Can You Run the Pool Pump with a Solar Cover On?

Who wouldn’t enjoy a refreshing dive in their pool on a sunny day? But when it comes to harnessing solar energy to keep the pool warm and conserve energy, you might wonder about running the pump with a cover. So, can you run the pool pump with a solar cover on?

In this article, we will explore the topic of running pool pumps with a solar cover along with the benefit, drawbacks & practical tips for optimizing your pool’s energy efficiency while maintaining a comfortable temperature.

But before I tell you all of this, first begin with understanding & knowing, ‘Can you run the pool pump with a solar cover on’?.

Can You Run the Pool Pump with a Solar Cover On?

Can You Run the Pool Pump with a Solar Cover On?

It Is Possible to run the Pool Pump with the Solar Cover On, but it is only sometimes advisable due to the chemical imbalances & reduced heat transfer probability.

However, running the pool pump with the solar cover on is feasible & has certain advantages, like it prevents stagnation, algae growth, & the buildup of debris. While the cover may slightly impede the flow, it still allows water movement & ensures the filtration system functions adequately.

I have done this practice earlier, a few years ago. I installed a solar cover for my pool & experimented with running the pump with the cover on.

The result was astonishing because I found that increasing the pump running time by extra hours each day could maintain excellent water clarity and heat retention while minimizing energy consumption. Plus, keeping it off for too long may result in prime loses. Recently, I’ve shared an article on reasons why Pool Pump Loses Prime When Turned Off.

This personalized approach helps me strike a perfect balance between energy efficiency & water quality and encourages me to write an article to help other fellows like me.


A solar cover, also known as a pool blanket, tends to be a lightweight cover that usually floats on the water’s surface, primarily to retain heat & prevent heat loss from the pool water.

In major cases, the covers are usually made of special materials that allow the sunlight to pass through while also trapping the heat generated by the sun. 

The good news is that you can indeed run the pool pump with the solar cover on, but there are a few things you need to consider before making & a decision.

Before we address whether you can run the pulp with a solar cover on without anybody, it is important to understand the purpose, benefits, drawbacks & benefits of running the pool pump with the solar cover on.

Benefits of Running the Pool Pump with a Solar Cover On

As I told you in the earlier section, running the pool pump with the solar cover also has a few benefits, especially regarding energy efficiency and heat rest tension. Below is what you can expect after running the pool with a solar cover.

Increased Heat Retention

Since you already know that a solar cover plays a crucial role in keeping your pool water temperature warm, below I’m mentioning a comparison of cold water temperature with & without a solar cover.

Pool Water Temperature with Solar CoverPool Water Temperature without Solar Cover
Sunny Day80°F (27°C)75°F (24°C)
Cloudy Day75°F (24°C)70°F (21°C)
Nighttime70°F (21°C)65°F (18°C)

If you look at the table very closely, you will find that solar cover can increase the pool water temperature by an average of 5 degrees Fahrenheit compared to not using a cover.

It is also important to install a pool cover to prevent water loss due to overheating and debris from accumulating or falling into your pool. Putting water temperature using a solar cover can be pristine if you want to translate to a more comfortable swimming experience, even on cloudy days or colder nights.

Enhanced Energy Efficiency

Running the pool with a solar cover not only helps in retaining heat but also enhances energy efficiency. According to the Department of Energy, using a solar cover will reduce pool heating costs by up to 70%. This reduction is primarily due to the minimized heat loss from the pool water. 

Therefore, I highly advise you always to have a good quality pool cover that can harness the sun’s energy effectively & prevent heat dissipation which further helps you reduce Reliance on traditional heating methods like gas or electric heaters. It saves you energy and puts less strain on your wallet. 

Not only is it beneficial for the environment, but also for your budget. However, paying attention to the drawbacks of running a solar pump without a solar cover is also important. Therefore, below, I am mentioning a couple of drawbacks of running the pool pump with a solar cover on it as well.

Drawbacks of Running the Pool Pump with a Solar Cover On

Drawbacks of Running the Pool Pump with a Solar Cover On

Even though there are a couple of benefits of running the pool pump with a solar cover on that is compelling, it is also important that we acknowledge the potential drawbacks too. 

