Pool Safety Cover Types And Their Uses

The swimming pool safety cover can serve several purposes – keeping debris out of the pool, preventing accidental falls into the pool, and even keeping the pool warm with solar energy. Unfortunately, they are a substantial investment so you need to make the right decision when making a purchase. Let’s look at your options. 

Mesh Pool Safety Cover

Pool safety covers can be separated into two groups, solid and mesh. Mesh safety covers are stretched across a swimming pool and held by springs and stakes. They have improved safety measures over pool tarps, which simply rest on the water to keep out debris but have no safety features.


Light duty mesh covers are the most affordable option. These prevent 95% of the sun’s UV light from reaching the pool water. Certified Pool Operators® will know, sunlight affects the pool water chemistry, requiring more regular pool sanitation. Even 5% of UV light can quickly throw off the pool water balance. Heavy-duty mesh covers block 99% of UV light. This helps maintain a well-balanced, sanitary swimming pool without constantly adjusting pool chemicals. 

Light-duty mesh safety covers are durable but also can be easily picked up and moved. They are strong enough to support hundreds of pounds, although standing on a pool safety cover is dangerous and highly discouraged. Heavy-duty covers are heavier and less portable than light-duty covers but they are also much stronger. The improved strength and durability increase the lifespan of the cover. Since buying a pool safety cover is no small investment, this can save you a lot of money in the long term. 

Solid Pool Safety Cover

Solid safety covers offer even more durability and safety features, but at a higher price tag. With mesh covers, rainwater passes through the cover while keeping debris out of the pool. Solid safety covers don’t let sunlight, debris, or water to pass through. This keeps the water chemistry in the pool chemistry stable. However, you will need a pump that removes water that accumulates on top. If too much water sits on top of the cover for an extended period of time, the cover can stretch and the hardware can become damaged. If you live in an area with cold winter temperatures, a solid pool safety cover may not be the best option. Heavy snowfall can damage or even cause the cover to collapse. There is also the issue of installation difficulty. Solid pool covers can take several people and multiple hours to install. This may be a bit too much for your average pool owner but is not out of the scope of a commercial swimming facility. Mesh covers are much easier to install.


Tarps Vs Safety Covers

The least expensive option is the pool tarp. Unfortunately, these tarps have no safety features and can even pose extra risks. If a person or animal steps onto a tarp, it will collapse into the water and surround the victim. Pulling a pet or person out from under the weight of a waterlogged tarp can be extremely difficult. Pool tarps also collect rainwater on top, which becomes stagnant, dirty, and can attract pests. Since they are far less durable than safety covers, they will need to be replaced often. These are the reasons we do not recommend using them. 

Swimming Pool Experts

If you are going to take advice from anyone about pool covers consider your Certified Pool Operator®. Pool Operation Management not only offers award-winning CPO Classes, but they offer expert maintenance service to keep your pool functioning properly. When you hire us for either residential or commercial pool closings, we make sure your pool is clean, clear, and properly balanced before the cover goes on. We can even use our vast knowledge of pool operation to act as expert witnesses in legal disputes. For the very best in everything pools, contact us today.


*This information is obtained from the Certified Pool and Spa Operator Handbook. This information may not be applicable to your pool based on your pool type and location. One should reference all applicable regulations and standards for your facility.

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