While the weather might have changed, that does not mean you cannot still enjoy your swimming pool regardless of the temperatures. Why not get the best pool heater on the market so you can enjoy a swim whenever you want no matter what the temperatures are like outside?
We have compiled a list of some of the best pool heaters to help you choose the best for your swimming pool. These units range from cheap to expensive options and from simple to more advanced ones. We have also given you a guide on how to buy the ideal unit for your pool.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Best Pool Heater for the Money Review
- 2 Best Solar Pool Heater
- 3 Best Natural Gas Pool Heaters
- 4 Best Propane Gas Pool Heaters
- 5 Best Pool Heat Pumps
- 6 A Complete Guide to Buying the Best Pool Heater
- 7 Choosing the Size of Your Pool Heater
- 8 Benefits of Using a Pool Heater
- 9 3 Major Types of Pool Heaters
- 9.1 About Solar Panels Pool Heaters
- 9.2 About Natural Gas or Propane Pool Heater
- 9.3 Heat Pool Pump
- 10 Pool Heater Cost Factors
- 11 Maintaining Pool Heaters
- 12 Facts About Swimming Pool Heating
- 13 Conclusion
The Best Pool Heater for the Money Review
We will rank the heaters according to the features they offer and their classifications (Solar heaters, Natural gas heaters, Propane gas heaters, and Heat pumps heaters.
Best Solar Pool Heater
Fafco Solar Bear Economy Heating System for Above-Ground Pools
At 4ft. by 20ft., Fafco Solar Bear Economy Heating System is one of the biggest solar heaters on the market today and also among the most effective and powerful units. It is quite bulky and getting an ideal place to assemble it might be a challenge as it takes up lots of space. But it delivers exceptional performance where you need it to.
The unit comes with a vital bypass valve, two 6ft long 1½ inches hoses with clamps, and all of the hardware you will require for installation. It works differently than other heaters and is ideal for above ground pool. Your swimming pool pumps water via the heater and backs out, heating up your facility in this way as opposed to an ordinary heat transfer.
The system works best between 1000hrs and 1600hrs, although that might change depending on where you are – latitude and season. Aim the heater south at about 30 degrees angle for the best outcome. You may mount Fafco on a rack, on the roof, or on the ground, so it is very easy to install.
Economy Pool Heating Solar Panels 2 – 2×20
Economy Pool Heating Solar Panels from Sunglabber will swiftly heat your pool with free, dependable heat from the sun. The unit traps the free energy from the sun to warm your pool, eliminating your pool heating bill and minimizing the amount of power you use.
It circulates swimming pool water via solar panels and these panels feature 1½ inches header, which enables for smooth circulation through the panels, thus maximizing the efficiency. What is even amazing is that you may add extra panels (which you need to purchase separately) to the system to hit optimal heating ability.
The system comes with an easy to follow instruction manual and is perfect for a small pool as you can add (for bigger pools) or reduce the panels (for smaller pools).
6-2X12′ SunQuest Solar Swimming Pool Heater Complete System with Roof Kits
SunQuest Solar Swimming Pool Heater is a full solar panel heating scheme that may be used for inground pools as well as above ground ones. The beauty of this solar-powered system is the energy it saves you and hence your bill. No more gas or electricity bill for warming your swimming pool; is absolutely an intriguing alternative.
This system heats your swimming pool water as it is filtered via the pipes and sent back to the facility fully heated by the sun. It is attractive for a few reasons; including its easy installation process and compatibility with current pool pumps.
The unit features advanced technology, premium quality, excellent reliability, and highest rated performance. However, SunQuest requires a reasonable amount of sun to properly warm your pool, so you need to choose the location carefully.
Best Natural Gas Pool Heaters
Hayward H400FDN Universal H-Series Pool Heater
Hayward H400FDN Universal H-Series Pool Heater is one of the best natural gas pool heaters on the market today. It is a bit expensive than other natural gas units but it is an efficient and reliable heater that gets a good review from users. The system features a quality fin plate heat exchanger that is made from cupronickel. Cupronickel makes the unit to be long-lasting and durable, even in slat-based and high-flow water conditions.
This system also features a forced draft combustion scheme that propels air via the combustion tank at a set flow rate. This aids to remove any outside weather variables that would affect the system performance. If it is cold or windy outside on a certain day, the unit will still work efficiently.
