Are you looking for a way to save money for heating your pool? One of the best ways to do it is to buy a good quality solar pool cover.
Since there are so many different types of solar pool covers, also known as solar blankets, pool blankets, solar covers, domes, and thermal blankets, it is not surprising that choosing the best and most efficient one for your needs can be quite tricky.
Read on to find out what the different types of solar pool covers are, how they work, and how to choose the best one to help lower your energy costs, help you save water and chemicals for your pool, and also help the environment.
With a good solar pool cover, you can extend the swimming season with several weeks and sometimes even months.
The different solar pool cover types
Here are the main types of solar pool covers that are being offered on the market in 2020:
Bubble pool covers
Also known as bubble solar covers, these are some of the most affordable ones you can buy. They consist of hundreds of small bubbles that help trap the heat of the pool water inside the pool when it is not in use. They also protect it from elements like leaves, debris and bugs, and reduce the evaporation of the pool’s water and added chemicals by about 95%.
The bubble pool covers are transparent and let through the sun heat, so they can help heat up the water in the swimming pool by up to 15 degrees Fahrenheit in days with consistent sunlight.
They are usually lightweight, easy to adjust to the shape of the pool, and can be trimmed and stored easily.
On the other hand, they are not suitable for use as safety covers.
Solar sun rings
These covers are designed and made with UV-resistant vinyl, which helps reduce the water and chemical evaporation and also helps retain the heat in the pool when it is not in use. These are not as efficient as other solar pool blankets, but are easy to install and will help you reduce your costs for heating the pool.
These are designed and made to help heat up the water in above ground pools with maximum energy efficiency and ecologically.
They help extend the swimming season, reduce the cost for heating and adding water and chemicals to the pool, and will keep any leaves, bugs and other elements out of the pool.
Solar domes can also double as safety covers for your swimming pool to keep your children and pets safe when it is not in use or when it is not being supervised.
Liquid solar covers
These are chemical-based, liquid and invisible covers that are applied to the water in the pool. These liquid covers help reduce the evaporation of the water by up to 40% and are inexpensive and biodegradable.
On the downside, they do not protect the water from debris, bugs, and leaves, and cannot be used as safety covers.
Features to look for when shopping for the best solar pool cover
Before going ahead and purchasing a solar pool cover, you may want to consider the following features to keep in mind, in order to make an informed decision and buy the best one for your needs:
The price and brand
The various solar covers can cost from under $50 up to $1,000 and more. The price depends on the type of cover you choose, the materials used, the durability of the cover, the size, and shape, as well as on the brand.
It makes sense to invest your hard-earned money in a brand which you know can be trusted, and a manufacturer who offers some type of warranty for the product.
The type of cover and materials used
Different solar covers are made of different materials. The most common ones, namely the bubble covers and solar rings, are made of polyethylene or polypropylene with different thickness ranges from 8 to 16 gauge.
Make sure you choose a cover that is easy to remove and put on the pool with or without a reel, especially if you are planning on using the pool on a daily basis.
Bubble covers are lightweight and efficient for heating the pool, and insulating the heat inside it. They are usually UV resistant, but they are not as durable as other types of materials.
You should pick a solar blanket that can cover the entire pool with some overlapping if you want it to be efficient.
Some of the covers we have picked for you can be trimmed in order to fit pools with non-standard shapes and sizes.
Others are specifically designed for certain pool types, shapes, and sizes, so make sure you get all the measurements before you buy a solar pool cover.
The thicker the solar pool cover, the more hear it will be able to retain. The thickness of the different pool blankets can vary from 8 to 16 mils, or from 800 to 1,600 gauges depending on the type and material used.
Thicker solar pool covers are heftier and won’t be blown away when the weather is windy.
But then again, heavier covers are harder to roll up, fold and store away. Plus, they are usually more expensive than the thinner and lighter ones.
The different solar pool covers come in various color options. The bubble covers are usually clear, blue, or silver, while solar rings can come with different prints. The blue covers absorb the heat better, the clear ones let the sun heat through better, and silver or blue ones will reflect the heat from the water back inside the pool at night or when it is cloudy.
In general, you can expect that all of the solar pool covers are UV-resistant, so they will not be damaged from the scorching sunlight.
Clear ones can last for up to 10 years, while others will probably last for up to 6 years of use during the swimming seasons.
You can find solar pool covers in all types of shapes, patterns, and designs. The most common ones look like bubble wrap, but there are some which have hexagon or diamond-like figures, some have smooth surfaces, and there are dome-shaped covers with doors and windows as well.
The best solar pool covers for 2020
The Sun2Solar Clear 33ft. Solar Cover from the 1600 Series is the best solar pool cover money can buy in 2020.
The innovative design of this solar pool cover includes thousands of bubbles which collectively absorb and retain the heat, to keep the water in the pool nice and warm even through the chilly nights and days.
The cover comes in clear and blue translucent color options, so it allows for the UV rays to pass through and penetrate the water underneath the cover and heat it up.
This superb pool cover helps prevent up to 95% of the evaporation of the water from the pool, and thus helps the environment and your wallet by saving water. It will also protect your pool from falling leaves and other debris.
With a solar pool cover like this one by Sun2Solar, you can readily jump into the water of your pool first thing in the morning without that cautious toe-dip needed.
The highly efficient pool cover comes in various sizes suitable for round pools from 8 feet up to 33 feet.
You can additionally trim the cover to fit the unique shape of your pool easily, without the trimming affecting the warranty offered by the manufacturer.
The cover has to be placed with the bubbles facing downwards into the water for the best heating and protection results.
Overall, this is the most efficient and versatile of all solar pool covers we have reviewed for 2020.
This Standard 8 Mil Blue Solar Blanket by In the Swim is another superb accessory that will help you save tons of money for heating and cleaning your pool, as well as for refilling it with water due to rapid evaporation.
