pool thermometer in water

How To Measure Pool Temperature (Best Thermometers To Use)

Last updated on January 25th, 2024 at 08:27 pm

In this article, you will learn how to measure pool temperature while using some of the best thermometers for pools.

Imagine this: you wear your swimming suit, take your cold drinks outside, and dip your toes in the swimming pool—only to find the temperature off.

Aside from being a hassle to deal with, it can put a damper on your mood! So, your best bet to avoid similar instances in the future is to learn how to measure pool temperature.

This is where swimming pool thermometers come in handy. Pool thermometers come in different shapes and sizes, each with its own set of features.

Let’s take a look at a variety of thermometers for measuring pool temperature.

Pool Thermometer Types

The most common types of pool thermometers include:

  1. Floating Pool Thermometers

As the name suggests, these thermometers will float in your pool, giving you accurate readings. Some of them come with a remote that allows you to turn them on and off. The remote can also show you the temperature.

Other budget-friendly options come as a single unit with a digital screen, which can be a little hard to read in some cases.

If you love swimming at night, we recommend investing in a unit with a remote or backlight screen for night-time reading.

Recently, there have been many advanced floating thermometers that come with dedicated applications you can download on your phone. This allows you to monitor your pool’s temperature all day with the press of a button.

Some thermometers also come with an indoor monitor that you can hang inside your home while measuring both temperature and humidity.

They may also include a comfort indicator that lets you know if the water is suitable for a swim.

Checking the temperature of the swimming pool water with a thermometer
  1. Hanging Pool Thermometers

If you’re looking for a simple way to check the temperature of the water, a hanging pool thermometer is ideal.

Hanging pool thermometers are similar to the standard mercury ones, so you won’t need any batteries or chargers. They tend to be more affordable while still being as accurate as advanced thermometers. They also last longer than digital ones if you manage not to break them.

Typically, they come with a cord, which allows you to attach them to your pool. 

However, they aren’t as easy to read. You can only read the temperature when you hold the device, as they don’t have digital screens and the numbers are usually too small.

floating pool thermometer
  1. Infrared Pool Thermometers

With an infrared thermometer, measuring your pool’s temperature will be as simple as pointing the device at the water, and voila! You’ll get the readings right away.

This is the easiest and quickest way to check the temperature of your pool. You won’t be dealing with cords or blurry screens.

Unfortunately, you won’t get the most accurate results with infrared thermometers. That’s because they only measure the temperature at the top layer of the water. However, the readings won’t be far off. 

These thermometers aren’t as expensive as you think, though. They cost as much as digital ones. The thing is, you can use these thermometers in your kitchen or even to check someone’s body temperature.

Hand hold a non-contact IR body thermometer isolated on white background

Which Thermometer Should I Choose?

Choosing the right thermometer for your pool depends on your needs and how you intend to use the thermometer.

For starters, if ease of reading is your priority, you should avoid analog thermometers. Instead, you should go for a modern one with a bright screen or a wireless monitor.

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When buying a wireless thermometer, make sure to check its range of transmission. Some devices use Bluetooth, which provides a limited range of transmission.

Furthermore, if you’re looking for the most accurate result, a hanging analog is your best bet.

It’s worth mentioning that digital pool thermometers need batteries to run. So, it’s essential to consider how long these batteries will last. Some advanced devices are rechargeable. In that case, make sure to check how long the device can work after a full charge.

Where do I Position the Pool Thermometer?

When it comes to floating thermometers, you don’t have to worry about positioning. They tend to record the average temperature of the pool, so jets won’t affect the results.

On the other hand, if you’re using a hanging thermometer, make sure to place it away from the pool jets. The water coming out of the jets can significantly affect the readings.

Finally, infrared thermometers typically measure the surface temperature. So, it doesn’t matter where you aim them.

Why Should I Measure Pool Temperature?

Measuring your pool’s temperature is essential for many reasons. Let’s check some of them out.

  1. Keeping Swimmers Safe and Comfortable

No one enjoys swimming in a too-cold or too-warm pool. Super cold pools can make you feel tired faster.

In addition, jumping in a freezing pool might cause a shock. This shock may cause sharp intakes of breath and an increased breathing rate. It may also lead to a rise in blood pressure.

This can even cause asthma attacks or panic attacks in susceptible people.

Not only that, but blood will also rush to vital organs, leaving limbs deprived. So, swimmers will find it difficult to swim.

On the other hand, when the pool is too warm, it might lead to dehydration and overheating, especially during the summer. Swimmers may also experience muscle spasms and fatigue.

  1. Controlling Algae and Bacteria

You’re probably in a constant battle to keep your pool free of contaminants. Typically, chlorine and other sanitizers can keep the situation under control with the help of filtration.

However, if your pool temperature becomes too high, it’ll be a suitable environment for algae and bacteria to grow.

These contaminants can get nice and comfy in a hot pool. Not only that, but they’ll also start reproducing and making themselves at home.

While keeping your pool at the optimal temperature won’t eliminate algae and bacteria, it’ll make it harder for these contaminants to grow.

pool with green algae
  1. Maintaining Pool Chemistry

High temperatures can affect your pool’s chemistry balance. Aside from the fact that high temperatures accelerate chlorine degradation, contaminants are more common in warm water.

Since they reproduce more rapidly in warm water, the chlorine amount in your water probably won’t be enough to get rid of them. 

Any imbalance in the chlorine amount can mess with your pool chemistry.

What’s the Optimal Pool Temperature?

Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to pool temperature. Generally, most people prefer the pool temperature to be between 78°F and 82°F for leisure. It’s also a suitable range for water aerobics and other activities.

However, for kids’ swimming lessons, the temperature should be at least 84°F. That’s important to keep their bodies comfortable in the new environment. It’ll also warm their muscles and prevent breathing difficulties, unlike cold water.

For seniors, it’s best to take the temperature even higher. A temperature of 86°F to 88°F is perfect for seniors, as cool water might be uncomfortable for them.

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