Why little or no info on solar. I have posted there before and can't find it. Solar it big here others have asked me info but

boxdin

Member
Aug 26, 2018
8
Albuquerque
but you guys are nowhere to be seen in the solar area. I don't get it..... not even a heading in the forum for solar. I'll find others who take solar seriously.
 

markayash

Gold Supporter
Mar 21, 2016
2,508
Marietta Ga
There is a forum that covers heaters..You want one just for solar? Just curious as to why you seem upset about it?
I see people talk about solar heating all the time
 

PoolGate

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 7, 2017
4,867
Damascus, MD
Many people with solar also have other forms of heating. Doesn't make sense to give it its own forum when it is just another method of heating.

 
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jseyfert3

Bronze Supporter
Oct 20, 2017
964
South-Central WI
Most forums work as such: If specific sub-topics get enough interest, they get their own sub-forum. If gas and heat pump heaters don't have their own sub-forums, then solar certainly won't, as by percentage of installs from what I've seen it's much less. It's not that TFP is against solar by any means. It's just it's nowhere near popular enough to get a dedicated sub-forum.

If you're looking for info or want to discuss, then post a topic in the "Everything Else". There's should be plenty of people who will reply. What never gets good replies though is a snarky "you don't do X so I'm going to Y!" Reminds me of working at Lowe's while I was in college. If you were polite, I would go to great lengths to help. But if not, I did the bare minimum required. One day, I got a phone call from a customer:

"I just called to let you know I'm never shopping there again!" they yelled into the phone.

"Okay" I replied.

I swear I could hear them seething as they disconnected the phone call. But WHAT was I suppose to say? Grovel at their feet? They didn't ask for anything! Now, had they had a bad experience with X and explained what happened, I could and WOULD have helped them get the issue resolved to (hopefully) their satisfaction. But that's not what they wanted apparently.

Anyway, your post reminded me of that call is all...
 
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Rattus Suffocatus

Silver Supporter
Jun 5, 2019
1,189
Corona de Tucson, AZ
There is a lot of places that it just won't work. Trust me-- I am interested in doing that next year here in Tucson, so interest does exist. The guys in the Midwest, however probably wouldn't be that interested in it. I would like to see a bit more discussion on systems that are not "run a lot of headloss off of your main pipe and run the pump at full speed, and put the pipes on your roof" systems because how I am situated isn't going to work that well for me.
 

markayash

Gold Supporter
Mar 21, 2016
2,508
Marietta Ga
There is a lot of places that it just won't work. Trust me-- I am interested in doing that next year here in Tucson, so interest does exist. The guys in the Midwest, however probably wouldn't be that interested in it. I would like to see a bit more discussion on systems that are not "run a lot of headloss off of your main pipe and run the pump at full speed, and put the pipes on your roof" systems because how I am situated isn't going to work that well for me.
OK I have to ask, you AZ folks have water temp over a 100..Why would you need a heater? Does it cool off in off summer months?
If I get 88 without a heater I am thrilled .

I still debate solar to keep the pool water a tad warmer longer.
What caught my interest was a giant radiator that mounts in your attic and heats your pool water. I looked into it once but my house attic isn't that close to the pool pad.
 

Rattus Suffocatus

Silver Supporter
Jun 5, 2019
1,189
Corona de Tucson, AZ
So when I researched this earlier this year, even in balmy Tucson, it can extend out the swimming season up to three (two is more typical) months. I have never had over 100F water temp (except in the hot tub with the insulating cover kept on). I think the hottest the pool has ever been was 95F and that was right after we filled it. This year (which supposedly is the 2nd hottest on record) the 93.5F was the hottest we ever got, and that was during a week solid of 108-112F weather for highs. Though at 93F water temperature my wife insisted we take the cover off for a couple of days and because of that alone it never broke 90F again.

Take a peek at my little snarky thread on the VIP forum. No one wants to swim now that the water temperature is "only" 80F. You get acclimated really fast to the warmer weather. One bad part of the desert is that it's so dry here when you get out, even if it's warmish out, you get the swamp cooler effect and it's cold! So it's a hard thing to explain to others, but your 72F there is about 76F-77F here due to the dryness.

