We had a question about whether you should leave a solar blanket on a pool all of the time or take it off every day, whether we are using the pool or not. The short answer is, leave solar blanket on as much as you can but you also should let your pool breathe a bit every day. Remove the solar blanket for an hour once a day.
We have had a pool for the past 23 years and have used a solar blanket for every one of those years to keep our pool nice and warm for swimming. It has worked out great for us and it is well worth the cost of a solar blanket compared to heating with a gas heater. But back to our question of whether you should leave a solar blanket on the pool or not all day long.
Based on our experience the answer is yes, however there are some issues you need to be aware of if you are going to do this. The practical side of leaving your solar blanket on the pool is whether you take the time to monitor the temperature and also the level of chlorine in your pool. If you let the water get too warm and the chlorine level too low, you risk the growth of green algae in your pool. In fact our pool turned totally green one year because I forgot to check the chlorine level. It took us 2 weeks to get the pool clear again.
Solar Blanket Schedule
This has been one of the best summers for a pool and so far we have had no problems at all. This is our schedule for the pool which has worked well for us:
- Pump is turned on to circulate the water from 6:30am to 9:30am
- Solar blanket is removed around lunch time
- Chlorine level is checked around 6pm
- Pump is turned on to circulate the water from 6pm until around 10pm
- Chlorine and algaecide are added as needed
- Chlorine shock treatment is completed once every 3 to 5 days depending on the temperature of the water.
- Solar blanket is place back on after we are finished swimming in the evening
The message here is daily monitoring of the chlorine level in the water or at least every 2nd day. It is very important to not let the water get cloudy ever. Once it does it is only a matter of hours before it goes green on you. Check the sides of the pool daily and if you begin to see green algae forming on the sides of the pool or the water begins to look a little bit cloudy , it is time to take action.
With the solar blanket on the pool so much, the water temperature rises quickly so daily monitoring is required. Once the blanket is removed and people are swimming, the water is being circulated more and mixed as well so there is no need to have the poop pump on all day long for private pools. However if you are the type to forget about some of these steps then it is best to use an automatic chlorinater and leave the pool pump on all of the time.
An added benefit of leaving the solar blanket on with the pool pump off is that the top foot of water gets incredibly warm. this makes it very nice to enter the pool and swim in the top foot of water. This warm temperature is really great when the air temperature begins to cool as you get closer to the fall and day time temperatures are lower. Of course after a few minutes the water mixes and the overall pool assumes the average temperature of the water.
This has been our experience of leaving the solar blanket on the pool for long periods of time. With Solar Blankets you can save energy and also enjoy a warm pool too. It really does depend on the sun and if you only have cloudy rainy days there is not much to be gained by a solar blanket or even heating the pool with a heater. Comments are welcome.