Solar pool heating has become the latest craze for homeowners with swimming pools. With summer just around the corner, there are many benefits so thermal pool heating to take advantage of.
WHAT IS THERMAL ALL ABOUT
Similar to PV Solar panels, thermal works by absorbing energy from the Sun. What’s different is rather than this system producing electricity, it generates heat significantly reducing swimming pool heating costs. As a matter of fact, solar pool heating is the most cost effective way to warm the pool compared to gas and electric pool pumps. The cost of this system ranges from $3000 - $5000 to buy and install with a return on investment of 2 to 7 years.
Installing a system is very easy and convenient to the homeowner. Thermal panels, called “solar collectors” are mounted to the home where the pool power is pumped into and heated before returning back the pool. The system also incorporates a pump to circulate the water, a filter to remove any debris. Every pool has an existing pump that is filtering or cleaning their pool (6-8 hours/day). The beauty of a solar pool heating system is that it runs off of that pump that is already working every day thereby doing its job at no cost to the homeowner. Another aspect of the system is the control valve with a thermostat that distributes water through the collector on the roof. Being thermostatically controlled (Either controller already exists or one will be installed), all the homeowner needs to do is set the temperature they want to swim at. When the sun comes up, the solar system will automatically turn on to help regulate their desired pool temperature. That means that one can either cool the pool during hot days or warm it up for evening swim.
WHAT KIND OF SYSTEM IS NECESSARY?
Solar pool heating does require a certain amount space and the best location is to use the space on the roof. How much space? That depends on the surface area of your pool. Ideally, the collectors should range between 70% - 100% of the pool size. So if the pool is 12ft by 40ft, that’s a square footage of 480 feet. That means you need to equal the same area size with the solar collectors on the roof. Each collector is about 4ft by 10 feet. Keep in mind that it’s important to determine the correct orientation and tilt of the thermal panels. Having the panels tilting towards the sun will provide the best heat energy. Home’s that have a south facing roof with ample space and minimal to no shade is a good scenario to solar with pool heating.