What is nice about the fall and early winter here is that it's dry and room temperature for highs (we do get below freezing in January for short periods of time at night, we have had snow at my elevation since I have been there)... so it's nice to do outdoor "stuff" in.. not so much to swim in.

As for the radiator.... I had a ground source (geothermal) heating/cooling system in Iowa. They don't do that here because of the soil being like concrete for horizontal loops and it being 500' to water for vertical loops... but why they don't at least supplement A/C here with a heat pump from the pool as a common item just blows my mind. That could be just enough extra heat to extend out the season and it would be pulled from the house.... But it's not at all common to see something like that....

Even more blow your mind: For about 1/2 of the year, it's cool at night and hot during the day. And it's dry then.. so you'd think there would be a system to vent the hot (and somewhat moist) air from the house outside at nights during these times and take air from outside at night to cool automatically. But there is no such beast. The A/C just runs....Is's probably more efficient then, but it can't be as good as taking in the cool fresh air would be... or could it? I'm sure someone would chime in.....

Living in the desert takes getting used to, and honestly a lot of people leave at about year five because they can't do it or don't like it.
 
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jseyfert3

Bronze Supporter
Oct 20, 2017
964
South-Central WI
but why they don't at least supplement A/C here with a heat pump from the pool as a common item just blows my mind. That could be just enough extra heat to extend out the season and it would be pulled from the house.... But it's not at all common to see something like that....
I was actually going to suggest you look at the Hotspot FPH, it seems just the thing for you out in the desert. It's exactly what you said, okay, well not exactly. You seem to imply using a seperate heat pump, but your AC is already a heat pump. The Hotspot FPH just uses the pool water to cool your refrigerant instead of the air and a fan, so the waste heat from your house heats the pool while reducing the workload on the AC by cooling the coils faster. There's a controller that comes with it and switches the system between using the pool when the pool needs heat and switches back to using the fan cooled coils when the pool is hot enough. Someone hear posted an install recently and then was talking about having a 96 degree pool a couple weeks later. I think they were in Georgia?

Definitely something for you to look into. I'm even considering it here, as it would allow us to maintain a higher temp without a cover most of the summer, but any season extenders would need to be done with gas here.

Even more blow your mind: For about 1/2 of the year, it's cool at night and hot during the day. And it's dry then.. so you'd think there would be a system to vent the hot (and somewhat moist) air from the house outside at nights during these times and take air from outside at night to cool automatically. But there is no such beast. The A/C just runs....Is's probably more efficient then, but it can't be as good as taking in the cool fresh air would be... or could it? I'm sure someone would chime in.....
Commercial HVAC units will often do just this. As part of a college course I did some basic heat modeling and a typical office building would require COOLING in the MIDDLE OF WINTER in the midwest during the peak of the day due to heat loading from people and computers! So, it's either run the AC in the middle of winter or get smart and pull in outside air to do the same thing.

If dry, and cool, it's definitely way more efficient to draw in outside air vs run an AC, even though the AC does get more efficient when cooler. It just requires monitoring of humidity because (especially in the midwest) if the humidity is too high outside then you end up with too much humidity inside which isn't comfortable, so there's times here where it might be 60 °F outside and you need cooling but you can't pull outside air cause it's raining and 100% RH outside. But in your case it would be a very good idea.
 

Desert Dog

Well-known member
Apr 4, 2020
260
Alpine, Ca
ven more blow your mind: For about 1/2 of the year, it's cool at night and hot during the day. And it's dry then.. so you'd think there would be a system to vent the hot (and somewhat moist) air from the house outside at nights during these times and take air from outside at night to cool automatically. But there is no such beast. The A/C just runs....Is's probably more efficient then, but it can't be as good as taking in the cool fresh air would be... or could it? I'm sure someone would chime in.....

