Pool owners LOVE green pools. Crazy statement if the “green” you're thinking about is unclean, algae-filled water. But when “green” means eco-friendly, a “green” pool is something homeowners should aspire to have in their yards.
Why should I build or upgrade to an energy efficient pool?
You’ll save money. Energy-efficient pool appliances always pay for themselves in reduced electric bills, and then continue to save money for years to come. By choosing pool equipment such a variable speed pump or pool cover, and by establishing good habits like lowering the pool heater when not in use and proper preventative maintenance, costs to a pool owner can be greatly decreased.
Almost all of a pool’s heat loss—about 95 percent—occurs at the surface, mostly through evaporation to the air and radiation to the sky. By using a pool cover to prevent heat and water loss, the amount of chemical water treatment will also be reduced. A multispeed or energy efficient pool pump can also significantly reduce the power consumption of a swimming pool by over 65%.
Did you know that some states offer tax incentives and rebates for homeowners that purchase energy efficient pool appliances? Check to see what incentives and rebates are available in your state..
With a combination of pool products and good preventative maintenance habits, you can improve the heating and energy efficiency of your swimming pool. Variable drive pool pumps reduce utility costs.
You can save energy and maintain a comfortable swimming pool temperature by using a smaller, higher efficiency pump and by operating it less. On average, an energy efficient pump will use 30-45% less energy than that of a standard pump. The difference over a season can be immense. Pumps now come in two-speed, four-speed, and variable-speed models, so you can turn the speed down for regular daily use saving a lot of energy, and use higher settings for more thorough, less frequent cleanings. New energy-efficient pumps also move the water more efficiently for further savings. Since pumps circulate the water to keep it clean, the better they work, the less a filter has to work.Visit www.pentairpool.com/pumpcalc to see how much money you could save by switching to an IntelliFlo variable speed pump.
Pentair Water Pool and Spa® was the first to introduce variable speed technology with their IntelliFlo® pumps over 5 years ago. Today, IntelliFlo continues to lead the way, out-selling all other variable speed brands combined. Their ultra-efficient permanent magnet motor design reduces noise and vibration for greater efficiency and longer pump life. 8 programmable speed settings ensure minimum flow requirements are being used for every pool task – filtering, heating, cleaning, spa-jets and more – to optimize performance and minimize energy use. In fact, with IntelliFlo technology, pool owners can save $620 to $1,360 each year compared to other pumps.
A good pool cover will save energy and water. It can keep the water in your pool an average of 10 degrees warmer, which can cut summertime pool heating costs by up to 90 percent. A cover reduces water and chemical evaporation by up to 70 percent, saving nearly a thousand gallons of water per month. A cover also helps keep your pool clean, which means you'll have to run your filter pump less often, saving even more energy.
In addition to a pool cover, there are other ways to help keep the cost of heating your pool to a minimum while you still enjoy a comfortable water temperature. Make use of solar energy by locating your pool in the sunniest part of your yard. If possible, screen it from the cooling, prevailing wind with existing structures such as the house or garage, or add a solidly built fence as a windbreak. The water temperature you desire for your swimming pool not only affects the size of the pool's heater, but also your heating costs if use a gas or heat pump pool heater. Heating your pool with solar energy is by far the most energy-efficient method. If you buy a gas or electric heater, check the yellow-and-black Energy Guide label on the appliance. It shows relative energy-efficiency according to tests by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Pool water temperatures typically range from 78ºF to 82ºF. The energy consumption for each degree rise in temperature will cost 10%–30% more in energy costs, depending on your location. In warmer climates, this percentage is higher because of the relatively low cost of heating a pool at 78ºF.
Buy automatic timers for both your pool heater and pump. This will allow you to run them in several short cycles during the day, which is more effective than running them once continuously for several hours a day.
Maintain efficient daily operations. Turn down the pool heater when the pool is not in use and maintain appropriate water temperatures when in use (78°-80° for active swimming, 82°-84° for recreational use). Raising the water temperature just 1°F can costs an additional 10 - 30%, depending on your location. Keep a thermometer in the pool to help determine the temperature that is best for your pool and mark the "comfort settings" on the thermostat dial to avoid accidental overheating. Backwash the pool filter only as much as necessary to avoid wasting water and energy and be sure to keep drain systems clear to allow the free flow of water. By far, the most energy efficient lights you can get for the pool are LED or solar powered.
It is also possible to make your spa energy efficient. Portable spas are more energy efficient than in-the-ground spas because they are better insulated and usually have covers. If you have a typical portable spa, your heater will heat water 10 degrees in about 8 hours. If you use your spa once a week, lowering the temperature 3 degrees when not in use will save you approximately 5-10% of your spa heating costs; if you use the spa less often, your savings could be even greater. Don't run the jets unless you are using your spa. The mixture of water and air is great for relaxing the muscles, but it cools the water quickly. Spa covers are important. Be sure to leave the cover on until you are ready to use your spa and replace when you're finished. Remember that the heat that escapes is the heat you must pay to replace.
To support your efforts to make your pool and spa as economical and eco-friendly as possible, below are some changes you can make that help conserve energy and water while reducing your operating costs.
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