designer pool covers A poster showing how to build a swimming pool.

The Ultimate Guide to Pool Net Covers: Features and Installation tips

Pool net covers are essential for maintaining the cleanliness and safety of your pool. In this ultimate guide, we will explore the different types of pool cover materials, installation tips, maintenance practices, benefits of using pool covers, and how to size and secure your pool cover effectively.

Key Takeaways

  • Choosing the right pool cover material is crucial for the functionality and durability of your cover.
  • Proper installation of pool covers, whether above ground or below ground, is essential for safety and effectiveness.
  • Regular cleaning and professional maintenance are necessary to prolong the lifespan of your pool cover.
  • Using pool covers helps prevent water evaporation, provides insulation, and reduces algae growth in your pool.
  • Determining the correct size of your pool cover and securing it with hooks in bricks ensures maximum coverage and safety.

Choosing the Right Pool Cover Material


When it comes to selecting a pool cover, vinyl is a popular choice for many homeowners. Its durability and affordability make it an attractive option for those looking to balance cost with longevity. Vinyl covers are known for their UV resistance and can come in both solid and mesh varieties, catering to different needs and preferences.

Vinyl pool covers are relatively easy to maintain, requiring just a soft brush and mild detergent for cleaning. They are also adept at preventing water evaporation, a common issue in pool maintenance. This not only conserves water but can also lead to savings on your water bill.

Remember, the right pool cover can make a significant difference in reducing maintenance efforts and costs. Consider pool size, material, durability, safety features, and budget when selecting a pool cover. Choose wisely for long-term savings. Seek reliable suppliers in Cape Town.

While vinyl covers are sturdy, they are not indestructible. Regular checks for damages or tears, especially after heavy weather conditions, are essential to ensure the cover continues to perform its function effectively. With proper care, a high-quality vinyl pool cover can last up to 15-20 years, making it a sound investment for your pool.


When it comes to mesh pool covers, they strike a balance between protection and permeability. Mesh covers are designed to let water through while keeping debris out, ensuring your pool stays clean without the hassle of standing water accumulating on top. This feature also reduces the risk of drowning by preventing water from pooling on the cover’s surface.

Mesh covers are lightweight and easier to handle compared to solid covers, making them a practical choice for regular use.

Here are some benefits of mesh pool covers:

  • They allow rainwater to filter through, reducing the need for pumping off standing water.
  • Mesh covers typically require less maintenance since they don’t collect water or debris.
  • The high tensile strength mesh material ensures durability and longevity.

Remember, the right pool cover can make a significant difference in your pool’s safety and maintenance. Consider the Katchakid Pool Safety Net, which uses countersunk, durable high-density nylon or brass anchors to secure the cover firmly in place.


After exploring the benefits of vinyl and mesh, it’s time to consider polycarbonate pool covers. These covers are known for their durability and impact resistance, making them an excellent choice for areas with harsh weather conditions or for pool owners who want long-term reliability.

Polycarbonate covers also excel in minimizing water evaporation and retaining heat, thanks to their insulating properties. This can lead to significant savings on water and heating costs over time. Here’s a quick rundown of the advantages:

  • Durable and impact-resistant
  • Excellent insulation, reducing heat loss
  • Minimizes water evaporation
  • Can withstand harsh weather conditions

When it comes to installation, polycarbonate covers may require professional assistance to ensure a perfect fit and maximum efficiency. Their rigid structure often means a more complex setup, but the payoff in protection and energy savings is well worth the effort.


After considering the popular materials like vinyl, mesh, and polycarbonate, don’t forget there’s a world of other materials that might just be the perfect fit for your pool. Fiberglass, aluminum, geotextile, composite, and bubble material each bring their own unique benefits to the table. For instance, fiberglass is known for its durability and resistance to wear, making it a long-term investment.

When choosing the right winter pool cover, it’s not just about the material. Size, compatibility, and price are key factors that can make or break your decision.

