Can you use solar heating with saltwater systems?

jmc001

Active member
May 25, 2016
28
New Milton, Hampshire, UK
Because I noticed the Intex solar mats can't be used with saltwater systems but it doesn't say why not. I have been looking at different makes and none of them say anything about salt water. I phoned an online supplier and they said it wasn't recommended to use solar panels with saltwater systems. There is no information I can find on the internet. I was hoping I might find someone using them with salt water :)
 

CASPER570

Member
May 28, 2016
23
Fullerton, CA
Check out YouTube... there are several different methods aside from solar mats that are easy builds and relatively cheap to build and will be a bit more efficient given you have the room around the pool to set up a solar panel... I am building one on a 4x8 sheet of plywood.
 

jblizzle

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 19, 2010
43,238
Tucson, AZ
Check out YouTube... there are several different methods aside from solar mats that are easy builds and relatively cheap to build and will be a bit more efficient given you have the room around the pool to set up a solar panel... I am building one on a 4x8 sheet of plywood.
Homemade DIY solar heating setups are rarely more inexpensive or more efficient than commercially made panels.

I have solar and saltwater and I am sure hundreds if not thousands of members do as well.
 

needsajet

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 4, 2016
4,752
Sydney, NSW, Australia
Pool Size
44000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
what he said ^

There's around 1/4 million pools in Sydney. My own random sample of 30 pools (from looking at houses) included all but two on salt and over 50% solar heated.

Salt water is not a challenge for solar heating system design in any way. At 3,500 PPM salt, pools run 1/10th the salt concentration of seawater, and liquid chlorinated pools are commonly 500 to 1500 PPM salt.

Go fa ya life, mate :)
 

gwegan

TFP Expert
Apr 19, 2013
2,769
Sacramento, CA
Ok I've spent 20 minutes looking all over Intex's site looking for the no saltwater language. I've read the manual cover to cover.

I can find nothing saying that the solar mats are incompatible with salt water systems.


Who told you you couldn't use the solar mats with a saltwater system?

There may be some problems with Intex pumps not being powerful enough to move the water through a large solar system and back into the pool and for that reason they don't want the solar system on a roof.
 

jmc001

Active member
May 25, 2016
28
New Milton, Hampshire, UK
I also phoned an online pool company asking about solar heating panels by PoolSolar and they told me it was not recommended to use them with saltwater systems.

If I can used them then that's great and I will go ahead and get some. :)

Thanks for your help.
 

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jblizzle

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
May 19, 2010
43,238
Tucson, AZ
Here is my thinking on why they might be saying that. Could it be that the Intex systems are integrated too much and there is no way to plumb the SWG after the solar mats? The SWG must be the last piece of equipment or gas could build up in the solar mats.

And of course the pumps are generally too weak.

Maybe it is not that the mats would be damaged and more a problem with ability to properly plumb with the Intex equipment.
 

gwegan

TFP Expert
Apr 19, 2013
2,769
Sacramento, CA
To use the British term this is just rubbish. Intex says nothing about it in their manual and it defies common sense. There are no reports on TFP that I have ever seen about a problem with Intex or any other solar panel that has any relationship to salt water pools.

I I had Jason's thought about the plumbing problem. ANd its correct Intex sells integrated salt systems that would be before the panels. But the chlorine concentrations would not be that significant.
 

Trick

Silver Supporter
Apr 21, 2015
139
Waterford, MI
Casper these commercial manufactured ones have way more surface area then you will achieve. And even having a good DIY system under a glass or plexi its barely going to match a commercial unit. Thats a good amount of work for something you can buy pretty cheap all ready done.
 

needsajet

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 4, 2016
4,752
Sydney, NSW, Australia
Pool Size
44000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
Could be that someone plumbed solar in after the SWG and they had problems, so they just say no.

If there's no way to plumb it in ahead of the SWG, a separate pump might be an option, but would be best with it's own intake and return. If the Intex pump is already at or above it's capabilities, maybe this would be necessary anyway.
 
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