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Best Solar Pool Heaters Reviews

Solar pool heaters offer a green, cost-effective, and reliable alternative to electric models. Using solar energy, they makes your swimming season longer without raising your energy bills. These heaters use renewable energy to warm your pool water, which is great for the environment. They’re perfect for eco-conscious people who care about nature and their pool.

Here’s what to consider when choosing a solar pool heater:

  • Efficiency: Look for models with high efficiency (60 – 80%) in converting sunlight into heat. This ensures effective heating while saving energy.
  • Durability: Choose heaters made from durable materials like UV-resistant plastics or corrosion-resistant metals. These can withstand outdoor resilience with minimal maintenance.
  • Size and Capacity: Select a heater that matches your pool’s heating needs. Consider factors such as pool size, sunlight exposure, and potential obstructions. Choosing the right size ensures efficient heating and optimal performance.

Find the perfect solar heating solution for your pool’s requirements through our “BUYING GUIDE” and top picks. Keep your pool warm all year while remaining eco-friendly and budget-conscious.

Best Solar Pool Heaters Table

Solar Pool HeatersSolar Panel MaterialTemperature RaiseSuitable forBuy Now
SmartPool Solar Pool HeaterPolypropylene6 - 10℉In-Ground Swimming PoolCheck On Amazon
Game Solar Pool HeaterHigh-Quality Material5℉Mostly for Above-Ground of up to 8000 gal. but used for In-Ground PoolsCheck On Amazon
SolarPoolSupply Solar Pool Heater DIY KitPolypropyleneN.AResidential Inground and Above-Ground PoolsCheck On Amazon
Solar Sun Rings Solar Pool HeaterUV Resistant Vinyl5℉Both Inground & Above Ground PoolsCheck On Amazon
Intex 28685E Solar Pool Water Heater MatHeavy-Duty UV Stabilized PVC5 to 9 ℉Above-Ground Pools of up to 8000 gal.Check On Amazon

Best Solar Pool Heaters Reviews

Here are detailed reviews of our carefully curated list of solar pool heaters that assist you in selecting the proper solar heater that suits your pool requirements.

1. SmartPool Solar Pool Heater

S601 Pool Solar Heater

SunHeater has been delivering effective solar pool heaters for over 20 years. Designed to efficiently heat your pool, this SmartPool S601 solar heating system features two 2’ x 20’ panels made of durable polypropylene. With the capability to raise your pool’s temperature by 6-10°F (4-6°C), you can enjoy extended swimming seasons and comfortable water temperatures year-round. Perfect for in-ground swimming pools, this system is a must-have accessory for any pool owner seeking eco-friendly and cost-effective heating solutions, while lounging by the poolside or taking a refreshing swim.

Crafted with precision and reliability, the S601 utilizes a direct flow system, ensuring optimal heat distribution throughout your pool. Each heating tube is equipped with a header hole, and a coating of fiberglass over a molded header, maximizing the efficiency of the heating process. It uses 80 square feet of solar panels that add luxurious warmth as this system works tirelessly to maintain your desired pool temperature. 


  • Material: Durable polypropylene
  • Panel Dimensions: 4 feet wide x 20 feet long
  • Coverage: 80 square feet
  • Direct Flow System: One header hole for each heating tube
  • Raises Pool Water Temperature: 6-10°F (4-6°C)
  • Installation: Requires separate installation kit (Sold Separately)
  • Product Dimensions: 240 x 54 x 2 inches
  • Item Weight: 34 pounds


  • Efficiently raises pool water temperature by 6-10°F (4-6°C).
  • Durable polypropylene construction ensures longevity.
  • Utilizes a direct flow system for optimal heat distribution.
  • Easy DIY installation for convenience.
  • Compatible with in-ground swimming pools.
  • Includes liquid heat shield to reduce water evaporation.
  • Perfect for people with large pools 


  • A separate installation kit (including piping) is required, sold separately.
  • The straps of the pool heater are not up to the mark, resulting in water flow and leakage issues in some cases. 

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Another Best Product from SunHeater:

Introducing SunHeater’s S120U Universal Solar Pool Heater, a versatile solution compatible with both in-ground and above-ground pools. Its 20′ x 2′ strip design allows for easy installation that lets you connect the heater to the existing pool pump, and mount it on roofs, racks, ground, or fences within a 40 sq. ft. area. Featuring a patented web design, this heater efficiently maximizes sunlight exposure to raise pool water temperature by 6-10°F without extra kits or plumbing. While it offers simplicity and effectiveness, durability may be a concern, and it’s not ideal for larger pools.

