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After you have calculated the total number of solar pool panels your pool requires and you have determined the total solar pool panel square footage needed to achieve 100% heating coverage you will be ready to take and record your roof measurements to verify the available square footage. This will help you determine how many panels you can actually fit on your roof(s) or structure before purchasing a solar kit.

Measuring a roof for solar pool heating

Roof B

Roof A

In the example above detailed measurements were taken of the roof location(s) we determined to be most sutible to install our solar pool panels.   The South West roof [Roof A] and the South East roof [Roof B].


Note: If your roof has any roof obstacles (vents, chimney, skylights etc.) make sure to factor them into your measurements.

After we recorded our measurements we then calculated the available square footage of each roof by multiplying the vertical length by the horizontal width. 

Measuring a roof for solar pool heater

Roof A:


Due to the roof vents close to the peak on Roof A we chose to use the 20' vertical length (vl) measurement and 27' horizontal width (hw) measurement to caculate the available square footage.


     20' vl x 27' hw =  540 ft² available 

     240" vl x 324" hw


Roof B:


Roof B has a skylight installed so we chose to use the 15' measurement as our vertical length and 25' as our horizontal width.


     15' vl x 25' hw =  375 ft² available 

     180" vl x 300" hw




The Vortex solar pool heating panel comes in 3 standard sizes: 4'x12', 4'x10' and 4'x8'.  All panel sizes measure 48" wide with a 3" gap between collectors for mounting, totaling 51".

solar pool panel sizes

Typically solar pool panels are placed next to each other in a horizontal row; each panel requires 51" horizontally. The overall width of a solar panel array includes the minimum 3" required on all sides of each row to allow space for feed and return PVC plumbing lines.  

solar pool panel array layout

By using the Vortex System Sizing Calculator we calculated we needed to fit 6 Vortex 4' x 12' solar pool panels on our roof. By using the space requirements chart above it was determined that we needed  a total of 12' 6" vertical length by 26' horizontal width.  


In the above examples we confirmed the square footage of both Roofs A & B and determined that both roofs had enough space available to receive 6 Vortex 4' x 12' solar pool heating panels.  Since Roof A is facing SW and is much closer to the pool equipment, it was identified as the optimal location to install the solar pool panels. We also decided Roof B can serve as an alternate option or could be used to install additional panels in the future to increase our systems heating potential.

solar pool heater space requirements chart
solar pool panel array layout 2
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