Aluminum covers are lightweight and strong, while geotextile fabrics are praised for their filtration capabilities. Composite materials often offer a blend of strength and insulation, and bubble materials are great for solar heating. Here’s a quick rundown of these options:

  • Fiberglass: Durable, wear-resistant
  • Aluminum: Lightweight, strong
  • Geotextile: Excellent filtration
  • Composite: Strength plus insulation
  • Bubble Material: Solar heating efficiency

Remember, the final choice should align with your preferences, intended use, budget, and climate. It’s all about finding that perfect balance to protect and enhance your pool experience.

Other Materials

Beyond the common materials like vinyl, mesh, and polycarbonate, there’s a world of other materials that can be used for pool covers. Fiberglass, aluminum, geotextile, composite, and bubble material each bring unique benefits to the table. For instance, fiberglass is known for its durability and resistance to wear, while aluminum offers a lightweight yet sturdy solution. Geotextile covers are permeable and great for drainage, and composite materials can provide a combination of strength and insulation. Lastly, bubble material, often used in solar covers, helps to retain heat and reduce evaporation.

When selecting a pool cover, it’s crucial to consider the specific needs of your pool and environment. Here’s a quick checklist to guide you:

  • Assess the primary function you want from your cover (e.g., safety, heat retention, debris protection).
  • Consider the climate you live in; some materials perform better in certain weather conditions.
  • Factor in the longevity and warranty offered by the manufacturer.
  • Don’t forget about aesthetics; the cover should complement your pool and surrounding area.

Diverse pool covers, from solar to designer solid, offer protection, efficiency, and style. Quality covers ensure safety, efficiency, and longevity for pools.

Remember, the right material can make all the difference in maintaining a clean, safe, and energy-efficient pool.

Installation Tips for Pool Covers

Below Ground System

When opting for a below ground system for your pool cover, the installation process is integrated into the pool’s construction. A wet pit is created to house the mechanism, ensuring that the cover retracts seamlessly without disrupting the pool’s aesthetics. This method is particularly advantageous for those who prioritize a clean look with no obstructions around the pool area.

With a below ground system, the cover is out of sight when not in use, maintaining the beauty of your pool environment.

To ensure a smooth operation, consider these steps:

  • Measure the area accurately to accommodate the wet pit and mechanism.
  • Consult with professionals to determine the best location for the pit in relation to the pool.
  • Choose a lid system that matches the surrounding surface for a cohesive appearance.

Remember, customizable pool covers with safety features can be tailored to fit your specific needs, whether it’s for a new build or an existing pool. They offer not only an economical benefit by reducing water evaporation and heating costs but also keep your pool clean and ready for use at any time.

Above Ground System

When it comes to installing an above ground system for your pool cover, simplicity and efficiency are key. Ensure that the cover is properly secured to prevent accidents and to maintain the cover’s longevity. Here are some steps to guide you through the process:

  • Begin by clearing the pool area of any debris or sharp objects that could damage the cover.
  • Lay out the pool cover and ensure it is the correct size for your pool. It should extend beyond the pool’s edges by at least 2-3 feet.
  • Attach the cover to the pool using the appropriate fastening system, such as an anchor, track, rope and winch, or other systems like buckles, clips, and hooks.
  • For an anchor system, install anchors around the perimeter of the pool and secure the cover with straps or strings.
  • If using a track system, ensure the tracks are installed on either side of the pool and that the cover slides easily along them.
  • Tighten the cover using a winch or other tightening mechanisms to ensure a snug fit and to prevent sagging or wind lift.

Remember, while DIY installation is possible, professional installation is recommended to ensure safety and proper setup. Regular maintenance checks are also crucial to address any wear or tear promptly.

Maintaining Your Pool Cover

Regular Cleaning

Keeping your pool cover in top shape is not just about aesthetics; it’s about longevity and functionality. Regular cleaning is crucial to prevent the accumulation of debris, which can lead to mold, mildew, and even damage to the cover itself. Here’s a simple routine to help maintain your pool cover:

  • Remove Debris Regularly: Use a soft brush or leaf blower to clear leaves, twigs, and other debris.
  • Brush and Hose Off: Gently brush the cover and then hose it down to remove dirt and grime.
  • Tighten and Secure: Check the cover’s fastenings and tighten any loose parts to ensure it stays in place.
  • Use a Cover Cleaner: Apply a mild, non-abrasive cleaner designed for pool covers to tackle any stubborn stains or buildup.

