Homemade Solar Pool Heater - Ideas and Tips for Making One
Are you thinking of making a homemade solar pool heater?
There are multiple reasons why people are turning toward solar energy - saving extra dollars on utilities being high on the list.
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Heating a pool is one of the areas this application can work well for those who have one. A solar heating system will save you money while being relatively inexpensive to operate.
While pool systems can be quite elaborate, they are actually pretty simple set ups using unglazed plastic collectors that in themselves are low cost. Outside of the fact that many states offer tax breaks for heating with solar, the other most affordable thing about the set up is that the pool itself acts as the thermal storage system. Aside from this, you have a pump already that can be used for circulating water through the solar collectors.
Homemade solar pool heaters are inexpensive to construct - about $100 in most cases, and are a good investment. Solar panels can be built from common materials such as plywood for the base, copper piping laid out in the pattern of a radiator, flat black paint, and acrylic sheeting. It does not even have to be water tight.
By attaching 90-degree adapters at the appropriate corners of the pipe pieces, you can bring water in and it can be sent back again. Repeat this process several times until the desired radiator style pipe set up is attained. For your homemade solar pool heater, you will want to paint everything - including the pipes, adapters and box, in flat black paint and allow it to dry. This is necessary as black absorbs the most sunlight and will as a result generate the most heat.
The top of the panel box should be covered with clear acrylic sheeting. This will allow the light to pass through without the loss of accumulated heat. This is an inexpensive method as well as being pretty low maintenance. The panel can then be hooked up to the pool's filtration system, although an adaptor may be needed to connect the pump hose to the copper piping in a water tight manner. Panels should be mounted at a 30 degree angle and pointed at the sun.
If the pool has ample size, several homemade solar pool heaters may need to be constructed and connected for the desired amount of heat required. Solar panels can be constructed in roughly two hours per panel by the average pool owner. The acrylic sheeting can be cleaned with a nonabrasive cleaner when needed to allow the necessary light required for proper heating.
Another material that can be used for your homemade solar pool heater, called poly pipe, can be attached to the base by using a few coils to form a spiral. It works well and can be purchased at most hardware, tractor supply or garden shops. It is also easy to work with and has fewer chances of leaking.
If you have a flat roof near the pool, this might also be a good possibility for mounting your solar panels in order to get the best sun's advantage.
All in all, homemade solar pool heaters are great energy savers and can be a fine addition to your swimming pool setup.
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