Do I need a cover for my swimming pool?

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Do I need a cover for my swimming pool?

You might be surprised to hear that most people that we build indoor swimming pools for decide not to install a swimming pool cover. 

The reason almost always comes down to aesthetic. They don’t like the way swimming pool covers look. 

However, we would always recommend that you install a swimming pool cover for both indoor and outdoor swimming pools. So, if you are looking for a short answer then, yes. You do need a cover for your swimming pool. 

There are many advantages to installing a swimming pool cover and only a couple of disadvantages. This blog will explore these to help you understand why we think installing a swimming pool cover is the best option for you and your pool. 

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Advantages of installing a swimming pool cover

swimming pool installer

There are many reasons that we recommend that you install a swimming pool cover. These advantages loosely fall under:

1. Swimming pool efficiency (increases)

2. Swimming pool maintenance (decreases)

3. Swimming pool safety (increases)

Swimming pool covers reduce energy usage

One of the main reasons that we would recommend getting a swimming pool cover, is that it retains the swimming pool heat, thus retaining energy and reducing the overall running costs.

Most of a pools heat is lost through the surface of the water. If the pool is uncovered this will make its way into the air. With a very efficient Air Handling Unit (AHU) you might be able to regain some of this and funnel it back into heating the swimming pool. But some heat will still be lost. And the pool will require more energy to bring it up to temperature. 

The most efficient way to retain heat and lower the running costs of a swimming pool is to install a cover. 

The cover will usually be closed over when the pool is not in use. In a domestic swimming pool this will be most of the day and night. And in a commercial pool, this will usually be closed overnight. 

Swimming pool covers reduce air temperature and pool room condensation

swimming poolIf you don’t install a cover on your swimming pool this will affect the temperature the the air needs to be at. 

Without a pool cover the air temperature in the pool hall has to be approx. 1.5 degrees higher than the swimming pool water. If the air temperature isn’t kept higher then you will find that condensation occurs around the pool hall. If this condensation is not controlled (which can be difficult if the air temperature is not high enough).

Average swimming pool temperature is around 28-31 degrees. Most people want their home swimming pools to be comfortable to get into, so we usually find that they run the swimming pool on the higher end of this bracket. This means that the pool room needs to be around 33 degrees (or higher depending on pool temp). This might be fine when you are in the water. But if you want to use the pool room for any socialising/reading/relaxing out with swimming, then you may find that this is too hot. 

This temperature difference rule falls away when the swimming pool is covered. A pool cover allows you to lower the air temperature. This will reduce overall energy consumption and allow you to set the room temperature at a comfortable setting.  

Swimming pool covers reduce maintenance

Without a cover it is very easy for debris and litter to make it’s way into the pool.

This is not as large a problem for indoor swimming pools as it is for outdoor pools. However not having a swimming pool cover can still increase the level of maintenance that your pool needs. 

If you would rather spend less time brushing, vacumming and scooping debris out of a swimming pool, then a swimming pool cover will come in handy.

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Swimming pool covers reduces Chlorine usage

The reduction in debris and outside contaminants also allows you to use less chlorine in a swimming pool fitted with a cover.

This will not only reduce the likelihood that someone will have a reaction to the chemicals. But it will also be safer to use and less expensive to run. 

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Swimming pool covers increase pool safety

Swimming pool covers cannot be relied on to fully stop people from falling in, you should also utilise barriers if necessary to stop children from wandering in and also sings with regards to the depth. They also usually cannot bear much weight.

But swimming pool covers do help increase the safety of the pool. And act as a barrier to prevent people from falling in and drowning. 

Do I need a cover for my outdoor swimming pool?

If you are brave enough to build an outdoor swimming pool in Scotland then do you need a swimming pool cover?

Again, we will always recommend that you install one. And fortunately for all the reasons above (which are exaggerated with outdoor pools) people who install outdoor swimming pools usually install a pool cover.

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Disadvantages of installing a swimming pool cover

As you’ve probably already guessed by now, we think that you should install a swimming pool cover. The benefits outweigh the disadvantages.

There are usually two reasons people do not get a swimming pool cover:

1. Swimming pool covers don’t look great

2. Swimming pool covers are expensive

Swimming pool covers ruin the look of a pool

I think this is very subjective. But some people want their pool to b a feature within their home. And covering it can take away from this.

There are multiple options in both style and colour for swimming pool covers, so the chances are you should be able to find something you like.

Plus, it’s worth remembering that the cover will be over it when you are not using it. You can always pull it back if you are wanting to show the pool off. 


Swimming pool covers are expensive

Swimming pool covers add on money to the cost of the over all pool installation. So often people will try to save money by not installing one. 

If you’ve read the above advantages then you will already know this is a false economy. 

Yes, you will save money in the upfront installation costs. But, you will spend more on energy and chemical costs if you don’t install a swimming pool cover. 

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What are the different types of swimming pool covers?

A swimming pool cover is anything that forms a vapour barrier between the pool and the outside world. So there are many different variations that vary in cost. 

The main types used in indoor swimming pools are foam heat retention covers and slatted automatic pool covers.

Outdoors either bubble/solar covers or slatted automatic pool covers are used. In the winter time a Winter pool cover will usually be fitted during the close down season.

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How much does a swimming pool cover cost?

There is a massive variance in cost for swimming pool covers. Not only will it depend on what type of cover you go for. But also, the size of the pool you need to cover.

Swimming pool covers can cost anywhere between £2000-£20,000 on average. With the slatted automatic pool covers being the higher end of the scale. 

In conclusion

Covers for swimming pools aren’t necessary. And for that reason, many people who install an indoor swimming pool decide against them.

But we would always recommend that you install one. It will help drastically reduce the running costs of your swimming pool in both terms of energy and chemical usage. And it will make your pool area safer.  

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Debbie Ekins
Debbie Ekins
Eagle Leisure - Sales & Marketing Manager Mission = to arm you with the knowledge you need to make the best buying decisions. Fuelled by coffee (and naps). Explorer of Scotland and the world.
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