With summer finally here, now’s a good time to think about your outdoor living. Swimming pools and their equipment use a significant amount of electricity, but there are a number of things you can do to improve the energy efficiency of your pool.
A good place to start is to reduce the amount of time the filter runs, using as little time as possible while still keeping the pool clean. Usually 4 to 6 hours per day during the summer is sufficient. This action alone may reduce annual electrical consumption by 40 to 50 percent. Consider running your pool pump during off-peak hours which can help reduce demand for electricity during a time when the cost of power is at a premium.
Automatic pool cleaners should be used 3 to 4 hours daily during the summer. Start the pool sweep 15 minutes or more after the filter pump is running and stop the sweep 15 or more minutes before the filter pump. Use a wall brush and leaf skimmer frequently.
Make sure you have an accurate pool thermometer and keep the pool temperature at 78 degrees or lower. If you only use your pool during the weekends, reduce the water temperature by 8 to 10 degrees during the week. Shelter your pool by using hedges, cabanas and fencing as windbreaks.
Finally, you may want to consider an active solar pool heating system. With this system, filtered pool water is pumped into the tubing of the collector panels. The sun’s heat is transferred from the panels to the water and the heated water is returned to the pool. Automatic controls are available to turn on the system when there is enough sun to heat the pool water and off when no heat is needed.