DIY Solar Swimming Pool Heaters
If you are the owner of a pool and would like to extend the summer hours back a little into the spring and forward a little into the fall without having to swim in freezing water, use this simple solar water warming solution. It is used in industrial settings but can easily be adapted for the home owner.
Measure the Area of Pool
Measure the square footage of your pool so you can get a general idea of how many black bird balls you need. This is not a critical measurement as any extra balls will just form another layer. The bird balls are made of a high density polyethylene but are hollow allowing them to float on the surface of the water, covering a little over 90% of the surface. Most pool manufacturers will tell you on your documentation what the surface area of your pool is. A simple math formula is pi(r) squared where "r" is the radius of the pool.
Purchase the Balls
These types of balls can be found anywhere you can buy playground balls. Typically they are around 10 centimeters in width which is about four inches. If you figure on getting 9 balls per square foot, you should have plenty to cover the surface of the pool.
Install the Swimming Pool Solar Heating Balls
When you are ready to heat you pool, just pour in the balls. They will automatically situate themselves across the surface of your pool. It will slow down evaporation, keep away the birds, reduce algae formation and slowly warm your pool water. To remove them for swimming, simply skim them off the surface with a large open weave netting bag or use a large skimming net.
Maryland resident Heide Braley is a professional writer who contributes to a variety of websites. She has focused more than 10 years of research on botanical and garden articles and was awarded a membership to the Society of Professional Journalists. Braley has studied at Pennsylvania State University and Villanova University.