Installing Flexible Solar Heating Panels for Pools Installing Flexible Solar Heating Panels for Pools
Flexible solar heating panels are a great solution for either pools that are located a long distance from the main house or seasonal pools that will be taken for the winter. Flexible solar panels perform in the same way as the rigid panels with the added functionality of flexible construction. This means they can be bent for better solar conduction and folded up completely for portability and storage. Installing a flexible solar heating panel for an above ground pool is a very easy project for any do-it-yourself homeowner.
Step 1: Determine Best Location
The best part about flexible solar heating panels is that they are fairly portable and easily installed in different places. However, locating the best position the first time will save you a lot of time. Check the different areas around your pool for a spot that receives a great deal of direct sunlight.
Step 2: Attach Arms to Solar Panel
After removing the pieces of the solar heating panel from the packaging, you can start the assembly by attaching the arms to the side of the panel. Place the arms on the side of the casing and line up the holes. Set the washers in place and tighten the screws.
Step 3: Attach Mounting Bracket
The bracket that will hold the solar panels in position will go onto the back of the panel. Line up the holes with the holes on the bracket, set the washers, and then tighten the mounting bolts.
Step 4: Attach to Pole or Pool Decking
When working with a flexible solar heating panel you have two ways that you can mount it for the season. If you have a deck for your pool, and it lines up with the location you chose at the beginning, simply bolt the panel to the deck. Use 3-inch carriage bolts screwed directly into the decking. If there is no deck, you will need to use the post that is included, or mount to a 4 x 4 post.
Step 5: Set Position of Panel
Loosen the bolt that tightens the panel into place and align it with the position it needs to face to receive the most sun. Tighten the bolt so that it doesn't move during times of wind.
Step 6: Connect Panel to Batteries
Solar heating panels to not produce power by themselves. They capture the sun's rays and convert it into usable power that is stored in batteries. This current then goes to the heater, pump, or wherever else you need it to go on your pool. Connect the positive wire from the panel to the positive side of the battery. It is important to use a fusible link for this process to interrupt the flow of power in the event of an overload or short. The negative cable is then connected to the negative battery terminal.
Step 7: Monitor Charging of Batteries
Once the flexible solar heating panel is connected to the pool's pump, you will need to monitor it to make sure that the batteries are charging enough during the day. You may need to make slight adjustments in the way the panels are positioned for maximum energy capture.