How Solar Pool Heating Systems Work

You can enjoy your swimming pool year-round because solar pool heating systems exist! They are an eco-friendly, effective, and inexpensive way to heat your pool even in the coldest months.  Discover the significant differences with each solar heater product and decide which can work seamlessly with your pool equipment.

Types of Solar Pool Heating Systems

Before you consider the different types of solar pool heating systems, first consider your site’s solar resource. This will determine the efficiency of any of these systems:

  • Solid Panels With Straps

These are also known as monolithic panels and are often the cheapest solar option because they have low production costs. However, they demand more penetrations in the roof than other systems and are connected to one another with rubber hoses and metal clamps that have to be tightened on a regular basis.

  • Individual Tube Panels

These are more expensive than monolithic panels but carry some advantages such as:

  • Handling higher wind loads with fewer roof penetrations
  • Requires no straps to hold them down
  • Durable and leak-free when properly installed
  • Requires no maintenance tightening of panel clamps
  • Have UV-protected polypropylene clamps with internal o-ring that operate through the life of the system without any maintenance
  • Lowest back pressure rating in the market that eliminates high energy bills
  • Can be installed on rooftops, porches, or even the ground
  • Glazed or Non-glazed

These are categories by which solar pool heaters are placed depending on the climate where they are intended.

  • Non-glazed systems are more affordable and more efficient for solar pool heating systems in warm climates. They don’t have a glass covering or glazing but are made of heavy-duty rubber or plastic treated with an ultraviolet light inhibitor.
  • Polymer glazed systems are more expensive because of the copper tubing on an aluminum plate with an iron-tempered glass covering. They work best for colder climates or for higher temperature needs

How Pools Gets Heated Through  a Solar Pool Heating System

A solar pool heating system typically includes the following elements:

  1. Solar collector which is the device through which pool water is circulated to be heated by the sun
  1. Filter that removes debris before water is pumped through the collector
  1. Pump that circulates water through the filter and collector and back to the pool
  1. Flow Control Valve which is an automatic or manual device that diverts pool water through the solar collector

The process of heating pool water generally involves setting the desired water temperature on the solar control panel and transferring energy from the solar collectors into the water that passes through them and then bringing the water back to the pool. The process is continued until the desired temperature of the pool is achieved and the pool’s filter pump shuts off. The entire process is achieved with the following steps:

  • The desired water temperature is set and the sensor determines when the system turns on and starts heating water.
  • Coldwater is then sent from the pool by the pool pump through a series of channels in the solar collectors.
  • The solar collectors use solar energy to heat the cool water as it moves through the panels.
  • The water is returned to the pool after it reaches a significant temperature gain or after it is heated at a certain temperature.

Cost of a Solar Pool Heating System

Solar pool heaters are becoming a trend for homeowners and in commercial settings as well because they generally last longer than gas and/or pump heaters. In fact, their prices are even fairly competitive with other kinds of pool heaters. 

A solar pool heating system usually costs between $3,000 and $4,000 for the materials and the installation. This provides a payback of between 1.5 and 7 years making it a worthwhile investment.

What to Consider in Installing a Solar Pool Heating System

With the most efficient, eco-friendly, and economical method of heating your pool with a solar pool heating system, you should also consider many factors like pool size, local ambient temperatures, ideal water temperature, and the sun’s position.  

Choose professional installers like solar pool heating systems who have been installing solar pool heating systems under all weather conditions so that you are assured that your system will work for you.