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Thread: Solar Sun Rings

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    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    Solar Sun Rings

    Hello all,

    Does anyone have any experience with these inflatable solar sun rings that supposedly help heat up the pool? I have a 16' X 32' inground pool with a vinyl liner and wanted to know if this was the poor man's answer to warming up the pool a bit, or an extreme waste of money. Thanks in advance for your help.
    - Reji

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Best I can tell they are more expensive than a solar blanket, so they'd be an expensive way to go.
    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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    I should have mentioned this before but I have 2 dogs who may think that the solar blanket is the same thing as the winter cover that they normally walk over. I fear that they may drown if they jump on the solar blanket.

    I have also read on a site that sells these solar sun rings that they are a) more effective than a solar blanket and b) easier to take off and put back on than a solar blanket, and I was hoping that someone out there might have some experience/insight as to whether these statements are true (it is probably obvious but I am VERY new to the world of owning a pool and am trying my best to learn using this forum).
    - Reji

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    I have 12 of them that I purchased online and at this point I would advise against purchasing them.

    I cannot confirm that they work based on my use so far. I am still trying to determine if any of them are leaking air. I had a difficult time getting the interior of the rings properly inflated. It states to use 2 breaths and then wad them up to the size of a beach ball and this will seperate the two layers of vinyl. It does but then if water gets on top of the ring and cools it, the two layers of vinyl stick back together loosing the ability to produce heat.

    Yes there are some advantages. It is very easy to handle them. Storing them is somewaht tricky, you can not just stack them on top of each other in the sun. They have a tab with a hole so they can be hung on a peg or hook, but are not stiff enough and fold over. I fold them into quarters and stack them on a table inside my storage shed.

    I like the therory of the product, I'm just not sure they are ready for prime time yet.
    24'x54" Sharkline Matrix by Wilbar International, 15,200 gallons (2015)
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  5. Back To Top    #5
    A solar blanket is by far the most effective and lowest cost method to increase you water temperature and keep the heat in. I typically only cover my pool at night, and remove the cover during the day. I get a better heat gain on my pool that way, some say leave it on all the time so YMMV.

    With that said, I seriously doubt that these clear covers will make a significant impact in heat gain, or retention. These solar rings can't cover 100% of the pool surface, leaving many gaps to allow evaporation at night (your main source of heat loss).

    As far as ease of use, I can't imagine collecting 10 or 15 of these rings off the surface of the pool and storing them would be any easier than rolling up the solar cover. I have a cover and reel, and it takes all of 30 seconds to remove the cover, and about 2 minutes to put it back on.

    I understand the issue wiht your pets, and you might be right about them getting in on top of the cover and possibly drowning.

    Have you considred using an invisible fence around the perimeter of your pool to keep the dogs out? You could still remove their invisible fence solar to allow them to use the pool when you wanted them to.

    One other possiblity for your is the liquid solar blanket (solar fish). They don't work nearly as well as a regular solar blanket (only about 30-40% as effective in my experience) but they will help you retain some heat at night. They are a bit expensive, but could give you some increase in heat retention. Be sure if you try these, to try and leave your pool pump off at night - they are most effective when the water is perfectly still - that allows the chemical to settle to the still surface to inhibit evaporation.
    6500 gal. Fiberglass HydroPool w/SWG = 9' x 18' x 6';

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    NWMNMom's Avatar
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    Don't waste your money on the "fish" either. Its almost impossible, with wind and the environment, to get the pool still enough for long enough to prevent evaporation. Been there, done that.

    The solar blanket is your best bet - put up a barrier system to keep the dogs out, either electrical or physical - not only are they in danger even with the Solar Rings, but any kind of wandering animal or child/person is just as at risk.
    18x33x52 Buttressfree Seaspray (Wilbar) AGP - 1.5hp Pentair Maxim w/22" Pentair Meteor Sand Filter, Aqua Rite SWG System, Biltmore Walk In Steps - 2/4x20 Solar Panel Setup - Doheny Jet Drive (RIP -Pool Rover Jr) - finally hard plumbed the whole darned thing -
    Beats Driving to the Lake!

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    NWMNMom is right to some extent - the fish have very limited usefulness, and in my opinion the cost/benefit ratio is way too low, but did provide a benefit for me on my pool. It just wasn't enough benefit for me to continue using them.

    I didn't mention the issues with pets specifically, but I also agree with Mom - I would never allow pets any kind of free roaming access to my pool. Winter covers are too expensive for animals to be walking around on them. My sis-in-law's cover has significant damage from her dogs (which no longer have access to the pool area). She learned her lesson the first year she had the dogs. They chewed the metal tabs off her straps too.
    6500 gal. Fiberglass HydroPool w/SWG = 9' x 18' x 6';

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    So are there any happy solar sun ring users out there?
    Vinyl In Ground 18x36
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