2. Game Solar Pool Heater

Game 4721-BB Curve Solar Pool Heater

Game’s 4721-BB solar heater features a unique curve design that maximizes heat collection, making it compatible with Intex, Bestways brands, and most above-ground and in-ground swimming pools. With the ability to raise the temperature of an 8000-gallon pool by 5 degrees in just 4 days, this heater provides efficient heating for your pool, thanks to its innovative design. It is compact and easy to install anywhere that consumes less space. 

Crafted with adjustable and foldable legs, this solar pool heater allows for flexible positioning to maximize sunlight exposure. Its clear cover further traps heat, enhancing its heating efficiency. Made with high-quality materials, including a durable frame and clear cover, this heater ensures longevity and withstands outdoor elements. It comes with treaded ports giving you flexible plumbing options. The kit includes accessories like Intex adapters and 2 hoses and clamps. 


  • Type: Solar Pool Heater
  • Compatibility: Suitable for above-ground and in-ground pools
  • Size: 44.88ʺ long by 27.56ʺ wide
  • Coverage: Ideal for an 8000-gallon pool
  • Temperature Increase: Raises pool water temperature by 5° in 4 days
  • Installation: Freestanding
  • Material: Durable blow-molded plastic frame with a clear cover
  • Adjustable Legs: Yes, for optimal sunlight exposure
  • Accessories Included: Intex adapters, 2 hoses, 2 clamps
  • Weight: 18.3 pounds
  • Warranty: 90 days


  • Unique curved design for maximum sunlight exposure
  • Adjustable legs for flexible positioning
  • Clear cover traps heat effectively
  • Raises temperature of 8,000-gallon pool by 5° in 4 days
  • Suitable for both above-ground and in-ground pools
  • Includes accessories for easy installation


  • Small size may limit heat collection efficiency
  • Not suitable for large-sized pools
  • Some customers reported issues with durability, compatibility with nozzles, and leakage.

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3. SolarPoolSupply Solar Pool Heater DIY Kit

SolarPoolSupply Solar Pool Heater DIY KitExtend your swimming season with the SwimJoy SJ-30 Solar Collectors DIY Kit that provides a durable, efficient, and maintenance-free system. This comprehensive kit, boasting a system size of 60 square feet, provides all the essentials for efficient solar pool heating. With two 4’x7.5′ solar panels included, each aspect of the installation process is meticulously addressed to ensure seamless integration into your pool system.

Whether you opt for rooftop or rack mounting, these solar collectors promise optimal heat absorption, enabling year-round pool enjoyment. From establishing water connections between panels to linking them with your pool’s plumbing lines, every detail is covered in this DIY kit to set up the selected number of solar panels in a single row. With included parts facilitating gravity drainage and piping, its maintenance becomes a breeze, letting you focus on enjoying your comfortably heated pool without costly heating bills. with this sustainable solution provided by SwimJoy’s innovative solar heating technology.


  • System Size: 60 Square Feet
  • Panel Dimensions: (2) 4’x7.5′
  • DIY Kit Components:
  1. Two (2) SwimJoy SJ-30 Solar Collectors
  2. Two (2) SwimJoy Panel Installation Kits
  3. One (1) Row Installation Kit
  4. One (1) Vacuum Relief Valve Attachment Set


  • A comprehensive DIY kit includes all necessary components for installation
  • Efficient heating with two 4’x7.5′ solar collectors
  • Facilitates easy mounting on the preferred surface (roof or rack)
  • Ensures proper water connections for optimal performance
  • Ultra-secure rail mounting system for strapless flush mounting
  • Its panel clamp system connects panels and PVC pipe. 
  • Gravity drainage aided by included parts for hassle-free maintenance


  • May require additional expertise for the installation
  • Limited compatibility with certain pool configurations
  • Additional plumbing work may be necessary for certain setups.

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4. Solar Sun Rings Solar Pool Heater

Solar Sun Rings Solar Pool HeaterThe Solar Pool Heater SSR-SB-02 is a practical and innovative solution to effortlessly heat your swimming pool using solar energy without complex installations or connections. With a pack of 6 rings included, each ring, measuring around 60 inches in diameter, is crafted from two layers of durable UV-resistant vinyl. This passive solar heating device efficiently captures the sun’s rays, with the upper clear layer directing sunlight onto the bottom blue layer, where about 50% of the sunlight is absorbed and converted into heat.

The rings work by covering approximately 50% of the pool surface, allowing heat to penetrate the water while still permitting some heat loss to prevent overheating during the day. At night, these rings act as insulating blankets, helping to retain the heat accumulated during daylight hours, ensuring your pool remains comfortably warm for extended periods.


