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What Can I Use Instead Of A Pool Pillow?

Are you fed up with the never-ending cycle of replacing your pool pillow every year?

Or perhaps you’re searching for a more sustainable option to secure your pool cover? Well, look no further.

In this blog post, we’ll be delving into some alternative options for pool pillows. Say farewell to the frustration and expense of traditional pool pillows and say hello to innovative solutions that will not only save you money but also benefit the planet.

So sit back, relax, and let’s take a plunge into some game-changing alternatives for your pool cover.

Using Yoga Balls as an Alternative to a Pool Pillow

Using a yoga ball as a substitute for a traditional pool pillow is a cost-effective and convenient solution for winter pool maintenance.

These large inflatable balls, also known as exercise or stability balls, are readily available at most fitness or sporting goods stores.

While they are commonly used for workouts, their versatility extends to other purposes, such as serving as an alternative to a pool pillow.

Steps for Using Yoga Balls as an Alternative to a Pool Pillow:
Begin by inflating the yoga ball to your desired size. If you have a larger pool, you may need a bigger ball.
Place the fully inflated ball in the center of the pool and secure it with a pool cover. The ball will act as a barrier between the cover and the water.
Make sure the ball is properly centered and evenly distributed before completely securing the cover.
Regularly check the ball’s inflation level throughout the winter season and re-inflate if necessary.
When spring arrives and it’s time to open the pool, carefully remove the cover to avoid damaging the ball. Then, deflate and store the ball for future use.

Using a yoga ball as an alternative to a pool pillow offers similar benefits to using a traditional pillow.

It helps prevent ice and snow buildup in the middle of the pool, reducing pressure on specific areas of the cover and evenly distributing weight. This also makes it easier to open the pool in the spring.

However, it is important to keep in mind that using a yoga ball may not be as effective as using a specially designed pool pillow. The ball may shift or deflate over time, causing uneven weight distribution on the cover and potentially causing damage.

Additionally, it is crucial to properly winterize your pool before the cold weather sets in to avoid any potential damage.

Beach Balls: A Viable Option for Winterization

While beach balls may seem like a fun and budget-friendly alternative to pool pillows, they may not be as effective in winterization.

Unlike pool pillows, beach balls are not specifically designed for this purpose and may not provide the necessary support and protection for your pool during the colder months.

Additionally, beach balls are not as durable as pool pillows and may easily pop or deflate, leaving your pool vulnerable to potential damage.

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Pool Pillows Beach Balls Yoga Balls
Specifically tailored for winterization Not intended for winterization Not intended for winterization
Durable vinyl material Inflatable plastic material Inflatable plastic material
Creates space between cover and water May not provide sufficient space for protection May not provide sufficient space for protection
Distributes weight and pressure evenly May not offer ample support and protection May not offer ample support and protection
Prevents ice and snow buildup on cover May not effectively prevent ice and snow buildup May not effectively prevent ice and snow buildup
Easier access to pool in summer months N/A (not applicable) N/A (not applicable)
Buoyancy for above-ground pools N/A (not applicable) N/A (not applicable)
Essential for maintaining clean and well-maintained cover N/A (not applicable) N/A (not applicable)
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The Pros and Cons of Using Pool Floaters Instead of a Pool Pillow


  • Effortless Setup: One of the main benefits of choosing pool floaters over pool pillows is the ease of installation. Unlike pool pillows that require careful placement and inflation, pool floaters can simply be placed on top of the water’s surface and left to do their job. This makes them a convenient option for busy pool owners who may not have the time or resources to set up and maintain a pool pillow.
  • Cost-Efficient: Pool floaters are typically more budget-friendly than traditional pool pillows. This is because they are made from less expensive materials, such as lightweight vinyl, compared to the heavy-duty vinyl used for pool pillows. For cost-conscious pool owners, this can be an appealing alternative.
  • Versatility: In addition to protecting your pool during the winter months, pool floaters can also serve multiple purposes. They can be used as a platform for relaxing or playing in the pool, making them a versatile addition to any backyard pool.


