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Top  swimming pool cover pumps tested from certified pool technicians.

The Best 8 Pool Cover Pumps for Maintenance During the Winter

How do you choose between nearly identical pumps?

Wayne WAPC250

Removal Pool Cover Pump
Automatic Pool Pump

Bottom Freezer Refrigerator

The Little Giant Pool Cover Pump

Pool Cover Submersible Pump, 1/3-HP, 115V
Little Giant

Automatic Pool Cover Pump

Ocean Blue Winter Pool Cover Pump

Winter Pool Cover Pump
Ocean Blue

Electric Winter Pool Cover Pump

Little Giant Manual Pool Cover Pump

Pool Cover Pump, Pack of 1
Little Giant

Manual Pool Cover Pump

How We Found the Top Pool Cover Pump

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8 brands
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10 hours of
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4 top picks

The Top Pool Pumps

When the summer season is over, it’s time to close down your pool and prepare for the winter season. However, this doesn’t mean you just throw a cover over your pool and leave it alone until springtime. Your pool must be maintained regularly no matter what season it is. This means maintaining the winter cover and keeping the pool water clean and at the appropriate level. The cover takes a lot of abuse from the nasty weather of the winter, so you must ensure it stays clean and firm. If the cover takes too much abuse, then it could cause rain and snow to get through and raise the water level.

There is a straightforward piece of equipment which can solve all your pool maintenance problems during the winter. It will both protect your cover from damage and prevent water from building up in the pool. This equipment is called a pool cover pump. Let’s examine its features so you can understand why it works great for maintaining pools.

The Benefits of a Pool Cover Pump

A winter pool cover prevents weather debris like leaves, snow, twigs, and rain from getting into the pool water. The only problem is this debris stays on top of the pool cover. There is no automated system that removes the debris.

The more debris and water that accumulates on top of the cover, the more weight that accumulates in the center. For every 1 inch of rain per square foot of space, you have 5.2 pounds of weight on there. Imagine a pool cover with 280 square feet of surface space, which is what a 12’ x 24’ swimming pool normally requires. This would cause 1 inch of rain to put approximately 1,456 pounds of weight on your cover from the rainwater. With this much weight pushing on the center of your cover, you’ll need a replacement cover very soon. Plus, the cover cannot prevent the water and melted snow from seeping through slowly.

Before you can take off the cover and open your pool, you need to remove the water which stands on top of it. If you think you can handle the job, then remove the water yourself. Otherwise, hire a professional to do it for you. This is necessary if hundreds of pounds of water pressure have built up on your pool cover for a couple of months.

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The Function of a Pool Cover Pump

The primary function of a pool cover pump is to prevent minor debris and water from building on top of the cover. It accomplishes this task by pumping these elements out, so they don’t build up. The water and debris can be sent from the pump to wherever you want on your property. Also, when melted snow and rain end up on your cover, your pool will not overflow because of the pump.

Please note that a pool cover pump cannot eliminate snow from your cover. You must wait until the snow melts first. Once it becomes liquid water, the pump can successfully remove it from the cover. But you need to be careful here because sometimes ice can form instead of water. This will make the situation worse. Just to be safe, remove the snow when it’s on your cover using a snow removal tool. Make sure its head is made of non-abrasive foam. That way, the pool cover won’t get damaged or torn as you push off the snow from the cover.

Should You Get a Manual or Automatic Pump?

There are automatic and manual pool cover pumps. Which one is better?

A manual pump may sound primitive, but it is actually quite simple to use. You won’t need to pump or twist a lever to remove the debris and water from your cover. What the “manual” pump does is it pumps out these elements from your cover after you manually activate the pump. So, if you see debris accumulating on top of your cover, then you simply turn on the pump. That is it.

Of course, the problem with manual pump comes from human error. If you don’t monitor the severity of the debris on your cover, then it could cause problems for it if you’re not around to turn on the pump.