  • Size: 60 inches in diameter
  • Type: Solar ring
  • Installation: On the pool surface
  • Material: UV-resistant vinyl
  • Quantity: 6 units
  • Heat Source: Passive solar heating device
  • Included Components: Each unit contains 6 magnets for attachment
  • Pool Compatibility: Suitable for all chlorine or saltwater system pools
  • Coverage: Each ring covers approximately 50% of the pool surface
  • Recommended Usage: One ring for every 50 square feet of pool surface area
  • Effective Heat Retention: Acts as an insulating blanket to retain heat gained during daylight
  • Maintenance: Easily cleaned after removal from the pool.


  • Easy installation and removal without the need for plumbing connections
  • Effective in raising water temperature by a few degrees Fahrenheit
  • Customizable to fit the size of your pool
  • Provides insulation at night to retain heat accumulated during the day


  • Some customers have reported concerns about the quality of the pool heaters
  • Requires removal from the water whenever the pool is in use.

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5. Intex 28685E Solar Pool Water Heater Mat

Intex 28685E Solar Pool Water Heater MatThe Intex 28685E solar pool water heater mat is a smart and eco-friendly solution designed to enhance the above-ground swimming experience that maximizes your pool’s enjoyment. This innovative solar heater mat utilizes cutting-edge solar technology to naturally raise the temperature of your pool water, providing a comfortable and inviting swimming environment. Whether you’re lounging in the sun or enjoying a refreshing swim, this heater mat ensures that your pool stays warm and welcoming, allowing you to make the most of your outdoor oasis.

Crafted with convenience and efficiency in mind, the Intex mat is seamlessly compatible with Intex filter pumps, offering hassle-free installation and operation. With its compact and durable design, this mat effortlessly blends into your pool area while delivering impressive heating performance.


  • Size: 47.25ʺ X 47.25ʺ
  • Type: Flat mat
  • Installation: Ground
  • Heater Mat Size: 1.2 meters x 1.2 meters (flat, before filling)
  • Heating Performance: Increases swimming pool water temperature by approximately 5-9° Fahrenheit (3-5° Celsius), depending on weather conditions
  • Surface Area: 11 square feet
  • Hose Connections: Includes 1 adapter A and 1 adapter B for 1 1/2-inch hose connections
  • Included Components: 0.5m connecting hose, 1.25-inch hose attachment point, bypass valve
  • Material: Constructed of heavy-duty UV-stabilized PVC
  • Weight: 5.3 pounds
  • Compatibility: Suitable for above-ground pools up to 8000 gallons


  • Easy installation and compatibility with Intex above-ground pools
  • Option to connect up to 6 mats for enhanced heating performance
  • Affordable alternative to traditional pool heating methods
  • Constructed of heavy-duty UV-stabilized PVC
  • The compact and foldable design allows for convenient storage during the winter months


  • The build quality is not up to the mark, as it is too thin and might get pinholes.
  • Some users may experience difficulty with water flow through the mats, particularly with higher flow rate pumps.

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Our Top Recommendations:

Buying Guide to Purchase the Best Solar Pool Heaters

Dive into our comprehensive guide for the finest solar pool heaters. We’ll walk you through everything from understanding collector types to evaluating pool size and installation needs. With our expert insights, you’ll be equipped to select the perfect solar pool heater, ensuring optimal warmth for your pool while embracing eco-friendly solutions.

1. Types of Solar Collectors

Types of solar collectors vary in design and efficiency, catering to different needs and preferences. In general, three types of solar pool collectors are available – flat plate, evacuated tube, and batch collectors. 

  • Flat-Plate Collectors, commonly utilized for pool heating, are versatile and can be installed either on rooftops or on the ground adjacent to the pool. While effective, they do require significant space.
  • Evacuated Tube Collectors are renowned for their efficiency, utilizing vacuum tubes to generate substantial heat for pools. Despite their compact design, they outperform flat-plate collectors regarding heat production, making them ideal for larger pool setups.
  • Batch Collectors, although capable of heating pools to high temperatures, are less efficient compared to other types. They tend to overheat pools and are more suitable for specialized applications requiring excessive heat.

2. Design

Solar pool heater design doesn’t concern aesthetics but focuses on enhancing efficiency and heat absorption. Brands innovate with patented designs to maximize heat capture. For example, Game, a leading brand in pool heating solutions, adopts a curved design instead of the traditional flat layout to enhance heat retention.

Similarly, SunHeater employs a patented panel design resembling a web, optimizing sunlight exposure for faster and more efficient pool heating. These specialized designs significantly improve efficiency, ensuring quicker temperature increases in your pool.

