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Clean Power DIY solar pool warmers look like lily pads

Published on July 22nd, 2014 | by Jo Borrás

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DIY, Zero-energy Pool Warmers Could Save You Thousands

July 22nd, 2014 by  


DIY solar pool warmers look like lily pads

There’s nothing better than a swimming pool for beating the summer heat and spending some quality time with friends and family outdoors, but keeping a pool warm can be prohibitively expensive and incredibly wasteful. Fortunately, these simple-to-make, DIY pool warmers concentrate the energy of the sun to release up to 500 BTUs per hour into your pool. Each!

All you need to get started making these lily-pad style pool warmers are hula hoops, some readily-available polyethylene film, a few clamps (or an extra set of steady hands), a sharp blade, and a slightly modified soldering gun to get everything to stick together.

Keep in mind, it might take a bunch of these lily-pad pool warmers to keep your pool warm, and the original Make article seems to think that 50% coverage is what you’re really after. Still, given the bargain-basement unit cost of these things and their high potential output/heat-retaining insulation, you’ll probably make your money back in no time. You can check out the super-over-simplified version of the instructions for making your own zero-energy pool warmers, below …

 

OVERSIMPLIFIED STEP 1


pool-warmers_1

Cut the polyethylene film to the approximate size of the hula hoops you bought.

 

OVERSIMPLIFIED STEP 2


pool-warmers_2

Clamp (or find someone willing to hold) the polyethylene film to the edge of the hula hoops.

 

OVERSIMPLIFIED STEP 3


pool-warmers_03

Use the slightly modified soldering gun to melt, or “spot-weld”, the film to the edge of the plastic hula hoop. Next, use the pointed tip of the soldering gun to puncture 9 small vent holes in the film, one in the center and the rest distributed in a circle of about 24″ diameter. This is critical, because, without these vents, air bubbles would form under the stretched polyethylene and reduce the heat transfer.

 

OVERSIMPLIFIED STEP 4


pool-warmers_4

Trim the edge of the film so it more neatly aligns with the hula hoop. This is purely an aesthetic step.

 

OVERSIMPLIFIED STEP 5


lily-pad-pool_5

Toss those DIY lily-pad pool warmers into the pool and start making that freeloading sun work for you!

 

… if that’s not enough, just head on over to the original article on Make.com for a much more in-depth, step-by-step guide to lily-pad construction. In the meantime, you can watch Make’s lily-pad pool warmer promo video, below. Enjoy!

 

DIY Solar Pool Warmers


Source | More Photos: Make, via Pinterest.


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About the Author

I've been involved in motorsports and tuning since 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the Important Media network. You can find me on Twitter, Skype (jo.borras) or Google+.



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