One of the most important parts of owning a swimming pool is protecting it from heat and energy loss with a solar cover reel. Choosing the right one can be challenging. There are specific considerations that you will need to make about the size of the reel and the style as well.
One thing for certain is that if you want to ensure you get the most out of your solar cover, you will need a reel. We have to put together everything you need to know before making your purchase and how to use your new solar cover reel.
The 7 Best Solar Cover Reel Reviews
1. Vingli Pool Cover Reel Set
- NOTE:Item ship in more than one box and may arrive separately.The package has upgrade. EASY TO ASSEMBLY & EASY TO USE: Embedded strap link design, making the pulling force bigger and more stable. Lockable...
- DURABLE, MAINTENANCE-FREE, RUST-FREE CONSTRUCTION. Excellent value when compared to other reels. 3-section aluminum pipe design, not easily droop. Grooved reel tube design to avoid strap fall off. It's...
- FIT IN ALL SHAPE POOL: Adjustment for width. This pool cover roller is suitable for 14 feet to 18 feet wide in-ground swimming pools. This swimming pool reel can fit in all shape pool, but the width must...
- MAKE YOUR LIFE EASIER. Covering your pool can provide numerous benefits: Keep a solar cover on the pool to help with evaporation during the hottest months and to keep the water warm enough for swimming...
- ECO-FRIENDLY DESIGN. The swimming pool cover reel offers a unique design that allow for easy wheel barrow-style maneuverability to take your cover to or from the pool. With 1 Hand crank on one end for...
The Vingli Pool Cover reel is the best solar pool cover reel on the market. When you look at the strength and durability of this model, you will quickly see why. The Vingli is made to last a long time, and it will handle even the largest solar covers.
Since this is a rust-free design, you can leave it out in any weather condition. The wheels are large solid tires, so you can easily roll the entire cover to your shed for storage.
In addition, the Vingli is adjustable for width; as long as you have between a 14 and 18-foot wide pool, this will work just fine. As long as you cut your solar pool cover to fit your pool, this is a perfect choice.
- Durable hand crank
- Easy to roll and unroll
- Long metal pole is adjustable
- This is a large unit at the end of your swimming pool.
2. NSdirect Pool Cover Reel
The NSdirect Pool cover really works for pools up to 22.5 feet wide. You will find that this is an affordable and slightly easier to operate solar cover reel than some of the others that you may find on the market.
One thing we can ensure about the NSdirect is that it will make your solar cover easier to use and remove. Solar covers keep your pool much more maintenance-free; therefore, the reel needs to be maintenance-free to help you complete this equation. The entire NSdirect model is completely rust-free.
- Easy to take care of
- Rust-free construction
- Allows you to use your solar pool cover more frequently
3. Nova Microdermabrasion Swimming Pool Cover Reel Set
- 【Durable & Adjustable】Made of polishing aluminum tubes, won’t rust or droop even after a long time of use. The length can be adjusted, which make it work for different size of swimming pools.
- 【User-friendly Design】Features a hand crank on one end of the wheel for smooth operation, which helps you to roll up and down easily. Comes with a Thermometer, help you easily monitor the water...
- 【Stable & Portable】 2 wheels for easy moving. They are made of full solid tires, durable and stable, won’t fall into the pool easily. Anti-slip legs to protect floor and increase stability.
- 【Make Your Life Easier】Covering your pool can keep debris from falling in your pool. This pool cover reel set protects the cover from damage and make your pool clean, allows you to relax after a hard...
- 【Easy Assembly】Fit in-ground pools 17.5’ ft - 21’ ft long. Straps and stakes included, easy to assemble. Long straps can attach to the cover at different points. ★★★Warm Note:The item will be...
The Nova Microdermabrasion Swimming Pool Cover Reel Set is one of the easiest to hook up and get started using. This is a very stable unit that has two wheels to help you move it around your deck. Many pool owners like to cover their swimming pool and night and then remove the cover and solar reel during the day.
The Nova Microdermabrasion Swimming Pool Cover Reel Set comes with a thermometer. This way, you can figure out how much heat loss you have avoided by using your solar pool cover.
- Polished aluminum tubes allow for rust-free construction
- Hank crank makes it easy to use
- Works for pools 17.5-21 feet long
- Construction is not as heavy-duty as other more expensive models
4. HydroTools by Swimline Above-Ground Pool Solar Blanket Reel System
- Above-ground pool cover reel system
- Includes straps and hardware to attach to the solar blanket
- This item fits perfectly with Swimline pole item numbers (54000, 54024)(Poles sold separately)
The HydroTools by Swimline is a solar blanket cover reel set. The only issue with this set is that you will need to purchase a pole to go with it. All of the straps and reels are in place, but the pole will have to be purchase based on the size of your pool.
