How to Use Solar Pool Covers

Solar pool covers are popular for a reason, as they do an excellent job of preserving the water temperature. A must-have item that shouldn’t miss from any pool owner’s inventory, it prevents evaporation throughout the night. Therefore not only will the chemicals remain stable for some time, but the water level won’t require adjustments, either. Additionally, it utilizes the natural sun rays heat to warm up the water, so it costs you nothing. When used in combination with a heater, it prolongs the pool-season into late autumn, ensuring the chilly weather won’t affect the fun.

Keeping your basin heated is not the only good effect the cover has on the pool. It also keeps it safe from debris and leaves, and will also prevent rain from breaking up the water balance. However, to ensure you can utilize one efficiently, you need to know what type to acquire as well as what size better fits the pool.

Cover Types

When dealing with solar covers there are a few options you can choose from:

  • Blankets
  • Rings
  • Liquid types

To ensure you get to know each types’ specific features, let’s take a closer look at each of them:


One of the most popular types, it looks, as its name implies, like a floating pool blanket. It incorporates tiny air bubbles inside it, overall resembling a bubble wrap. The bubbles can differ, according to the manufacturer, as they don’t have to be a specific size or shape. They can be small, medium, or large, and can even take the diamond shapes.


  • Highly affordable for all pockets
  • Preserves the heat
  • Can be adjusted according to the pool shape
  • Prevents debris from falling into the water


  • Might be a bit difficult to take it off

If setting it up takes too much of your time, you can consider investing in a wrapping-reel. This will roll it in and out, by simply rotating the switch.


These types of protection are usually shaped directly as a ring. It has a sturdy rim, which makes it easy to maneuver around, whereas the center is coated with heat-resistant material. They are easy to utilize, as they won’t pose any issues when its time to take them off, but depending on the pool shape, they might be a bit difficult to set afloat.


  • Easy to use
  • Quick to place and remove
  • Require no additional gear


  • Since they only come in circle-shape, they won’t fit the entire water surface


Although these types are a newer addition to the heat-retaining methods, they do reduce the evaporation rate, therefore increasing the heat retention process. They are quick to use, as all you need to do is toss them into the water at night and watch them work. However, as these are in use, it is not recommended to run the filter.


  • Easy to use
  • Prevents evaporation
  • Preserve the water temperature


  • Can’t be used with running filters

Sizing It Correctly

Now that you’re familiar with the types of covers you can acquire, it is time to know what you can do to perfectly fit it to your pool. Depending on the shape the basin has, regular or odd-shape, as well as its dimension, you will have a harder or an easier time to shape the sheet.

Blankets are not the most popular choice for nothing. They are highly versatile in their utilization and can be employed in any shape and size. Do you have a round pool? No problem, you can cut the edges so the cover will fit perfectly. A rectangular basin is more to your liking? Piece of cake! The cover already comes in a rectangular shape, so it got you covered. Odd-shaped basins are also a no-hassle, as the blankets can be adjusted in a puzzle-like manner to fit perfectly on all corners, crevices, and heights.

Rings can fit better on round-shaped basins, especially surface-top ones since those models tend to have a round shape themselves. Therefore, the rings will cover a wider surface, reducing the amount of heat lost through evaporation in the areas where it can’t reach. While they can be employed on in-ground basins as well, they are not as efficient as their counterparts since they do leave some areas unprotected.

Liquid covers require no special alteration since they can be used with any water body. However, you should calculate how each piece fares for how much water. In other words, ensure the pool capacity is compatible with the cover’s power.

Perfect Timing and Maximized Efficiency

If you’re not exactly sure when it’s the right time to add the cover, so the heat won’t escape, consider the following tips:

  • The sun works as a natural heating source, therefore you’d surely wish for the sun rays to heat the water if you plan on spending no cents in warming it up. So, it is best to avoid using it during the day and place it over as soon as the sun is no longer hitting your pool directly
  • Although you might be tempted to operate the filters at night, to preserve electricity. However, depending on your choice in cover, you might be unable to do so. If the cover doesn’t completely spread on the water surface, even an inch beyond it, every underwater current will train the heat stored within, forcing it upwards.
  • Mix it with a heater! If you wish the maximum efficiency from the wrap, combine its attributes with a pool heater. Not only will the preserved heat remain untouched, but it will also accumulate more as the heater works.
While a thicker cover might last you longer, its lifespan reaching almost 5 years, it doesn’t mean it can’t perform as efficiently as a thinner unit.

Final Thoughts

All in all, there’s no correct choice in picking the pool’s heat-preservation shelter as long as it fits your preferences. All types will aid in preserving heat, reducing evaporation, and prolonging the pool season, so it’s up to you which type you wish to acquire and utilize. As long as you keep in mind the pool’s size and your end goal, any choice you make is the correct one!


  1. Simon says:

    How much does a good quality solar cover reel cost? I’m asking because have problems with my back and I won’t be able to pull the cover all the time.

    • Carl Hudgens says:

      Generally, such items cost from $100 to $200, a price that is reasonable considering how much they help ease your work. For someone with your problem, it’s recommended to make this investment in order to prevent damaging your back.

  2. Veronica says:

    I accidentally bought a solar pool cover that exceeds the size of my pool. Will this be a problem in the long run?

    • Carl Hudgens says:

      No, it’s actually better to buy a solar pool cover that is a bit larger than the size of the pool instead of buying one that’s smaller. In case you’re bothered by the difference in size, just take a pair of scissors and carefully adjust the cover to perfectly fit the pool.

  3. Christopher says:

    Do I need a cover real to install a solar pool cover?

    • Becky Eddinson says:

      When you install the solar pool cover, you don’t need a cover real. However, it is a useful addition that will ease your work and help you operate the cover with minimum effort.

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