It’s that time of year again — swimming pool time — and everyone is eager to dive in. Yet no one wants to jump into a frigid swimming pool whose average temperature may be a chilly 60-something degrees. Because water has such a high density, it takes more energy from the sun to heat up than other materials like metal. So how does one heat up a pool quickly in order to have more play time?
Gas Pool Heater: Maybe not the more energy efficient pool heater available, but the advantage of a gas heater over heat pumps is that they speed up the heating processes quicker than any other heating process. Unfortunately because they are not energy efficient, gas pool heaters can be very expensive to operate. Word to the wise would be to use it sparingly and have an alternative method.
Solar Cover: If one doesn’t maintain their pool properly, it could end up cutting it’s lifespan in half. One of the best ways to extend a pool’s life is to cover it, and why not heat it up during the process? Also known as a solar blanket (think of what people put on their front window in the car), this large sheet of plastic could be the best pool heating solution and the most energy efficient pool heater for those not looking to spend much money. The cover also prevents evaporation from taking place — thus preventing the need to use more water.
Heat Pumps: The traditional, got-to method of heating a pool. In most climates, if the homeowner doesn’t take care of their pool for up to three weeks, it could turn green with algae. Having a heat pump will help churn the water and keep it less stagnant. Like the gas heater, it is not the most energy efficient pool heater on the market, but it works by gathering warm air surrounding the pool and compresses it.
Floor Return Lines: Another option would be to to take advantage of the return lines which return water to the swimming pool that has been collected through the plumbing system. Water from floor return lines enters the pool from the bottom where the water is coolest. Because heat rises, this newly released warm water will rise from the bottom, thus heating all layers of the pool.
To ensure proper temperature control, always test pool water at least once or twice per week. It is also best to use a proper cleaning agent to ensure no algae growth.