Clear vs Blue Solar Pool Covers – Whats The Difference ?

Unless you are one of those polar bear people who love the thrill of jumping into cold water, you probably want to ensure your pool stays heated at all times. However, before you run out and spend money on a gas or electric heater, have you considered a solar pool cover. Perhaps the most crucial factor to consider when covering your pool is the clear vs blue solar pool covers debate. 

A solar cover might easily raise the temperature of your above ground or inground pool. More so, it will also help reduce energy costs, water loss and even your chemical needs. Surely, all these factors make solar covers worth the look. 

In the past, you have probably owned a safety pool cover. So, why is it vital for you to get another type of cover? Well, this type not only keeps dirt and debris from your pool, but it also helps to heat it.

With no cover at all, your pool might absorb a tremendous amount of light. A white plaster pool with a depth of 4.5 feet will consume well over two-thirds of the sun`s energy. This energy will heat the pool by an average of 0.7°F per hour, especially in the evening. 

But the process of evaporation might also counteract the accumulation of the heat. Usually, it’s a process which is dependent on the presence of water, and the temperature of the air. More so, other factors such as the wind on the pool surface and humidity levels also play a vital role in the use of solar covers. 

Solar pool covers will capture energy from the sun and convert into heat in the water, which helps to keep it warm. Depending on the areas you reside, a solar pool cover may not be as effective as when using electric or gas heat. That said, the main tradeoff is that it will help you save money by controlling evaporation. 

The Process of Heating Pool Water

There are various vital factors, BTU (British Thermal Unit) is the measure of the amount of heat needed to increase the temperature of a pound of water by One Degree Fahrenheit. It’s the amount of energy which is produced when you light one matchstick. Yes, the heat of one match can heat a pound of water. What if the water puts out the light? Well, this is a process which will have to figure out on another guide. 

But at this point, this implies that heating a pound of water by one-degree Fahrenheit might only require one BTU. 

Let's say you want to maintain the temperature of your pool at 90 degrees Fahrenheit. When one pound of the water evaporates, it won't take away the BTU heat with it. On the contrary, it may take well over 1,000 BTUs of heat from the pool water.

At such a point, you have to figure out useful techniques which you can use to recover the lost heat. This means that evaporation not only consumes the heat and water from your pool but it’s also costly. We also have to consider the amount of heat your pool might lose through the process of evaporation. 

Well, various factors come into play at this point, such as the place where you live. For instance, the Arizona Department recently mentioned that a pool might lose close to four to six feet of water each year – due to evaporation. Solar covers help to reduce the loss of heat in two ways.

Is the Color Important? 

is the color important

Similar to the way solar pool cover placement matters, is just the way colour is also essential when you want to buy the cover. In fact, it makes a whole lot of differences. 

A blue colour cover is perfect because it allows only a small amount of light to pass through the cover and to the water. Since the light finds it hard to penetrate through, it gets trapped underneath the blanket. Thus, blue colour has this property because it absorbs the lightest, and also lets the least light penetrate through. 

However, even if blue light absorbs the most light, this does not mean that it's best for heating purposes for your pool. 

Clear Cover Absorbs A Small Amount of Light 

A solar pool blanket will absorb less light and let it pass through the water under it. Thus, this simplifies that a cover won't heat up as much as the blue or dark cover. Instead, the water is the aspect that receives the most heat, which might be trapped below the cover. 

A blue cover that absorbs more light might also get hot. The heat is quickly released to the air when the sunsets. Thus, a significant amount of heat loss gets to the water and later rises into the atmosphere. 

Who Wins? Clear Covers

Just as you can see, a clear solar pool cover has many benefits over the blue types. These types will heat your pool much more efficiently and evenly.

With a blue cover, the heat transfers to the water will leave some water just under the cover. Using a transparent cover ensures the heat distributes evenly for the best results. 

Even more, a blue cover also absorbs a small amount of heat, so it won't have heat to transfer to the water. It lets the sun rays pass through the water, without leading to heat loss or interference. 

An Excellent Example 

A clear pool cover is similar to a greenhouse which is made using plastic or glass material, which sits on the ceiling or the walls. These aspects let the light pass via and to heat a greenhouse. Then, the heat gets trapped under the structure, which leads to the greenhouse effect. 

Why Use A Solar Cover? 

Heat Retention

Pools that have solar covers on top can be well over 10 degrees warmer than pools that don’t have a solar cover. The solar helps to prevent the heat from evaporating. Also, it helps retain heat from the sun, as well as to raise the pool temperature. Installing a solar cover over your pool is like placing a lid on a pot- it helps maintain the temperature levels.

Also, factors that affect the temperature differences that a solar cover introduces are many. These include the intensity of the sun`s UV rays, the shading of the pool and the cloud cover intensity. Also, if you have trees close to or around the structures, these might block the amount of direct sunlight. As a result, the solar cover won’t be effective at gathering heat, and it will also help reduce evaporation side effects. If the rays of the sun have to force through the cloud cover, or if the sun fails to heat the cover at the correct times, then it's apparent that it will absorb less heat. 

Reduce Evaporation

Most of the covers listed on this guide will reduce evaporation side effects by as much as 90%, which helps trap heat undercover. It then heats it and redirects it to the pool. The reduced evaporation levels are perfect for the environment because the pool uses a small amount of water to refill. Plus, it's also ideal for your chemical consumption, because it controls the chemicals which are added to balance the pool levels. 

Keep Bugs and Debris Out

There are a few situations that are worse than splashing around your pool in the summer when you come across lots of dead bugs or debris. It can be uncomfortable and even embarrassing when you have guests over. While you may have a pool with a filter and chemicals that help remove such impurities, a solar cover will improve the results significantly. Thus, the result is that you have a cleaner pool, with a durable filter and with less dirt floating in your pool. 

Reduces Chemical Costs

A solar cover will reduce the consumption of chemicals significantly, and due to various factors. For instance, by reducing evaporation, you want have to add new water to your pool as previously. Thus, this helps reduce the amount of chemical required to restore or maintain the pH of your water. Also, if you have a saltwater pool, then you won't need as much salt to regain its original salt levels.

Furthermore, by keeping the pool warm, you will reduce the strain and reduction of your chemicals at low temperatures. The hotter a pool is, the more effective chemicals will be in the pool. 

Maintaining the quality of water in optimal conditions is crucial if you want to enjoy a good dip, and without any risks or contagious issues. Generally, a home pool might have a filter, which helps perform the filtration process. However, in some cases, such as in small volume swimming pools, a water treatment plan won’t be required for maintenance. 

It's not important for you have to a treatment plant for you to enjoy using crystal clear water. There are various factors and cleaning products that are suitable for maintaining your pool. 

Water Treatment

To achieve the ideal balance of water and maintain the condition of the pool, ensure you continuously regulate the pH level. 

Remember that pH refers to the acidity and basicity of the swimming pool water. This level should average between 7.2 and 7.7, which is a neutral pH, and suitable for applications such as bathing. Also, an alteration in the pH of the water will compromise the effectiveness of the chlorine. 


Being able to regulate the functionality of your solar pool should be an important priority. Thus, this guide on the clear vs blue solar pool covers should be the perfect place to get you started. When you have the correct solar pool cover, you will enjoy many benefits. You will save energy, and you even protect your pool from issues such as debris or insects. Therefore, use this guide to help make an informed decision when you want to maintain the performance and functionality of your pool. They are simple to install and suitable for your modern pool management needs.

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