How to Mount a Solar Pool Heater on a Roof

What You'll Need
Heater box
Roof heater kit

Mounting a solar pool heater on a roof is an ideal place for this without it getting in the way. Any sloped roof that has good south or southwestern exposure is a good place to mount one. Before you opt for this, you need to take some simple measurements and check out the site.

Step 1 - Determine the Exposure

Placing a solar heater on a roof that doesn't have adequate southern exposure won't do a lot of good. You also want to check to ensure that you don't have anything like shade trees or other items blocking out sunlight. Southern to southeastern exposure is ideal, but you can place the heater anywhere that gets a good amount of sunlight.

It's also a good idea to keep in mind how far away the heater will be from the pool. Covered patios work well when it comes to installing solar pool heaters. You want to use an area that is as close as possible to the actual pool. This will prevent you from having to install a large amount of piping and ending up with an unsightly mess on the pool side of your home.

Step 2 - Measurements

Once you have scouted your roof for the best placement, you can start to take the measurements. Before you order your solar heater you need to know how large the pool is and how much water needs to be heated. This is important because getting a solar heater that is too small for the pool won't provide enough heat. On the same note, a solar heater that is too large will also not be as efficient, not to mention a waste of money.

Step 3 - Check Permit Requirements

Roof mounted heat panels that are used to heat water are typically heavy, and some areas require an inspection and permit before you can mount anything like this on your roof. While it may not be necessary, it's not a bad idea to at least consult with someone regarding installation. This way you can ensure that your roof will support a solar pool heater without coming through the roof.

Step 4 - Install the Heater Box

When you order the heater, you will be able to order the casing or box for it as well. This will come with full instructions from the manufacturer, but typically only involves setting up some simple boards, and attaching the heater and panels. The kits should include all materials needed, including brackets, clamps, screws, and spacers.

Step 5 - Run the Pipe

PVC pipe works well for this. You will need to run pipes that will carry the water over the heater and back in to the pool. You don't need to use large pipes, and it doesn't have to look unsightly. If you've purchased a solar heater kit it will tell you how to attach the pipes to the system, and will give you a calculation to use for the amount of pipe you need to purchase.