Most people have seen a pool blanket. Over the decades, I have heard many things said about the solar pool blanket, but most people just do not quite understand its fundamental purpose. The biggest misnomer I have heard repeatedly is that the solar blankets can raise the pool temp by 5-10 degrees. Heck, if that were true, why purchase a heater? Just get one of those solar blanket things. The fact is that a solar blanket has only one function: to slow down evaporation from your pool.
Heat is lost from your pool through evaporation. If you look at your pool on a cold morning, you will likely see a column of steam rising off the surface—all that beautiful steam is HEAT. No matter how you heat your pool (solar or electric), a pool blanket will help maintain the temperature by slowing the evaporation. The easiest way to explain it is to use the following example. What would happen if you tried to heat your house without a roof? You might feel some heat coming out of the vents, but no heat will accumulate without a roof to keep it in. Today, pool blankets come in many forms. The traditional solar pool blanket is basically heavy-duty bubble wrap. The blanket should be cut to float on the surface of the pool.
There are other ways to reduce evaporation from your pool. There are things called, “solar rings.” These are like hula-hoops with material stretched over them. Instead of handling a 15×30 blanket (which is awkward), you can buy a stack of these solar rings and throw them in the pool. They float next to each other and cover a decent portion of the pool. In addition, there are pool covers, which mount on the deck and are even safe to walk on.
This is probably a good point to mention the safety warning stickers that come on pool blankets. Since the blanket is floating on the water, there are warnings about people and pets getting trapped under the blanket. If you have a safety fence around your pool, you have already mitigated much of the hazard. The Excel Solar Team urges all pool blanket owners to exercise caution when using pool blankets.
Overall, a pool blanket will retain the heat gained from your solar pool heater and increase your swimming season to nine months or more. Call Excel Solar at (321)-626-6630 to learn more about solar pool heating systems and blankets. Our team is happy to answer any of your questions!
C. Russell Moutsatsos
President of Excel Solar, Inc.
State Certified Solar Contractor (License #CVC56933)