If you do not take good care of and carefully store and winterize your portable basketball hoop during a cold season, be ready to drill a hole in your pocket.
You would lose your hard-earned money and go for extra repairs. Sometimes the damage gets out of hand, leaving you with the choice of purchasing a new one.
Winterizing a basketball hoop is a solution to such problems.
So, how to store/winterize a hoop? Lucky for you, I have the right solutions!
Tips For Storing A Portable Basketball Hoop in Winter
There are some ways through which you can store and winterize your portable basketball hoop during such a snowy and wintery season. Saving your valuable basketball hoop is necessary!
So, follow these tips and tricks to keep it safe and secure for the new season.
Shield the Base From the Cold
There are a few things that you can do to prevent the hoop base from freezing if you plan to leave your hoop outside. I will be sharing more information in this post!
Protect Your Portable Hoop From Wind
You don’t intend to risk it falling on a person. You can take two additional support poles and secure your hoop against the wind or follow these tips to prevent a hoop from falling over.
Cover Your hoop and Protect It From Rust
Putting the hoop in a protected location such as a barn, carport or storage space area is highly recommended during those cold winter months.
If this isn’t possible, you can cover the entire hoop with a tarp safeguarded with bungee cords.
The easiest thing you can do is utilize the biggest plastic cover you can find. Strap it all around and it will be stored until the end of the winter.
If you leave it outdoors, lower the hoop as long as possible. This prevents it from being harmed because of gusty conditions.
How to Shield Basketball Hoop Base From Freezing
Drain The Water from The Base
If you are an environmentalist and care for your surroundings, then this is a great solution to winterize a basketball hoop.
One of the cheapest and most convenient options is to drain the water from the base of the hoop.
From the side of the base, drain all the water from it. Some water will remain in the base.
Don’t leave the base as it is! Tilt your hoop a bit, ensuring the last drop of water also leaves the base.
Do not forget to remove the plastic and pole plugs in holes on the top. If you leave them, there are chances of them getting damaged during the winter season.
However, if your hoop is too heavy then tilting it is not an option.
Instead of disassembling it, use a siphon pump to siphon it. A siphon pump will help in extracting even the last drop of the water from your basketball hoop base.
Not ready to invest in a pump?
Put one end of the hose in the base, while another end on the ground.
Gravity is a thrilling concept, so it will do the work. Just suck some water yourself in the start, and let the gravity do the whole work.
Add Antifreeze to The Water in the Base
Instead of draining all the water from the base, you can use antifreeze as well. Antifreeze is not a hassle like draining water manually from the base.
However, there are certain things you need to remember with it. We will cover that a bit later.
The majority of the hoop bases are made from high density and premium quality polyethene plastic.
In winters, such bases don’t expand too much, resulting in no damage to the base.
In such cases, many people opt for antifreeze. But before you do it, let us understand the ratio and its proper usage.
Type of Antifreeze You Must Choose
Non-toxic antifreeze is suitable for basketball hoop bases.
What antifreeze does do to your water? It increases the boiling point of the water by 10 degrees Fahrenheit.
You need to be careful when using antifreeze. It is hazardous to plants and animals. If not used with care, antifreeze possesses a threat to animals and plants, resulting in their death.
Make sure not to spill antifreeze when adding the water to your hoop base. If it does spill, clean the surface immediately.
Even a minimal amount of antifreeze can damage your central nervous system, becoming a reason for demise.
Did you know that more than 9,000 pets die due to accidental ingestion of antifreeze in the United States?
The effects of antifreeze on the plants are also brutal, killing them within a few seconds.
Therefore, it is better to use a non-toxic antifreeze brand to minimize the perilous threats to animals and plants. It is expensive but not more than the value of life!
Accurate Ratio of Antifreeze in The Water
There is a myth that the ratio of antifreeze and water should be 50:50 but it isn’t true. Here are two options you can easily choose.
Go for 2 to 3 Calcium Chloride 8 pounds bags. In a big can of water, dissolve 77% of Calcium Chloride. Always remember that the mixture will be too hot.
Therefore, let it cool to medium temperature and then move it into the hoop base.
Another option is to use 2 to 4 bottles of non-toxic biodegradable pool antifreeze concentrate. It is safe for your kids, pets, and plants.
It is a pretty simple option as the procedure is easy to follow.
These options are not too expensive and will not drill a hole in your pocket. Whereas they are safer and a better option for your environment and surroundings.
Use Basegel or Sand in The Base
Many people choose to use sand in replacement of water in their hoop. Trust me, it is a good option.
A sand-filled base can be a pain if you regularly move your hoop. However, if you move it occasionally, the sand filled base is the perfect and reliable solution.
Do you know a 40-gallon base of a basketball hoop filled with water weighs about 320 pounds? The same base with sand will weigh around 500 pounds.
So, the sand brings more stability, durability, and reliability to your basketball system. There are also no worries about evaporation, freezing, and leakage.
On the other hand, sand also doesn’t cost much as well.
Basel is another great option with the same effect as that sand. It leaves a similar impression as that of 390 pounds of sand.
Here is a quick tip! Fill the base of your hoop with water halfway. For the other half, add Basel. It will make it firmer and sturdier than before.
It will also eliminate the tension of how to store and winterize a portable basketball hoop during winters.
This mixture can last for years! It ensures the same stability as that of the sand-filled base. If you add salt to the water, the Basegel can get back to its normal state again.
What Should I Do If the Water Is Already Frozen?
The winter is already here and now you are looking for ways to winterize a basketball hoop. It is too late technically as the water has already expanded the base.
But is there any solution to save it from complete disaster?
There is still hope to save it!
First of all, check the base of your basketball system. If it is already broken and de-shaped, the chances of saving are eliminated already.
However, if that’s not the case, quickly check the cap of the base.
Does it come off the base or not?
If the cap is stuck and not coming out, pour some road salt in it. The salt will defrost the cap by lowering the freezing point.
With a quick sharp twist, you must be now able to pull off the cap from the base.
If you live in a snowy area or happen to have seen one, you might have witnessed rock salt being spread on the road that is covered with ice. It melts the snow quickly.
Once you open the cap of the base, try adding rock salt bit by bit in it. Slowly and gradually the frozen water will start melting.
Once the water liquefies again, drain the water as mentioned earlier.
How to store and winterize a portable basketball hoop is now no more a myth. The steps covered in the start can help you in protecting your system’s base.
However, filling the basketball hoop base with sand or Basegel in the first place can save from such a crisis.
There are plenty of other complicated solutions available for winterizing a basketball hoop in winters. But their credibility is a question mark.
Moreover, they are way more expensive than you can think.
Leaving the base in the cold is never a good idea. Even if it is filled with sand or Basegel, the net can get covered in snow, resulting in damage to the material.
Always keep your hoop safe and secure in the winter season.