Solar pool heating is a smart choice if you are looking for an economical and energy-efficient way of heating your swimming pool. Essentially, a solar pool heater uses thermal energy from the sun and converts it to heat. Compared with other pool heating options, solar pool heating systems are more eco-friendly and will allow you to make savings in the long run. One of its greatest benefits is that it allows you to enjoy your swimming pool anytime you want.
If you are seriously thinking of using solar pool heating for your home’s swimming pool, here are some things that you should consider about solar pool heating:
Since a solar pool heater mainly relies on sunlight, it is perfect for pool owners who live in sunny climates. The efficiency and design of your solar pool heater will depend a lot on how much solar energy reaches your home.
You can use your solar pool heater together with a solar heat pump to maximise efficiency. Since your solar pool heating system operates using the sun’s natural energy, the only cost you end up paying for at the end of the month is the cost of keeping your pump running. Everything else other than the pump runs on solar energy.
- Equipment Costs
Your equipment takes up a big chunk of your solar pool heating budget. You can either have solar panels or a solar heat pump or both if you want to maximise your solar pool heating options. Solar heat pumps use less electricity than traditional heat pumps making it more energy-efficient.
The price of equipment may vary depending on the brand you choose, how big your swimming pool is and other factors.
- Size of the Pool
The size of your pool will affect the cost of your solar pool heating system. The bigger your swimming pool is, chances are you will incur more costs. One of the costs that you need to keep in mind is how many solar panels you will need.
If you also want to have heat pumps, keep in mind that the larger the size of your pool, the more kilowatts you will need as well.
- Size of the Solar Collector Array
You will need a solar collector array for your solar pool heating system. A good rule of thumb is that your solar collector array should be at least 80%-100% of the size of your swimming pool. How much sunlight it receives should be considered as well.
Here are two types of solar collector arrays:
- Systems using solar strips
These systems make use of tubes contained in collectors made of rubber or plastic that get attached to the roof with adhesive. Strip solar heating is very affordable and ideal for locations with a warm climate. You can use a solar controller with it so that you can control your pool temperature better.
- Systems using panel collectors
These also refer to rigid solar panels. These types of systems make use of tubes contained in collectors which are made of polypropylene. Although these cost more than strip or tube systems, they are more effective and can last longer. Rigid solar heating can also warm up water more quickly which would be highly useful when the weather becomes cooler.
Before you buy your solar pool heating equipment, make sure to set a budget for installation and maintenance costs. You need to think about building code requirements, safety issues and the cost of your pool heating supplier who will do the actual installation of your solar panels.
Access to the roof and where your solar panels will be installed also affect the installation costs. If your supplier needs scaffolding and additional safety gear, these may incur additional costs too.
- Cost of Running a Solar Pool Heating System
After the initial cost of purchasing your pool heating equipment, the cost of running your solar pool heating system should be minimal since it mainly relies on solar energy.
Sunlight is a clean and free resource. You may be spending initially on the solar panels, but in the long run, you will soon see a return on your investment. Utilising a solar pool heating system is a cost-effective way of heating your pool.
- Choosing the Right Solar Pool Heater
The right solar pool heating system can help extend your swim season at a much lower cost than when you use traditional pool heating systems. There are many various things that you should consider when choosing the right solar pool heater that is suited to the kind of swimming pool you have, your environment and lifestyle.
Here are other factors that you should take note of:
- Where to mount your solar panels
Make sure that your solar panels are mounted at the right orientation and tilted for maximum sun exposure.
- Control system for your swimming pool
You can either go with manual or mechanical control systems which will enable the valve to prevent or allow pool water to flow through the solar collector.
- Energy efficiency
Check your solar pool heater’s thermal performance rating. As a general rule the higher the number, the more efficient the unit will be.
Make sure to choose a reliable pool heating company that can help provide the right solar pool heating solutions for your requirements. With an efficient solar pool heating system, you can extend your swim season even into the cooler months while consuming less energy and being more environmentally friendly.