The solar pool cover is affordable and comes in various sizes suitable for round pools from 12 feet up to 33 feet.
With the Standard 8 Mil solar pool cover, you can expect to reach a higher temperature of your pool water by 8 to 10 degrees following 5 to 7 days of sunlight when the blanket cover is on.
It will also help reduce water and chemical loss due to evaporation from the pool when it is not in use.
Another advantage of this inexpensive pool cover is that it will keep it clean from falling leaves and other debris, and thus save you time and hassle for cleaning it too.
Thanks to the efficiency of this reasonably priced solar pool cover, you can extend the swimming season significantly by maintaining a warm temperature for longer.
The blanket can be trimmed to fit the shape of your pool.
It is sold with a 3 year warranty.
It is also available in Premium 12 Mil, Premium Plus 12 Mil, and in Ultra 16 Mil versions, which have even better water warming abilities. In fact, the Ultra 16 Mil blanket by In the Swim has a quick heating feature and offers excellent insulation for added energy efficiency.
Best budget-friendly option
The cover is made of a resilient 160-micron material which helps keep the water warmer and can help prolong the swimming season.
It also will reduce water evaporation and loss by 95% which will save money for water, for chemicals, and will also help the environment.
The cover will help insulate the pool and maintain the temperature during the night or on colder days.
It will also keep any leaves and other particles out of the water when it is not in use.
The affordable solar pool cover is 17’8” x 8’4” in size, weighs only 5.5 lbs. and comes with a nifty carrying and storage bag, so you can easily fold it up and store it away for the winter.
For a price of under $40, this is the best solar pool cover you can find on the market for 2020.
The rest of the best solar pool covers for 2020
The Thermo-Tex Solar Pool Cover is another top quality blanket for your swimming pool, which will help you reduce your operating costs and enjoy your outdoor pool for longer every year, even when the season is over.
The blanket is made of a premium quality UV-stabilized polymer, which helps protect it from getting damaged by the UV light of the sun as well as from the chemicals in the water.
The cover consists of thousands of bubbles that help retain the temperature, and at the same time, allow for the sun rays to pass through and warm up the water in the pool.
The cover will help maintain the temperature in your pool even when the summer is officially over, so you can enjoy a couple or more weeks of swimming even when the season is over.
The cover will also help reduce the evaporation of the water and the chemicals in it, which will save you a lot of money every season.
It also helps keep the pool clean from falling leaves, branches, bugs, and other debris.
The cover is sized 16 x 32 feet and is light in weight (16 lbs.), so you can easily remove it and put it on your pool without the need for special reels.
It is offered with a 3-year warranty by the manufacturer.
If you are ready to splurge out on a more sophisticated solar pool cover, then we recommend the premium quality Sun Dome Pool Cover by Swimline.
This pool cover consists of 16 panels, top rails, and uprights, which will allow you to extend the swimming season significantly and will also save you money for heating, water, chemicals and cleaning of the pool throughout the season.
The high-end solar pool cover can heat up the water and the air temperature over the pool significantly by using only sustainable solar heat. In fact, you can expect the water to be heated up by up to 20 degrees Fahrenheit with solar heat used only, and the air in the dome to be heated up by 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
It helps prevent the evaporation of the water during the hot days and also keeps the water clean from elements and debris.
The dome is easy to set up and put down by two people and has a door and three windows.
It is designed to fit 24 feet sized above ground swimming pools.
The dome is made of premium quality aluminum tubes used to support the crystal clear 12 gauge vinyl panels.
The door and windows are easily closed and opened with durable double zippers. There are also fiberglass screened flaps for better ventilation.
The bottom part is made of double-thick 24 gauge vinyl with grommets and added neoprene shock cords to keep the dome safely in place.
It can withstand wind and rain, and you can continue enjoying your above ground swimming pool up until late October and even later with the help of this energy-efficient solar heating dome.
This bundle by Sun2Solar includes a 33 foot round solar cover blanket from the 1200 Series, along with a 6-pack of sturdy grommets.
It is suitable both for in-ground and above ground pools sized 33 feet but is also available in smaller sizes down to 12 feet.
The specially designed solar blanket consists of air-filled bubbles that will float on the surface of the pool and will help accumulate the heat from the sun and transfer it to the water.
The cover also helps insulate the heat inside the pool during the night and when the pool is not in use.
Thanks to its transparent construction, this affordable solar blanket will let through the heat from the sun rays and will help heat the water without the need for electrical power or an added heater.
It will also help minimize the loss of water from evaporation, and along with it will help save money for the chlorine and other chemicals that evaporate along with the water.
You can easily trim this solar pool cover to fit the size and shape of your in-ground or above ground pool.
Thanks to the added grommets in the bundle, you can help keep it safely on top of the pool when it is not in use, and at the same time make removing or moving it across the pool when needed.
The blanket for conserving electricity and water comes in clear and blue color options.
A solar pool cover may seem like overkill if you have a pool that you use only occasionally, but in fact, it is beneficial, money-saving, and time-saving accessory.
These nifty covers are affordable and will help keep the water in the pool warm even when there is no added heater, and when the sun is down or it cloudy.
Also, a good pool cover will help prevent the evaporation of much of the water in the pool and also of most of the chemicals which you have added to keep the water safe and sanitary for use.
A good quality solar pool cover should be able to heat the water in the pool without the use of other energy sources than the sun.
It will also keep the water clean from falling leaves, insects, and debris when the pool is not in use.
It is an environmentally friendly and money-saving accessory which is a must-have for any outdoor swimming pool owner, no matter the size of the pool, and no matter whether it is an in-ground or above-ground one.
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Last update on 2021-01-08 at 14:05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API