Managing Swimming Pool Temperature for Energy Efficiency (2023)


Managing Swimming Pool Temperature for Energy Efficiency (1)

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.

Pool water temperatures typically range from 78ºF to 82ºF. The American Red Cross recommends a temperature of 78ºF for competitive swimming. This coincides with good fuel savings. However, this may be too cool for young children and the elderly, who may require a temperature of 80ºF or higher.

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.

On the following pages, see the tables showing the costs of heating pools at different temperatures in different U.S. cities:

Also, turn the temperature down or turn off the heater whenever the pool won't be used for several days. This will save energy and money. It's a myth that it takes more energy to heat a pool back up to a desired temperature than you save by lowering the temperature or turning off the heater.


What is the most energy efficient way to heat a pool? ›

Using an electric heat pump is the best way to heat your pool. Full stop. You'll want a powerful unit that will save you on your energy bill every month, like the Energy-Saving ComforTemp Pool Heat Pump 95,000 BTU to heat 18,000 Gallons.

How can I reduce my pool energy consumption? ›

Here are six ways you can skim your pool's energy use to keep your electric bill in check this summer while maintaining sparkling, clean water.
  1. Invest in a variable-speed pool pump. ...
  2. Cover your pool. ...
  3. Skim regularly. ...
  4. Clean strainer baskets and filters regularly. ...
  5. Reduce the pump's run time.
Aug 8, 2022

What is the best temperature to heat a swimming pool? ›

Keep Swimmers Comfortable

Set your pool heater's thermostat to a temperature between 78°F and 82°F (26°C and 28°C) to keep the majority of swimmers comfortable. Maybe a little cooler if you're in an area with very hot summers, or a little warmer if you live in a milder climate.

Is it more efficient to keep pool heater on all the time? ›

Also, turn the temperature down or turn off the heater whenever the pool won't be used for several days. This will save energy and money. It's a myth that it takes more energy to heat a pool back up to a desired temperature than you save by lowering the temperature or turning off the heater.

Is it cheaper to keep your pool heated? ›

Reduce the temperature of the pool a few degrees. The warmer you keep your pool water, the more it costs to heat it. The US Department of Energy explains pool heating energy consumption, pointing out that each higher degree in temperature will cost you 10–30 percent more. That cost range is due to weather.

Why is my pool using so much electricity? ›

It takes a lot of electricity to clean the water and calibrate the chemicals – not to mention a lot of time on your part to take care of it. Research shows that pool owners spend over 40 percent more on energy costs per year than those without pools.

Do pools use a lot of electricity? ›

Budgeting for a pool is complex, but remember to consider how much a pool costs per month in electricity. Running a pool adds about $50 per month to your electricity bill. However, monthly energy costs for your pool can range anywhere from $10 to $300, depending on your pool pump type.

How many gallons should a pool lose per day? ›

The average pool water evaporation rate is about a quarter of an inch of water per day or more than two inches in a week, which on a 33′ x 18′ swimming pool (an average pool size) is more than 2500 liters or approximately 600 gallons a week; this may vary depending on your climate and the factors listed above.

Is 84 degrees warm for a pool? ›

Most casual swimming pool users like the water in the 84-86 degree range. Many hotels and resorts typically try to maintain their pool water temperature in this range.

Is an 80 degree pool warm? ›

Now anything colder than 78 degrees will start to make you feel chilled when you step out of the water. Anything above 82 degrees will begin to feel like bath water. However, 80 degrees is generally warm and cool enough for all to enjoy.

How many degrees does a pool heat up in an hour? ›

Translation: if you run a 400,000 BTU heater for one hour (using four gallons of propane) you will raise the temperature in a 21,000 gallon pool by about 1.82 degrees.

How do I keep my pool cool in 100 degree weather? ›

How You Can Cool Down Your Pool's Temperature
  1. Possible reasons for a warm pool. Sometimes, a pool cover or a pool heater is the culprit. ...
  2. Invest in a water feature. ...
  3. Use ice. ...
  4. Partially drain and refill. ...
  5. Use pool coolers. ...
  6. Make adjustments to the landscape. ...
  7. Nocturnal cooling using solar panels. ...
  8. Enjoy your pool this summer.
Aug 5, 2021

Should I turn off pool heater at night? ›

The decision as to whether leaving the pool heater on or off overnight relies on your usages and plans. Turning off the heater is advisable if you will be out for a couple of days or if you only plan to swim during weekends. There's no advantage to have the heater turned on all week long.

Is 70 degrees cold for a pool? ›

No matter where you're swimming, avoiding water below 70 degrees Fahrenheit is a good rule of thumb for the average swimmer. The truth of the matter, though, is that 70 degrees is still pretty chilly. You'll probably have a better time if you wait for warmer water.

Is it cheaper to heat a pool with gas or electric? ›

Some might say that gas is less expensive, but that's only part of the story. Gas is typically cheaper than electric when it comes to the initial cost.

Is it cheaper to heat a pool or keep it warm? ›

Simple. The warmer you heat your pool water, the more it will cost. Each degree rise in temperature equates to an approximate 15-18% increase in operation cost. While an 88°F pool is toasty, it will cost a lot more to maintain than a pool held at 85°F.

Is it better to run the pool heater during the day or night? ›

As far as energy efficiency goes, you'd want to run it during the day. Now, if you're looking to swim in the morning, and you want it at 85 degrees in the morning, you're probably going to have to run it at night. Another thing you could do is stagger the run times during the day.

Is solar or electric pool heater better? ›

Additionally, solar pool heating lasts about twice as long as a regularly used heat pump, as our systems here at UMA come with a 12-year warranty! Plus, the maintenance costs are far lower (virtually nonexistent, in most cases).

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