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Thread: Solar Cover Questions

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    titleistseemore's Avatar
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    Solar Cover Questions

    I will be placing an order this week from Amazon for a Hayward Pump / Filter Combo and would like to add a solar cover for the 18' intex pool that I am installing. Are there any differences in the solar covers that would be an advantage like thicker (Higher Mills), Is it better to get a blue one or a clear one? I just always purchased the intex or summer escape versions before but thought I would get some advice from everyone here on since I have limited knowledge on these units ...
    Tim Jacobsen Lodi Ca.
    18'x48" Intex Ultra Frame (5700 Gallons)
    TF 100 Test Kit, Speedstir, & Sample Sizer. Liquidator Installed.
    Hayward C550 Cartridge Filter (55 Sq. Ft.), 1HP Powerflo LX Pump, Pool Rover Jr.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...uild-Questions

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    borjis's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    From all the reading here I found that the thickness shouldn't matter.
    Anything over 5 mil will be quite difficult if you are removing it on your own.

    A thicker one might last a little longer but the consensus seems to be you will
    only get 3 seasons max out of any of them regardless of thickness.

    blue vs clear:
    both seem to do the same but theoretically the blue would have the advantage of less chlorine burn off from sun.

    and some say clear will heat more.


    based on all of this I bought my first cover a few weeks ago.

    5 mil, blue
    16x32 IG Vinyl, 13,000 Gals. Hayward S-244T sand filter, SP2810X15 pump
    (1.5 HP motor) Raypak PR266AEN (266k btu) gas heater. TF-100 Test Kit.
    Dolphin E10 Cleaning Robot.

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    titleistseemore's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    Thanks for the quick reply and good info, I will do the same
    Tim Jacobsen Lodi Ca.
    18'x48" Intex Ultra Frame (5700 Gallons)
    TF 100 Test Kit, Speedstir, & Sample Sizer. Liquidator Installed.
    Hayward C550 Cartridge Filter (55 Sq. Ft.), 1HP Powerflo LX Pump, Pool Rover Jr.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...uild-Questions

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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    I bought a 5 mil clear based on reading here. I could not be happier with it. It has really exceeded my expectations.I have no desire for a reel and I can lug it around by myself and I am a 52 yr old woman.
    16x32 IG rectangular 21,800k new vinyl liner 2014, Triton II TR 50 sand Filter, Pentair 3/4 hsp whisperflow pump, 3 returns, TF100 test kit w/speedstir. Maytronics s 300i robot.

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    titleistseemore's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    Thanks,
    When I get a chance latter tonight I will find one that is economical and cut to fit, I was originally thinking clear for a couple of reasons, glad to know yours is working good. Rogers, Its been a while since I have been there, I always enjoyed my trips to NW Ark.
    Tim Jacobsen Lodi Ca.
    18'x48" Intex Ultra Frame (5700 Gallons)
    TF 100 Test Kit, Speedstir, & Sample Sizer. Liquidator Installed.
    Hayward C550 Cartridge Filter (55 Sq. Ft.), 1HP Powerflo LX Pump, Pool Rover Jr.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...uild-Questions

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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    I have had a few blue ones and they work great. I plan to try a clear one when I buy the next one to see if it retains heat better.
    Sharkline Reprieve 15x52 (3/14). Still using Intex 2650 Sand Filter with Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 3/4 HP pump (6/15). Solar Cover cut into strips for easy removal, (2) 2*10 Space Saver solar panels. Swim Jet HD Robot (by Aquabot) (3/15). Chlorine Liquidator (4 gal). 4 person hot tub. Hard pipe is the way to go for improved flow! Retired Lil Shark (3/15). Starite Max E Therm 333k BTU Propane Heater w/ 24 gal tank (7/15).

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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    Everything about them can be a pain and an eye sore. But they work! Mine went on n in 2 days raised temp from 55 to about 62 with air temp only in upper 70s, in southern PA. I'm still working on the eye sore solution for when it's not in the pool.
    Using Tapatalk

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    Defgufman's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    Mine is on a roller and works great. The last one I had was clear and seemed to warm it more that the blue one does now.
    Inground 13,200 gal Vinyl, Pentair 3/4 hp pump, Pentair Sand Dollar filter, Polaris 280

    Pool School, Pool Math, CYA to FC ratio chart, Testing Kits

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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    I've never had a clear cover, only blue, but they worked well. Wouldn't a darker color absorb/retain the heat better?
    27k gallon 33' round, partially buried 22" Sandman sand filter, 1.5hp 2 speed TidalWave pump, Pentair 'Lil Shark with leaf canister, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Casey's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    They say the clear ones do a better job but I don't know as I've never had a clear one. The only I have came from my dad's house and I promptly cut it into 4 sections n roll them up as I take them off the pool. I hate dealing with the big cover.
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    The clear cover works much better. I have had both, and found the clear seemed to work better. The sun rays go through, but not back up through it (so the mfg says).
    I also use a reel, works great, simple to use and keeps it off the ground, etc.
    Last edited by DarrelB; 05-07-2015 at 07:51 PM. Reason: addition
    Ultra 16', Intex Sand filter/pump combo, 8' x 20' solar panels, solar blanket w/roll tube, 1" extruded foam floor with Gorilla pad, Liquid chlorine and stabilizer.

