Solar cover....one or two?

mchecc

Member
May 28, 2017
16
Georgetown TX
We have a large rectangular inground. We wore out a solar cover in 3 years. We had a reel but it isn't the greatest even though it wasnt cheap ..it becomes very hard to turn even though we didnt have the thickest guage cover.

I want the thickest guage cover this time around so my husband suggested getting two half covers and a new reel to reduce bulk. Are there any downsides to this? We often open just half the pool.
 

Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
6,197
NY
We had a reel but it isn't the greatest even though it wasnt cheap
I had the same experience. I spent twice as much on a ‘Heavy Duty’ reel with upgraded bushings and it got harder to turn every year. By year 5 I had to brace myself while doing it. Maybe it only would have taken 2 years with a regular reel, I dunno 🤷‍♂️.

So are you planning on only putting half of the cover on the reel to keep the weight down ? There’s no reason why that won’t help, but if the thicker half cover is twice as heavy, it will end up being the same in the end.

I had the thick cover and it was such a chore that when it died we we did not get another. It’s widely accepted here that the thickness does not make it last any longer and also does not retain heat better. Seran wrap will stop just as much evaporation as a solar cover. If you didn’t have a reel and were dragging the cover off the pool and hanging it on a fence, then maybe the thicker cover would last longer, but even *if* it did, I would personally rather have it be that much easier to manage even if I had to replace it more often.
 
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1Sammy

In The Industry
Jul 20, 2017
403
Windsor, Ontario. Canada
With the one reel i wonder how you just opened half the pool ? If you rolled up only half, did you then cover that half and the section hanging down to the water ? This can be why you only got 3 years from it.
I have had my reel now for 41 years and a child can spin the blanket off the pool using it. When they get hard to turn something has gone wrong. Oil, grease, taking it apart and cleaning the parts that allow it to turn it needed.
A solar blanket property cared for will last at least 6 years before the bubbles start to fall off.
 

mchecc

Member
May 28, 2017
16
Georgetown TX
With the one reel i wonder how you just opened half the pool ? If you rolled up only half, did you then cover that half and the section hanging down to the water ? This can be why you only got 3 years from it.
I have had my reel now for 41 years and a child can spin the blanket off the pool using it. When they get hard to turn something has gone wrong. Oil, grease, taking it apart and cleaning the parts that allow it to turn it needed.
A solar blanket property cared for will last at least 6 years before the bubbles start to fall off.
What brand reel? Mine was a mess from the beginning. Commercial grade but large metal tubes that arrived dented. Screw holes didnt line up..eventually got replacement parts and put it together. Actually i never covered my solar cover after the first year..white cover got torn up in wind and i always meant to replace it.
 

mchecc

Member
May 28, 2017
16
Georgetown TX
I had the same experience. I spent twice as much on a ‘Heavy Duty’ reel with upgraded bushings and it got harder to turn every year. By year 5 I had to brace myself while doing it. Maybe it only would have taken 2 years with a regular reel, I dunno 🤷‍♂️.

So are you planning on only putting half of the cover on the reel to keep the weight down ? There’s no reason why that won’t help, but if the thicker half cover is twice as heavy, it will end up being the same in the end.

I had the thick cover and it was such a chore that when it died we we did not get another. It’s widely accepted here that the thickness does not make it last any longer and also does not retain heat better. Seran wrap will stop just as much evaporation as a solar cover. If you didn’t have a reel and were dragging the cover off the pool and hanging it on a fence, then maybe the thicker cover would last longer, but even *if* it did, I would personally rather have it be that much easier to manage even if I had to replace it more often.
Good to know about cover thickness. The heavier guage only has slightly longer warranty.maybe i will buy a one piece cover and new lighter reel and if i have to split it later i could. I suspect the reel is the problem. I had to put waterproof tape over the screws that held the big sections of the roller together. Otherwise they poked through. Was a disaster reel from day one.
 

Newdude

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 16, 2019
6,197
NY
Even worse is if they somehow get on top of the cover. My dog ran across mine and sunk right in. It balled all around him and trapped him with a few hundred gallons of water. Luckily he was trapped with his head above the water because it took me 10 minutes to get him free. Keep in mind both he and the cover were ‘floating’ yet the weight of it all was too much for me to move/untangle.
 

1Sammy

In The Industry
Jul 20, 2017
403
Windsor, Ontario. Canada
What brand reel? Mine was a mess from the beginning. Commercial grade but large metal tubes that arrived dented. Screw holes didnt line up..eventually got replacement parts and put it together. Actually i never covered my solar cover after the first year..white cover got torn up in wind and i always meant to replace it.
Custom Built.
 
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