I have a porous safety cover and I've opened clear both seasons now when I closed properly. Late when the water is cold, bump the FC to shock level and cover. Open early before the water gets near 60 degrees. Used algaecide the first year, none this year and pool is clear, just a little dust and a couple stray leaves on the bottom. Haven't opened yet but nothing should change in the next few weeks before the water gets warm. From my experience, closing late, opening early is the most significant factor in having a clear pool in the spring. I'm sure the plastic does prevent sunlight from hitting your pool and keeps your FC from disappearing as quickly. How much difference it makes depends on the opacity of each cover. Many safety covers are at least 90% opaque, 95% more common and even some mesh covers are labeled as 100%.
I was also wondering about that- 2nd year with pool. When I opened the pool last year - hired someone- and they said the pool look liked it was closed in the seventies. empty bleach bottles scattered on the surface, large black tarp being held down with water tubes. They said for safety i should get a mesh cover. We were thinking about it, we have a dog and child would make sense. The water was clean- nothing was in there. So mid summer when I saw a sale I purchased a micro mesh cover... I had the cover installed and closed by the same company that opened it.. This year it is a green colour and some pine needles.. I am going to hold my judgement on the mesh cover, as we had foundation work after the pool closed and perhaps some debris got in at that time....I will look into the Algecide for the closing this season...
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