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National average
(pool closing of equipment, lines, and chemicals with draining)
Low: $100

(partial pool closing of draining and lubricating equipment)

High: $350

(pool and hot tub closing with equipment, lines, chemicals, and draining)

Cost to close a swimming pool varies greatly by region (and even by zip code).
Get free estimates from swimming pool maintenance professionals in your city.

The average cost of closing a pool is $250.

In this guide

Reasons to Winterize Your Pool
Closing Process
Enhancement and Improvement Costs
Additional Considerations and Costs

How Much Does It Cost to Winterize Your Pool?

If you have a pool that you do not use during the colder months of the year, it is important to close it up properly for the winter. Winterizing your pool means that it will be cleaner, more sanitary, and easier to open back up again in the summer.

Winterizing includes different processes from chemicals to covers, and people may hire professionals to assist with some or all of the closing. The average homeowner spends around $250 on closing a pool each year, including chemical costs.

Reasons to Winterize Your Pool

Whether you live in the sunbelt or snowbelt, if you do not use your pool when the weather gets colder, it is important to winterize it before covering it for the season. Regardless of where you live, failing to winterize can lead to the overgrowth of algae and bacteria. It can also lead to debris composting 1 in the pool, all of which means that it can be much more difficult to get your pool cleaned and ready to open the next year.

In addition, if you live in an area that sees freezing temperatures, failing to winterize can lead to serious damage to the pool walls and your equipment. Because water expands as it freezes into ice, any water inside your pump 2, filter, or heating system can cause irreparable damage to these parts, necessitating their replacement. Not lowering the water level in the pool can also mean damage to the tile and other parts of the pool.

When you winterize your pool properly, you help stop algae and bacteria growth and prevent new debris from entering. You also ensure that there is no trapped water in any of the machinery or water lines so that the pool will be easier and less costly to clean and open again next summer.


The timing of when you close your pool can be important depending on where you live. If you live in an area where the temperature stays above 65ºF and you are merely closing it until temperatures get hot again, then you can close at your convenience.

However, if you live in an area where the temperatures drop below 65ºF, then it is essential to wait until after they have done so for the season. This is because algae does not grow well below this temperature, allowing you to get better control on that and bacteria growth so that your chemicals and cleaning will be more effective.

It is equally important not to wait too long, however, because doing so can leave your pool open to the risk of freezing. Therefore, you need to make sure it is closed prior to the first snow. Halloween is considered late or the last date you should close your pool by to fit into this window.

Closing Process

The closing process can differ depending on where you live and what type of pool you have. However, there is little difference between above ground and inground pools, and most involve many of the same steps. The material your pool is made of, its condition, and size can impact how long the closing takes. It can also differ depending on whether you hire professionals to do some or all of the work or if you will complete the closing by yourself.

About a week before closing, the pool needs to be shocked. The homeowner usually does this, but some companies will do this for an additional fee. After this, all skimmer baskets, wall fittings, ladders, and other parts are removed from the pool, drained, cleaned, and stored for the winter.

At this point, the pool should be cleaned. Again, some homeowners do this themselves to lower the costs of the closing. This includes vacuuming, scrubbing down the walls, removing all debris, and running the filter for 24 hours to get the pool as clean as possible.

Once the pool is cleaned, the water level is lowered between 6 and 18 inches depending on the type of cover and pool. If you have tile, the water must be lowered to below this point to avoid damage. This may also be something you take care of to reduce costs.

Next, all the pool equipment is drained and lubricated. All water is cleared from the plumbing lines. Finally, the last winterizing chemicals and algaecides are added to the water, and the cover is put in place.


The basic pool closing, which includes clearing the plumbing and equipment, lubricating the equipment, removing ladders, diving boards, and skimmers as well as installing the cover, is around $200 to $250. In most cases, this also includes adding some of the chemicals.

For additional fees, you can also have the water lowered ($50), any waterfalls or other features winterized ($50), or have a hot tub winterized ($100). Pool cleaning is sometimes included in the closing or can range in costs from $50 to $100 depending on the size and condition of the pool. Having a typical inground pool winterized and drained will generally cost around $250 on average.

Enhancement and Improvement Costs

Air Pillow

If you have an above ground pool, you need to place an air pillow, otherwise known as an ice compensator, below the cover. This helps balance the weight of snow and ice on top of the cover and protects the walls of the pool from caving in under that weight. Air pillows cost around $20.

Winter Pill

If you have had issues with algae or bacteria growth in the winter before, you may want to opt for a winter pill, which is a floating device that releases chemicals slowly throughout the winter. They cost around $10 to $20.

Additional Considerations and Costs

  • Slides and diving boards should be taken off and stored along with ladders and other equipment when closing the pool.
  • Most of the damage done to pipes and equipment comes from freezing when homeowners attempt to winterize the pool themselves. It is best to have a professional winterize to ensure that it is done correctly.
  • Never drain a pool completely over the winter. Otherwise, pressure from the frozen ground could cause it to pop out or rip the liner from the pool, meaning expensive repairs in the spring.


  • How much does it cost to have someone close your pool?

The average cost to have a professional close your pool is around $250.

  • What chemicals should I put in my pool when closing?

The pool needs to be shocked prior to closing, then an algaecide and winterizing formula should be added.

  • Do I have to drain my above ground pool for winter?

No, you should lower the water line by about 12 inches, and then place an air pillow on the remaining water before covering. ​​

  • How much does it cost to close a pool permanently?

Permanently closing a pool costs between $300 and $500 depending on the size and what needs to be done. ​

  • Can I leave my pool empty?

Leaving your pool empty in a climate that experiences freeze/thaw temperatures will cause serious damage to the liner or pool itself. ​

  • Can you leave water in a pool over winter?

Yes, you should leave water in the pool over the winter, only lowering it to below the tile line to prevent damage.​​

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Remodeling Terms Cheat Sheet

Definitions in laymen's terms, cost considerations, pictures and things you need to know.
See full cheat sheet.
1 Composting: A natural substance derived from plant, animal, or mineral matter that is added to soil in order to make it more fertile
glossary term picture Pump 2 Pump: A device used to move air, liquid, or gas by mechanical means

Cost to close a swimming pool varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

Pool being closed for winter

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Los Angeles, CA
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