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by Guest Blogger Charlie Nadler November 28, 2012
Easy Energy-Saving Tips for Your Pool and Hot Tub
For owners of swimming pools and hot tubs, motivation to cut down on energy use may come from an environmentally-conscious place; if not, it will definitely come in the form of a monthly utility bill. Between the air conditioning and the pool pump, the operating costs and environmental impact of pools and hot tubs are a serious cause of stress for many owners.
While pool and hot tub ownership will invariably come with their share of expenses, there are some easy ways that you can shave some money off those utility bills, cut down on water and energy usage, and limit the environmental impact of your pool and/or hot tub. When you’re running your equipment at peak efficiency, you can feel better about your investment and enjoy your pool or hot tub to the fullest.
Swimming Pool Energy Saving Tips
- Use a variable speed or multi-speed pump. When a new pump becomes necessary or desirable, investing in multi-speed or variable speed pumps will pay for itself within three to six years. Rather than the highly inefficient oversized pumps found in most pools, these types of pumps allow you to use up to 75% less energy.
- Reduce pool water consumption. By reducing the amount of water needed for your pool, you’re also cutting down on energy needed to pump and treat water. Keep your water lower in the pool to reduce the amount splashed out. Using a cartridge pool filter will reduce water wasted during backwashing.
- Operate the pump less. Running your pump only as much as you need to can drastically reduce the energy demand. Some people run their pumps 24 hours per day, but most pool pumps will move all of the water through the filter in 8-10 hours time.
- Keep the pool clean by performing regular pool maintenance and keeping the water clear and free of organic debris.
- Harness the power of the sun. Hopefully your pool is in direct sunlight and benefits from the sun’s heat – reducing the amount of heating energy needed. If you have good daily sun exposure, you could use a solar pool heater to replace gas or electic pool heating.
Hot Tub Energy Saving Tips
- Utilize a windbreaker. To conserve the amount of heat needed for your hot tub, look for ways to block the wind near the tub. Along with giving you some privacy from the neighbors, wind blocks such as shrubs, fences, trees and walls reduce the heat lost from wind.
- Invest in a quality cover. One of the critical ways to conserve energy with your hot tub is to make sure you have a strong spa cover. Sometimes an older cover can look like it’s doing a good job of keeping in heat, but if it’s waterlogged, if it doesn’t secure tightly onto the top, or if there are any rips or leaks, the cover is not properly insulating your tub.
- Set the thermostat lower. The thermostat does not need to be set at the high temperature limit. You can lower your energy consumption and only have to wait a few minutes when you want to heat it hotter.
- Clean and change the filters. Similar to a swimming pool, the hot tub’s filters are vital to efficient operation. Mark your calendar to clean out the filter three or four times per year, and switch out the filter once a year. By ensuring that the filter is never broken or clogged, you’re making sure the pump’s motor and heater are not working overtime – and not wasting energy.
Charlie Nadler is a writer for AAA Pool Service, a weekly pool service company serving the North Shore and western suburbs of the Chicagoland area.
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