How Much Ice Would It Take To Cool A Swimming Pool?

Along with much of the country, we've been hit with some record high temperatures so far this summer. For some pool owners, this can result in pool water that's in the upper 80's and 90+ degrees - not exactly the perfect temperature to take a cool, refreshing dip.

So how can you prevent your pool from feeling like a hot bath? It might be hard to imagine what a pool service provider might do to help. If you've tried dumping some ice cubes into the deep end with hopes for relief, you're certainly not alone. You're also better off using that ice to make yourself a cold drink.

There has been some uptick in speculation lately about just how much ice it would take to actually cool your swimming pool, though the question was answered quite succinctly in an article in Slate back in 1999. After going through the science of how ice cools water temperature by absorbing calories, the author gives this real life example to illustrate just how this would play out:

"So to lower the temperature of a 20,000 gallon pool of 90 degree water by 10 degrees, you would need about 8,750 pounds of ice. A ten-pound bag of ice costs around a buck, so cooling your pool with ice cubes would cost $875. (It would also add about 3 inches to the depth of the water.) And, of course, as long as the air around the pool and the bodies in it are warmer than 80 degrees, the water would immediately start getting warmer again."

This hypothetical price tag and outcome is probably enough to make any pool owner forget the idea forever - but if you are still curious to see how much ice you'd need to cool your pool, you can calculate the amount using this equation: Your pool's volume (in gallons) / 1,000 x the number of degrees (Fahrenheit) you'd like to cool the pool by x 43.75.

How much did it come up with? Still interested in using ice to cool your pool?

Charlie Nadler

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