Hayward Universal is an efficient, durable heater and it’s getting a lot of positive reviews from users. It is perfect for swimming pools as well as Spa.
Pentair 460736 MasterTemp High-Performance Eco Pool Heater
Pentair 460736 MasterTemp provides all of the efficiency, reliability, ease of use, and performance you would expect from a Pentair unit and much more. This unit is able to easily heat up the biggest and coldest of swimming pools in just a few seconds.
It offers the latest engineering tech, top-quality construction, best-in-class efficiency, and the reliable results you can expect from Pentair and many users have come to love. The system harnesses the fast heating power of natural gas and has a heat rating of 400,000 BTUs, enabling it to easily heat your pool of up to 30,000 gallons.
In addition to its amazing heating abilities, the system is fitted with a rotating digital screen with easy controls, high limit switch, stack flue sensor, electronic ignition, and water pressure switch. It is without a doubt a great natural gas pool heater for the money.
TRANE TR250NA Residential Pool and Spa Cupronickel Heater Low NOx 250,000 BTU Natural Gas
Trane TR250NA Residential Pool Heater runs on natural gas and features a low NOx emission that enables it to meet air quality regulations around the world. It comes in 2 different BTU sizes of 400,000 and 250,000, making it perfect mainly for inflatable pool. The system is constructed with amazing hydraulic efficiency to save you energy.
The heat exchanges on this heater are constructed from cupronickel, a resilient and durable material. It also features an LED screen to aid you to read the diagnostics and adjust the temperature you want. Furthermore, it only comes with a few controls to make it simple for all people to use.
Some of its greatest benefits include heats up all pool easily, 83 percent thermal efficiency, and works well with salt and chlorine water pools. The major shortcoming of this unit is that your warranty will be voided if you don’t hire a professional to install it.
Jandy Pro Series JXi 400K BTU Low-NOx Natural Gas Swimming Pool and Spa Heater
Jandy Pro Series JXi Pool and Spa Heater is quite similar to the previous model in this series but it has some few changes. It is a natural gas, 400,000 BTU, and polymer header swimming pool heater. It features a digital remote control and it links with the AcuraLink RS system of control. This unit passes the level of environmental regulations for low NOx emission, meaning that your heater will be eco-friendly and save the environment.
It also features a highly effective C-Fin heat conductor which is incorporated to lower your operating costs and offer even more saving. This was a great idea from the manufactures that was intended to make you save some heating cash.
The unit offers comfortable temperature in your pool in any type of weather and comes with a user-friendly backlit screen and a menu that is easy to follow. One touch setting makes the spa-to-pool switching simple and is perfect for blow up pool.
Best Propane Gas Pool Heaters
Hayward H150FDP Universal H-Series Pool and Spa Heater, Propane, Low Nox
Hayward H150FDP Universal H-Series Heater is a low NOx emission with 150,000 BTU and is suitable for huge pools. The unit measures 32 inches by 29.3 inches and weighs about 133 pounds. Its exchanger is constructed from standard cupronickel material, giving durability and reliability at a go.
The system is professional, installation should be done by an expert, and is suitable for Spa purpose. Although it mainly works on propane, it works effectively on electricity and thus suitable for Intex pool. It also features an LED control panel that gives you full control of your swimming pool water.
The ignition of this system is accomplished by durable Silicon Nitride Hot Surface Igniters and do not get dysfunctional. The propane is burned via stainless steel burners with insulated combustion tanks which ensure that the heat is maintained. The smoke level of this unit is pretty low when you compare it to other pool heaters. One of the major cons of this unit is that it is quite expensive and uses much fuel which adds to the cost.
Pentair 460737 MasterTemp High Performance Eco-Friendly Pool Heater, Propane Gas
Pentair 460737 MasterTemp High-Performance Pool Heater is a propane unit that is capable of heating large swimming pools in most areas. It easily warms your pool and settles it to the right temperature. Pentair 460737 is an energy efficient unit that is also licensed for low NOx emission, making it more eco-friendly than some other gas heaters.
Being a 400,000 BUTs size pool heater, this isn’t a good unit for small pool but it is perfect for a medium and large one as well as for inground pools and spas. It is a relatively compact unit constructed from rust-free and high-quality materials. The unit has a small shortcoming in that it gets hot when it is heating your pool – don’t touch it.