Ever heard or seen a whole house fan? Lived in a place with one before. Open the windows at night and turn on. Worked great. So good that if you had a fireplace and left ash in it, no door, ash would get sucked out and fill the room. Cooled the house down quick. Shot the hot air out the roof and the suction pulled air in through the windows. Kinda wish I had one.
 
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markayash

Gold Supporter
Mar 21, 2016
2,508
Marietta Ga
So when I researched this earlier this year, even in balmy Tucson, it can extend out the swimming season up to three (two is more typical) months. I have never had over 100F water temp (except in the hot tub with the insulating cover kept on). I think the hottest the pool has ever been was 95F and that was right after we filled it. This year (which supposedly is the 2nd hottest on record) the 93.5F was the hottest we ever got, and that was during a week solid of 108-112F weather for highs. Though at 93F water temperature my wife insisted we take the cover off for a couple of days and because of that alone it never broke 90F again.

Take a peek at my little snarky thread on the VIP forum. No one wants to swim now that the water temperature is "only" 80F. You get acclimated really fast to the warmer weather. One bad part of the desert is that it's so dry here when you get out, even if it's warmish out, you get the swamp cooler effect and it's cold! So it's a hard thing to explain to others, but your 72F there is about 76F-77F here due to the dryness.

What is nice about the fall and early winter here is that it's dry and room temperature for highs (we do get below freezing in January for short periods of time at night, we have had snow at my elevation since I have been there)... so it's nice to do outdoor "stuff" in.. not so much to swim in.

As for the radiator.... I had a ground source (geothermal) heating/cooling system in Iowa. They don't do that here because of the soil being like concrete for horizontal loops and it being 500' to water for vertical loops... but why they don't at least supplement A/C here with a heat pump from the pool as a common item just blows my mind. That could be just enough extra heat to extend out the season and it would be pulled from the house.... But it's not at all common to see something like that....

Even more blow your mind: For about 1/2 of the year, it's cool at night and hot during the day. And it's dry then.. so you'd think there would be a system to vent the hot (and somewhat moist) air from the house outside at nights during these times and take air from outside at night to cool automatically. But there is no such beast. The A/C just runs....Is's probably more efficient then, but it can't be as good as taking in the cool fresh air would be... or could it? I'm sure someone would chime in.....

Living in the desert takes getting used to, and honestly a lot of people leave at about year five because they can't do it or don't like it.
Maybe I was thinking the hot tub :) my water is 70 now :(
 

Rattus Suffocatus

Silver Supporter
Jun 5, 2019
1,189
Corona de Tucson, AZ
I've seen the wrap for the AC's. It's kind of a kludge compared to adding a separate small heat pump. If we didn't get the cheapest Crud homebuilder carrier units I probably would consider it. I might anyway at some point if I stay here.

And, I am aware that I can go around opening up windows at night, and probably even using the normal house fans (I have two systems in my house) to circulate or draw in air. But everyone is too lazy to do it and I'd have to get up in the middle of the night to close it, because a lot of the year it gets too cold at night.

I don't miss 70F dewpoints and 100% RH anymore at all. Humid here is 45% RH. We do have some of that in the monsoon season though.
 

jseyfert3

Bronze Supporter
Oct 20, 2017
964
South-Central WI
I've seen the wrap for the AC's. It's kind of a kludge compared to adding a separate small heat pump. If we didn't get the cheapest Crud homebuilder carrier units I probably would consider it. I might anyway at some point if I stay here.
AC wrap? The FPH Hotspot is not a wrap. It is a refridgerant to water heat exchanger, a refridgerant valve, and a controller. To install an AC tech cuts the refridgerant lines, connects the valve and heat exchanger. Pool water pumps though the heat exchanger. When the controller senses the pool needs heat, the valve shifts, which pulls refridgerant out of the AC coils and directs it into the pool heat exchanger coils, where the water from the pool directly cools the refridgerant (and therefore heats the water). It also shuts off the AC condenser fan to save additional energy. If the pool reaches your desired temp, the valves shifts refridgerant back to the fan cooled AC coils, the fan is turned back on, and the AC is back to normal operation.

