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Solar Hot Water Heating Opportunities

Outdoor pools are great on hot summer days – the kids are occupied and the water is refreshing. And as the summer progresses, the water heats up to a comfortable level. But on chilly spring and fall days the cool water in that pool amounts to nothing more than a 30,000 gallon decoration in your back yard. Plus you still may need to run the electric pool pumps to keep the water clean.

Because the water is cold in the spring and early summer, your options are to swim (or not to swim) in cold water, burn $50 in extra natural gas to heat your pool, or install a solar hot water heating system. It’s no surprise that my preferred solution is to install solar hot water heating system. These pool heat collectors are easily connected into your pool’s existing circulating pump system, and can easily maintain your pool at a comfortable 80 degrees F for most of the year.

My guest this week is Freeman Ford, one of the founders of FAFCO. FAFCO is the oldest and largest manufacturer of pool heating systems in the U.S. They are based in Chico, California, and have been manufacturing their special black polymer pool solar panels for over 40 years. In addition to their pool solar panels, FAFCO also has a line of solar DHW panels as well as a new hybrid solar thermal-PV panel. Please join me on this week’s Energy Show as Freeman talks about our country’s lack of commitment to clean, renewable energy — and the solar industry’s perseverance in the face of political paralysis when it comes to a transition to a clean energy economy.


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