Sta-Rite Max-E-Therm Pool And Spa Heater, Propane
Sta-Rite SR400 LP Max E Therm Pool Heater is a great choice for a propane gas pool unit that is slightly more compact and visually appealing, yet still effective and durable. All of its elements exist within a rust-free housing constructed of Dura-glass, a weather-resistant and rust-proof material that keeps your heater running for decades.
This unit is pretty light and fits well in tiny spaces around your pool area. It works effectively with an 84 percent efficiency rating – one of the best for a propane gas pool heater. Sta-Rite’s cupronickel heat exchange makes it a great unit for swimming pools – all kinds of pools.
You need to be careful when installing this product to ensure that your warranty remains valid (hire a professional).
Best Pool Heat Pumps
Hayward HP50TA HeatPro Titanium Heat Pump
Hayward HP50TA HeatPro Titanium Heat Pump might only produce 50,000 BTUs but it has garnered thousands of positive review from users and is able to heat 15,000 gallons swimming pool to 85 degrees in just a few days. It features an amazing 84 percent energy efficiency rating and thus saves you energy.
Some of its main benefits include easy-to-install, compact nature, amazing Titanium heat exchangers, and quiet operation making it perfect for Intex pool. The major downside of this system is its price – a bit costly for its BTUs rating.
OrangeA Pool Heater Electric Thermostat Pool Heat Pump
OrangeA Pool Heater Electric Thermostat Pool Heat Pump is meant for spa or small pools and is a great choice for swimming pools in warm places. It can raise the heat of your pool and aid to maintain it for a more relaxing swimming session. The design aids protect the unit from overheating or even becoming destroyed, so it will go off if gets too hot. This is a feature that makes it perfect for a blow-up pool.
The other way it guards itself is through shutting if there is no water going via it. This helps to maintain the ideal temperature and not lead to damage. It is constructed from galvanized steel case and hence study and dependable. With its ability to protect itself, we can say that this is a good unit for the money. However, it isn’t effective for bigger pools.
Pentair 460930 UltraTemp High-Performance Pool Heat Pump
Pentair 460930 UltraTemp High-Performance Pool Heat Pump is made with corrosion-free titanium heat conductors that make it last for decades without any problem. It comes with an LCD display to show temperature info and enable you to control all the settings easily.
Furthermore, the unit uses latest self-diagnosing tech to stay intact and monitor the unit for any issue as it happens. This is a great product for above ground pool and works well on home pool setups. It is highly effective but less effective when water or air temperature gets extremely low.
Swimming Pool Heater Electric Heat Pump
Swimming Pool Heater Electric Heat Pump features a slim footprint as well as an effective 55,000 BTUs operation making it the best choice for a small and inflatable pool as well as an above ground facility. It is certified to work at 25 percent/hour, which is a reasonably efficient when compared to other units in its class.
Its heat conductor is made from 100 percent titanium to aid prevent problems with rust and damage by your pool water. You may control this unit from an easy digital screen with different controls. A bit advanced, it might be hard to install it by yourself.
A Complete Guide to Buying the Best Pool Heater
What is the best pool heater on the market? Before we answer this question, you need to know that all swimming pool heaters are sized using British thermal unit (BTUs). BTUs are computed the amount of heat generated by your pool heater.
Things to Consider When Selecting Your Pool Heater
Here are a couple of the things to consider when buying a swimming pool heater to help you have a starting point when you are searching for your pool unit.
The Perfect Size Heater – You will determine the size of your swimming pool heater in BTUs. As you will find out later in this article, the number of BTUs you require is correlated to the surface area of the pool and the number of gallons of water in the pool – these are factors that you should consider when heating your pool. Your facility will be heated faster if it contains more BTUs and thus needs more power to use the heater.
The rate of Heating the Pool – Some units work faster than others. Solar heaters are the slowest while electric heaters are the fastest.
Noise Level – Some places have strict noise restrictions for pool apparatus or you might just want to install a peaceful and quiet pool environment. Some units come with additional fans, blower, and fans motors, all of which increase noise. Some heaters don’t produce noise such as electric pool heaters.