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    smforte's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    I've had a blue 12 ml for about a month. It conserves my chlorine but doesn't heat well. I cut it in 3 sections but wish I'd cut in 4. Hard for this 60 yr old female to take it off. Now if I can find a way to keep tree yuk off the top off of it!
    Montgomery, AL
    27000 16 x 36 IG, Vinyl, Grecian, Hayward Sand filter, 1 HP Pentair whisperflo motor, Aqua Genie filter not by choice, no extra jets, Dolphin s300i robotic cleaner,Taylor K 2006 test kit, speed-stir which I couldn't live without!

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    titleistseemore's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    Thanks for the input, I am looking at this model from amazon, what do you think?

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003TQMCEY/...=IYHVWLSRPH47I
    Tim Jacobsen Lodi Ca.
    18'x48" Intex Ultra Frame (5700 Gallons)
    TF 100 Test Kit, Speedstir, & Sample Sizer. Liquidator Installed.
    Hayward C550 Cartridge Filter (55 Sq. Ft.), 1HP Powerflo LX Pump, Pool Rover Jr.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...uild-Questions

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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    12 mil will be very heavy/difficult to handle by one person. Are you buying or building a reel?
    27k gallon 33' round, partially buried 22" Sandman sand filter, 1.5hp 2 speed TidalWave pump, Pentair 'Lil Shark with leaf canister, TF-100 Test Kit

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    titleistseemore's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    buying but not for a while, I have a big shopping list to complete the project ...
    Tim Jacobsen Lodi Ca.
    18'x48" Intex Ultra Frame (5700 Gallons)
    TF 100 Test Kit, Speedstir, & Sample Sizer. Liquidator Installed.
    Hayward C550 Cartridge Filter (55 Sq. Ft.), 1HP Powerflo LX Pump, Pool Rover Jr.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...uild-Questions

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    yostmatt's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    I went with a 12mil. Where I bought mine, I had the option of 7,12,or 16. 16 is way to thick and heavy. 7, is cheap and thin, 12 was just the right mix of both. I can put it on and take it off myself. The thinner ones seem to only get a couple years out of them.

    I bought the clear one. It seems to use the same amount of FC as if no cover was on at all. It does seem to warm the water pretty quick. I am in central PA, and my water is already 75. On a sunny day, I have gained 2-4 degrees. We are religious about putting the cover on at night to retain all that gained heat.
    ~Matt~ Radiant Metric 24'x52" 14k- built into a slope. CircuPool Si-30 SWCG. Jandy 200 SqFt cartridge filter. Pentair Optiflow 2-speed 1HP pump. Wanda the Whale. TF-100 Test Kit. Hard Plumbed.
    My Build w/ lots of pics

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    Currently, I am using a 5 mil cover. I have used 8 mil and 12 mil and will probably never go back to the thicker covers. The 5 mil is super light and performs just as well as the thicker covers. I haven't noticed any durability problems yet and it is the second season. My cover generally only last 2 seasons anyway before disintegrating.
    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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    titleistseemore's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    tough to find a clear cover that is not 12 mil ... probably going to go with a 12 mil. Anyone have a link?
    Tim Jacobsen Lodi Ca.
    18'x48" Intex Ultra Frame (5700 Gallons)
    TF 100 Test Kit, Speedstir, & Sample Sizer. Liquidator Installed.
    Hayward C550 Cartridge Filter (55 Sq. Ft.), 1HP Powerflo LX Pump, Pool Rover Jr.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...uild-Questions

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    mas985's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    I have had both clear and blue and haven't found much of a difference in heat. Probably because the clear covers don't really stay clear for very long.
    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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    titleistseemore's Avatar
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    Re: Solar Cover Questions

    I thought this would be an easy decision... I don't want to labor too much to take the cover off, not too worried about myself doing it but I am with my wife and the height of the pool that we will have this year vs the ring pools we have had in the past. I have always just bought the cheap intex version of the covers, I don't know the thickness but the covers were pretty light weight. I always got at least 2 years out of them. Getting the most heat from the blanket is key for me but after reading here and researching on the net I am not sure that the clear would have a large enough difference for me to notice. After the pool is up and complete I will be adding solar panels to the roof which will take me a bit to finish as I have 3 young boys and all are playing baseball in which I coach 2 of the teams and help on the third team when I can and as soon as baseball is over then it will be soccer and coaching again. So my projects during the spring and summer take longer then normal. That is why I was trying to get the best heat out of the blanket as I could. On days when I am off work, I plan to take the cover off during the day and install again in the evening but on my work days the cover would stay on all day.

    - - - Updated - - -

    SMFORTE had a good post that really got me thinking ... She has an in-ground pool and we will have the intex above ground.

    - - - Updated - - -

    A solar reel is in the future but the future will be mid summer at best ...
    Tim Jacobsen Lodi Ca.
    18'x48" Intex Ultra Frame (5700 Gallons)
    TF 100 Test Kit, Speedstir, & Sample Sizer. Liquidator Installed.
    Hayward C550 Cartridge Filter (55 Sq. Ft.), 1HP Powerflo LX Pump, Pool Rover Jr.
    http://www.troublefreepool.com/threa...uild-Questions

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