10 Best Pool Covers in 2023 – Reviews & Top Picks
If you have a pool, you know how essential a pool cover is to the well-being of your swimming hole in the off months. Not only that, but it is good to have a cover if you have small children or other animals or people that you wish to keep out when the pool is not in use.
Of course, a cover for your pool is not the easiest purchase to make. There are so many different varieties, brands, etc., that it can be difficult to figure out which one is best. This is where we come in to help, however. In the article below, we have provided you with the ten best pool covers on the market today.
We will share with you all the important information such as durability, fit, security, and ease of use. We have also provided a buyer’s guide, to further help you find the right cover for your pool. Keep on reading for all of the info you need.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2023
|Best for Above-Ground Pools||Robelle 3524-4 Super Winter Pool Cover||
|Best for In-ground Pool||Sun2Solar Rectangle Solar Pool Cover||
|Premium Choice||Blue Wave BWC808 Above Ground Pool Winter Cover||
|Intex 29026E Solar Cover||
|Buffalo Blizzard Deluxe Plus Pool Cover||
The 10 Best Pool Covers
1. Robelle 3524-4 Super Winter Pool Cover – Best for Above-Ground Pools
Our first pick is the best pool cover for above-ground pools. The Robelle 3524-4 Super Winter Pool Cover comes in eight different sizes, so you will be able to find the right fit. You have the option of 17 different colors, as well, so you can pick the shade that works best for you.
The Robelle is made of high quality 8×8 scrim. The polyethylene weighs 2.36 ounces per yard, so it is very durable. You also have a four-foot overlap that makes it easier to secure the cover around your pool.
This cover comes with a cable and winch to tightly secure it over your pool. Not only that, but it is easy to tie die with the evenly spaced grommets. What’s more, the top side is treated to prevent UV fading and damage, plus the bottom is black to stop the growth of algae.
Finally, this cover is lightweight and easy to fold up during the summer when it is not in use. Overall, this is our favorite pool cover for an above ground pool.
2. Sun2Solar Rectangle Solar Pool Cover – Best for In-ground Pool
The Sun2Solar Rectangle Solar Pool Cover is our pick for the best pool cover if you have an inground pool. There are 30 different sizes to choose from along with your pick of either blue or clear. This pool cover is made of thousands of tiny bubbles that trap heat to help keep your pool water warm, plus it keeps 95 percent of the water from evaporating.
The Sun2Solar is designed to trap the warmth of the sun and keep your pool’s water at an enjoyable temperature. That being said, you will have to replace the cover every evening for it to be effective. On the other hand, you can easily cut this cover to fit your pool, plus doing so will not affect your warranty.
The lightweight material is easy to get on and off, and it will help protect your pool from debris. The cover itself floats on top of the water, plus you can choose from either a two or four-foot overlay depending on your pool size. The durable fabric is long-lasting, and our favorite option for an inground pool cover.
3. Blue Wave BWC808 Above Ground Pool Winter Cover – Premium Choice
The Blue Wave BWC808 Above Ground Pool Winter Cover is available in seven sizes between 12 and 30 feet. You will be able to use this option to protect your pool from rain, snow, ice, and wind during the long offseason. It is made of heavy-duty woven polyethylene scrim, plus it comes with a vinyl-coated cable and winch.
The top side of the cover is treated to protect it from UV damage while the black underside will keep algae growth at bay. On top of that, you also have a four-foot overlay making the installation process easy. Be advised, however, that this is a winter cover only.
The Blue Wave cover also features heat sealed trim which will allow you to have a clear pool come spring. You get 10×10 per square inch of scrim making this a long-lasting and durable option. One drawback to this model of note is the grommets. Unfortunately, they are not as sturdy as we would like, and they are prone to rust.
4. Intex 29026E Solar Cover
The Intex 29026E Solar Cover is an inground pool option that retains your water’s heat by trapping the warmth of the sun. This durable 160-micron material sits on top of the water and helps keep the water from evaporating into the air.
The Intex comes with a carry case and has the customary bubble design for this type of pool cover. You can also cut it to size if necessary, although, you should note that it will rip more easily if you do so. On the other hand, you will be able to easily take the covering on and off as it only weighs five pounds.
You should note that this cover only comes in one 17’8”x 8’4” size. Also, as this brand floats on top of the water, it has a tendency to move around, which means it is less effective at keeping debris out of the pool. Otherwise, this is a solid daily use pool cover.
5. Buffalo Blizzard Deluxe Plus Pool Cover
If you require a solid above ground pool cover, the Buffalo Blizzard Deluxe Plus Pool Cover may be right for you. You can choose from eight different sizes and six colors to find the right option. Also, each color is reversible. It is made with 8×8 per square inch durable material, as well.
You will have a four-inch overlap, plus three-foot spaced grommets to help you secure this cover. You should note, though, that this option is more difficult to install, and you will most likely need two to three people. Beyond that, this cover features double stitching and triple thick UV protected threads.
The Buffalo cover is mesh, so it will allow water to seep through into your pool. This will not be a good feature if you need to periodically close your pool in the summer. Furthermore, it comes with a vinyl-coated cable and winch. Unfortunately, the winch is of poor quality, and you are better off purchasing your own.
