

For above-ground Intex pools, you may need to use a submersible pump if a hose and gravity drainage isn’t effective. Lower the pump into the pool and place the discharge hose over the side. Run the pump until the pool is empty.

Expect this process to take several hours. Make sure the drain valve and hoses stay securely in place as the pool empties. Monitor the drainage until the pool is completely empty.

Clean the Pool Surfaces

Once your Intex pool is fully drained, give the surfaces a thorough cleaning. Use a pool vacuum cleaner to suck up debris from the bottom of the liner. Vacuum the pool walls thoroughly to remove any dirt, algae, or mineral deposits.

If needed, scrub the inside of the pool with a mild bleach cleaning solution (1 part bleach to 10 parts water). This kills any remaining algae and helps prevent mold growth.

Rinse the pool surfaces well after cleaning. Remove any puddles of water with towels. Allow the empty pool to dry completely in the sun for several hours after cleaning.

Clean and Store the Filter and Pump

Proper cleaning of the Intex filter and pump is critical for winter storage. Start by rinsing off the pump housing and filter cartridge with a garden hose. Use a filter cleaner or degreaser to remove oil, mineral deposits and debris.

Completely drain all water from the pump housing. Remove the filter cartridge and allow it to air dry indoors. Leave the pump housing open to dry out as well.

Disassemble any pump parts that can be taken apart. Clean and lubricate parts like seals and o-rings. Let all parts dry thoroughly before storing them.

Place the dry filter cartridge and pump parts in a sealable plastic bag or storage bin. Store it in a dry, protected area for the winter.

Winterize Plumbing and Hoses

Any plumbing or hoses connecting the pump and filter will also need to be completely drained and winterized. Follow these steps:

  1. Detach all hoses from the pump housing. Drain any excess water from hoses.
  2. Use compressed air to force all remaining water out of pipes. This prevents damage from freezing and expands the hoses.
  3. Attach an air compressor blow gun to one end of each hose. Blow air through until no more water comes out the other end.
  4. Consider adding RV antifreeze to hoses for extra protection. Attach a funnel to one hose end and pour in antifreeze. Cap the end and hang the hose to distribute the antifreeze before storing.
  5. Coil hoses loosely and store in a dry area protected from the elements.

Deflate the Top Ring

The top ring of an Intex pool provides structure by holding the inflated top edge of the liner. To store the pool for winter, you’ll need to completely deflate and remove this ring:

  1. Locate the valve built into the top ring and unscrew the cap.
  2. Insert a pin or the eraser end of a pencil into the valve to press down the internal spring.
  3. While holding the spring down, pull on the valve to open it up. This will release the air from the ring.
  4. When fully deflated, disconnect the top ring from the liner and remove it from the pool.
  5. Fold the ring in half and store it with your other pool parts for the winter.

Fold and Remove Pool Liner

The vinyl pool liner provides the water containment for an Intex pool. In cold temperatures, the liner can become stiff and crack if not properly stored for the winter. Here are tips for removing and storing the liner:

  • Start by draining any remaining droplets or puddles from the liner and allow it to completely air dry.
  • Begin folding the liner at one end, smoothing out any wrinkles as you go.
  • Avoid sharp creases. Fold the liner in gentle waves rather than hard creases.
  • Once fully folded, carry the liner out of the pool framework for storage.
  • Do not store the liner inside the pool or resting on the ground over winter.
  • Find a dry, protected area like a shed or garage to store the folded liner.

You may also choose to disinfect the liner before winter storage using a bleach solution. This kills bacteria and prevents mildew growth while packed away.

Store Pool Frame and Accessories

The remaining Intex pool parts will also require proper winter storage:

  • Pool Frame – Disassemble any connecting joints between frame sections. Carefully fold frame pieces and store in a dry area.
  • Ladder – Completely dry off the ladder before storing it. Fold any extending pieces.
  • Maintenance accessories – Store things like your skimmer net, vacuum head, and brush in a clearly marked storage bin.

Check that all hardware and accessories are accounted for and not left outside in the empty pool. Organize all parts together in a garage, shed or closet for easy spring setup.