Remember, a clean pool cover not only looks better but also performs better. It’s the first line of defense for your pool, so give it the attention it deserves.

In addition to the above steps, inspect your pool cover for any signs of wear or damage. Small tears or holes can turn into bigger problems if left unattended. Repair kits are available for minor issues, but for significant damage, consider consulting a professional. By taking these proactive measures, you can extend the lifespan of your pool cover and ensure it continues to protect your pool effectively.

Professional Maintenance

While regular cleaning of your pool cover is something you can do on your own, professional maintenance is key to ensuring the longevity and safety of your pool cover. Professionals can spot potential issues before they become costly repairs, such as small tears or malfunctioning safety locks. It’s recommended to schedule a professional inspection at least once a year.

  • Here are some professional maintenance tips:
    • Inspect for wear and tear
    • Check the cover’s mechanism
    • Ensure safety features are operational

Remember, a well-maintained pool cover is not just about aesthetics; it’s about safety and efficiency. Investing in professional maintenance can save you money in the long run by preventing major damages.

Lastly, always consider the quality of the pool cover when seeking professional maintenance. A high-quality cover may have a higher upfront cost, but it will likely require less frequent repairs and can withstand the elements better, making it more cost-effective over time.

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Benefits of Using Pool Covers

Preventing Water Evaporation

One of the unsung heroes in the battle against water loss in pools is the humble pool cover. Pool covers are incredibly effective at reducing water evaporation, a major culprit in water loss. By creating a barrier between the water’s surface and the environment, evaporation is significantly curtailed. This not only conserves water but also translates to savings on your water bill.

A solid pool cover, for instance, can minimize evaporation by up to 95%. It’s a simple yet powerful way to be more water-wise and cost-efficient.

Moreover, the type of material used for your pool cover plays a pivotal role. Materials like vinyl or polyethylene create a physical barrier that’s tough on evaporation. Remember, installation and maintenance are just as crucial to ensure your cover performs at its best, keeping evaporation at bay.

Here’s a quick checklist to keep your pool cover in top shape:

  • Regularly remove debris and clean the cover
  • Inspect for damages or wear and tear
  • Ensure proper fit and secure attachment

By following these steps, you’ll extend the life of your pool cover and maintain its efficiency in preventing water evaporation.

Providing Insulation

Beyond keeping your pool free from debris, a pool cover acts as a thermal blanket. It traps heat inside the water, significantly reducing the energy needed to maintain a comfortable swimming temperature. This is particularly beneficial during cooler months or for pools in areas with significant temperature drops at night.

Insulation is not just about warmth; it also means cost savings. By minimizing heat loss, you’ll see a noticeable decrease in your heating bills. Here’s a quick rundown of how a pool cover can impact your energy consumption:

  • Less heat loss overnight
  • Reduced need for constant heating
  • Lower energy bills

Remember, a well-insulated pool can extend your swimming season, giving you more time to enjoy your investment.

Choosing the right pool cover is crucial for efficiency. Ensure you select a size and material that suits your pool and local climate. Regular maintenance and cleaning are essential for the longevity of your pool cover, especially in places like Durban where the weather can be harsh.

Preventing Algae Growth

Algae can be a persistent issue in pools, but a well-chosen pool cover can be a game-changer. Pool covers block sunlight, which is essential for algae to thrive, thus keeping your pool cleaner and easier to maintain. It’s not just about blocking light; a cover also reduces debris, which can contribute to algae growth.

Consistent use of a pool cover, along with proper pool chemistry, can significantly reduce the likelihood of algae taking hold. Here’s a simple checklist to ensure your pool stays algae-free:

  • Use the pool cover regularly, especially when the pool is not in use.
  • Maintain proper water chemistry with regular testing and adjustments.
  • Keep the pool cover clean to prevent any organic matter from accumulating.