If done properly this is not a kludge and would have maximum efficiency for transferring house heat to the pool water.

Not only that, but it should make the AC more efficient than it being air cooled. So not only are you not paying for pool heat, but you're saving money on regular AC costs!

Here is the guy I was talking about who installed it. He's in Atlanta, says he can crank his 12,000 gallon pool up to 94. Out in the desert I expect it would work even better. Hot tub pool night, for free? FPH - Hotspot Energy Install Begins!

Or this, from here: Hotspot FPH AC heat reclamation pool heater - a review!
In fact, my HVAC guy had his equipment set up reading the pressure gauges of the refrigerant lines between air cooled and water cooled modes. When air cooled, the pressure was 300psi. When water cooled, the pressure was 100psi. The translation of this that I got from my HVAC guy was that the compressor was working much less hard when the refrigerant is water cooled than when it is fan cooled, meaning it uses less energy and will extend the life of the compressor. Obviously, the fan isn't going either which saves somewhere around 300-500 watts of power as well from what I can tell.
A compressor only pumping 100 psi will use WAY less energy than a compressor pumping 300 psi! Again, way better than a second unit, it saves you money on AC while heating pool. That's like getting PAID to heat your pool!
 
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markayash

Gold Supporter
Mar 21, 2016
2,508
Marietta Ga
AC wrap? The FPH Hotspot is not a wrap. It is a refridgerant to water heat exchanger, a refridgerant valve, and a controller. To install an AC tech cuts the refridgerant lines, connects the valve and heat exchanger. Pool water pumps though the heat exchanger. When the controller senses the pool needs heat, the valve shifts, which pulls refridgerant out of the AC coils and directs it into the pool heat exchanger coils, where the water from the pool directly cools the refridgerant (and therefore heats the water). It also shuts off the AC condenser fan to save additional energy. If the pool reaches your desired temp, the valves shifts refridgerant back to the fan cooled AC coils, the fan is turned back on, and the AC is back to normal operation.

If done properly this is not a kludge and would have maximum efficiency for transferring house heat to the pool water.

Not only that, but it should make the AC more efficient than it being air cooled. So not only are you not paying for pool heat, but you're saving money on regular AC costs!

Here is the guy I was talking about who installed it. He's in Atlanta, says he can crank his 12,000 gallon pool up to 94. Out in the desert I expect it would work even better. Hot tub pool night, for free? FPH - Hotspot Energy Install Begins!

Or this, from here: Hotspot FPH AC heat reclamation pool heater - a review!

A compressor only pumping 100 psi will use WAY less energy than a compressor pumping 300 psi! Again, way better than a second unit, it saves you money on AC while heating pool. That's like getting PAID to heat your pool!
Atlanta :) you have my attemtion
I wonder how far is doable. My outside units are probably 50' form my pool pad.
That temping for sure but with weird stuff going on at work my wallet is in quarantine
 

cowboycasey

Gold Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 3, 2013
4,283
Fletcher, OK
you would think with the amount of pools and air conditioners a company like carrier would come up with an air conditioner with this built in and it has 2 inch pipe connections already there... Take an 18 seer AC to 25/30 seer...
 
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wayner

LifeTime Supporter
May 31, 2012
539
Toronto, ON
you would think with the amount of pools and air conditioners a company like carrier would come up with an air conditioner with this built in and it has 2 inch pipe connections already there... Take an 18 seer AC to 25/30 seer...
Exactly - this just makes SO much sense as all summer many of us are trying to get heat out of our house and add heat to our pool water. Exchanging the heat between the two is such an obvious thing to do and is very envrionmentally friendly as you are reducing the need to burn gas to heat your pool and burn coal, gas, etc to create the electricity to run your AC.
 

Stoopalini

Gold Supporter
Jun 8, 2020
408
Central Texas
I really wish I had known about FPH when I was building my pool. I would have added a 2" loop from the pool equipment pad to my heatpump equipment pad. But now I have a concrete deck in between the two ... so it would take quite a lot to get pipes run :(