Sunday, 7 August 2016

My Idea For A DIY Heated Swimming Pool/Hot Tub

This swimming pool idea takes multiple posts across the internet together to come up with a DIY heated pool that uses up little to no power and will cost very little to build. As all the ideas are collected together from parts of other peoples posts online I will put links to all the original posts at the end of this.

To start off with we need a pool, this can be small or large, the larger the pool, the harder it will be to heat. There are loads of different ways to build a swimming pool and they often include digging a big hole and lining it with concrete. The pool that I would build is different to this, it is built using wood pallets strapped together.
This swimming pool can be whatever size you want as it can be made larger or smaller just by changing the number of pallets that you use to build the pool.
Making the pool involves connecting multiple wood pallets in a circle, the original poster used ratchet straps to secure the pallets together as it was only being used as a temporary pool for the summer, for my ideal pool the pallets would be attached together a little more permanently using screws and a wooden frame across the top and bottom.

The waterproofing was formed by tarpaulins and was cushioned around the edges with towels so as to make it cheaper as it was just temporary for the summer. For a more permanent pool I would use some foam padding around the edges and a proper pool liner.
This forms the complete pool and the poster covered the outside of his pool in wood siding and added a ledge on the top but I would have mine sunken into a wood decking.

Now that I've worked out how the pool will be built and where it will stay, there are a few more things to cover:
1. The pool will need some form of water circulation to prevent the water from going stagnant.
2. The water will need heating as a cold pool isn't the most welcoming thing especially in England.

To get some water circulation going I would need a pump, and for a pump to work there would need to be electricity, this is the bit where some small amount of power could be required to run the pump and constantly keep the water circulating and prevent the water from becoming stagnant. But to avoid the requirement for electricity from the grid the pump could be hooked up to a battery charged by either a wind turbine, solar panels, or if a stream is nearby - a waterwheel to power the pump.


To heat the pool I have gone for a slightly different approach to the usual electric heater, but one that will heat the pool much better than any solar alternative. Using a wood-burner I can both create the heat and circulate the water to be heated and transfer the heat to the pool.
Heating the water with the fire would just involve a coil of copper pipes around the inside of the wood-burner. Pumping the water through the pipes without using any electricity from the mains is slightly harder.
To power the pump I would use the heat generated from the fire to generate power using a Peltier Module otherwise known as a thermoelectric cooler. A Peltier module consists of a sandwich of a ceramic plate, a thin metal film, a semiconductor, another thin metal film, and a second ceramic plate. This is used for cooling usually as when a current is applied across it one plate gets hot and the other cools down. But if a temperature differential is placed upon the Peltier module, where one side is heated and the other cooled, electricity is generated. This process is known as the Seebeck effect.
One side of the plate would be placed over the top of the wood-burner, and the other side will be cooled. The post on which I found this used a large CPU heatsink to cool the other side, but I can use the water feeding into the coils to pass over the top of the plate first and cool that side.

Combining all these ideas would allow me to create a pool on a relatively small budget that would be able to run with almost no costs involved in heating and running the pool.

Here are the links for the sources of my inspiration for the heated pool:
1. DIY pallet pool - http://www.littlethings.com/diy-pallet-pool/
2. Wood burning pool heater - http://www.instructables.com/id/Wood-Burning-Pool-Heater/
3. Electricity from heat - http://www.instructables.com/id/Fire-Power-Electricity-from-heat/

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