  • Less Effective: While pool floaters may offer some protection against harsh winter weather, they are not as effective as traditional pool pillows. This is due to their lack of insulation and support for the pool cover, which can result in damage to the cover or even the pool itself.
  • Maintenance Required: Like pool pillows, pool floaters also require regular maintenance to ensure their effectiveness. They can become dirty or damaged over time, which may affect their ability to protect the pool.
  • Limited Sizes: Pool floaters are not available in as many sizes as traditional pool pillows. This can be problematic for owners of irregularly shaped or larger pools, as finding a perfect fit for a pool floater may be challenging.

Potential Damage to Inflatable Items, Covers, and Liners

When it comes to protecting your pool from ice and snow, using alternative items instead of a pool pillow may seem like a cost-effective solution. However, this decision can potentially lead to damage to inflatable items, covers, and liners.

These alternative items lack the durability and resistance to pool chemicals and weather conditions that are necessary for proper protection.

As a result, they may be prone to punctures, tears, or deflation, rendering them unusable.

Let’s take a closer look at some common alternative items and the potential damage they can cause:

  • Sandbags or old towels: While these may seem like a smart way to weigh down your pool cover, they can actually lead to punctures, tears, or deflation due to their lack of durability.
  • Inflatable pool toys (rafts, animals): These may provide some fun in the pool during warmer months, but they are not designed for exposure to ice and snow. This can result in deflation or punctures.
  • Bubble wrap: While it may seem like a cost-effective solution to protect your pool from freezing temperatures, bubble wrap does not provide adequate insulation. This can leave your pool vulnerable to damage from ice expansion.
  • Water tubes and Styrofoam panels: These items may seem like a good fit for your pool cover, but they are easily damaged by ice expansion. As a result, they may not effectively protect your pool.
  • Interlocking foam mats, rubber/vinyl mats, air mattresses: Although these items may be used for other purposes, they are not suitable for use as a pool pillow. They may sink or tear under the weight of ice and can potentially cause damage to inflatable items.
  • Pool rings, beach balls: These items offer only limited protection from ice expansion and are not as effective as other alternatives in preventing damage.
  • All alternative items: Regardless of the item you choose, proper storage and maintenance is crucial for effective protection. If not properly stored or maintained, these alternative items may be ineffective and lead to potential damage.
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The Benefits of Using a Pool Pillow for Winterization

There are numerous benefits to utilizing a pool pillow for winterization in contrast to other options. These advantages encompass cost-effectiveness, simplicity, practicality, extending the lifespan of your pool, and being eco-friendly.

Purchasing a pool pillow is a budget-friendly solution that can save you money in the long run. It requires little effort to use, making it a convenient and hassle-free option.

Beyond its affordability and ease of use, a pool pillow offers practical benefits such as protecting your pool from harsh winter weather conditions. It prevents your pool cover from sagging and accumulating excess water, which can damage your pool and lead to costly repairs.

Moreover, using a pool pillow can significantly prolong the life of your pool.

By preventing the accumulation of water on your pool cover, it reduces the risk of mold growth and damage caused by freezing temperatures. This can save you thousands of dollars in potential repairs and maintenance costs.

In addition to being practical and cost-effective, utilizing a pool pillow for winterization is also environmentally friendly.

By reducing the need for harsh chemicals and excessive energy usage during the winter months, it helps to preserve our planet’s resources and reduce our carbon footprint.

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Suitable for Pools of All Shapes and Sizes

When it comes to protecting your above-ground pool from winter weather, traditional pool pillows are not your only option. In fact, there are a variety of alternative options that are both cost-effective and environmentally friendly.

Yoga balls, beach balls, and pool floaters can all be used to distribute weight and keep the cover buoyant, promoting even weight distribution and preventing damage to the pool.

These alternatives are suitable for pools of all shapes and sizes, making them a versatile solution for winterization.

Pool Shape Alternative Options Benefits
Rectangular Yoga Balls – Affordable alternative

  • Promotes even weight distribution
  • Round Beach Balls – Environmentally friendly option

  • Keeps cover buoyant
  • Oval Pool Floaters – Protects pool from damage

  • Reduces need for chemicals and energy usage
  • But it’s not just above-ground pools that can benefit from these alternative options. In-ground pools can also reap the rewards of using something other than traditional pool pillows.

