What’s the Perfect Temperature for Your Pool?

Jumping in is tough, even for gold medalists.
Jumping in is tough, even for gold medalists.

Your body runs at a constant 98 degrees. Your pool probably doesn’t…


That makes for a less than comfortable entry for even the most seasoned swimmers. In NBC’s latest video blog, Team USA Swimming superstars Natalie Coughlin, Elizabeth Beisel, Nathan Adrian and Conor Dwyer come clean about the part of their sport that everyone loves to hate. Check out the full video here.

So what’s the perfect temperature for your pool? Bad news – there isn’t one. Pick any temperature and you’ll find complainers arguing that your pool is too hot and others claiming that it’s too cold. Here’s the dividing line:


Too Hot! Lap swimmers, swim team participants and high-intensity aquatic group exercisers work up a sweat in the pool. They join in with die-hard cold-pool enthusiasts who embrace the chilling effects and swear cold water is better for your skin, hair, muscles and immune system. There is some science behind these claims – but if you just don’t like being cold, who cares!

Too Cold! Competitive divers, swim lesson participants and active older adults tend to prefer warmer temperatures. Who can blame them? Besides being more comfortable, warm water is easier on the joints, improves mobility and can even lead to better sleep sessions post-swim.

How do you Choose? Most aquatic directors and building engineers make their decision based not only on their majority population, but also on their budget. Heating a pool (as well as cooling one) can be an expensive proposition. Balancing patron needs with a responsible budget typically yields an ideal set-point on the thermostat.

The Bottom Line – You’ll never make everyone happy with your pool temperature. Some groups will always complain that it’s too high, while others will argue it’s too low. Be receptive to everyone’s feedback and pick a temperature that works best for you!

For more information on how to manage your heater cost, read our article Up In Smoke – Why your pool heater costs twice as much as it should, and how to fix it.