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Thread: Several questions about solar heating

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    kywildcats's Avatar
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    Several questions about solar heating

    I am thinking about solar heating and no nothing about it. Is it affordable to install after pool is already installed? Is most of it DIY type installation? I could mount it on a east or west facing roof, with complete sunlight all day, so which side would be the best? What is the best brand to check into? Do I require an extra pump to run the solar heating? Any insight would be appreciated because Im tired of a 70 degree pool in May!!!!
    Mark
    20'x28' IG, Vinyl, (Sept 2015) 14,900 Gallon, 3'4 to 5'6 deep, SPLAPOOL 1.5 HP, 220v, 2 speed pump, Waterway Carefree 27" 400 LB Sand filter, Digital Nano plus SWG, TF-100 test kit /speed stir. Dolphin Primal x3 robotic cleaner

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Several questions about solar heating

    A number of us here have done DIY installs of commercial solar heat panels, which is a viable option, we generally feel that trying to build a DIY solar collector is not economical, you are far better off buying a commercially built panel and installing it yourself. As to which one, that depends ona number of factors, personally I opted for using Techno-Solis panels (same as the house label Vortex panels sold by Solar Direct), but Aquatherm was a close second, at least for me. There are also other big names out there like Fafco and Heliocol, both of which are closely tied to their dealer / installer networks which makes buying their products difficult for the DIY'er. As to mounting location, south is best, followed by west then east, exact details depending on angle of roof, your latitude, desired swim season, etc. In general no extra pump will be needed, however you will most likely need to run your pump on high when using solar heat, you will also want a solar controller is you do not have an automation system that supports solar heat. Without a solar controller you can loose a lot of potential heat as solar panels also make very good pool coolers in rain storms and even during cloudy days.

    If you search the forum you will find many solar install threads, I suggest reading them as they will likely bring up topics you have not yet considered.

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Several questions about solar heating

    This May is certainly colder than usual! Bring the heat!

    I bought my panels at solardirect.com and installed them. There are pics in my build thread link in sig. They have a lot of info on their website. A big +1 to having a solar controller. Our solar panels have given us many extra and more comfortable swim days over the years.

    Also, adding a solar cover helps a ton. I added one for the first time a couple of weeks ago. HUGE difference. My pool was 81 today and I was in it! After lows in the 50s and highs in the low 60s last week, cloudy and rainy. It started around 85 at the beginning of the week after a sunny weekend and dropped to a low temp of 76 yesterday when the sun came back out.
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    kywildcats's Avatar
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    Re: Several questions about solar heating

    Thanks guys! Good read on yours, Pooldv. Maybe just a solar cover is the way to go for me. I just hate to cover up my pool in the summer after looking at it covered all winter.
    Mark
    20'x28' IG, Vinyl, (Sept 2015) 14,900 Gallon, 3'4 to 5'6 deep, SPLAPOOL 1.5 HP, 220v, 2 speed pump, Waterway Carefree 27" 400 LB Sand filter, Digital Nano plus SWG, TF-100 test kit /speed stir. Dolphin Primal x3 robotic cleaner

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Several questions about solar heating

    Yeah, we definitely don't like looking at the cover. I'm hoping that once June arrives and the sun with it we can just leave it off until mid or late September.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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