What Swimming Pool Temperature Setting Is Most Energy-Efficient?
In most climates, you will need to heat your pool, at least some of the time, to keep it at a comfortable swimming temperature. Obviously, you want it cool enough to be refreshing but not too cool that you are reluctant to get in. And, of course, it costs money to heat a pool, so that factors into your temperature setting as well.
Picking the Perfect Temp
Pool water temperatures typically run between 78 and 82 degrees. Any cooler than 78 and you may come out of the pool shivering. Any warmer than 82 and you may feel like you’re taking a bath. So you could say that 78 degrees is the minimum swimming pool temperature and anything over 82 degrees could be too warm.
A temperature of 80 degrees is generally warm enough for children and senior citizens to enjoy and cool enough to make for an invigorating dip.
Of course, you should keep in mind that every degree you raise the temperature your costs will proportionally increase. So the right temperature for your pool water is a function of how it feels on your skin and how it feels on your wallet. There is no ‘outdoor swimming pool temperature guideline’ that will fit everyone. The ideal pool temperature is a personal preference.
Keeping Costs Down and Water Temperature Up
There are steps you can take to keep your pool warm while keeping your costs down:
- Use an automatic safety cover when not using the pool. Keeping breezes from blowing across the pool surface helps prevent heat transfer to the air.
- Install hedges, fencing, and other features that keep wind from blowing through the pool area.
- If your pool heater is more than five years old, consider investing in a new high-efficiency gas heater or heat pump. In some cases, these units quickly pay for themselves in lower utility bills.
- If you tend to use your pool only on weekends, lower the temperature setting by approximately 5 degrees during the week.
- If going on vacation, turn off the pool heater — unless you expect freezing conditions while you’re away.
- Install a timer with a safety switch that can automate and optimize your temperature settings.
- If applicable in your area, run your pool’s filtration system between 8 p.m. and 10 a.m. when electricity demand and rates can be lower.
Find Your Sweet Spot
It can take a little time to find the right balance of comfortable water temperature and cost-effective operation, and that balance will change with the seasons. But with a little effort, you can find water temperature is good for swimming. Remember that it is always best to consult your local pool builder with any questions to see what might be best for your specific pool needs.
Editor’s note: Originally posted 7/2017
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