How to Heat Up Your Pool Without a Heater

Heating your pool without a heater can be cost-effective. Use solar blankets, rings, pills, panels, black liners, or enclosures to trap and retain heat, making swimming more enjoyable and extending pool season.

how to heat up pool without heater

One of the best parts of the summer is swimming in your pool. Nothing is quite as refreshing as taking a plunge into crystal-clear blue water on a hot day. Additionally, it is fun to spend time with your family and friends.

Unfortunately, all good times must come to an end. As summer turns into fall, your pool may become less attractive because the outside temperature isn’t as high, and the water in your pool is cold.

Some people handle this by heating the pool. However, this is incredibly expensive if you don’t already have a pool heater. How can you heat your pool without purchasing expensive equipment and paying for the energy needed to use it?

Keep reading to learn how to heat your pool without a heater, so you can continue enjoying the beautiful blue water well past the summer. 

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Learn How To Heat Up Your Pool Without a Heater Using These Six Tricks

Heating a pool doesn’t have to be expensive. Using these five tricks, you can successfully learn how to heat up your pool without a heater.

The effectiveness of each of these tricks depends on your location, sun exposure, and the type of pool that you have.

Use the Power of the Sun

The sun is your best friend if you want to learn how to heat up your pool without a heater. The sun provides free energy that you can utilize to warm up your pool.

The sun naturally does this throughout the day, but there are several methods that you can use to increase the effectiveness of solar heating.

Solar Blankets

Sun2Solar Blue 14-Foot-by-28-Foot Rectangle Solar Cover | 800 Series Style | Heat Retaining Blanket for In-Ground and Above-Ground Rectangular Swimming Pools | Use Sun to Heat Pool | Bubble-Side Down

The first method on our list is solar blankets. Solar blankets are covers for your pool that you can put on when the sun is out.

They are made of a material that absorbs energy from the sun and transfers it to the water in your pool.

The more powerful and longer-lasting solar blankets can even reflect heat into the pool at night when it gets cooler.

Using solar blankets during the day will help you maximize how hot the water gets from the sun.

Keeping a solar blanket on at night will help your pool retain the heat by preventing evaporation. You can also use a solar blanket in conjunction with a traditional heater to minimize heat loss.

Solar Rings

You can also purchase solar rings or mats that work similarly to a solar blanket. Solar rings are much smaller than a solar blanket. A solar blanket covers the entire pool, while a solar ring covers a small portion.

Solar rings function in the same manner as a solar blanket. They attract more light to the pool and help prevent heat loss at night.

The primary advantage of solar rings is that they are cheaper than solar blankets, and you can use a pool while there are solar rings in it.

The flexibility of solar rings is their primary advantage. However, do not expect solar rings to warm your pool significantly.

Solar Pill

Aquapill Solar Pill Liquid Solar Blanket 12,000 gallons Pools(Various Pack Sizes) - 4

One of the more unique ways you heat up your pool without a heater is to use a solar pill. A solar pill releases a non-toxic, insulating liquid that floats to the pool’s surface. The liquid is invisible, so you can’t see it.

The liquid helps attract sunlight and retain heat. It also has the additional benefit of easy use. You attach the pill to your skimmer, slowly releasing it over a month.

You do not need to remove the liquid, which saves you time compared to a solar blanket or ring.

Solar Panels

XtremepowerUS Inground/Above Ground Swimming Pool Solar Panel Heating System 28" X 20'

Solar panels are the most effective way to heat up your pool without a heater. While installing solar panels is a more significant upfront cost, the energy you collect to form the sun can heat your pool directly.

Solar panels can significantly increase the temperature of your pool, but they also require a lot of work to install.

You will need to attach the panels to your roof or a nearby building. You will also need to invest in the proper wiring and electrical equipment to ensure the panels function correctly.

Black Pool Liners

TECHTONGDA HDPE Pond Liner Black 20x20ft Flexible Water Garden Fish Pond Liner Elasticity

Another common way to heat your pool without a heater is to use black pool liners. They work similarly to solar blankets, absorbing warmth from the sun and transferring it to your pool’s water.

The most significant benefit of a black pool liner is that they are relatively easy to install. You can place a black pool liner over the entire surface of your pool, and it will start absorbing energy from the sun.

Build a Structure/Enclosure

why do pools in florida have screens

Finally, you can build a structure or enclosure around your pool to increase the temperature of the water.

A pool enclosure works similarly to a greenhouse. It traps the heat generated by the sun and does not allow it to escape.

The heat trapped by the structure can significantly increase the temperature of your pool and have the added benefit of allowing you to use your pool during inclement weather.

Why Should You Heat Your Pool?

Now that you know how to heat up a pool without a heater, learn why you should do it. Heating up your pool can make swimming in it more enjoyable.

Warmer water makes the experience more comfortable and relaxing. Additionally, a warmer pool can make swimming easier since the body will not have to adjust as dramatically to the temperature change.

If you plan on using your pool for aquatic exercises or swimming laps, then heating your pool can make this a more pleasant experience. The warmer water will also help keep muscles loose, reducing the risk of injury.

Finally, heating your pool allows you to maximize your return on investment. Pools are expensive, and if you can use your pool for longer, you get more bang for your buck.

FAQs about Heating a Pool

These are some commonly asked questions about heating your pool without a heater.

Do black garbage bags warm up a pool?

Garbage bags are not an excellent way to warm up your pool. They are not designed to hold in heat and will not warm up the pool much. Additionally, as they trap water, they may end up sinking to the bottom of the pool, which can be challenging to clean up.

How long does it take to heat a pool without a heater?

Depending on your chosen method, it can take anywhere from one day to a couple of weeks. Solar blankets and rings are the quickest methods, while solar panels and pills require more time. Building a structure/enclosure around the pool can also take some time to implement.

