Solar Pool Covers
Swimming pools are high-maintenance additions to your home, and they particularly impact your electricity bills. One way to save money and energy is to control evaporation in both indoor and outdoor pools by using a pool cover.Outdoor swimming pools absorb up to 85 percent of direct solar energy from the water’s surface. However, when not in direct sunlight, pools lose energy and warmth in cooler air. A solar pool cover optimizes solar energy absorption and conserves heat by sealing it in the water. It can raise the temperature of a pool as much as 8 degrees Celsius within a week’s time.
Types of Solar Pool Covers
Even a sheet of heavy plastic helps capture the heat of direct sunlight on an outdoor pool, but solar pool covers have air chambers that magnify solar energy before emitting it to cooler water below. Solar covers are passive devices that capture energy by being positioned in sunlight, and then help insulate the surface of the pool with trapped air to minimize heat loss after the sun goes down.
Solar pool covers, also called bubble covers or solar blankets, are the least expensive and easiest to handle for pool owners. Solar pool covers are made of thick plastic material with UV inhibitors, and they look like bubble packaging material, they float on the surface of the water and are customized to the shape of your swimming pool.The air bubbles that cover the surface of most solar pool covers absorb the sun’s warmth and transfer it to the cooler pool surface. The cover seals in the heat, preventing it from escaping back into the air. This process is most effective when the sun is shining directly on the water. During the night, bubbles act as insulators to hold in heat, but a solar cover does allow some warmth to escape due to basic physics. The outside of the cover becomes cooler than the inside and reverses the thermal collection process.
Bubble covers are UV resistant, which means they are better able to withstand damage from ultraviolet radiation. Nevertheless, they rarely last longer than five or six years because the sun does cause them to deteriorate.Bubble covers are lighter in weight than protective pool covers designed to keep people and animals out. Thicker covers are marginally more effective in retaining heat than thinner ones, and they stay in place better during windy conditions, but they are more cumbersome to manoeuvre. Solar pool covers do more than just trap the sun’s heat in a swimming pool. They keep out leaves, dust, and other debris that blow into an uncovered pool, and thus reduce the frequency of skimming and vacuuming chores. They minimize water evaporation and conserve water so that pool owners do not have to add water as often.