This is what makes the automatic pool cover pump so much better. You just place it in the center of your winter pool cover and leave it there. When rain falls onto the cover, the pump activates automatically to pump out the water after it reaches a certain level. You should periodically check on the cover anyway, but this will at least prevent a lot of problems from happening.

Please note that a pool cover pump cannot eliminate snow from your cover. You must wait until the snow melts first. Once it becomes liquid water, the pump can successfully remove it from the cover. But you need to be careful here because sometimes ice can form instead of water. This will make the situation worse. Just to be safe, remove the snow when it’s on your cover using a snow removal tool. Make sure its head is made of non-abrasive foam. That way, the pool cover won’t get damaged or torn as you push off the snow from the cover.

Picking a Pool Cover Pump

Automatic pool cover pumps are the best, but they also cost more. If you’re not afraid to invest the money, then go with this pump every time. But if you’re looking to save money and don’t mind manually having to activate the pump, then go with the manual pool cover pump.

1) Wayne WAPC250

Wayne WAPC250

Removal Pool Cover Pump
Wayne WAPC250

Automatic Pool Pump

 Quickly turn the pump on and off by sensing the proximity of water Plug in and leave the pump unattended for care free water removal

Pros

  • Automatic freeze protection
  • Auto turn On and Off
  • Adapter included  

Cons

  •  low flow

Why we chose it

The automatic pool cover pump called the “Wayne WAPC250” is the best pump around. Once the water comes up to a certain level on the machine, the pump activates automatically. There is also a filter attached to prevent debris from knocking over or clogging the pool cover pump. This gives you the freedom to walk away without having to monitor it.

The Wayne WAPC250 has the ability to pump as much as 3,000 gallons of water per hour. It only has a 1.25” drain hose and a 25’ power cord too. If the temperature outside is freezing, the motor of the pump will be automatically protected by the freeze protection technology included. When you place the pump on the cover, you can position it properly with the 25’ rope that comes with it.

2) The Little Giant Pool Cover Pump

The Little Giant Pump

Pool Cover Submersible Pump, 1/3-HP, 115V
Little Giant

Automatic Pool Cover Pump

Integrated Float Switch renders reliable automatic control.

Pros

  • Detachable intake screen
  • Easy cleaning and maintenance.
  • 3/4 garden hose connection.
  • 25 power cord.

Cons

  • Takes time to get used to it

Why we chose it

This Little Giant automatic pool cover pump may not be as powerful as the Wayne WAPC250, but it can still pump out as much as 1,745 gallons per hour. Since the pump is automatic and submersible, it will activate automatically if the water level on the cover is 2 inches high around the perimeter of the pump. When the water level goes under 2 inches, the pump automatically shuts off.

You can attach a regular garden hose to the Little Giant pool cover pump. You can clean and maintain the pump easily because it features an intake screen that is removable. The machine only weighs about 13 pounds. This certainly won’t stress out the pool cover too much.

3) Ocean Blue Winter Pool Cover Pump

Ocean Blue Pump

Winter Pool Cover Pump
Ocean Blue

Electric Winter Pool Cover Pump

It’s easy to maintain and comes with only one moving part.

Pros

  • Removes 350 gallons per hour
  • Completely submersible & clog- resistant
  • Standard garden hose fitting

Cons

  • Not automatic

Why we chose it

This is an affordable automatic pool cover pump which doesn’t require much work to operate. It is completely submersible and pumps out water when it gets up to 1/8” high. Included in the kit are a garden hose adapter and a 25’ power cord. These are the same accessories you’ll find included with the Wayne and Little Giant pool cover pumps.

The Ocean Blue can pump around 250 gallons of water per hour because it has a small motor. It is automated though, so you don’t have to monitor it while it’s pumping.

