What Pool Contractors Don’t Want You to Know
How much time and $$$ does it really take to heat a pool? While the time it takes may have stayed relatively consistent, that cost to do so has nearly DOUBLED.
Let’s consider the time and money necessary to heat an average pool (15’x30’). The average 450 Sq Ft pool is ~ 15,000 gallons. With a 400,00 BTU Gas heater, it will take ~ 6 hours to bring the pool from 65 degrees to 85 degrees.
Here is the math…
15,000 gallons * 8.33 lbs/gallon = 125,000 Pounds of water
400,000BTU Heater @ 80% efficiency =320,000 BTU’s
125,000/320,000 BTU Heater = .39 hrs to raise the entire pool 1 degree
.39 * 20 = 7.8 Hours to raise 15,000 gallons of water 20 degrees
Natural gas heaters use about 1 therm per hour per 100,000 BTU’s. For a typical size 400,000 BTU pool heater, that’s 4 therms per hour. So, for one day of heating the pool from 65-85 degrees, that will result in 25 therms for the day.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statisicts, the cost of 1 therm of gas was ~$1.00 2 years ago. The national average is up 50% and it has more than doubled in other areas of the country. That means an average size pool will cost $50/day on average to reach warm swimming temperatures (Costing much more in winter time and less during summer)
What does this mean for pool owners?
What does it mean for those that are in the business of SELLING POOLS? The ones who are looking to best serve their clients will incorporate solar into their product offerings. If a pool owner were to keep their pool warm from April-October, they could see an annual gas expense of $3,600 for the year. A solar pool heating system will deliver the same heating performance during these 7 months with NO operating cost. With the average price of a solar pool heating running $5-10k, this yields a payback of 2-3 years. Considering most people build a pool with the intent of enjoying it many years to come, Solar pool heating is a no brainer.
If you build swimming pools, the cost of gas is may hurt your business if you don’t have cost effective heating solutions. What’s the answer? A solar pool heating system. After all, NOBODY enjoys a cold pool.
What is Title 24 in California?
The California Title 24 Building Energy Efficiency Standards are designed to ensure new and existing buildings achieve energy efficiency and preserve outdoor and indoor environmental quality.
As of Jan 1st 2020, all low rise residential buildings have been mandated to incorporate a solar photovoltaic (PV) system to meet the minimum requirements for building energy efficiency standards. While this may seem like just another hoop to jump through in the construction process, it is also a huge value add to any new construction home project. Now that solar is a part of every new home construction project, Suntrek is here to make sure that the solar system and home are designed with each other in mind. A solar system can complement a home just like a beautiful entry way or stunning backyard if you treat it with the same amount of importance!
Some home builders will simply “check the box”. This will mean installing a solar system that meets the minimum requirements. Suntrek will design, engineer and provide a proposal for providing a turnkey solar solution to meet those minimum requirements. Often times, an energy storage (battery) system can be implemented into the design. This addition will reduce the required quantity of solar panels installed on the roof by 25%. Typically the minimum requirement results in a system that is not appropriately sized for the home. For this reason, Suntrek will also provide and second option that is better engineered for the square footage of the home and the kind of electrical load we expect to see for that home. Since every clients needs are unique, another option is to have Suntrek work directly with the homeowner to ensure their preferences and goals are met.
When installing solar on a new construction home, there are several benefits. Solar energy systems come with a federal tax credit. Today, that tax credit is 26% of the system cost. There are many costs involved in the construction process that are related to the solar systems installation (roofing, structural, electrical, architectural). All of the solar related expenses should be allocated to the cost of the solar system. As the price of the solar installation increases, so does the tax credit. The purchaser of the home will be able to capitalize on a 26% federal tax credit on the cost of the solar energy system. When the home is purchased, the new homeowner will start off with a big tax credit and will have a new solar system that was financed through the mortgage of the house. With interest rates at an all-time low, this can be one of the most attractive financing options available.
For home builders committed to energy-efficient design and sustainability, Suntrek provides the “Power of Three”. A 360-degree solar solution that incorporates solar heating for the swimming pool and solar heating for domestic hot water. Incorporating all relevant kinds of solar technology will provide a new homeowner with a sustainable way of living that allows for luxurious lifestyle, without the overhead costs.
Contact Suntrek today to discuss any and all of the items mentioned above.
Solar Electricity | Energy Storage Systems | Solar Pool heating | Solar Hot Water Heating
The Age of Power Independence
Building a home solar powered home requires solar architecture. Solar architecture can be defined as designing a home with solar energy as a highlighted feature of the home.
- Design a roof plan that will allow for a square or rectangular solar panel layout. This provides for a clean layout.
- Consult with your solar energy company to confirm system size and footprint.
- The solar panels should be on a South or West roof and preferably on the rear or side of the home.
- This is also the time to determine if solar pool heating and solar hot water heating will be part of the solar architecture solution.
- Integrate the solar collectors into the roofing system by installing a composition roof in the footprint area of all solar panels and then install your tile roof or other roofing materials around the solar collectors, framing them in for a clean, recessed look.
- Select your solar panels so that they are black framed and black backing so there is a black solar system with no white mixed in.
- Allow the sun’s energy to passively enter the home for heating during the cooler months.
- Create an overhang over windows to block the sun’s energy from entering in during the summer months
- Have concrete, stone, or other mass in the home that can receive this energy and hold it naturally.
- Of course, ventilation and air flow are critical to the overall health of the solar architecture.