Solar Pool Heater

38

Models Considered

64

Hours of Research

4

Experts Interviewed

409

Consumer Reviews Analyzed

E xtending the swimming pool period, even in colder months, or, why not, even the whole year round, can be achieved without your annual costs rising. Solar pool heaters not only use green energy to warm up the water, thus they are eco-friendly, but they will cost you less than any other traditional heating method. There are already plenty of models on the market, and, depending on what type of pool you have, and its size, it might prove a bit difficult to find a unit that can match your needs. So, to ease your searching, we offer you our best recommendations.

7. Kokido K835CBX/RV – Best for Above Ground Pools

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Specifications:


  • Panel size: 22” x 22” x 12.6”
  • Pool type: Above-ground
  • Pool size: 12’ round or rectangular
  • Set-up place: On rack

  • Temperature increase: ~5°F
  • Compatible with pool pump: N/A
  • Warranty: 30 days





It measures 22 inches in length, 22 inches in width, 12.6 inches in height, and it has a weight of 3.5 pounds, thus it is compact, lightweight and easy to move around. It can be used only with above-grounds pools, and, depending on the weather condition and the size of your pool, one unit can cover up to 10.000 liters of pool volume. It features a quick and easy installation process, and it can connect to other heaters, as well, in case you need more for a larger swimming pool.

It comes with 4-foot hoses, fittings and stainless steel clamps, which will not rust or corrode in time, as well as an integrated rack to allow you to set it up at an optimal angle, to receive the maximum sunlight possible. It comes with a protective cover, which will keep it safe while you’re not using it, and it can be attached in-line, as it is compatible with 1.25 and 1.5-inch flexible hoses. It has a limited 30-day manufacturer warranty from the moment of your purchase.

What we like:
  • Compact and easy to store
  • Easy to set up
  • Hassle-free installation
What we dislike:
  • Can be used only with above-ground pools
  • There were some complaints about the hoses
Overview

It is compact, therefore easy to store and move around, and it comes with an integrated rack to help you set it up for maximum sun exposure. It can be used only with above-ground pools, and, depending on the weather it can heat up to 10.000liters of water. However, you’ll have to buy another one or two if your pool is larger.


6. SunSolar 2-2ftX20ft – Best for Water Circulation

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Specifications:


  • Panel size: 2’ x 20’
  • Pool type: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size: N/A
  • Set-up place: Roof, rack, or ground

  • Temperature increase: ~10°F
  • Compatible with pool pump:
  • Warranty: 5 years





The set comes with 2 solar panels, each measuring 2 feet in width and 20 feet in length, and it comes with not only a roof or rack mounting kit, but with an add-on kit as well. It can be used with both in-ground and above-ground pools, and it is compatible with any already existing water pump, so you don’t have to worry about changing it. It features a simple design, with hassle-free do-it-yourself installation, and it will be able to raise the water temperature with approximately 10 °F, depending on the weather conditions and your pool size.

It comes with standard connectors, so you can easily attach any 1-1/2” or 1-1/4” flexible hose, and it will take around 30 minutes to have it fully operational. The set features a MAX-FLOW design, which has 2-inch OD headers, therefore it will increase the water circulation, while thanks to its interchangeability, you can easily connect more panels, depending on your pool size. It comes with a limited 5-year warranty from the moment of your purchase.

What we like:
  • Comes with roof kit
  • Large and sturdy panels
  • Can be used with in-ground and above-ground pool
  • Simple design for DIY installation
What we dislike:
  • They are easily punctured
  • Some complained about them leaking
Overview

Easy to install and set up, they need about 30 minutes to completely install. You can either place them on the roof, as the set comes with a roof kit or directly on the ground by the pool. It is compatible with any already existing water pump, and it comes with an add-on kit in case you need to prolong the pipe.


5. SunHeater S120U – Best for the Money

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Specifications:


  • Panel size: 2’ x 12’
  • Pool type: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size: 24’ round pool, 15’x30’ oval or rectangular
  • Set-up place: Roof, rack, ground or fence

  • Temperature increase: ~6° – 10 °F
  • Compatible with pool pump:
  • Warranty: 5 years





It features a simple, do-it-yourself, installation, and it can be installed, depending on your needs and preferences, on the roof, rack, ground or fence. The solar panel measures 2 feet in width and 12 feet in length, and it will help increase the water temperature from 6° up to 10 °F, depending on the weather and sun intensity. It comes with all the necessary accessories, so you will have a smooth experience setting it up, and it can be used with an already existing pool pump, as it will reduce the backpressure put on it. Additionally, it can be used with both in-ground and above-ground types of pool, therefore eliminating the guessing work for which kit to buy.

