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Thread: Solar cover Mil thickness for reel operation

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    Solar cover Mil thickness for reel operation

    I have to buy a new cover this year. I purchased a reel last year for our 27' round above ground pool. The cover that came with the pool seemed a bit heavy when it was rolled up on the reel. I was wondering what Mil thickness is optimum for a reel? My reel is located on the end of the pool if that makes a difference. I think a 8 mil cover would be the lightest but probably not the best for keeping it warm and such. So I am leaning towards a 12mil diamond shape one. What do you guys think?

    17600 galon 27' round Mirage above ground. Eco-Kleer cartridge filter. Direct sunlight most of the day.

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    SW Indiana

    Re: Solar cover Mil thickness for reel operation

    I think 12 is the way to go for lasting.
    TFP Moderator
    20K Gallon 20X36 Vinyl Inground
    Hayward S244T Sand Filter with 1HP Whisperflo Pump. Liquidator C-201 and Solar Heat

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    chessie6's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    East Hartford, Connecticut

    Re: Solar cover Mil thickness for reel operation

    We had a 16 ml clear cover on our 24' above ground - it was heavy when rolled up and pivoting away but super durable and stiff. It was kept out of the sun when rolled up which was huge in maintaining it's life.

    We were using a 15 ml clear cover with round bubbles on our 19 x 36 IG pool last year and it really stressed the reel - my DH had to make reinforcements to it to try to eliminate the big sag in the middle. I have heard in several sources that diamond bubbles catch more water in them as the cover is rolled up, so of course that will add to the weight. I have also heard that preventing evaporation is the reason why these covers retain the heat, so thickness wouldn't be a bearing on that; just on longevity.

    I've seen online stores selling 5 ml covers even . . I always thought that 8 ml was the thinnest.

    I am waiting for shipment of my new 12 ml cover and will be interested in seeing how it compares to the 15 ml. weight-wise.

    Summer: 19 x 37 Pacific Graphex IG modified oval, aztec marine vinyl liner, 24,000 gal, 3.5 feet to 8 feet, 1 hp Hayward C4025 Swim Clear 4-cartridge filter, chlorine pucks or bleach depending on CYA levels, 1 super wide mouth skimmer, 4 returns (2 therapy jets in steps), Hayward pool vac ultra, Hayward Heat Pro heat pump, non-curved pool slide, 6' jump board, 12 ml clear solar cover, TF-100 test kit, added salt for feel 1,250 ppm, we had "pink algae" in 2010.
    Winter: Hot Springs Vista Spa, 500 gallons. Using BBB method for the first time and for the first time in ages, the water is crystal clear

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    chiefwej's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011

    Re: Solar cover Mil thickness for reel operation

    Do not use a diamond shaped bubble cover with a reel. The diamond shape traps water when rolled up making it very heavy. In fact most places say that use on a reel voids the warranty on both the reel and the cover. There is little difference in the performance of covers. They all prevent evaporative cooling and provide very minimal solar heat gain. The primary difference seems to be in how long they last. I would buy a cheap one and replace it when it's shot.
    Tucson, AZ
    19k gallon Pebble Tec play pool/spa, Pentair Intelliflo VS (3 hp) 011018, Super II 2hp (for spa), Aqua Rite T-15 SWG, Pro Grid 60 DE filter, Hayward H400 & Heliocol Solar heating, A&A infloor system, fill water w/high CH and TA, 50 ppm borates,TF-100 test kit

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    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Olney, MD

    Re: Solar cover Mil thickness for reel operation

    I have never had one last more than three years (regardless of thickness/weight/storage methods). So I only buy the thinner cheaper ones. The warranties are pretty much a scam because they just prorate and are really only there to make sure you buy your next one from the same company.
    20k gal, IG Vinyl, IntelliFlo VF Pump, 60 GPM sand filter, Jandy Aquapure Ei 35, 2 skimmers, one main drain, two returns, Dolphin Diagnostic cleaning robot, Taylor K-2006 test kit

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