Liquid solar pool covers and solar blankets are two interesting methods of achieving and retaining warmth for your pool. One of the main reasons pools lose their warmth is through evaporation. (Remember, heat rises.) So, when water from a pool evaporates the heat goes with it. That is why covering your pool, either with liquid solar pool covers or a solar blanket, helps keep your pool warm. When the pool is covered, the evaporation process is halted by the barrier.

Both liquid solar pool covers and solar blankets have a place when it comes to retaining heat for pools. Here is an explanation of what a liquid solar pool cover and a solar blanket are, along with the pros and cons of both methods:

Liquid solar pool covers are a microscopic layer of alcohol that lays on the top of the water in your pool. The liquid solar pool cover works much like oil and water in terms of density. If you put oil and water in a glass, the water has a higher density than the oil and therefore the oil will eventually rise to the top of the glass. Even after you “mix” the oil and water eventually, the oil will return to the top of the glass creating a barrier between the atmosphere and the water. 

Alcohol is even less dense than oil and therefore, it creates a better barrier between the atmosphere and the water. Thus, liquid pool covers can reduce water evaporation by 85 percent.

Pros of Liquid Pool Covers

Using a liquid pool cover to retain the heat in your pool is a unique option. There are many benefits to using this method many of which make having a cover on your pool much less work.

Here are the pros of the liquid pool covers:

  • You Don’t Have to “Uncover” the Pool: Having to cover and uncover the pool to retain heat can be a chore and depending on your strength, it can also be physically demanding. While it might not seem like it, pool covers can be heavy. However, with liquid pool covers, once the alcohol is in the pool you don’t have to do anything. There is nothing to pull up or replace. You can swim without worry because after you are done the alcohol will just rise back up to the top and continue to keep the heat in your pool.

  • Safe For Both Humans and Pets: Liquid pool covers are safe for both humans and pets. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about your kids or your fur-babies enjoying the summer festivities whenever they please.

  • Lower Your Pool Heater Bill: The more energy that is evaporated into the atmosphere, the more your energy bill skyrockets. If you are releasing most of the heat your pool heater creates, you are literally vaporizing your money. Having a liquid pool cover will help keep your heat in the pool, which helps your heater not have to work as hard reducing your energy bills.

Cons of Liquid Pool Covers

Liquid pool covers can be great if you are looking for an easier way to keep the heat in the pool. However, there are a few things that make using a liquid pool cover less appealing. 

Here are the cons of liquid pool covers:

  • Does Not Heat Pool: Liquid pool covers do not heat the pool at all. Any heat in the pool needs to come from another source. Rather, liquid pool covers are insulators in that they keep the heat that is already there in the pool.

  • Liquid Pool Covers are Weather Permitting: Part of the allure for liquid pool covers is that they are microscopically thin. That is all well and good until a big gust of wind comes and blows the water around. If your pool is in an area that is windy, unfortunately, a liquid pool cover is not going to work for you.

  • Slow to Work: Some liquid pool cover customers report that it takes a long time for their liquid pool cover to work. Plus, since you have to add more liquid pool cover every month, it becomes hard to tell when it starts to work and leaves you with a time period of no heat retention at all.

Solar Blankets

Solar blankets are extremely helpful for preserving the heat and longevity of your pool. With solar blankets, you have a lot of options to fit your needs. 

The way solar blankets work is that the bubbles lay face-down on the surface of the pool water and the translucent nature of solar blankets still allow the sun’s rays (and heat) to enter the pool. Meanwhile, the air bubbles trap the pool’s heat in during the night and times when the sun is not shining.

Of the two, solar blankets are the most common pool cover and due to their many benefits, they are rapidly growing in popularity. Here are the pros and cons of using a solar blanket to protect your pool: 

Pros of Solar Blankets

Solar blankets and pool covers, in general, protect the pool from any debris surrounding it and helps retain heat. Pool covers are also used to help keep kids and pets safe when they are around the pool area. 

However, solar blankets offer that protection in addition to a free way to heat the pool.

Here are the pros that you will receive with a solar blanket:

  • Heats the Pool: The solar portion of the solar blanket can help raise the temperature of your pool up to 15 degrees just by using solar energy. This can be used with a heater without any worry and will help take the burden off the heater saving you money.

  • Prevents Heat Loss: Evaporation is the main cause of heat loss within a pool. When you use a solar blanket you create a barrier between the water and the atmosphere which keeps the heat (and the water) in the pool.

  • Cuts Down on Maintenance: Solar blankets are designed to stay in the pool water regardless of the weather. So if the wind blows debris into the pool, a solar blanket will keep the pool clean just as it will protect it from cold raindrops. Therefore, you have less maintenance and can enjoy your pool more, instead of spending so much time cleaning it.

Cons of Solar Blankets

Solar blankets come in all shapes, sizes, and colors; which is good for some things but isn’t always a positive thing.

Here are some of the cons that come with using a solar blanket:

  • Size, Shape, and Shade Issues: There are many different sizes, shapes, and shades that make up the market of solar blankets. Some solar blankets, like the regular blue blanket, are easy to find, while other colors like clear and black are harder to find. Plus, when you are purchasing your blanket, you want to make sure the size and shape of the blanket are right for your pool or it will not work properly.

  • Can Be Heavy: Even when it isn’t wet, solar blankets can be heavy. However, when it is wet, the solar blanket can become extremely difficult to pull out of the water, especially without dropping it on the ground and dirtying it. Depending on the pool owner, you might need more than one person to get the pool cover off. This can be annoying especially if you want to use your pool in peace when no one else is home.

  • Could be Costly: There are different types of solar blankets and those different types vary in cost. Depending on your preference for your pool, a good solar blanket could last a few years for a little more money, or just one season for a little less of an investment. Either way, that could be a difficult expense in the summertime when you are already opening the pool. 

    In summation, there are many different options for covering your pool. Some of the options vary in their durability, convenience, and abilities. Therefore, it is important to do your research on specific types and brands to find the right pool cover for you.