Reduced Water Circulation

When you let the pool pump run with the solar cover on, the cover starts to impact the natural flow of water. This kind of reduction in water circulation can also hurt the filtration system’s effectiveness. Sometimes, Pool Pump Works on Recirculate but Not on Filter.

You should also note that insufficient filtration may lead to the accumulation of debris, making the pool water appear cloudy as well. If you want to prevent decreased water clarity & potential growth, you should implement a maintenance & cleaning schedule for your pool & its pump. 

To mitigate reduced water circulation, I recommend you schedule a regular cleaning session that helps remove debris accumulated on the cover. You should also use a skimmer net or a pool brush to gently remove the insects, leaves, or other particles from the water. 

Also, make sure to increase the duration of pump operation to compensate for the reduced circulation caused by the cover. I usually like to consult with a professional or refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines for better determination of optimal pool pump running time based on the pool size & condition. 

Therefore you should also be considered consulting with your pool manufacturer for better guidelines on keeping the pool pump on determining the optimum pump running time based on your specific pool type & conditions. Many fellows also complain that their Pool Pump Motor Shuts Off After 10 Seconds.

Potential Chemical Imbalances

Since you must maintain proper chemicals to ensure a safe & healthy swimming experience, running the pool pump with a solar cover can also affect the distribution of chemicals, leading to unwanted imbalances. 

You should note that improper chemical balance leads to poor water quality and contributes to eye & skin irritation. This is why I highly recommend testing the water regularly & monitor chemical levels, including chlorine, pH, alkalinity, and chemical hardness. 

To get accurate testing results, ensure a reliable testing kit from a nearby pool supply Store or online retailers. Proper pool water testing regularly helps you identify imbalances and takes corrective actions promptly. 

Based on the test results, you must adjust the chemical as required to maintain the recommended level. You should also consult a pool professional or your pool manufacturer for guidance on the appropriate chemical range for optical pool water balance & health.

4 Tips for Running the Pool Pump with a Solar Cover On

If you want to maintain or strike the right balance between energy, Efficiency, & pool maintenance, consider the following tips as closely as possible.

Set a Pump Operation Schedule

First, you must establish a daily, weekly, and monthly schedule for running your pool. However, consider a few factors like weather conditions, pool usage, and local regulations. Let your pool pump run for at least 6 to 8 hours daily, or adjust the duration based on your pool type size or specific requirement.

Monitor Water Quality Regularly

As I told you earlier, using a test kit, you must monitor the water quality regularly or before entering the pool. You can also seek professional water testing services if you have a budget. 

It would help if you kept a log of the test result to track any fluctuation or trend in the chemical levels of your pool water. This will help you identify any potential issue and promptly take appropriate action to maintain optimal water quality for safe & enjoyable experiences.

Consider Alternative Pool Covers

If you are concerned about the reduced water circulation caused by the solar cover, I suggest you choose alternative pool cover options that allow better water movement.

I have seen main people using a mess cover or a combination of a solar cover & mesh safety cover to provide both heat retention & improved filtration.

Therefore, consider researching different covered types or consult with a pool professional to determine the best option for your specific need & your pool type or condition.

Maximizing Efficiency

I recently installed a solar cover for my pool & experimented with running the pump with the cover on. By increasing the pump running time by an extra hour each day, I was able to maintain excellent water clarity & heat retention while minimizing energy consumption. This personalized approach helped me strike a balance between energy efficiency & water quality.


I hope you know that running the pool pump with its solar cover is a viable option to maximize energy efficiency and heat retention in your pool. Still, there are also a few potential drawbacks that you need to consider & implement the tips mentioned above to mitigate any issue. 

Plus, if you want to enjoy a well-maintained & enjoyable swimming experience, make sure to personalize your approach based on your pool-specific need & consult with a professional for expert guidance. 

I have done my best to give you in-depth knowledge: ‘Can you run the pool pump with the solar cover?’ If you find this article helpful, please consider sharing. Your share will help you answer the question: can you run the pool pump with a solar cover? Check my other helpful guide on pool get-at maintenance and share it on this website. See you in the next post, till then, take care & goodbye.