The Budget – There are major price differences among different types of swimming pool heaters. Gas heaters go for as low as $1,500 while solar heaters go for over $4,000. In addition to the buying price, you need to consider the installation costs for various types of heaters and monthly expenses to operate your pump. The best gas heater will cost about $500 per month while the best solar heater will cost you nothing.
The Size of the Pool – The size of your pool will greatly influence the decision about which unit to purchase. Some pool heaters are perfect for small pools while others are ideal for medium and large pools.
The Shape of the Pool – Different shaped swimming pools will affect the kind of heater that will work best for them as some are quite effective in odd facilities than others.
Is a Pool Heater Necessary – One question that you need to ask and answer yourself is if you really need a heater. It might be a waste of money if you stay in a warm area. However, if your facility is always cold and you want to use it during the cold weather, a pool heater might be the perfect solution. A pool heater is also necessary if you own a spa or hot tub.
Above Ground or Inground Pool – Your heating requirements will differ based on the kind of pool you own. Buying an inground pool heater isn’t the same as buying an above ground pool heater. They vary in size and hence you need to choose well depending on your personal research.
Choosing the Size of Your Pool Heater
How much water a pool heater can heat depends on its BTU rating. 1 BTU raises the temperature of 1 pound of water by 1 degree Fahrenheit. Hence, a heater with a 400,000 BTU rating might heat up a swimming pool with 400,000 pounds of water within a short time. Higher rating means that your pool will become warm faster. People living in colder places should remember this as they will require a higher rating than those living in warmer places.
In order to determine how much BTU you will need, you need to determine the size of your swimming pool as well as how much you wish to raise its temperature. For instance, if it’s 50 degrees outside and you wish to raise the pool’s water to 90 degrees, you will require a heater that is capable of raising the temperature by 40 degrees.
Here is a chart that will help you figure out how many BTUs you will need:
Benefits of Using a Pool Heater
You can enhance your home with your personal pool. But how does a heater makes it even better to own a swimming pool in your yard?
Extends Your Pool Season – You might not access your pool all year-round especially if you live in a cold location. Adding a pool heater to your facility aids to extend your swimming season so you can swim at the right temperature whenever you wish.
More Ways to Enjoy with Your Family – You can prolong your family time by incorporating a heater to your swimming facility. When you can swim whenever you want, it helps you to spend time with the loved ones and even enhance your bond.
Make the Most of Your Investment – You increase the value of your house when you invest a pool in it. Adding a pool heater ensures that your house is even more valuable because you can use your facility anytime you want.
It Is Durable – A swimming pool heater doesn’t require much care to continue providing you the ability to keep the water warm throughout the year. The unit will work effectively with minimal pool service so you can always swim when you want.
3 Major Types of Pool Heaters
There are three major types of pool heaters:
- Solar Panels Pool Heaters
- Natural Gas or Propane Pool Heaters
- Heat Pumps
Before purchasing the best pool heater, you need to know how it works, why you need to use it, and where you should place it.
About Solar Panels Pool Heaters
This type of pool heater works by absorbing heat from the sun into a solar panel (s) and transferring it into your swimming pool. It works slowly and is more costly than other types of pool heaters although the method itself is the cheapest.
Types of Solar Pool Heaters
Solar pool heaters are classified into three major classes:
Solid Panels with Straps – Several firms manufacture monolithic panels or solid solar panels. These type of solar panels features strong heat ratings during midday when the sun is hot and directly overhead. The performance is reduced when the sun is heating them at an angle. They are the most affordable solar panels and demands more penetrations in your roof than other alternatives as they cannot handle the wind.
Individual Tube Panels – They are just a few firms that produce this type of solar panels. The well-known firm is Heliocol. These systems are more expensive and have a lot of benefits including handling higher wind loads and hence fewer roof penetrations.
Glazed or Non–glazed Panels – All solar panels pool heaters are classified according to the climate they can handle. If you stay in a place where the temperature doesn’t get below freezing point, Non-glazed Panels should just be fine. They are more affordable and more efficient for pool use in warm weather. For cold places, Glazed Panels will work wonders and are quite expensive.
Why Use Solar Pool Heaters?
Solar pool heaters are easy to install, affordable, and best of all, reliable. Unlike pool heaters that use electricity or gas to heat your pool, solar units depend on the sunlight as a source of power. The savings that it offers over a long duration of use outweigh the initial cost of the solar panel.