This is a plastic style, and it will stay stationary on your pool deck. The large full solid tires from other companies will be a bit more portable than the HydroTools model.
Although the HydroTools Solar Blanket Reel System claims that it will work with a heavy cover, it is best for the lighter-weight options. This option is of great value and can allow anyone to put the solar cover on and off.
- Can purchase metal rod to work for any shape pool
- Hook and loop straps included
- Will work for an inground swimming pool or above ground
- Still need to purchase other equipment to get this to work
5. SunHeater Stainless Steel Solar Blanket Reel System
- POOL SOLAR BLANKET REEL SYSTEM – The Sunheater Solar Blanket Reel System fastens securely to your pool’s top rail to make removing your solar blanket easy and efficient. Compatible with 3 in. tube...
- FOR ABOVEGROUND POOLS – This solar cover reel system is suitable for steel wall or soft-sided aboveground pools
- EASY TO USE POOL REEL SYSTEM – The simple pin fastener system allows for quick and easy removal of the reel system when the pool is in use
- DURABLE DESIGN – The durable stainless-steel construction and finish along with the deluxe nylon bearings mean you can rely on this solar cover reel system to have a long, durable life
- INCLUDES – The Sunheater Solar Blanket Reel System includes brackets for standard and soft-sided aboveground pools with flat or round shaped pool frames. Included brackets allow you to install on a...
The SunHeater system is one of the best solar cover reels for an above-ground pool. Most above-ground pools will not need the same size pool equipment and accessories as an inground pool. Save yourself space and trouble by finding an option that works specifically for your pool.
This easy-to-use reel system can help you pull the cover in and then lock it into place. The entire unit is made from stainless steel, and it should stay in good shape for years to come. Truly this makes rolling your solar pool cover-up a very easy task.
- Works on a round pool as well
- Smaller in size but durable, perfect for above ground pool deck
- Can work even with a heavy cover
- Not a great choice for inground swimming pools
6. HydroTools In-Ground Pool Solar Blanket Roller Reel System
- In-ground pool cover reel system
- Includes straps and hardware to attach to the solar blanket
- Poles sold separately
Hydro Tools makes our list yet again, this time for the inground swimming pools solar cover reel system. The HydroTools options offer a great value, and they are extremely easy to use.
The only downside with these is that you have to purchase the pole separately. However, HydroTools makes some of the best solar cover reels for those that want a stationary pool reel for their inground pool.
- Easy to install and use
- Will stay permanently on one end of the pool
- Fair price for the durability and longevity of these solar cover reels offer
- Make sure to buy a high-quality pole to go with the unit
7. Intex Solar Cover Reel
- Keep your pool water warmer with this environmentally friendly heating method!
With the number of people who own an Intex Pool, the company has had to make accessories for their pool products. If you have an Intex above-ground pool, this is a perfect solar cover reel to use.
This option is easy to install and will work with rectangular pools from 9 to 16 feet wide. It does not take much to keep some of these Intex above-ground pools warm when they have a solar cover on.
Take advantage of this and purchase a solar cover and pool reel to make sure you can use your swinging pool more and more each year. Spending time in a warm pool is hard to beat, and this Intex combination will help you get that done.
- Can be used on above ground pools
- Simple and easy to install the solar reel
- Hand crank operation
- Need to purchase solar cover to go with it
What Is a Solar Cover Reel and How Do They Work?
A solar cover reel is a device that sits at one end of the pool and helps you pull your solar cover in and out. There are straps on the solar cover that you will attach to your cover.
As you turn the crank on the side of the solar cover reels, the solar cover will pull from the pool water and onto the solar reel. The process is quite simple, and it helps to ensure that you can keep your solar cover in great shape.
Do I Need a Reel for My Solar Cover?
Having a reel for your solar cover will make you use it much more often. When you don’t have a reel, it is very hard for one person to put the cover on the pool by themselves. It really becomes a two-person job, and that is not always feasible.
What happens then is people start finding excuses not to use the cover at all. If you spend the money on the solar cover and you want to keep your pool water both clean and warm, it makes sense to have a cover reel.
With a few turns of your hand, you can ensure your pool is covered.