Moreover, if you already happen to own another solar panel, or wish to attach more than one, you can do so without a worry, because all connectors are interchangeable with all models, thus providing you with versatility and freedom. The wind vents it comes with will help maintain the integrity of the panels during windy weather, while the individual collector tubes will not only assure increased flow rate, but they will also provide you with an easy draining when you’re not using the system. It can be used for any 24-feet round pool, or an oval or rectangular-shaped one, which measures 15 feet by 30 feet. It has a limited 5-year warranty from the moment of your purchase.

What we like:
  • All necessary accessories are included
  • Can be used with in-ground and above-ground pools
  • Better water flow
  • Flexibility and freedom in setting it up
  • Simple design, with DIY approach
What we dislike:
  • There were some complaints about the design
  • Some complained about it leaking
Overview

Thanks to its simple design and DIY installation method, you won’t need professional help to set it up. It is compatible with your already existing water pump, so you don’t have to worry about buying a new one, and it can be used with in-ground and above-ground pools. All the necessary hardware is included, and it can be placed on the roof or near the pool.


4. SmartPool S240U – Best for Large Pools

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Specifications:


  • Panel size: 2’ x 20’
  • Pool type: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size: 30’ round pool, 18’x36’ oval or rectangular
  • Set-up place: Roof, ground or fence

  • Temperature increase: ~6° – 10 °F
  • Compatible with pool pump: N/A
  • Warranty: 5 years





It has two panels, each measuring 2 feet in width and 20 feet in length, with a weight of 33.8 pounds in total. The heating system can be used with all types of pools, in-ground and above-groundas well, so you don’t have to worry about that, and it comes with all the necessary hardware for a simple, DIY installation method. The panels are made from time-resistant polypropylene, and they come with a fiberglass-reinforced over-molded header for increased durability. The headers are threaded, therefore providing you win flexibility, when it comes with mounting channels, to allow you to mount it vertically, on a fence, on your roof, or by your pool.

It comes with an interlocking channel, which provides you with an easy way of connecting individual panel sections together, so you’ll have even more heating power, while the wind vents will make sure to preserve the panel’s integrity even on windy weather. It has an internal baffle that will divert the water through the panel, for optimal water flow, while the tube-on-web design it comes with, will provide more surface area which can be exposed to sunlight. It will help raise the water temperature with 6 up to 10 °F, depending on the weather and pool size, and it can be used with any 30 ft round pool, or those with oval and rectangular shapes measuring 18 ft by 36 ft. It has a limited 5-year warranty from the moment of your purchase.

What we like:
  • Simple to install
  • Wind-resistant
  • Can support additional extensions
  • Versatile installation process
What we dislike:
  • Some complained about it leaking
  • There were some complaints about it design
Overview

It features a simple DIY installation method, so you can easily set it up by yourself, and it also allows you to choose where you want it installed, as it can be placed on the ground, on the roof or, vertically, on a fence. The panels come with wind protection vents, so they will resist windy weather, and they can be used with all types of pools.


3. Doheny’s Solar Heating – Best for Water Temperature Increase

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Specifications:


  • Panel size: 2.5’ x 10’
  • Pool type: Above-ground
  • Pool size: Medium-sized
  • Set-up place: Roof, rack or on the ground

  • Temperature increase: ~10° – 15 °F
  • Compatible with pool pump:
  • Warranty: 5 years





The set comes with 2 solar panels, each measuring 2.5 feet in width and 10 feet in length, and they come with a simple, do-it-yourself installation, which doesn’t take more than 30 minutes. It helps increase the water temperature from 10° up to 15 °F, therefore helping you save money in the long run, and it is eco-friendly, as well. It can be installed in-line with your already existing pool pump, so you don’t have to worry about needing a new one, and it will make sure not to overexert it.

