So now that Fall is officially here, one of the things on your to-do list is probably to get your pool ready for winter. Living in Texas, we are fortunate that we don't have to "winterize" our pools in the same sense that our northern brothers and sisters do, but don't let the mild winters fool you. Wintertime can and will wreak havoc on your pool toys and accessories, and likely the last thing you want to do is to replace these rubber and plastic items every swim season. How can you protect your toys when you're not using them?
Well, the best answer is to store them in a container that is both lockable and rust-proof. A durable rubber or plastic storage container is going to be your best bet. A container like this serves two purposes: it protects your toys from the weather, and it also keeps out any critters, like squirrels and mice, who might like to make your noodles and volleyball net into their new cozy winter home. You can get one for pretty cheap or spend a little extra for some more stylish options. Rubbermaid makes a great "deck box" (as they are called, though you can store these boxes anywhere you have room), and you can find it online or locally at Sam's Club. The Container Store also sells a few nice ones, starting at $99. Right now is a great time to buy something like this, as we are now out of "pool season", and stores are looking to liquidate their summer inventory to make room for Christmas! Just like it's a lot cheaper to buy a ski jacket in June, buying pool accessories in October or November will provide you with some seasonal savings.
Here are a few links to some storage boxes that we found online. Check 'em out.
Still not convinced? Well let me put it to you this way- one deck box costs between $99 and $250, depending on your style. Replacing all the toys, however, can cost the average family anywhere from $100 to $300, easily. I just added up the cost of outfitting a family of four with goggles, noodles, floaties for the kiddos, two floating loungers, fins for the kids, and a replacement volleyball net, and the total cost is already at $240! Do you want to spend upwards of $240 every year, or would you rather invest in a deck box once and protect what you've already spent your hard-earned money on? For me, my money is best spent protecting my existing investment, and not throwing it away every year on new stuff to replace perfectly good accessories and toys from last season.