Pool covers serve a lot of different purposes, but in general, they’re not intended to be walked on.
Oh, there are safety pool covers that can easily support the weight of children, and one that famously advertises its ability to hold up under the weight of an elephant. But being strong enough to support someone walking on it and being designed for that purpose are two different things.
Fortunately, there are honest-to-goodness inground pool covers you can walk on for regular, everyday use. They’re called platform pool covers.
Types of Inground Pool Covers
There are a lot of different types of pool covers, and the lines between them are sometimes blurred. Here are some of the terms you may have heard:
Pool Cover. This is just a general term that encompasses all of the pool cover types below. However, in its most basic form, a pool cover simply keeps out debris and doesn’t serve any other purpose – not effectively, anyway. These pool covers may be automatic, allowing you to cover and uncover your pool with the flip of a switch.
Safety Pool Cover. This term is reserved for pool covers that can support the weight of a pet or small child. Safety pool covers are required by law in some areas.
Winter Pool Cover. A long-term pool cover to protect a pool during the offseason. These covers are designed to fit securely for months, so they may not be easy to put on or take off.
Solar Pool Cover. A solar pool cover is intended to conserve energy. It traps heat from the sun while insulating your pool from the cooling effect of air, which can significantly lower heating costs.
Platform Pool Cover. This is the type of inground pool cover you can walk on. They’re strong enough to effectively serve as a floor, covering the pool when it’s not use.
There’s some overlap in these terms. For example, most winter pool covers also qualify as safety pool covers because they’re strong enough to hold firm when someone walks on them. And of course, a platform pool cover could serve as both a safety pool cover and a winter pool cover. It all depends on how it’s used.
Pool Covers You Can Walk On – For Real
Platform pool covers are typically made of clear or frosted acrylic, allowing you to see the water below your feet as you walk across. They’re often rented out for special occasions such as weddings and parties.
Using a platform pool cover, you can create a stylish dance floor, or just expand the space on your patio. A platform pool cover provides a topic of conversation for guests, and can make any gathering more memorable.
You can also buy a platform pool cover to use as semi-permanent flooring during the offseason. Due to the cost, not many homeowners choose to do this – despite the fact that it might be nice to have the extra walking space in the backyard. However, some hotels and casinos purchase pool covers you can walk on to conserve space while still taking advantage of a the pool’s striking appearance.