One of the concerns that potential pool owners have is the effect that a backyard swimming pool will have on energy consumption. It’s true that it takes a lot of energy to pump, filter, and heat such a large volume of water, but the fact is that energy efficient technology has come a long way since the early days of backyard swimming. Love your pool, love the planet, and take some time to learn about these energy saving ideas.
Swimming Pool Covers
Something as simple as regular use of a swimming pool cover can result in significant energy, water, and pool chemical savings. Pool covers are one of the cheaper ways to bring down the cost of running a swimming pool which is why we’ve placed them at the top of this list. Not only does a cover help retain water heat when the pool isn’t in use, it will play a significant role in reducing the amount of evaporation that occurs. This, in turn, reduces the amount of chemicals that need to be added to the pool to keep the water properly balanced. Automatic pool covers make covering your pool as simple as the click of a button and turn a multiple person job into something someone can do on their own. Another new product on the market to help prevent water evaporation is a virtual pool cover. A liquid, which floats on the water’s surface, is poured into the pool and acts as a chemical barrier to evaporation. It’s virtually unnoticeable to the touch while able to cut water evaporation in half.
Variable Speed Water Pumps
Although variable speed water pumps have been around for over a decade, it’s only recently that they’ve become more popular. Some of this has to do with energy saving rebates that some provinces offer. If you happen to live in such a province, the dealership will typically reduce the sticker price of the pump to reflect the rebate. And since some provinces have introduced peak time billing for electricity use, it’s been shown that a variable speed pump can pay for itself in only a couple of seasons. Simply program the pump to run at low speed when electricity prices are at their highest and allow it to run at full speed when the rates dip.
It’s been found that cartridge filters are more energy efficient than sand filters. There are a couple reasons for this. One is the energy required to reheat the pool water after backwashing a sand filter. Backwashing also requires adding more chemicals to the pool to keep the water chemistry balanced. And it’s notable that backwashing uses much more water than what’s needed to clean cartridge filters.
Many of today’s pool lights have been converted to much more energy efficient LEDs that also have a longer lifespan. Another improvement in technology is the lower voltage lights that are now available for pool use. Although pool lighting can be rated at 120 volts, energy efficient lighting is available at ratings as low as 12 volts. Over time, this can make a big difference in your energy consumption.
To learn more about maintain your pool, download our Backyard Escapes guide.