Saturday 27 June 2009

Solar Heating Payback Time

Avid readers of this blog may note that it started on 7 August 2007 with a piece about the new family splash pool — it cost £150 on eBay, and has brought countless hours of joy to various people from all around over the past three years. It gets, to put it mildly, intensive, almost daily use.

The day after it went in (2006), Nick came back with a bunch of friends from school who jumped into the freezing water. I went down to check everyone was undrowned, and a head emerged from the freezing waves to the immortal line “excuse me, mister; have you got a heater for this thing?” Three weeks and various old bits of washing machine linkage later we had heating but the cost of running it was not fun.

This year with the help of Ken the Swimming Pool man in High Wycombe we have bitten the bullett and upgraded to Solar Heating. The first day temperature was up to 21 degrees. After the sun today, the water reached 31 degrees, far higher than anything we have ever achieved with electricity. Going on Ken’s calculations, that’s payback in 6 weeks. Is this a record?

And this afternoon the pool sprung a leak. But that’s another story.


Wilf said...

How are you going to cut the grass under and around the solar panels?

Mike1727 said...

Do you have the contact details for the solar heating people? We have a similar pool and the electricity heating costs are huge

Bishop Alan Wilson said...

Wilf, it can all be moved around so I think we will take it up, mow underm then move it. This will help minimise lawn damage. Temperature today was 29 but that was without a really good run of sunshine. That 3 degrees higher than we achieved last year with electric heating.

We got the stuff from Ken Downs Swimming Pools, 143 Amersham Rd, High Wycombe HP13 5AD (01494 436216). In thery you need pads up to half the surface area of the pool, but we've only got a third and it seems to be working fine on our 18 foot pool. We may still get another couple of pads to speed up the process and give us a bit more welly on cloudy days, but the last one of those we had it up to 26 degress! email me for further details (

George said...

This is a great idea but I think I would spend my money on a geothermal system first.

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