Be eco-friendly - use a solar blanket

Solar blankets are one of those inventions which have come on the back of a wave of green enthusiasm. We care about the environment and we want to do everything we can to make ourselves as energy efficient as possible.

These solar blankets are placed over the top of your swimming pool and the sun helps to heat the water. It’s an easy alternative to a heater you have to keep running at all hours.

How Does a Solar Blanket Work?

The sun shines on top of the cover. The cover is designed to absorb the sunlight and heat up. This heat energy is transferred to the water. It’s why covers are usually in black or clear plastic. Special air bubbles within the cover trap the heat so it’s forced to heat the pool water.

The covers also prevent heat from escaping the pool area. Once the heat is transferred, it slows down the rate at which it escapes. This is usable heat and it can increase water temperature by five degrees Fahrenheit per 12 hours of cover. Evaporation is further limited by the cover.

Making Your Life Easier

Solar covers do more for your pool than heating up the water. The rate at which the chemicals in the pool are removed decreases. Sunlight naturally breaks down the chlorine in the pool. The cover obscures direct sunlight somewhat.

In practice, you’ll have to refill your pool with chlorine less regularly. You’ll cut down on the amount of chlorine you’ll need to buy and transport in the process.

Installation Costs

There are two major options for systems available to you. Firstly, we have the manual system. A manual system will cost about $300. All you do is roll up the cover in a similar way to a window blind. It can be a hassle and you have to remember to do it. The handle can also be quite temperamental. You need some upper body strength for a manual cover.

An automatic system is more expensive at $1,000. Always bring in a contractor to install one of these. They’re tricky to install correctly. Once it’s been installed, putting the cover on is a matter of flicking a switch.

Danger Alert

Improper use of a cover can lead to a serious hazard. The first make people make is storing their cover at the side of the pool in direct sunlight. It’s a mistake because the cover can become scorching. If a small child or pet touches it, they could burn themselves. Moreover, the plastic itself degrades considerably.

You should always have a fence around your pool, as well, if you have small children in the yard.

These covers are difficult to get out of if you fall on top of them. If you get trapped under the cover, you’ll struggle for air. The cover reduces the oxygen levels considerably. It’s rare, but some swimmers have died due to falling in their pools and getting tangled up in their solar covers. Provide proper supervision in any case.

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This article is penned by Jane Myers, a freelance writer and a fitness enthusiast. She feels swimming is the best way to lose weight. She recommends poolproducts.com to her readers who are looking for some spectacular contemporary pool designs.

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Filed under: Living Green

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