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Thread: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

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    solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    Was thinking of buying a solar cover and reel, about 300-350 bucks.

    16x 40 foot pool, 15,000 gallons.

    I want to keep the water at 84 degrees.

    266,000 BTU pool heater at .82 cents per therm. 80% efficiency.


    water is 84 degrees. how much heat would I lose in a 24 hour period if the outside temperature was averaged 70 degrees?

    trying to figure out cost of gas heater vs solar cover with heater.

    need someone that is smart and good with math. lol

    thanks

    also solar cover would reduce chlorine consumption? but by how much?
    15,000 gallon inground fiberglass pool with spa. 350lb Sand filter, 1.5 hp pump, and heater

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    Johnl's Avatar
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    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    I would recommend the solar cover. It's not as fast heating the pool as a heater, but it really helps to hold the heat in at night. Without a solar cover your pool would easily loose a few degrees at night. Over the course of the swimming season, you will use your heater a lot less with a cover.

    By the way, you don't have to go crazy with a real expensive solar cover, so it's not a large investment.

    I don't know how much the cover saves you in chlorine.
    23K Gunite IG Pool
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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    A solar cover doesn't really heat the pool. In fact, it reduces the amount of sunlight that gets absorbed by the pool. The purpose of a solar cover is to keep what heat is already in the pool from escaping with evaporating water.

    I have solar and usually keep the pool around 88 degrees. Without a cover, I lose about 6 degrees overnight and with a cover about half that (3 degrees per day). Unless you have very cheap gas, it is likely to cost a fortune even with a cover.

    Using my heat loss numbers with your pool size and gas cost, it will cost about $8/day with a cover and twice that without.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    IF I got a solar cover I would use it with the heater, as a purpose so the heat doesn't escape when I heat it to 84 degrees. solar cover and a good reel is about 300-350 bucks, So trying to figure if its worth it or not? also save on chlorine with a solar cover.


    costs savings of solar cover with heater, vs just using the heater. both at 84 degrees
    15,000 gallon inground fiberglass pool with spa. 350lb Sand filter, 1.5 hp pump, and heater

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    So the cost difference with vs without a cover would be about $4 per day.

    BTW, how much heat do you lose overnight right now or does the heater run at night too?

    [EDIT] Used the wrong heat gain numbers so the delta cost is actually about $4/day.
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    haven't done it yet. cooler weather for the week, so haven't cranked the heater up yet, trying to decide which route I should take.

    but I guess I could do a test to see how much heat I lose in a 24 hour period, then calculate the cost of getting it back to 84.


    using the natural gas heating cost calculator, would be about 15-16 bucks to heat the water from 74 degrees to 84 degrees.



    but also, how much heat would I lose WITH a solar cover?
    15,000 gallon inground fiberglass pool with spa. 350lb Sand filter, 1.5 hp pump, and heater

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    Really, you would only need to add 10 degrees the first day but after that, you need to add what was lost the previous day which can be less than the initial heat rise.

    Quote Originally Posted by mas985
    I have solar and usually keep the pool around 88 degrees. Without a cover, I lose about 6 degrees overnight and with a cover about half that (3 degrees per day).
    So if your conditions were about the same as mine, with a cover, you will need to add about 3 degrees per day and without a cover, you will need to add 6 degrees per day. This of course assumes your conditions are the same and that there is a 0 net gain (sun - losses) during the day.

    This calculator might be useful: http://energyexperts.org/CalculatorsToo ... lator.aspx
    Mark
    Hydraulics 101; Pump Ed 101; Pump/Pool Spreadsheets; Pump Run Time Study; DIY Acid Dosing; DIY Cover Roller
    18'x36' 20k plaster, MaxFlo SP2303VSP, Aqualogic PS8 SWCG, 420 sq-ft Cartridge, Solar, 6 jet spa, 1 HP jet pump, 400k BTU NG Heater

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    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    Have you looked into solar panels on your roof or in a spot where they can get sunlight most of the day. We live in southeastern PA and have had a relatively cool summer and some nights in the 50's so far. My pool has not gone below 82 degrees since all summer. I just got out of the pool and at 7 pm the pool is 85 degrees. I do keep a solar cover on the pool, a clear 12 mil one, and as someone else posted, I lose about 3 degrees at night. My neighbor who has a 15,000 gallon pool and no solar heater but uses a solar cover has a current pool temperature of 76. There is no cost to run it and another neighbor who has been using solar heat swims from April through October every year and with no extra cost the price is certainly right. We may add two more panels next year just to see how long we can extend the season. (we have four panels now)
    30 ft. round Aqua Leader agp with dished out center 23,800 gallons; 1.5 hp Hayward pro matrix pump; Hayward EC50 DE filter; solar panels; solar cover

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: solar cover and reel, vs heating the pool with heater

    In Michigan, adding a cover to our pool made a big difference in how much we had to use the heater. (In August, we needed to leave it off, to keep the pool temperature under 90.)

    A cover also keeps the water a lot cleaner. Our pool was irregular (vaguely kidney-shaped), but the cover we got was rectangular and didn't cover the pool 100%; even then it helped keep the water clean. Except in August, when it was rolled up.

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