Remember, while a pool cover is a powerful ally in preventing algae, it’s not a substitute for regular pool maintenance. Stay vigilant with your pool care routine to enjoy a pristine swimming experience.

Mesh covers, highlighted in the snippet provided, are particularly effective as they keep debris out while allowing rainwater through. They are easy to install, remove, and crucially, they help prevent algae by reducing stagnant water. However, it’s important to note that no cover is a silver bullet; regular pool care is still essential.

Sizing and Securing Your Pool Cover

Determining Pool Cover Size

Getting the size right for your pool cover is crucial. Measure twice, cover once—this old adage holds true when it comes to pool covers. Start by measuring the length and width of your pool at its widest points. For those with freeform or irregularly shaped pools, pinpoint the longest length and the widest width. Don’t forget to factor in any additional features or obstacles around your pool that might affect the cover’s fit.

Remember to add an allowance for the overhang; typically, an extra 2-3 feet around the perimeter is recommended. This ensures that your cover will extend beyond the pool’s edge, providing optimal coverage and protection.

Here’s a quick checklist to help you capture all the necessary measurements:

  • Determine the type of pool cover you need.
  • Measure the pool’s length and width at the widest points.
  • Add the overhang measurement for the cover’s edge.
  • Account for rounded corners by measuring the radius.
  • Consider any obstacles that might interfere with the cover.

Once you have all your measurements, consult with the manufacturer’s sizing guide or a professional to ensure you’re choosing the right size. A properly sized cover is not just a matter of aesthetics; it’s about efficiency, safety, and longevity of your pool cover. And remember, while it might be tempting to double up on covers for extra protection, this is generally not advisable due to reduced effectiveness and potential safety hazards.

Securing with Hooks in Bricks

Once you’ve determined the perfect size for your pool cover, the next step is to ensure it stays firmly in place. Securing your pool cover with hooks in bricks is a reliable method that offers stability and ease of installation. Here’s a quick rundown on how to get it done:

  • Measure the perimeter of your pool and mark the spots for hook placement, ensuring they are evenly spaced.
  • Drill holes into the bricks at the marked locations using a masonry bit.
  • Insert anchors into the holes for added support.
  • Screw the hooks into the anchors, making sure they’re tight.
  • Attach the pool cover to the hooks using ropes or fasteners, pulling it taut to avoid any sagging.

Proper maintenance of the hooks and bricks is essential. Regularly check for any signs of wear or damage and clean them to prevent buildup that could affect their performance.

If you’re looking for alternatives to hooks in bricks, consider using water bags or sandbags to weigh down the edges of the cover. While these options may be easier to install and remove, they don’t offer the same level of durability as hooks in bricks.


In conclusion, pool net covers are essential for maintaining a safe, clean, and energy-efficient pool. They provide various benefits such as reducing water evaporation, lowering heating costs, saving on chemicals, and minimizing maintenance time. Additionally, pool net covers keep debris and leaves out of the pool, ensuring that it stays crystal clear and swim-ready all year round. With different materials and installation options available, pool owners can choose the right cover to suit their needs and preferences. Remember, proper supervision and safety practices are key to enjoying your pool to the fullest.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I choose the right size pool cover?

To choose the right size pool cover, measure your pool’s length and width and add an additional 2-3 feet for the cover’s edge. This will ensure a proper fit and maximum coverage.

What material should I choose for my pool cover?

The most common materials for pool covers are vinyl, mesh, and solid covers. Each material has its own advantages and purposes, such as durability, drainage, or winter protection.

Can I install the pool cover myself?

While it’s possible to install a pool cover yourself, it’s recommended to hire a professional for proper installation and safety measures.

How often should I maintain my pool cover?

Regular maintenance is essential to keep your pool cover in good condition. Clean it with a soft brush and mild detergent, and check for damages regularly, especially after heavy rain or storms.

Can pool covers prevent water evaporation?

Yes, pool covers significantly reduce water evaporation, saving water and lowering heating costs. They also reduce the need for chemicals and maintenance.

Do pool covers provide insulation?

Pool covers provide insulation by trapping heat and preventing it from escaping the pool. This helps reduce energy costs associated with pool heating.