Benefits of Using Solar Panel Pool Heaters
As with any other system, there are benefits and shortcomings of using this system. However, solar pool heaters offer more benefits than shortcomings; in fact, the major shortcoming of using a solar panel to heat your pool is that you need to place it in direct sunlight. With just one major shortcoming, the list of benefits really tilts the balance for why you should use a solar panel pool heater.
More economic pool heating costs – No energy costs such as electricity or gas.
More durable – Solar heaters equipment are often more durable than electricity and gas heating systems, lasting for over 25 years.
Less maintenance – Solar panel doesn’t need servicing frequently like electricity or gas heaters; in most situations, it doesn’t need servicing at all.
Good for the environment – A solar pool heater doesn’t produce nitrogen oxide into the environment, hence reduce smog.
Extended swimming season –A solar heater extends your swimming season by about 4 to 8 weeks every year.
Of course, other heaters usually extend your swimming season just like a solar heater, but their cost is usually higher. The majority of pool owners prefer this system to electric or gas ones, primarily due to the money saved (energy savings), low maintenance costs, and the effect it has on the environment.
How Solar Panel Pool Heaters Work
A solar pool system doesn’t affect the other system used to run your pool, such as the pump and the filter. A solar heat panel mounted on a closed structure, such as a shed, garage, or your home collects water from your pool and use the power from the sunlight to warm it and then send it back to your pool.
The system uses your pool’s original filtering and pumping systems to move the water and circulate it via your pool.
Placing the Sun Collectors
Ideally, you should place your sun collector panels in a section where they will get direct sunlight. For example, a place that gets sunlight from dawn to evening is best. Watch out for any obstruction, such as tree limbs, buildings, or other items that might block the sunlight and place your panels appropriately.
Solar Pool Heaters Heat and Cool Your Pool
A solar pool heater raises the temperature of your pool’s water by about 2 to 3 degrees Fahrenheit every time it passes via the collectors. Over a duration of 5 to 10 days, where the temperatures are pretty high and the sun is bright, the system is capable of raising the water temperature by up to 15 degrees Fahrenheit.
As well as heating your pool, the solar panels pool heater can lower the temperature of your pool water on cold nights if you turn it on. The water gets to the panels, reduces the temperature, and then gets back into your swimming pool, the same as heating.
Summary: Solar Pool Heaters
- Eco-friendly: Zero pollution
- Uses a free source of energy
- Superb for heating swimming pool in warm places
- Energy savings pay for installation cost
- Last about 25 years.
- Require a lot of direct sunlight
- Costly to purchase it
- Heats the water very slowly
About Natural Gas or Propane Pool Heater
Using gas to heat a pool isn’t quite popular due to the skyrocketing prices of this fuel. This is actually the most expensive method, even though the unit itself is quite affordable.
Types of Gas Pool Heaters
There are three major types of gas pool heaters:
Coil Gas Heater – Also known as a Flash Heater, Coil gas heater is the most famous kind of gas heater in use today. Here, your pool’s pump pumps the pool water via a filter and then via the coil heater where it moves via a heating surface situated over the gas-lit flames of the system’s combustion chamber. The water gets warm as it gets via the surface.
Convection Gas Heater – This is perfect for a spa or small pool. It features a single huge flame that warms slow-moving pool water in a huge tube.
Tank Gas Heater – This works like an ordinary home warm water heater. It keeps a tank full of hot water which is supplied to your swimming pool or spa.
Why Use a Gas Heater
Gas pool heaters are the most effective of all types of pool heaters because they heat your pool regardless of the climate outside. They use propane or natural gas as fuel to generate energy and transfer it through combustion towards your pool’s water.
Benefits of Gas Pool Heaters
There are a lot of benefits of using a gas heater to heat your swimming pool with the only major con being the rising cost of fuel.
Very Efficient – These units are quite efficient at heating your pool faster. The high heat generated by burning the gas in a chamber or furnace forms high heat levels that easily bring the water in a pool to the desired degrees. This often reduces the duration your heat is really running.
Fewer Issues With Wear and Tears – Because gas heaters run for a short time, they often experience fewer issues with wear and tear compared to electric pool heaters or pumps. Hence, they are fewer problems that will require your time and money to solve them through the repair.