Other than that, this is a great option for keeping the worst of the debris from your pool. Our final thought is that this cover does not provide any algae protection. Otherwise, this is not a bad option for your above ground pool.
6. Happybuy Pool Safety Cover
The Happybuy Pool Safety Cover is a great option if you have kids or animals that you are worried about near the pool. This is a stretch cover that uses a series of springs that are attached to ground bolts. It creates a flat and secure surface across your pool that your dog can run across (although, we don’t recommend testing it out-accidents happen).
Made of soft yet durable PP material, the Happybuy comes with all of the supplies you need to install your cover. The springs are made of strong stainless steel while the ground bolts are made of copper. You also have a two-foot overlap to ensure you are getting the right fit, however, a four-foot would be more convenient.
Even though this is a good cover for safety reasons, it is more of a pain to install. You will need the correct size drill bit along with a drill hammer. What’s more, each spring will require you to drill a hole in your concrete patio. It will typically add up to be more than 20 holes.
Besides safety, this cover will keep debris out of your pool, although it does allow rainwater to seep through. Also, as we are sure you can imagine, this is a very heavy cover and will require a few people to install if you do not go the professional installation route. Finally, you should note that the Happybuy is eco-friendly and non-toxic.
7. Blue Wave BWS390B Rectangular In Ground Pool Safety Cover
The Blue Wave BWS390B Rectangular In Ground Pool Safety Cover is another option if you are looking to keep animals and kids safe when your pool is not open. Unfortunately, it is only available in five sizes with a two-foot overlap, so finding the right size can be difficult. Not to mention, the overlap is often shorter than specified.
You will have either a blue or green color to choose from, and the material is made of two-ply, multi-seam scrim that is durable and won’t tear. With that being said, the strap connections that attach to the springs are prone to tearing and fraying.
You will receive all of the necessary materials with this pool cover including stainless steel springs and brass ground bolts. Keep in mind, though, you will have to drill more than 20 holes into your patio, plus the brass bolts are permanent, so they will need to be covered when the pool is in use.
The Blue Wave features multi-seam stitching along with reinforced wear strips on the top and bottom to prevent abrasion and wear. The cover also comes with a carry case, although this option is very heavy and not something you will be carrying around, not to mention, it is difficult to get into the bag. Lastly, you should note that you will most likely need a professional to install this cover.
8. Intex 28021E Round Easy Set Pool Cover
If you have a small above-ground pool, then this 10-inch round cover is available. The Intex 28021E Round Easy Set Pool Cover comes only in this one size, yet it is durable and protects your pool from debris. It is only available in this one color, keep in mind.
The Intex is lightweight and provides you with a 13-inch overhang, although more overlap is usually recommended. Also, this cover fits snugly over the rim of your pool. Just keep in mind that it will take more than one person to install it as it can be difficult to pull it over the pool lip.
This covers also has drain holes that allow rainwater to run into the pool, but keep in mind, it also allows debris to enter, as well. What’s more, you will receive a rope tie to help secure the cover, although it is not the best quality. Finally, be aware that this cover works with the specified brand of pool, and will not necessarily fit other ten-foot round pools.
9. Pool Mate 351632RPM Winter Pool Cover
Our number nine pick is the Pool Mate 351632RPM Winter Pool Cover. This option comes in 13 sizes and is available in a blue color. Right off the bat, you should note that this cover requires water tubes to hold it down; which are sold separately. Though, it does come with the water tube straps.
Made of durable polyethylene material, this cover is designed to sit on top of the water. It will protect your pool from leaves, snow, and other debris. That being said, this cover does not allow water to seep through, so it can become quite heavy and sink into the pool if you do not have a siphoning system.
On the plus side, the Pool Mate has a five-foot overlay to make installing the cover easier. It also has heat sealed seams and UV protection. We want to note here, that the UV protection is meant to eliminate algae growth, but it is not as effective as it should be.
Our other concern with this cover is the water tube straps. Unfortunately, they are not secure, and you will have to continue to readjust them to keep the cover in place.
10. GLI Pool Products MSC1632 Rectangle Safety Pool Cover
Our final pick is the GLI Pool Products MSC1632 Rectangle Safety Pool Cover. This brand comes in one 16×32-foot size, and a forest green color. This pool covering is designed for safety. It attaches around the pool by straps attached to springs that anchor to brass bolts in the ground. This will keep your kids and pets from accidentally falling through the cover.
You want to note that this cover has a few requirements for it to fit your pool and be effective. For example, your pool cannot have rounded corners, any accessory fixtures such as slides or diving boards 18 inches from the ledge, or staircases in the pool. You also need to have three feet of unrestricted concrete patio space around the perimeter, as well.
The GLI pool cover will keep debris like leaves and snow from entering your pool. The two-ply polyethylene mesh material allows rainwater to sweep through, so be aware your pool will not be crystal clear come spring. Also, the cover is advertised to be mold, rot, mildew, and harsh chemical resistant. While this is true right away, the overall quality of the cover is poor, so it typically does not last an entire season.
