Repairs to Solar Covers and Solar Reels

solar-reel-covers-blanketsHave you ever found yourself struggling to maintain your water temperature? Or, have you gone to bed, awoken to find your pool temperature dropped significantly overnight? I have the solution for you!

Today’s blog focuses on the advantages of utilizing a solar cover and reel, how to buy replacement parts for the reel, and how to prolong the life of your cover.

Advantages of Solar Reels and Covers

The general rule of thumb is to keep the solar cover on when the pool is not in use. A solar cover will help retain the heat that is absorbed by the sun throughout the day and prevent heat loss during the evening. A solar cover will also reduce chemical use and water evaporation.

rockys-solar-reelIf you find yourself struggling to get the solar cover off, then it may be time to invest in a Solar Reel. A solar reel makes it easier to cover or uncover a pool quickly by one person. By using a solar reel, it will extend the life of a cover and prevents tearing of the cover or UV damage.

Solar reels come in various widths, for inground or aboveground pools. To determine what solar reel you need, measure the width of your pool and order accordingly. If you have questions on what reel you need, our experts are standing by 24/7 to assist you.

Repairing Solar Blankets

Over time, your solar blanket will literally start to fall apart. Later in the blog, I will discuss ways to extend the life of the cover. But for now, if you find a small hole in the cover, waterproof tape may be utilized as a patch.peel-and-patch-solar-cover-repair-patches

Our Peel & Patch repair kit works very well. If you have remnants of an old solar cover, a small section may be used to fill in a larger hole. If the hole is too big for repair, it may be time to replace the cover.

Solar Cover Reel Parts and Troubleshooting

When opening the pool for the spring, check to see if the cover reel functions properly. Follow these basic steps to ensure the reel works properly:

  1. Is the reel hard to turn? If so, the ball bearings may need to be replaced.
  2. Are any parts missing, or broken? Inspect both ends of the cover for missing screws, broken yokes, or blanket clips.
  3. Is the reel tube bowing in the center of the cover? This is due to a solar cover that is too heavy or long. We do not recommend using any solar cover greater than 12 mil with a residential solar reel.
  4. Does the cover roll up unevenly? If so, the reel attachment kit is not evenly placed in the center of the cover and needs to be reattached.

If you know the make and model of the reel, you can visit the Parts Finder on our website. We have solar cover reel parts for over a dozen different solar reels.


If the make and model of solar reel is unknown, contact us at 1-800-288-7946 and our parts and technical department will be happy to assist you.

Prolonging the Life of a Solar Cover

The number one reason solar covers starts to fall apart is due to chemical imbalance. Chlorine levels need to be kept between 1-3 parts per million and the pH between 7.2-7.6.  Low pH, high chlorine levels, and shocking the pool with the cover on, can weaken the cover and cause the bubbles to deteriorate.

Believe it or not, the number two worst thing for a solar cover is the sun itself! When using the pool, the cover should be protected from UV rays.

solar-saddleSolar reels are perfect for this, or If you have an above ground pool, our Solar Saddle attaches quickly and eliminates the cover from laying on the grass, or in the getting dirty. It also makes it easier to take off and put your solar cover back on.

poly-tarp - UV shield for pool solar blanketsWhen the cover is rolled up, the Solar Tarp can be placed on the solar cover and acts as a protective shield from UV rays, wind, rain, and debris. The solar tarp simply fastens together with Velcro and easily comes off and rolls up very small and tightly when you have the solar cover on the pool.

solar-blanket-coverWhen closing the pool for the winter, above ground reels should be taken off and stored indoors. For in ground reels, try a heavy duty winter solar blanket cover which protects the solar cover and reel tube from rain, debris, and sunshine during the winter, if you are unable to find storage room indoors for the blanket and reel.

Covering it All

  1. Solar blankets are great, and solar reels make using them even better!
  2. Replace or Repair? You can DIY repairs to solar covers and solar reels.
  3. Protect your solar cover from sun, chlorine and low pH for twice the life!

If you have any questions on solar covers, what size solar reel to use, or how to extend the life of your solar pool cover, do not hesitate to call us at 1-800-288-7946 and any of our experts will be happy to assist you!


Kristine Malak
InTheSwim Staff Blogger


Repairs to Solar Covers and Solar Reels — 6 Comments

  1. I have a tear along the seam. There is no overlap which I can cement back together. How do I repair this? Is there a patch which can be plastic welded back on over the seam?

    • Hi Carl, you can use heavy duty and very sticky packing tape, or Gorilla tape, or any clear, reinforced tape. Clean the surface with soap/water and dry well, then scuff up the surface with sandpaper, cut a rounded corner patch, and stick it on! A usually permanent patch.

  2. The mice chewed couple holes in my solar blanket while it was in storage. We tried to patch with a vinyl repair kit for liners but it wouldn’t stick. I have plenty of leftover from the trim to patch with but can’t get it to stick. Any suggestions?? Also any suggestions for storage to keep mice out!! We taped up in original box

    • Hi Julie, we have a cover patch, for winter covers, that would work, it’s essentially very sticky tape, and perhaps packing tape or something would also work to patch a solar cover. For the mice, they don’t like Mint, or mothballs. A large plastic trash can with a lid is a great winter storage location if you can roll it up just right to fit. Placing in the rafters in the garage can be a good location, making it difficult to reach. You can also leave them on the solar reel during winter, using the solar blanket winter cover.

    • Hi Vincent, you can use a rubber cement, or vinyl cement, which you can find at any hardware or home store. Most solar blankets are made from extruded polyethylene (plastic), and lots of different sealants or adhesives could be used.

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