It can be used only for any above-ground, medium-sized pools, and it can be mounted on a roof or a rack. Additionally, it comes with all the necessary hardware, so you can easily start the set up as soon as you’ve taken it out of the box, while thanks to the wind vents, it will help maintain it in good condition even when there’s windy weather. Moreover, it comes with a unique on/off diverter valve, which allows you to easily turn the ‘hot water’ off, whenever the pool has reached your desired temperature. It comes with a limited 5-year warranty from the moment of your purchase.

What we like:
  • On/off valve
  • Quick and fast installation
  • Eco-friendly
  • Can rise the temperature with 10-15°F
What we dislike:
  • Can be used only with above-ground pools
  • There were some complaints about it leaking
Overview

Easy to install, featuring a quick, DIY set up, it will take you around 30 minutes to have it working. It can be connected to your already existing pump, and it can help warm up the swimming pool water with 10 up to 15 degrees, depending on the weather. However, it can only be used with above-ground types of pool.


2. Smartpool WWS601P – Editor’s Choice

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Specifications:


  • Panel size: 4’ x 20’
  • Pool type: In-ground
  • Pool size: N/A
  • Set-up place: Roof, or on the ground

  • Temperature increase: ~10° – 15 °F
  • Compatible with pool pump:
  • Warranty: 4 years





The panel is made from tough polypropylene, thus it will not rust, scale or corrode with time, allowing you lengthy usage. It measures 4 feet in width and 20 feet in length, and it weighs 19.4 pounds. The heating system comes with an in-ground hardware kit, which will allow you to easily connect it to your in-ground pool, and it can be placed on the roof or directly on the ground. However, if you plan on adding more panels, you’ll have to buy additional assembly kits.

The system will use your already existing pool pump, so you don’t need a certain model, and it has a tube-on-web design for maximum sun exposure. The wind vents will ensure the panel’s integrity even on windy conditions, while thanks to its interlocking channels, you can add more panels, depending on your needs and preferences. It has a direct flow system which means that it has one header hole for each heating tube, therefore it will increase the warming-up process while allowing you better flow when draining it. It comes with a limited 4-year warranty from the moment of your purchase.

What we like:
  • Easy to install
  • Can be placed on the roof or ground
  • Wind vents for windy weather
  • Sturdy and time resistant
What we dislike:
  • It can be used only with in-ground pools
  • Requires additional kits for more panels
Overview

It can be placed on your roof, or directly on the ground near the pool, and it can be used with in-ground pools. Additionally, it will require you to buy additional kits if you want to connect more panels together, and it comes with windy vents to protect it during windy conditions. Moreover, it is time resistant and durable, since it’s made from polypropylene.


1. SunQuest Complete Kit – Best Overall

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Specifications:


  • Panel size: 2’ x 12’
  • Pool type: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size: 24’ round pool, 15’x30’ oval or rectangular
  • Set-up place: Rooftop, rack, on the ground

  • Temperature increase: ~10°F
  • Compatible with pool pump:
  • Warranty: 5 years





This is your go-to option when you want to warm up your swimming pool and still maintain low costs. It is a set, which provides you with simple do-it-yourself installation, thanks to its explicit manual, and it is compatible with both above ground and in-ground types of pool. Depending on the sun and your pool’s design, it will be able to raise the water temperature with around 10°F. If you need even more heating power, it does have versions with more panels, allowing you to have from 4 up to 18 panels, each 2ft by 12ft. It comes with a limited 5-year warranty from the moment of your purchase.

Design

It has a MAX-FLOW design, which provides you with 2-inch OD headers for better water circulation. Additionally, the set is compatible with an already-existing pump, so you won’t have to invest in a new pump, and it will put less pressure on it, so it won’t be overworked. Depending on where you want it installed, you can opt to place it on your rooftop, or a rack, or, simply lay it near your pool, on the ground.

Additional Accessories

The kit comes with everything you will need to set it up without a struggle. Therefore, it comes with 4 solar panels, which measures 2 ft by 12 ft, so they will be able to capture enough sun to heat your pool. It comes with a system kit with 3-way, 1 ½”/2” valve, as well as a vacuum relief valve and several adaptors for a 1.5-inch pipe. Additionally, it comes with 2-panel kits, which include connectors for 1-1/2” and 1-1/4” hoses, an add-on kit, a strap roof kit, and a high wind kit, to help you secure the panels on the roof if you decide to place them there.