Winter Pool Storage Tips

Follow these additional tips to help your Intex pool equipment stay in good shape throughout winter storage:

Check for Leaks

Inspect the empty pool liner closely for any small holes, tears or leaks that may have developed during the pool season. Patch these with a vinyl repair kit before storing for winter.

Plug Winterizing Drains

Use towels or pool plugs to insert into the water drain fittings in the bottom of the empty pool. This prevents dirt and pests from getting inside the liner while in storage.

Elevate Off the Ground

Avoid leaving the folded pool liner directly on a concrete or dirt floor over the winter. Place sheets of plywood or a pallet underneath the liner for elevation and airflow underneath.

Cover the Liner

Loosely cover the folded Intex pool liner with a tarp or plastic sheet. This protects it from dust, debris and UV damage while allowing ventilation to prevent mildew.

Use Mothballs

Place mothballs around the stored pool liner to repel mice and other rodents that may try nesting in it over winter. Do not use mothballs directly on the liner.

Inspect Storage Area

Check that the storage area is protected from the elements, stays dry and maintains a fairly even cool temperature. Avoid storing pool parts in attics or spaces with extreme temperature swings.

Lubricate O-Rings

Remove and lubricate any rubber o-rings and gaskets on pool valves and connections. Coat with silicone grease before storing to prevent drying and cracking.

Check Frames for Rust

Look over metal pool frames and spot treat any areas of light surface rust with a rust remover spray. Apply touch up paint if needed to prevent further rusting.

Reopening Your Intex Pool After Winter

When spring arrives, you’ll be ready to set up your Intex pool again for the new season. Follow these tips for safely reopening your pool after winter storage:

Inspect All Components

Unpack all of the stored pool parts and do a thorough inspection. Look for any damage or wear and tear. Order replacement parts now if anything needs to be repaired or replaced.

Clean Surfaces

Use a hose and mild detergent to clean the pool liner, frame, ladder and other components after storage. Allow everything to fully dry.

Rebuild Frame

Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions to properly reassemble the pool frame. Make sure all connecting joints are reattached tightly and securely.

Replace Top Ring

Inflate the top ring with air until it is firm according to the product specifications. Insert the ring into the sleeve at the top of the liner to hold its shape.

Smooth Out Liner

Unfold the liner and spread it out fully in the sun to warm it up. Gently work out any wrinkles or creases in the material as you insert it into the frame.

Refill Pool

Attach all hoses to the filter pump system. Fill the pool slowly and carefully, checking frequently for leaks.

Balance Water Chemistry

Test and treat the water to balance the pH, alkalinity and sanitizer levels before swimming. Shock treat initially.

Run Filter Pump

Reconnect and prime the pump, turn on the filter, and circulate water to get your Intex pool ready for a new season.

FAQs About Closing an Intex Pool for Winter

Can I leave water in the pool over winter?

No, you should never leave water in an Intex pool during winter storage. All water must be drained from the liner, pipes and pump system to prevent freeze damage.

What temperature should I winterize the pool?

Once nighttime temperatures are regularly dropping below 40°F, it’s time to winterize an Intex pool. The water must be drained and liner removed before you get a hard freeze.

Where should I store my Intex pool for winter?

Store your Intex pool liner and accessories in a protected area like a garage, shed, basement or storage closet. The storage space should stay dry and maintain an even cool temperature.

How do I keep mice and bugs out of my stored pool?

Use mothballs or other repellents around the perimeter of the stored liner Use plugs in the liner drain openings. Keep spaces covered but allow for some ventilation.

Do I need to treat the pool liner before storing?

It’s a good idea to clean the liner with a dilute bleach solution before storage. This prevents algae and mold growth. Don’t store the liner until it’s completely dry.

Can I leave the Intex pool frame assembled?

No, you should completely disassemble the connecting joints and fold up the frame sections before storing them over winter. The frame pieces should be stored individually.


Winterizing your Intex pool is essential for protecting it from damage during cold temperatures and snow. With proper care, your Intex pool can be stored safely through winter and last for many years. Planning ahead and following this winterization guide will help ensure your pool liner, frame, and components remain in the best shape when spring arrives again.

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