If you have an inground pool, it certainly wouldn't be a bad idea to consider buying a winter cover for it. With winter pool covers, inground pools stay healthier, cleaner and safer (more or less). As with anything else though, there are drawbacks too. Let's take a closer look at what these things do.
With winter pool covers, inground pools are protected from debris getting in, and from loss of water to evaporation and from loss of winter pool chemicals. What they don't do is to actually protect a child or pet that chooses to walk on the cover. Regular winter pool covers aren't made to be strong enough to take that kind of weight. They also don't have what it takes to help your pool retain heat the way solar pool covers do. They do exactly what they say protect your inground pool from dirt and losses to evaporation.
They make winter pool covers out of either vinyl or plastic mesh. Both these types of material happen to be UV resistant. If they weren't UV resistant, you'd have them cracking and breaking up pretty soon in the cold and in the sun. Buy the better quality ones, and you'll find that they make them out of them multilayer vinyl. This material happens to be stronger and usually, it resists algae growth is well.
Once protected by winter pool covers, inground pools remain covered for the whole season. The covers stay in place without flying off at the first sign of a strong breeze by being weighted down. You need to weugh the entire thing down all around the edges and in the center. The actually sell stuff like Aqua Bloks to help weight pool covers down with. When it rains or snows and your pool cover accumulates a lot of weight this way, Aqua Bloks also help keep your pool cover from sinking down under the weight of it all and going into your pool.
Now the whole prospect of how it can rain or snow and the weight of it can just sink your pool cover, must be a bit worrisome. That's what they sell mesh covers for. If you're wondering what use mesh covers would be in keeping your pool clean, worry not. The mesh isn't really anything like chicken mesh. It's a porous plastic surface that most dust and debris can never get through. When it rains though, the water can percolate through the mesh into your pool.
There will only be a minimal level of dust and dirt that gets in. This actually isn't a bad idea. A mesh pool cover really isn't bad idea. If you get a solid cover, while it might be a great way of keeping your pool completely sealed and clean, water from a rainstorm or something will easily accumulate on the cover and you'll need to use a special pump to get rid of it.