3. Mounting Type and Installation

When investing in a solar pool heater, installation is often an overlooked aspect by consumers. Considering the installation process is crucial as it can impact the overall budget. Some heaters necessitate professional installation, thereby increasing the financial commitment.

However, certain models offer a simpler installation process, empowering users to handle it independently. Equipped with detailed installation guides, these heaters facilitate DIY installation, reducing the need for additional service expenses. It’s essential to assess the installation requirements of a solar pool heater beforehand to ensure a seamless and cost-effective setup procedure.

Solar pool heaters are available in various mounting options. Smaller models typically feature rigid square or round frames that can be mounted on a roof or installed as standalone units. Many of these heaters have adjustable legs, allowing users to optimize sunlight absorption. On the other hand, larger solar pool heaters require panels to be mounted on structures such as ground racks or home roofs. Additionally, buyers may need to purchase installation kits and racks separately, which can contribute to the overall cost.

4. Durability

Durability in solar pool heaters relies on quality materials, resistance to UV rays and weather, and reliable components like tubing and seals. High-quality materials such as UV-stabilized PVC and corrosion-resistant metals enhance longevity, while robust construction and reinforced seams prevent premature wear. Attention to design, adherence to standards, and warranties further ensure reliability and durability, providing years of efficient heating performance.

5. Pool Size

The size of your pool significantly impacts the effectiveness of a solar pool heating system. Larger pools require a correspondingly larger system to ensure efficient heating. A general rule of thumb is to match the surface area of the solar pool heater to 50-100% of the pool’s surface area.

In regions with cooler or cloudier climates, opting for a solar pool heater with a surface area closer to 100% of the pool’s surface is advisable. Conversely, in warmer and sunnier areas, a smaller system may suffice. Solar pool heaters with larger surface areas are particularly beneficial for extending the swimming season and maintaining comfortable water temperatures well into the cooler months.

6. Temperature and Efficiency

The effectiveness of a solar pool heater in warming water hinges on various factors, including its surface area and the duration of direct sunlight exposure. Notably, on cloudy days, solar heaters may have a negligible impact on pool temperature.

Primarily, the heater’s surface area determines its capacity to influence water temperature. When appropriately sized, a solar pool heater can elevate pool temperature by up to 10 degrees Fahrenheit over a few days. To maximize efficiency, complementing the heater with a pool cover is advisable, preventing heat loss during nighttime.

Verdict: With our buying guide for the best solar pool heaters, you’ll navigate the complexities of selecting the ideal heating solution with ease. Whether you’re considering factors like pool size, installation requirements, or efficiency, our guide provides valuable insights to extend your swimming season while minimizing energy costs. 

Solar Pool Heaters – FAQs

1. How do solar pool heaters function?

Ans: Solar pool heaters feature large, dark-colored panels designed to absorb solar heat. These panels contain channels and valve openings connected to the pool pump. Water is circulated through these channels, where it absorbs heat from the sun before returning to the pool.

2. What are the advantages of solar pool heaters?

Ans: Solar pool heaters can raise pool water temperatures by up to 10° Fahrenheit without consuming electricity.

3. How many solar panels are required to heat a swimming pool?

Ans: The number of solar panels needed depends on the pool size and the area/location. Generally, solar panel surface area should cover at least 60 percent of the pool’s surface for effective heating.

4. What tubing size is recommended for a solar pool heater?

Ans: For optimal performance, use 2-inch plumbing tubing for solar pool heaters, as it aligns with standard pool pump sizes.

5. Are solar-heated pools warm during winter?

Ans: Solar pool heaters can typically raise water temperatures by up to 10° Fahrenheit. However, in colder climates, pool temperatures may drop below the heater’s capacity to maintain warmth.

6. What is the lifespan of pool solar heating systems?

Ans: Most solar pool heaters last 10 to 15 years before UV damage and exposure to extreme temperatures cause material deterioration.

7. How to prevent the solar pool heater from freezing?

Ans: To avoid freezing in winter, drain the solar pool heater completely during fall pool winterization procedures. Also, use PEX piping instead of the conventional copper pipes, and additionally, install a recirculation system and freeze protection valve. 


Investing in a solar heater for your swimming pool is a wise choice due to its cost-effective heating capabilities. When selecting a solar heater, it’s crucial to assess your pool’s size, type, and geographical location to determine the required heating capacity. Additionally, consider the efficiency of the heater concerning your specific pool heating needs. 

Ensure that you have adequate space to accommodate the size of the heater for optimal performance. We hope our top picks and buying guide assist you in making an informed decision and maximizing the benefits of your solar pool heating system.

If you have any questions regarding the selection or usage procedures of solar pool heaters, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. We’ll provide prompt responses to address your queries and assist you with every aspect of solar pool heaters. 

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