Solar Pool Heaters for Quality Water Heating

Many Australians have a swimming pool in the backyard and most see plenty of use during the warmer months. However, the number one reason that the backyard pool becomes deserted is cooler weather, which reduces the water temperature. This can occur at any time of the year, especially if your pool is in a shaded spot or you live in the southern parts of the country. There is a solution to this problem – a water heater. These are a great way of bringing the water up to a comfortable temperature for swimming and extending your swimming season throughout the whole year. Although there are many types of water heating options, one of the cheapest and most efficient is a solar pool heater.

Solar Pool Heating

A pool area with solar collectors installed on the roof.The basic idea for solar pool heating is to heat the water in specially designed panels on the roof of your house and then transfer this heated water into your pool. The water from the pool is pumped through a solar collector, which are usually installed on the roof of your house or shed, and it is heated by the sun as it flows through the collector. This water is then returned to the pool. This can be installed as a fully automatic system, with a digital controller, and you can even have it set to achieve a desired temperature. On average you can expect a 5 -7 degree increase in the water temperature during the warmer months and 2-4 degrees in the cooler months. The running costs of this system are virtually nothing, because the existing pool pump is used to pump water to and from the solar collector. If you don’t have a roof space to install this system they can be installed on a specially designed frame. The cost of this type of system depends on how large your pool is and whether you need an automatic or manual system. The cost of installation also needs to be considered, but DIY kits are available. The following are some of the advantages of solar pool heaters compared with traditional gas or electric water heaters.

  • More economical
  • They work on cloudy days as well (without the same efficiency)
  • Very quiet, even under full operation
  • Simple to install and can be installed almost anywhere
  • No power is required
  • Extend swimming season
  • A quality system will last 20-30 years
  • Can be used together with other water heaters
  • Automatic or manual control
Solar collectors installed on a roof.

This solar pool heating system in installed on the roof of a house.

Frame mounted solar collectors.

This pool heating system is mounted on a custom frame.

Thermal Swimming Pool Covers

Thermal pool cover.These covers are designed to retain the heat in your pool. They are essential for owners who already have pool heating installed because they help retain the heat from the heater so that water heating is required less often. Thermal pool covers are available in the traditional bubble cover and the newly developed thermal cover designs. Bubble covers are great for retaining heat, but they don’t last as long or look as good as a modern thermal blanket. Thermal blankets cost about $25-35 per square metre, which means a standard pool cover costs about $1000. You also need to factor in the costs of installation and a roller for your cover. Some states offer rebates for installing a thermal cover and they are actually mandatory in some locations. You can expect a thermal swimming pool cover to last approximately 10 years and a bubble cover to last 6 years. The following are some of the main advantages of using a thermal pool cover.

Save Energy If you use gas or electricity to heat your pool then a thermal cover can help you save money on your power bill!
Save WaterEvaporation is the number one cause of lost water in Australian swimming pools. They can actually lose more than a pool full of water each year -this could be as much as 200 litres per day! A thermal cover not only keeps the water warmer, but it also reduces evaporation.
Increase Swimming TimeA warmer pool means more swimming time and a longer swimming season!