Less Expensive to Operate than Heat Pumps – When oil and gas prices are low, a gas pool heater is less expensive to run than an electrical pump pool heater. This is especially true because the heater is used less often compared to a heat pump. For example, you need to turn on the heat pump a couple of before you enter the pool while you need to turn on the gas heater just 30 minutes before.
How Gas Pool Heaters Work
Unlike other swimming pool heaters, the working of a gas heater is fairly simple and straightforward. Starting off, the system needs either natural gas or propane to work (depending on the model). Once you have taken care of the gas, the process starts.
The combustion furnace is where the magic takes place. As the gas enters the furnace and burns, heat is released. Specially manufactured metal tubing runs via the furnace offering a safe way of travel for your pool water. The water gets warm as it travels through the furnace while inside these tubes. From there, the warm water is sent back into your swimming pool, and the process continues.
Propane vs. Natural Gas Pool Heaters
Gas-powered swimming pool heaters pack a strong punch and may heat your swimming pool water faster. As you already know, these heaters run on either propane or natural gas, and although these fuels will make your facility comfortable and warm, differences in distribution methods, cost of each fuel, and energy content might make one of them better suited for your priorities and needs.
Environmental Impact – Compared to other fuels, natural gas and propane burn efficiently and cleanly. Natural gas produces less carbon dioxide when you burn it than propane, but even the latter produces fewer dangerous greenhouse and pollutants gases than other petrol-based fuels. Furthermore, propane isn’t classified as a greenhouse gas when in its natural form, but natural gas is – in case of a leak, natural gas is considered to be more harmful than propane.
Convenience – Assuming that you can access natural gas, getting it to your heater will be much easier than it would for propane. It comes through a fixed line and there is always plenty of gas available. On the other hand, propane needs a strong tank which needs to be refilled regularly and is often unsightly. Therefore, you need to actively control propane instead of just counting on it whenever you need it like natural gas.
Energy Density – In terms of the amount of energy you will get from a certain volume of these fuels, propane carries the day. One cubic foot of propane produces about 2,500 BTU of heat while a cubic of natural gas produces about 1,000 BTU, giving propane nearly twice and half the energy of natural gas. Therefore, a propane heater will use less fuel compared to a natural gas heater to heat the same volume of pool’s water.
Fuel Cost – Propane’s benefit in terms of energy produced comes crashing when you release that it costs nearly as thrice as the cost of natural gas. Natural gas cost about 40% of propane cost, making it cheaper to heat your pool using natural gas. Natural gas is also readily available and hence much cheaper.
Summary: Gas Pool Heaters
- Cheap to buy
- Low emissions
- Heats the pool fast and in any temperature
- Costly to operate
- Not eco-friendly
- Short lifespan of about 5 years
Heat Pool Pump
This pump works using electricity as well as heat from the water and air to heat your swimming pool as opposed to only electricity. This makes them reasonable to operate, although they work slowly compared to pure electricity heaters.
Types of Heat Pump
There are 2 primary types of heat pumps:
Air-Source Heat Pumps – An air source pump uses air as its primary source of heat.
Water-Source Heat Pumps – A water source pump uses water as its primary source of heat. This heater is used for special purpose.
Why Use Heat Pool Pumps
Heat pumps use a small amount of electricity to work compared to electric pool heaters. As opposed to heating your pool with an electric heating system, heat pumps collect heat from the air. There is enough heat to put in your pool even when it’s 40 degrees outside. In simple terms, you are simply moving the heat from the air to your swimming pool.
Benefits of Heat Pool Pumps
The major con of using heat pump is that it heats your facility slowly. With that said, these units have a lot of benefits including:
Energy Efficiency – Pool heats pumps are among the most efficient pool heating choices out there. While gas and electricity heaters are well-known for their speed, the benefits come at a cost – skyrocketing monthly operating expenses to be precise.
Cost-Effectiveness – With great energy efficiency ratings, it is only logical that operating cost will go down. But it is not just the operating cost because the initial cost of these units is lower compared to solar heaters.
Eco-Friendly – In most situations, heat production needs some form of combustion. This is especially true when it comes to gas pool heaters – they need to burn gas in order to produce heat. Heat pumps don’t burn gas to produce heat and hence very friendly to the environment.
