Harnessing the power of the sun can be a cost effective and environmentally friendly way to get extra months of use from your outdoor swimming pool, year after year. Before making the commitment, however, it’s important to check whether your home is suitable for solar pool heating.
In a solar pool heating system, the pool water is pumped through solar collectors, which warm the water using the sun’s heat before returning it to the pool. These collectors can be sited on the ground, but are often placed on the roof of the house.
The more direct sunlight they can pick up, for the most hours, the more effectively solar collectors will work. Tall trees or nearby obstructions like buildings can block sunlight from the collectors, so a shady garden isn’t ideal.
To get the most exposure to direct sunlight, solar collectors should face south in the northern hemisphere, north in the southern hemisphere. Flat roofs also work well, as the collectors will point directly at the sky.
A solar heating supplier will evaluate your pool and property to work out what kind of system you need, and where. They will work out how big a surface area the collectors will need to cover, based on the size of your pool and how much sunlight the collectors will receive, and the best angle for them. Factors like your home’s latitude and the months you want to use the pool will also be considered.
If you would like to use your pool all year round, pick a glazed collector system, in which the collectors have a glass covering. This provides more effective heating in cold weather, but the collectors will be more expensive than the simpler unglazed type.
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