There are three main types of pool covers currently available in the Australian market. There are advantages and disadvantages to each. Find out which pool cover is best for your pool?
We all know that pool covers are really good at reducing evaporation of water. What you might not know is that the water in heated swimming pools evaporates more than twice the pools volume every year! Thus if you have a heated swimming pool, a pool cover is a necessity rather than a choice.
Solar or Bubble Blanket
A good quality solar or bubble blanket will eliminate about 90% of water loss from your pool. It is however not effective at retaining heat.
A solar or bubble blanket does not really prevent the heat loss that occurs over night when the outside temperatures drop.
A solar or bubble blanket typically lasts only a few years when used on a heated swimming pool.
The main advantages of this type of pool cover is that it is the most affordable and that it is also very effective in reducing evaporation of water out of your pool.
Thermal Blanket Pool Covers
A thermal blanket (also known as a thermal doona) is twice as effective in retaining heat in your pool water as would be a bubble or solar blanket.
They are also more attractive. As the thermal blanket is multi-layered and foam-based it lies flatter in the pool than a bubble cover – and it also holds its shape better.
Whilst more expensive than a solar or bubble blanket they will pay for themselves in terms of less heating costs if you are using gas or electricity to heat your swimming pool.
Thermal blankets or doonas are light, flexible and tough. Because they are light they are also easy to handle which is important if you don’t have a pool roller.
Thermal or doona blankets are comprised of ultra violet stabilised cross-lined foam together with bounded outer laminates. If you obtain one of these pool covers you can yourself cut the blanket to fit your pool. You can also order a custom shaped and cut blanket to the specific measurements of your swimming pool.
In comparison to bubble blankets, thermal blankets do not require as much maintenance. Also thermal blankets unlike solar covers are safe to leave uncovered in the sun.
Another advantage of thermal blankets is that they block out sunlight. Thus this reduces the likelihood of algae growth in your pool, meaning you can use fewer chemicals to keep your pool clean. This saves you not only money but is also eco-friendly.
Thermal doonas are more expensive than solar blankets; however they last much longer, usually around eight to ten years.
Polycarbonate Pool Slat Cover
A polycarbonate cover is more heat resistant and buoyant then solar or thermal blankets. Polycarbonate pool slat covers are also hail proof.
A polycarbonate cover should save you about 30% off your yearly water bill as they are very effective in reducing evaporation.
Polycarbonate slat covers are electronically controlled and are more durable than the solar, bubble or thermal blanket options.
They are also wonderfully easy to use; just flick a switch and the cover either retracts or extends out over your pool.
The disadvantage of this type of pool cover is that they are more expensive than bubble cover or thermal blankets.
Pool Covers for Heated Pools
A standard swimming pool is around eight by four metres and contains 40,000 litres of water. With a heated pool evaporating over twice their volume each year that is around 80,000 litres of water. This amount of water often forms about thirty percent of your household water bill. Thus having a heated pool without a pool cover will really impact upon your annual water bill.
If you are heating a pool using gas or electricity then once again a pool cover is a necessity rather than a choice. A pool cover will save you an enormous amount of money in terms of electricity and gas usage to keep your pool at an optimum temperature.
Eco Solar Heating – Pool Covers