What we like:
  • Can be used for in-ground and above ground pools
  • Several installation methods
  • All necessary accessories included
  • Can increase the water temperature up to 10°F
What we dislike:
  • Some complained about the hose
  • There were some complaints about its design
Overview

A complete set which is not only easy to install, featuring a do-it-yourself approach, but it can also be installed on the roof, or near the pool, depending on your needs and preferences. Additionally, it will help you reduce your annual costs, and it will lengthen the period you can use your swimming pool.


Top 7 Comparison

Photo Solar Pool Heaters Price
SunQuest Complete Kit Image
Best Overall
1. SunQuest Complete Kit
  • Panel size: 2’ x 12’
  • Pool type compatibility: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size compatibility: 24’ round pool,
    15’x30’ oval or rectangular
  • Installation: Rooftop, rack, on the ground
  • Temperature raise: ~10°F
  • Warranty: 5 years
Check Price
Smartpool WWS601P Image
Editor’s Choice
2. Smartpool WWS601P
  • Panel size: 4’ x 20’
  • Pool type compatibility: In-ground
  • Pool size compatibility: N/A
  • Installation: Roof, or on the ground
  • Temperature raise: ~10° – 15 °F
  • Warranty: 4 years
Check Price
Doheny's Solar Heating Image
Best for Water Temperature Increase
3. Doheny’s Solar Heating
  • Panel size: 2.5’ x 10’
  • Pool type compatibility: Above-ground
  • Pool size compatibility: Medium-sized
  • Installation: Roof, rack or on the ground
  • Temperature raise: ~10° – 15 °F
  • Warranty: 5 years
Check Price
SmartPool S240U Image
Best for Large Pools
4. SmartPool S240U
  • Panel size: 2’ x 20’
  • Pool type compatibility: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size compatibility: 30’ round pool,
    18’x36’ oval or rectangular
  • Installation: Roof, ground or fence
  • Temperature raise: ~6° – 10 °F
  • Warranty: 5 years
Check Price
SunHeater S120U Image
Best for the Money
5. SunHeater S120U
  • Panel size: 2’ x 12’
  • Pool type compatibility: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size compatibility: 24’ round pool,
    15’x30’ oval or rectangular
  • Installation: Roof, rack, ground or fence
  • Temperature raise: ~6° – 10 °F
  • Warranty: 5 years
Check Price
SunSolar 2-2ftX20ft Image
Best for Water Circulation
6. SunSolar 2-2ftX20ft
  • Panel size: 2’ x 20’
  • Pool type compatibility: Above-ground and in-ground
  • Pool size compatibility: N/A
  • Installation: Roof, rack, or ground
  • Temperature raise: ~10°F
  • Warranty: 5 years
Check Price
Kokido K835CBX/RV Image
Best for Above Ground Pools
7. Kokido K835CBX/RV
  • Panel size: 22” x 22” x 12.6”
  • Pool type compatibility: Above-ground
  • Pool size compatibility: 12’ round or rectangular
  • Installation: On rack
  • Temperature raise: ~5°F
  • Warranty: 30 days
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Conclusion


A solar pool heater will not only help you save money in the long run, as it is way more cost-effective than any type of traditional heating, but it is also eco-friendly. Before you decide on which product best suits your needs, however, let’s quickly review 3 of the most interesting heaters at the moment:

Best solar pool heater overall: SunQuest Complete Kit
It will help you quickly increase the water temperature with around 10°F, as well as allowing you to easily set it up depending on what type of pool you have, in-ground or above-ground. Versatile when it comes to its mounting way, you can easily place it wherever you need it, and you won’t have to buy another pump, as it can work perfectly with your already existing pump.

Best-selling solar pool heater: Smartpool WWS601P
Able to heat the water in the pool by up to 10°F and available at an affordable price which makes its price-to-quality report stellar, it comes as no surprise that this Smartpool entry is what most customers opted for. Manufactured by a reliable company and easy to install, it’s a system that you can rely on for years on end.

Best solar pool heater for water temperature increase: Doheny’s Solar Heating
If you live in a generally colder area where even in summer chances are slim that the water in your pool will be acceptable to get into or you simply like to soak in water as warm as possible, then the Doheny’s system is what you need. It is actually able to heat the water inside the pool by a maximum of 15°F, considerably more than what most heaters provide.