Swimming Pool Heating: Solar Thermal or a Heat Pump? Bristol and surrounding area only.

1 World Solar offer both solar thermal heating and heat pump green heating solutions for swimming pools. Both of these options save significantly on running costs (especially against oil heating) and carbon emissions, whether your pool is indoor or outdoors. Alternatively you may have an unheated outdoor pool and simply want to extend the swimming season by a few months. Either way we can offer a full design service and competitive quote, so please get in touch with us. We're based in Bristol and can cover the area about a one hour drive around Bristol i.e. not national coverage, which is a shame because before I added this line, we received quite a few distant enquiries that we couldn't cover! Google Solar Trade Association to find installers in your area.





Solar Thermal Heated Swimming Pools

Why should we only appreciate outdoor pools for the two warmest months of summer when it is possible to extend this pleasure and reduce running costs by using solar thermal heating? Or how can we enjoy an indoor pool all year round with lower fuel bills?

Fortunately heating a swimming pool by solar energy is an ideal application for solar thermal heating, because of the large volumes and low temperature of water in a pool. Whereas domestic hot water typically requires a temperature of 60C, a swimming pool is comfortable at 28C such that the solar collectors are operating extremely efficiently at all times. The only fuel cost for the solar thermal system is for a small circulating pump.

There are a number of system options, including unglazed direct collectors, which often comprise of rubber or plastic mats. Whilst we can provide this type of system we specialise in high efficiency glazed solar collectors which input their heat indirectly via a heat exchanger in the pool circulation system, as shown in the diagram opposite. With this type of collector the swimming season can be extended even longer in an outdoor pool whilst significant solar contribution can be made all year round for a heated indoor pool.

The other advantage of glazed solar thermal collectors is that they can also produce hot water, for swimming pool showers or for the home itself if adjacent. This is especially attractive for pools which are used seasonally, as the entire power of the solar collectors can be directed solely at the domestic hot water heating, producing a high solar fraction even in winter.

In terms of the size of solar collectors required then 50% of pool area is typical in order to displace about 50% of the boiler fuel use, in an indoor pool. However all pools must have a good insulated pool cover fitted for solar to be effective. Our design service would include T-Sol modelling of the proposed design which would provide a more accurate bespoke estimate.



1. Swimming pool heat pump
2. Remote control
3. Pure water to the pool
4. Circulating pump
5. Bypass and regulator valves
6. Pipe water from the pool
7. Filter

Heat Pumps for Swimming Pools

Controlling the temperature of water is essential to ensure the pleasure of swimming and a heat pump is an ideal way to provide all year round economical heating for indoor swimming pools. This may be as a standalone or in conjunction with solar heating.

Our approved heat pump solution is from Calorex, an established UK company, who have a wide range of heat pumps designed specifically for swimming pool heating. These heat pumps are specifically designed for swimming pool heating and this means that all components used in their construction are designed to give maximum efficiency at swimming pool conditions and will give years of trouble free service.

The main advantages of a heat pump

  • 74% less emissions than an oil boiler
  • Low operating cost
  • Designed and built especially for swimming pools
  • Water heated to 35°C if required
  • Simple installation
  • Long lifespan
  • Suitable for swimming pools in operation throughout the year
  • Minimum maintenance

Why choose a heat pump

The heat pump is now recognised as one of the most economical and environmentally friendly methods of dynamically heating a swimming pool. Its principle allows heating of your swimming pool water by enhancing the free and natural energy in the air to a usable form of heat whilst respecting the environment. By careful design a heat pump is capable of providing your pool with up to five units of absorbed heat for every one unit paid for.


Useful Links

Solar PV Enquiry

Solar Thermal Enquiry

Home Heating Enquiry

General Enquiry

More Information

Swimming Pool Heating Info

Underfloor Heating Information

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0117 941 1663