Invest In Green
There are new technologies and equipment in the swimming pool industry that are greatly reducing the costs to operate your swimming pool.
*Reduce Speed (the rotations per minute)
*Lower velocity of water flow is safer. It decreases the risk of suction entrapment and evisceration that we have heard so much about from the Virginia Graeme Baker Act.
*Longer circulation run times increases sanitization and filtration.
**Filters are in use longer and under lower pressures which allows them to catch smaller particles. Chemicals are circulated for longer as well which allows for better contact time to oxide organics (algae, microbes, etc.)
*New pumps are far more quiet than the traditional pumps.
*Lower velocities and pressures decrease the wear on other equipment and, therefore, extend their life.
*Lower energy costs
**The Affinity Law states that you use 25% less energy if you run the same pump at half the speed for twice the time.
**At 1/2 speed you get approximately 1/2 the flow but only 1/4 of the resistance. This requires only 1/8 the electrical consumption. These new pumps are run for approximately twice the time so you end up with 1/4 the electrical consumption daily.
*2 Speed Pumps – These pumps have been around a long time and are of the same type and design as traditional open drip proof pool pumps. These pumps are found in spa applications usually. The idea is basically to have 2 pumps inside 1 steel housing. They usually require an extra controller or time clock. Their life expectancy is comparable or worse than traditional single speed pumps. If one of the motors/ windings goes bad you must replace the whole motor.
*Variable Speed Pumps – These pumps use the same motors that power the electric cars. They are new to the pool industry. VS Pumps offer much greater energy efficiency (65-95%) over traditional pumps. Some types convert 240v into 3 phase to optimize power usage. They offer extreme flexibility through an external time clock, automation, and/or the computer drive that is mounted to some motors by itself. Some models offer self protection built in to help prevent burn out from electrical surges and drops or low water in the pool. The motors are completely sealed and prevent damage from the elements or pests such as ants making nests in them. These are our preferred choice and offer the best value to comply with the energy code and save money. For more information including how to calculate your energy savings go to www.pentairpool.com or www.Impowerdealer.com
*Heaters – Heaters burn a gas and heat the pool water from this heat. These units are great for intermittent use and to get your pool or spa hot fast. They are more expensive to operate and therefore should not be used to maintain your pools temperature. They will work no matter what the outside temperature is. They get very hot and should be away from traffic areas and landscaping. We do not install gas heaters.
*Heat Pumps – Heat Pumps heat your pool by proactively collecting solar energy. They take heat out of the air and force it into your pool. The new units are far quieter than the older units and much more efficient. They generate 1408 BTUs per cent verses 673 BTUs. There is a new Florida code that changed the type of coolant and requires higher efficiency from heat pumps for pools that went into effect in 2010. If your unit is more than 5 years old it is worth looking into the savings a new heat pump will save you. These units will raise your pool temp about 1 degree an hour. They are far cheaper to operate than gas heaters, especially when maintaining heat. Most of these units will not work when the air temp. gets below 45-55 degrees as there is not enough heat to take from the air. The efficiency of these units will also vary based on temp. and humidity. We will be happy to bid on a new heat pump installation or replace your out of date unit.
*Solar Panels – Solar Panels are passive solar heat collectors that are usually located on the roof of a nearby structure. They can be controlled by a thermostat unit or turned on and off manually. Once installed they are “free” heat except for maintenance costs such as leaks, possible roof issues, and the increase in system pressure by pushing the water up to the panels and through the small capillaries that makeup the panels- remember every 1 psi increase costs $30 a year. We will refer you to a reputable company to install solar panels for you.
*Solar Blankets and Rings – Whichever heating method you use a solar blanket or solar rings are a must to hold that heat in your pool water. It takes 1 Btu to raise 1 pound of water 1 degree. Each pound of water at 80 degrees that evaporates takes 1,048 BTUs with it. Generally, a pool will lose up to 80 % of its heat every night without a blanket or rings. Blankets float on top the pool and limit the contact of water and air thus retarding evaporation and insulating the water from direct heat lose to the air. Blankets can pose a drowning hazard for pets and children while they are on the pool. Solar rings are 5 foot diameter rings that float on the surface and create a loose raft that retards evaporation and insulates. The solar rings are also passive collectors of solar energy and claim to heat the pool when the sun is shining on them.
Chlorine Generators/Salt Systems
*60 % of new pools are being built with salt systems. These systems still use chlorine to sanitize the water but they produce it on site inside the pools plumbing. Chlorine is made inside the generator through electrolysis from salt (sodium chloride). This chlorine sanitizes the pool water and then converts back to salt to begin the cycle again. These systems maintain a steady consistent reading of chlorine instead of the peaks and valleys you get when manually adding chlorine weekly. They are marketed as “green” equipment by eliminating the transportation of chlorine to your pool. Many users of these systems report their skin feeling softer and even some skin conditions clearing up after using a salt pool. The level of salt in the pool required is low enough that there shouldn’tt be any salt taste to bathers. These pools still require weekly maintenance and the equipment will need servicing regularly. There are many different models of salt systems available now. Please call us to have us propose the right install for your pool today.
*LED technology has made it to the pool industry. These lights use 12-70 W of electricity verses the traditional 100-300W. They can be retrofitted into many existing light housings. Some of these lights can change color or run custom lighting themes in your pool. We can estimate a retrofit for your existing pool.
*There are many amazing things that you can do with your pool equipment now. Automation can be used to optimize the energy use of your system as well as many other options including internet based control, color and light themes, and water feature customization. Most systems have wireless remote controls available. There are color touch screens available now as well. Automation can simplify your interaction with your pool by changing multiple settings and valves with the push of one button.