Is there any reason to not be energy efficient with your swimming pool? Probably not, right? Although there is an upfront cost for much of the pool equipment you’d need to upgrade and update your swimming pool to more energy-efficient and ecologically friendly. Ask your pool contractor, though, how long it would take to see a return on your investment in the upgrades and updates to more energy-efficient pool equipment.
There are a couple of reasons many pool and hot tub owners might consider upgrading and updating to more energy-efficient pool equipment:
- You’re concerned with the environmental impact of your swimming pool as a whole
- You want to save money on operating costs and utility bills
Reasons To Be More Energy Efficient With Your Pool
Cost reduction is the number one reason pool and hot tub owners give for wanting to be more energy-efficient. The equipment you use in your house — washing machines, refrigerators, etc. — that are more energy efficient will save money. Money saving is the bottom line.
When you use a variable speed pool pump and use a swimming pool cover, you’re on your way to money- and energy-savings. A variable speed swimming pool works harder when it needs to (vacuuming) and works slower when it doesn’t (circulating the water and chemicals) and that saves money over using a single speed pump that runs at the same speed no matter what it’s doing.
Using the pool cover diligently:
- Reduces water evaporation
- Cuts back on maintenance time and costs
- Saves money on chemicals
- Traps heated water if you use a pool water heater
Energy and water savings. Did you know: 95% of the heat loss in your pool water occurs at the surface? It makes sense since there is so much surface area for the heat to be lost. This also holds true for the evaporation of the water through the surface of the pool (again, using a cover helps!)
An upgrade to an energy-efficient swimming pool pump reduces power consumption and can also save up to 60% of the cost of utilities.
Energy rebates are given by many municipalities and some manufacturer’s of pool equipment offer rebates and incentives for making the upgrades.
What can you do to have a more energy-efficient swimming pool?
There are small steps you can take to help lessen the impact on the environment by having a swimming pool.
- Prevent the evaporation of the pool water through the use of the swimming pool cover — as mentioned. You can also talk with your pool contractor about installing a windbreak. A windbreak can consist of a fence, gate or plants and trees. If you slow the rate of wind blowing across the top of the pool, you also slow the rate of evaporation and save money! The US Dept of Energy found that 70% of the total energy wasted in pools is because of water evaporation (because you need to keep refilling it). Also, for every gallon of water lost through evaporation, it uses more than 8,000 BTUs in energy. Also, a traditional swimming pool can lose up to 1 and 1 and a half inches of water a week through evaporation and/or splash out.
- Energy efficient pumps, filter and heater upgrades are worth the money you pay upfront. Invest in the most energy efficient equipment you can afford.
- Use the sun to heat the pool water. Use a solar cover to capture the heat from the sun and warm the pool water.
- A darker-colored pool finish will also absorb the rays of the sun and help warm the water.
- If you’re not going to use the pool during the week, lower the water temperature.
- If you heat the water, lower it by a degree or two — you will save money and most of the people who use the pool won’t notice.
- The best temperature for swimming is 78 degrees.
- Run the pool pump and filter in the overnight hours when there is a smaller draw on the grid and the cost of electricity is lower.
- Use LED lighting for the swimming pool. LED lights are stylish and energy-efficient.
- Automate pool operations and install timers. They aren’t actually energy-saving, but they can help assure you don’t turn on the pool equipment and forget to turn it off.
If you want to save money this summer on your pool and hot tub operations, give your pool contractor a call and he or she can work with you to make it a reality.