How can you keep a pool warm at night?

Using a heater is the best way to keep your pool warm at night, but it is expensive. Alternatively, you can insulate your pool with solar blankets to help the water retain heat or build a structure to keep the surrounding air warm.

How to heat a swimming pool for free?

You can heat a swimming pool for free by using solar-powered methods. A solar blanket or solar rings are the best ways to heat a pool for free. They require a minimal upfront cost and can be pretty effective.

How can you heat a pool fast using DIY methods? 

Using a solar blanket is the fastest way to heat your pool using DIY methods. Solar blankets are placed directly on top of the water and trap the sun’s rays to warm the pool. Solar rings are another great option and work similarly to a solar blanket.

More FAQs

Is there any way to heat the pool without a heater?

There are several ways to heat a pool without using a heater. One option is to install a solar pool cover, which can help trap heat from the sun and warm up the water. Another alternative is to incorporate a liquid solar cover into your regular pool maintenance routine. Additionally, you can consider using a solar pool heater, which utilizes the power of the sun to heat the pool water. When planning your pool, it is important to factor in the sun’s exposure to maximize heat absorption. Lastly, opting for an enclosure can help retain heat and prevent heat loss from the pool.

Can I heat my pool with electricity?

You can heat your pool with electricity by using an electric pool heater, which is widely chosen for effectively maintaining warm pool water throughout the winter season.

How long does it take to heat a pool at 10 degrees?

It takes approximately 6 hours to heat a pool at 10 degrees with a standard heater (300k BTU), considering factors such as the volume of water to heat, the desired temperature increase, and the size of the heater.

Will a black tarp heat a pool?

A black tarp can indeed heat a pool to a certain degree. As sunlight reaches the black tarp, it absorbs and retains heat, which can subsequently be transferred to the pool water beneath it. This process is commonly referred to as passive solar heating.

Can a heat pump heat a pool?

A heat pump can indeed heat a pool by transferring heat from the outdoors into the water. By utilizing existing heat and relocating it, heat pumps consume less electricity.

Do solar pool heaters work?

Solar pool heaters do work, albeit at a slow but consistent pace, even on days with partial sunshine. If you reside in a more southerly climate zone and diligently cover the swimming pool with a solar blanket when it is not in use, they can effectively maintain a swimming pool temperature below 82°.

Can you swim in a non heated pool?

You can swim in a non-heated pool. It is recommended to opt for traditional, non-heated pools if you plan to use them seasonally, which involves draining and covering them during the winter months. Ultimately, the choice depends on personal preference and your comfort level while swimming.

How long does it take to heat a pool?

The time it takes to heat a pool varies depending on several factors. Typically, a heat pump can raise the temperature of a pool by 20 degrees Fahrenheit within a range of 24 to 72 hours. However, for smaller pools such as spa pools, the heat pump can achieve the desired temperature in approximately 45 to 60 minutes.

What is the black hose trick to heat a pool?

The black hose trick to heat a pool involves filling up a black garden hose and leaving it in direct sunlight. By doing so, the water within the hose warms up and can be used to heat your pool while refilling it. It is important to note that this method has limitations, as it relies on sunlight to warm up the hose. Additionally, this technique is only effective when you are in the process of refilling your pool.

What to do when pool is too cold?

When the pool is too cold, one solution is to install a pool heater. By using a heater, you have the ability to regulate and maintain the desired temperature of your pool. This means that even during colder weather or when the sun is not shining, you can still enjoy a warm pool. Additionally, if the water is already warm enough, you can simply switch off the heater.

How do you heat a pool in cold weather?

To heat a pool in cold weather, one can utilize various methods. Gas heaters, for instance, make use of propane or natural gas to warm up the pool. Solar blankets offer a straightforward solution by allowing the inground swimming pool to be used for an extended period. Additionally, an alternative option is to employ an air-source heat pump.

How many days does it take for pool water to warm up?

The time it takes for pool water to warm up can vary depending on several factors, but on average, it could range from 12 to 48 hours.

How long does a pool need to warm up?

The pool requires a certain amount of time to warm up. The time needed to heat a pool depends on various factors such as the size of the pool, the desired temperature increase, and the capacity of the heater. For instance, an average sized rectangular pool measuring 16×36 can take approximately 6 hours to heat up by 10 degrees using a standard heater with a capacity of 300k BTU.

What warms up a pool?

The process of heating a pool involves various methods, including the use of heat pumps, which enable the conversion of cold water into warm water. This applies to both domestic and commercial swimming pools.

What is the easiest way to heat a swimming pool?

The easiest way to heat a swimming pool is by using a gas pool heater, which is the fastest method to warm pool water. Other options include a pool heat pump, solar pool heater, solar pool cover, solar rings, and a black hose.

How many solar panels does it take to heat a pool?

The statement: “It takes a total of 200 square feet of solar panels to heat a pool with a surface area of 400 square feet, assuming a 50% offset. For reference, a system consisting of four 4’x12.5′ solar panels, which have a total surface area of 200 square feet, can be used.”

How long does it take to heat an entire pool?

It typically takes about half a day to heat most average size pools.

Is there a cheap way to heat a pool?

There is a cost-effective method to heat a pool. To heat a pool inexpensively regardless of your location, it is important to select the appropriate time of day to operate a heat pump. By running the heat pump during the warmest part of the day, you can significantly enhance its efficiency since heat pumps derive heat from the air.

What is the most economical way to heat your pool?

The most economical way to heat your pool is by using a heat pump pool heater in mild climates, as they are energy-efficient. Additionally, solar water heaters are a cost-effective option with low annual operating costs, making them competitive with other types of water heaters.

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