Are you looking to bring down your energy bills? Solar energy is the way to go then. Suppose you own a swimming pool and want to use it all year round. You need a solar thermal system to heat your swimming pool.

You might be surprised to know that at least 29 million homes generate electricity using solar panels. Since most people like to have their pool heated at around 28° Celsius, solar thermal heating is needed.

Are you wondering why you need solar pool heating and how they work? Keep reading this article to find information about solar pool heating.

Why Should You Use Solar Panels Near Swimming Pools

In the UK, most areas receive sufficient heat from the sun, more so in the south of the country. However, during the winter season, it can get really cold, and often during the summer season, the pools’ temperatures dip to 20° Celsius. As mentioned above, people generally prefer the pools’ temperature to be 28° Celsius.

So, you need a solar pool heater that has short payback periods and helps cut costs on your energy bills. Plus, these heating systems generally don’t need much controlling or monitoring as they are automatically controlled. Moreover, if you don’t have a solar panel installed, your pool’s water can get cool as it loses heat via evaporation.

Pros and Cons Of Solar Pool Heating System

To convince you why you need such panel installation near your swimming pool, here are some pros and cons of a solar thermal heating system.


  • Solar heating is environmentally friendly.
  • Once installed, there is little to no running costs
  • Most solar pool heaters have a life expectancy of at least ten years
  • Solar pool heating works well when it warms the pool water that is used to top up your swimming pool
  • You’ll find swimming pool solar heating the most efficient in the summer months without requiring much maintenance
  • You can use solar pool heaters in commercial and residential spaces
  • The solar collectors will function even if it is cloudy conditions as the sun’s thermal energy remains unaffected
  • Solar pool heaters are easy to install
  • If you are in the south of the country, you can swim in your swimming pool for all 12 months with a solar pool heater installation.
  • It will maintain the temperature of your pool


  • You cant control the temperature like you would a thermostat. It depends on the sun’s position.
  • Most affordable installations require direct sunlight to fall on the panel’s surface.
  • An ideal ground in terms of size and position is required for installing the solar thermal system near your swimming pool.

How Do Swimming Pool Solar Panels Work

Now you know why you require these panels to heat your swimming pool. You might wonder how the panels work for a swimming pool, isn’t it?

Solar thermal system for your swimming pools is easy and efficient. Essentially, a solar panel system consists of four parts:

Swimming Pool Solar Panels

  • The Collector: This is the main component of the solar heating systems. The collector is mostly installed on the roof of your property, and it contains reinforced glass pipes that capture the radiation emitted by the sun that is transferred into heat.
  • A Pump: The pump circulates the heat transfer fluid between the panels and the cylinders. It is generally powered by a photovoltaic cell.
  • A Valve: Valves are used to control the flow of liquid in the pipes. Different types of valves come in a panel to control the pressure, temperature, and flow of the fluid in the solar heating system.
  • A Filter: Filter removes debris from your pool water. In addition, the liquid that flows through the filter is what is diverted to the solar heating system.

Essentially, a solar swimming pool heating system works through solar energy. It raises your swimming pool’s water temperatures by 5° Celsius by harnessing the energy of the sun.

Your pool remains heated longer with a solar heater to enjoy your swimming pool for a long time. The mechanism is quite simple.

First, the water flows via the filter, which eliminates debris. The pump would lead the water into the collectors that help heat it efficiently. This warmed water is sent back into your swimming pool. Flow control valves exist that diverts the water to the collector.

A panel near your swimming pool that works using the sun’s heat help you warm your swimming pools without much maintenance.

Types Of Swimming Pool Solar Panel

You can choose several solar thermal panels based on the type of collector and panel. Below are some of them:

Unglazed Solar Collector

Price-wise, an unglazed collector is the least expensive and simplest option. The collector surface does not have a glass flat plate layer; instead, they are made of rubber or black plastic.

Unglazed collectors consist of an absorber that can withstand ultraviolet light.

These collectors may prove less efficient in cold climates. However, their cost-efficiency has been proven as they transfer heat well and their prices are lower.

Glazed Solar Collector

Glazed panel prices are higher, and they prove costly. They are made of aluminium, iron-tempered glass, and copper.

Their efficiency is higher in colder climates, and you may continue using them all year round to heat your swimming pools with the sun’s energy. Plus, they are used for heating fluids for domestic purposes too.

Individual Tube Panel

Few companies manufacture the tube panel. Their cost is on the higher end. However, they prove more advantageous.

They handle higher wind speeds with fewer roof or site penetrations. Installing them is easier and requires only clamps on the header’s length. The individual tube panel system is more durable, leak-free and boosts the efficiency of heating your pool.

Solid Solar Panel With Straps

They are essentially monolithic polymer panels that require more penetrations on the roof or site. Plus, they cover a larger area as you’ll be using 3-5 straps to make it sit correctly on your roof or site.

The price of this type of panel is the cheapest, and their performance is enhanced when the sunlight is hitting directly on the panel. So, it might perform better in the hottest part of the year.

Generally, these pool heater systems require more maintenance compared to the other pool solar thermal systems.

Tips To Use Solar Panels Efficiently

While using solar thermal systems to heat your pool, you might want to consider the following conditions and tips to boost its efficiency and environmental friendliness:

Swimming Pool

  • Importantly use pool covers for preserving heat and lowering evaporation. They are fundamental to the solar heating system
  • Ensure your panels are south-facing and are not in the shaded part of your house
  • Make sure installation size is at least 30 to 60 per cent of the area of the pool or more.
  • Try getting Dura+ heat pumps that can help you save 83% of the cost of operating your solar thermal system
  • Make sure you place your pool solar heating system in your house in an area close to the pool.
  • Ensure you buy a pool solar thermal system that is already efficient. While the initial cost of buying such a system will be high, it will be worth it in the long run as your energy prices will drop considerably.
  • Contact an expert who will take their time, knows the solar thermal system, understands what is required, and has years of experience installing the system.
  • While the systems require little maintenance, they require regular cleaning as dust and dirt accumulating on the surface can reduce efficiency.
  • If you use energy management software, you’ll be able to monitor the output of your solar panel and ensure its ideal efficiency.


The requirements of solar thermal heating systems for swimming pools has increased dramatically. With more information available, people are aware of the benefits of using solar energy systems to heat their pools.

Moreover, you don’t even have to maintain it much or manually run it; several automation options are available.

So, understand the different solar panels available and choose the right one for your swimming pool. Contact a professional solar panel installer to help you install it and guide you regarding additional requirements for a smooth functioning heating system. Then, you can enjoy your pool all year round.