Are Solar Pool Cover Reels Worth It?
Solar pool cover reels are worth it because they help to keep your pool clean and the temperature nice and warm. If you want to take a swim in the early or late parts of the season, the solar cover helps ensure that this can happen.
If you are a person who already has a lot to do in a day, wrestling a solar pool cover will not be worth it. Instead, use a solar cover reel to make sure that you can cover the pool at a moment’s notice.
Types of Solar Cover Reels
There are a few different types of solar cover reels. Having an idea of the exact type that you need may help make sure that you are happy with your long-term choice.
Above-Ground Solar Cover Reel
The above-ground solar cover reel will be attached to the side of an above-ground pool. These are typically made to hold a smaller overall cover.
In-Ground Solar Cover Reel
In-ground, solar cover reels need to be a bit more durable because they will hold a much larger reel. The inground reels are typically quite wide and will work for rectangular or oval pools, some kidney shape as well.
Manual Solar Cover Reel
Manual solar cover reels like those on our list mean that you will have to turn a crank to pull the reel in. With a reel like this, the work you have to do is not difficult, and one person can do it at a time.
Automatic Solar Cover Reel
Automatic solar cover reels allow you to push a button and have your cover pulled off your pool for you in minutes. This is a nice option to have but obviously will cost quite a bit more money. Not only does the reel need to be maintenance-free and durable, but so will the motor.
Stationary Solar Cover Reel
A stationary solar cover reel is installed on the deck of the pool or around the edge of the pool. This type of pool cover reel will not move from its location.
Portable Solar Cover Reel
A portable solar cover reel is something that you can store away if you don’t want to leave it out at the end of the pool. Solar covers and the reel are not the best-looking pool accessory. If you are having a party and want to put your reel away, look for something that comes with aluminum or plastic wheels that you can roll and store the cover.
Considerations and Features for Choosing the Best Solar Cover Reel
If you thought it was hard enough to choose the best solar cover, now you are stuck choosing the best solar cover reel. Luckily there are not too many major decisions to make about the best solar cover reels on the market. Here are a few of the most important things to keep in mind.
Size and Shape of Cover
Ensure that you choose an option that is going to cover your pool. It doesn’t matter if you have inground pools to cover or above-ground; the width must be accurate for the solar cover reel to work.
A hand crank is most typical for getting the cover on and off the pool. However, some will offer an automatic crank. If you want to save money and still have a great product that will help you use the sun to warm your pool, the hand crank is a fine choice.
Your solar pool cover is going to sit out in the sun and rain all the time. If you choose something that doesn’t have the right weather capabilities and strength, it will fall apart quickly. Your solar cover will last for years to come; choose a low-maintenance reel.
The reel is most likely going to sit at the end of your pool at all times. If you are particular about the way that your pool looks, ensure that you pick a solar reel that looks good.
How to Install a Solar Cover Reel
A solar cover reel is rather easy to install. Depending on the type of reel that you purchase, there will be some variations in the process. However, there are a few parts of this process that you may not be aware of.
One of the major questions that people have is how to attach the solar cover to the reel. This is actually quite simple, and you will see that the pool reel comes with straps that will clip onto the end of your solar cover.
These straps go up and down the long metal pole, so there is plenty of strength for you to be able to pull the solar cover off.
Once you are attached, the solar pool cover reel is straightforward to use. Simply start cranking the handle and watch the reel roll everything up. The cover should come in evenly as long as it wasn’t bunched up when it was on the pool.
When the solar cover has been pulled out of the pool completely, there will be an area where you can lock the hand crank into place so that it stays there.
Use your solar pool cover to keep your pool warm and save you money on pool heating costs. Also, allow the pool to stay clean because of debris that can drop in.
Recap: The Best Solar Cover Reels
Hopefully, you now feel like you have the information you need to purchase the best solar cover reel for your pool. There are many options out there, but the Vingli Pool Cover Reel stands out as the best overall. Regardless of your pool and solar cover size, this is a portable and reliable option that you can count on. The large full solid tires will hold up for years to come, and you can easily put this away when you need to. This is one of those investments for your pool that you will be glad you made.
For over 15 years, Sean Moore has been sharing his love and enthusiasm for swimming pools and hot tubs with everyone he knows. His goal is to help everyday people DIY their maintenance to save money by teaching how to properly take care of your equipment, safely and correctly balance chemicals, and extend the life of your water oasis.
Pricing on this page was last updated on 2022-10-01