4) Little Giant Manual Pool Cover Pump

Little Giant Pump

Pool Cover Pump, Pack of 1
Little Giant

Manual Pool Cover Pump

 No installation required! It features a 3/4-inch garden hose connection

Pros

  • Manual pool cover pump
  • Easy cleaning and maintenance
  • 25-foot power cord and 58 watts
  • 3/4-inch garden hose connection

Cons

  • Not automatic

Why we chose it

The Little Giant gives you some additional control when it comes to removing water. It is also a durable and affordable pump too. Once you connect the 0.75” garden hose, you just plug in the pump. It will then start removing the water when it is high enough. Your hose won’t be clogged with debris because of the intake screen that comes with the Little Giant.

It can pump 550 gallons of water per hour. If there is standing water, it may take some time to remove it. Try to maintain the pump and cover regularly to make the removal process go faster. You can submerge the motor completely if you want to.

5) Fibropool Pool Cover Pump Electric Manual

Fibropool Pool Pump

Pool Winter Cover Drain Pump (600 GPH)
Fibropool

Heavy-Duty Design

 Lightweight chassis will not weigh down pool covers

Pros

  • It is designed for both in ground and above ground pools.
  • Pumps 600 gallons per hour
  • 16-foot power cord plugs

Cons

  • Not be allowed to run dry

Why we chose it

The Fibropool cover pump weighs only 3.6 pounds and is very inexpensive. It can pump around 600 gallons of water per hour. Best of all, it comes with a 16’ drain hose of its own. You don’t need to use your own garden hose for the pump.

This 16’ power cord is not long, so you need to position the pump close to a power outlet. Having a narrow pool helps too.

6) Blue Wave Manual Pool Cover Pump (Dredger Jr.)

Blue Wave Pool Pump

Dredger Jr. 350 GPH Above Ground Pool Winter Cover Pump
Blue Wave

Fast! It is lightweight

It is lightweight and submersible and will pump up to 350 gallons 

Pros

  • Pumps up to 350 gallons per hour
  • Fully submersible
  • Manual on/off

Cons

  • Slow flow

Why we chose it

The Blue Wave Dredger Jr. pumps out 350 gallons per hour. The pump is lightweight and affordable for most people. You can submerge it completely underwater. However, since it is a manual pump, you need to manually turn it on and then turn it off.

Once the water is 1/8” deep, the pump is able to remove the water. An adapter for your garden hose and a 25’ power cord comes with the kit.

7) Splash Pools Manual Pool Cover Pump Universal

Splash Pools Pool Pump

500 GPH Universal Pool Cover Pump
Splash Pump

Full Submersible pump

Conventional electrical socket and comes with a hose adapter

Pros

  • Full Submersible pump
  • Transfers up to 500 gallons per hour
  • Uses conventional electrical outlet

Cons

  • Inferior Material

Why we chose it

The Splash Pools Universal Manual Pool Cover Pump can remove 500 gallons of water per hour. Not bad for a pump that weighs only 3 pounds. The kit includes an adapter for your typical garden hose. Plug the pump into an electrical outlet on the outside of your home.

8) Blue Wave Drain Pool Covers for Winter

Blue Wave Pool Pump

for Winter Pool Cover
Blue Wave

Quickly empties water off of your winter cover

 This simple device economically pumps water.

Pros

  • 13 feet of hose
  • Uses no electricity

Cons

  • Only for above ground swimming pools

Why we chose it

The Blue Wave Drain is perfect to use when you don’t have an outlet near your pool. That is because this pump doesn’t need electricity to remove water. It requires you to use your hands to generate power for it. This is a true “manual” pump.

The pump comes with a 13’ long hose. You’ll have everything you need to pump out the water successfully.

Drain Your Swimming Pool Cover Troubles Away

It doesn’t matter if you choose an automatic or manual pool cover pump. Any pump is better than no pump as far as maintenance is concerned. It gives you peace of mind knowing that the terrible winter months won’t destroy our cover or pool. But no matter which season it is, you won’t need to do as much cleaning when this pump is actively being used.

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