You should also be aware that the straps that anchor the cover are thin and poorly constructed. The installation is difficult, plus, as is customary for this type of cover, you will need to drill up to 20 holes in your patio. Although the GLI comes with the necessary hardware and instructions, it is difficult to install and requires more than two people.
In the long run, you are better off finding a more secure and effective pool cover than this one. We would recommend any of our other options above.
Buyer’s Guide – Finding the Best Pool Cover
The Different Types of Pool Covers
If you have just had a pool installed on your property, or have just moved into a home with an existing pool, you are in for some summer fun. That being said, pools require their fair share of work. One of the most important aspects of pool maintenance is finding an appropriate cover for when your swimming hole is not in use.
Generally speaking, there are three popular types of pool covers you can choose from. Determining which one is best for you will depend on your pool, lifestyle, and a few other factors. Let’s take a look at the different styles so you can become more acquainted with each:
Safety Pool Cover
This type of pool cover is most popular with inground pools, although it can be used in above-ground if you have a deck that is level with the lip of the pool. Beyond the standard functions, this style is designed to keep children and pets safe.
The cover is suspended across the water (does not sit on top of the water) by a series of straps and springs that are anchored into the ground. Typically, they are advertised with a weight limit. For example, a 170-pound man should be able to stand on it without falling through.
Besides those few factors, this is a great option if you’re concerned about little ones or animals falling into the pool. It keeps debris and the elements away from the water, and most of these covers have UV protection. Finally, this covering is used for the off season, and it is not meant to be taken on and off.
A Note About Installation
Something to keep in mind with this option is the installation. You will most likely need at least two people to pull the cover tight, or you may need professional assistance. Also, you will need to drill several holes into your concrete patio. Depending on your pool size, it can be up to 30 holes. What’s more, the ground bolts are not always removable, so you will have to cover them while the pool is in use.
If you are aiming to keep the worst of the debris out of your pool and maintain warm water, a solar cover is the way to go. This style of covering is typically made with small bubbles that trap the warmth of the sun. It will also keep the water from cooling overnight, and help prevent up to 95 percent of evaporation.
That being said, there are a couple of things you should be aware of with this cover. First, because they are very lightweight, they are prone to shift which will allow debris to get in your pool. They are also not recommended for winter use especially if you live in a cold and snowy region. What’s more, they are not recommended for homes with small children or pets as falling into the pool while this cover is in use can cause drowning.
Beyond that, this is a lightweight cover that is designed to be put on and taken off daily. They are easy to store and will keep your pool clean and warm. What’s more, you can cut them to fit the exact size of your swimming pool.
Cable and Winch Covers
This last cover is popular with above ground pools. The cover itself drapes over the pool and sits on top of the water. The excess is then secured with a cable and winch. As is standard with covers, it is designed to keep debris and the elements from affecting your pool. It can also help keep animals and children at bay, although it is not nearly as safe as our first style.
With this covering, you should note that it will only be as good as the cable and winch (that is usually) provided with your purchase. The winch needs to be heavy-duty enough to pull the cable tight, while the cable should be strong and not prone to snapping.
Though these three are the most popular, there are other styles available. For example, the water tube cover is made for inground pools and is essentially a cable and winch model. Instead of using the cable, however, it uses tubes filled with water to weigh down the edges of the cover.
For above-ground pools, you can also choose a fitted style. This works almost like a shower cap. It is made to fit perfectly over your round above-ground pool. You will need more than one person to install these covers, plus we recommended you purchase yours from the manufacturer of your pool to ensure a proper fit.
Besides the style, there are several other factors you should consider, such as:
- Material: A durable cover is important, so it won’t rip and fray. On the other hand, you want to consider whether you want a mesh cover or solid option. A mesh pool covering allows rainwater to seep through into the pool. Also note, those that are not mesh typically need a siphoning system as the accumulation of water can become quite heavy.
- UV Protection: Having UV protection helps with more than just fading. When your pool is covered for the winter, the water is no longer breathing and becomes stagnant. This, along with the sun’s heat, can cause algae and mold to grow. UV protection guards against this. Black bottoms are also useful for this.
- Overlap: Most pool covers have additional material on each end. The overlap will not only help you get the right fit, but it also helps you secure it. We recommend at least a two-foot overlap on all sides, but more is preferable.
- Straps and Seams: Straps, especially in the case of the safety cover, need to be strong and durable to keep the cover secure. Seam strength is also important. There is a great amount of strain on your cover, so you need to make sure your seams will not rip.
- Installation: Finally, we want to talk about installation. Pools are great fun, but they can often cost a good amount. If you do not want to hire a pool tech, make sure you are choosing an option that you will be able to install yourself.
In our opinion, the Robelle 3524-4 Super Winter Pool Cover is the best above ground pool cover available. It will keep your pool free of debris and safe from unwanted guests. If you need an inground pool cover, the Sun2Solar Rectangle Solar Pool Cover is a great way to keep the water nice and warm while also keeping it debris-free and clear.
We hope you have enjoyed the above reviews. Finding the best cover for your pool can be difficult with all the different styles and options, so we hope this information has pointed you in the right direction.