    By preventing damage to the pool’s lining and walls, these options not only protect the pool from ice but also promote even weight distribution.

    Without a pool pillow, the cover rests directly on the water’s surface, which can lead to costly repairs in the long run.

    Pool Type Alternative Options Benefits
    Above-Ground Yoga Balls, Beach Balls, Pool Floaters – Cost-effective alternative

    • Environmentally friendly solution
    • Disperses weight and keeps cover buoyant
    • Protects pool from winter weather
    • Promotes even weight distribution
    In-Ground Yoga Balls, Beach Balls, Pool Floaters – Prevents damage to pool

    • Reduces need for chemicals and energy usage
    • Protects pool from ice
    • Promotes even weight distribution

    No matter what type of pool you have, alternative options to traditional pool pillows offer a wide range of benefits. From protecting your pool during the harsh winter months to providing a more environmentally friendly approach, these options are a smart choice for any pool owner.

    How a Pool Pillow Protects Your Pool from Ice and Weight Distribution

    A pool pillow is an essential tool for safeguarding your pool from potential harm due to ice and uneven weight distribution during the winter season.

    Here’s how it works:

    Creates a Void on the Water’s Surface

    The pool pillow is strategically placed at the center of the pool, creating a void on the water’s surface.

    This void allows for ice expansion without exerting pressure on the pool walls or cover.

    Manages Effects of Winter Weather

    Winter weather such as rain, snow, and ice can accumulate on top of a pool cover, adding extra weight and potential damage to the pool walls.

    The pool pillow helps manage this weight by serving as a central point for ice to expand towards, preventing excessive pressure on the pool walls.

    Prevents Debris Accumulation

    Aside from managing weight distribution, the pool pillow also prevents debris from piling up in the center of the pool.

    This makes clean-up easier when it’s time to open the pool for summer.

    Made of Durable Material

    The best pool pillows are crafted from heavy-duty vinyl material, making them resistant to punctures and able to withstand harsh winter conditions.

    Be sure to look for a warranty against product failure for added peace of mind.

    Proper Positioning is Crucial

    For maximum effectiveness, proper positioning of the pool pillow is crucial.

    It should be placed centrally in the pool to evenly distribute weight from snow and ice, as well as prevent debris accumulation.

    Above-Ground Pools: Why Air Pillows are Essential for Winterization

    Air pillows, also known as pool cushions, are vital for winterizing above-ground pools. They serve as a protective layer to prevent damage from ice expansion and evenly distribute the weight of snow and debris on top of the pool cover.

    This prevents the cover from sagging and causing potential damage. Additionally, air pillows create a void under the pool cover, allowing for proper drainage and preventing water from accumulating and freezing on top of the cover.

    Air Pillows Alternatives
    Lightweight and effortless to use Using old towels or blankets
    Durable material that can withstand harsh winter conditions Using foam blocks or noodles
    Helps to distribute weight evenly on top of the pool cover Not using any additional accessories
    Creates a void for proper drainage and prevents water accumulation on the cover Using a tarp or plastic sheeting
    Prevents damage from ice expansion on pool walls and cover

    While there are alternatives to using air pillows, they may not provide the same level of protection for your above-ground pool during the winter.

    Old towels or blankets can quickly become saturated with water, becoming heavy and potentially causing more harm than good.

    Foam blocks or noodles may not be durable enough to withstand harsh winter conditions and can easily become damaged. Not using any additional accessories can lead to a sagging cover, which can cause damage to the pool walls.

    Using a tarp or plastic sheeting may not create a void for proper drainage, resulting in water accumulation and potential damage.


    In conclusion, tired of constantly replacing your pool pillow or searching for a more sustainable option for winterizing your pool? In this articles, we delved into alternative options such as using yoga balls or pool floaters instead of traditional pillows.

    While these may seem like cost-effective solutions, they can potentially cause damage to your pool and are not as effective as a specially designed pool pillow made of durable vinyl material.

    Not to mention, the benefits of using a pool pillow – affordability, ease of use, and practicality in protecting your pool from harsh weather conditions. Not only does it extend the lifespan of your pool, but it also contributes to being eco-friendly.

    So, bid farewell to frustration and expense and welcome innovative solutions that benefit both your wallet and the planet.