Durability – So what is better than cost-effectiveness, eco-friendly, and energy efficiency operation? Of course, durability. These units last for about 10 to 20 years, making them more durable than gas pool heaters.
Repair and Assistance accessibility – In case you find yourself in need of heat pump repair, help will be readily available. There are lots of professionals trained to repair this type of heater when you compare with other types pool of heaters.
How Pool Heat Pumps Work
Before anything, you need to know the major parts of a pool heat pump. They are:
- Heat exchanger
- Evaporator Coil
The heating process begins when a power current is applied, powering your pool heat pump. The pump begins to spin its fan using a minimal amount of power to pull in natural, hot air into the system via the evaporator coil situated on the side.
Inside this coil lies a refrigerant solution that mixes with the warm air, transforming it into a warm gas. Then, the gas is channeled into the compressor, where it is compressed into even a hotter gas. From here, the hot gas moves to the heat exchanger, warming up a tube (coiled titanium tube) that runs via the middle. The water flows via the exchanger and passes over the tube, slowly heating up with every cycle. The system will stop heating the water when it reaches the desired temperature and starts again when it drops.
Pool Heat Pump Power Usage
A pool heat pump is amazingly energy efficient although it requires a dedicated power line to work. Actually, the majority of heat pumps provide a coefficient of performance of 6. This means that your pool pump releases 6 units of heat for every unit of energy it takes, which is quite efficient. And this is possible because of the way the system works.
Heat pumps don’t really use electricity to generate heat like other electric heaters. Instead, they use this power to spin the fan and compress the collected heat. This is why their operation cost is low compared to an electric pool heater.
Pool Heat Pump Sizing
There is one factor that you need to remember when sizing your pool heat pump: size of your swimming pool. With that in mind, a standard size pump can cover a small to the medium pool but for custom-shaped or bigger pools, accurate pump sizing is required.
And just to remind you, as a pool owner, you may use pool heat pump for above and inground pools. They work effectively on both, the only difference is how they will be installed.
Difference between Pool Heat Pump and Electric Pool Heater
Pool heat pumps and electric pool heaters both require electricity to operate. The difference is that a heat pump will not produce heat from any heating element but will collect the heat from the environment (air) and transfer it to your swimming pool water.
On the other hand, an electric pool heater uses electricity to heat elements that heat your swimming pool water. These units are also called tank-less heaters since they heat the water directly from a coil. They cost less than heat pumps but cost at least 5 times more to run them. They are perfect for a spa because it is small compared to a swimming pool. In fact, they are quite expensive to heat a swimming pool.
The major advantages of electric pool heaters are that they are quite affordable (under $2,000.00), don’t depend on air to operate, and are environmentally friendly. On the other side, they are expensive to operate (over $500.00), expensive to install, and not energy efficient.
Summary: Pool Heat Pump
- No emissions
- Cheap to run
- Good choice in places that don’t have enough sunlight
- Eco-friendly: renewable power source
- Last about 20 years
- Requires electricity
- Heats the pool slowly
- Doesn’t work effectively in cold temperature
Pool Heater Cost Factors
The kind of pool heater you select will heavily determine the cost, both during the purchase and during operation. Average Buying Cost might fall within these ranges:
- Solar Panels Pool Heaters – $1,500.00 – $2,000.00
- Gas Pool Heaters – $1,500.00 – $ 2,500.00
- Heat Pump – $2,500.00 – $3,500.00
There are also other factors that will influence the cost of your swimming pool heater, including:
- Size of your pool
- Inground or above ground pool
- Size of the heater you require
- Pre-existing hookups
After you buy your heater, you need to determine whether you wish to hire a professional to install it or simply DIY. In most situations, it is a recommended to hire a professional to do it for you. These are the Average Installation Cost:
- Solar Panels Pool Heaters – $500.00 – $1,000.00
- Gas Pool Heater – $500.00 – $1,500.00
- Heat Pump – $500.00 – $1,000.00
Your installation cost will be less if you are changing a broken or old system and already have the right hookups for the best pool heater.
The cost of operating your pool heater will work differently because every heater is unique. You should expect the following Average Operating Costs:
- Solar Pool Heater – $0.00
- Gas Pool Heater – $200.00 – $400.00
- Heat Pump – $100.00 – $200.00
Other factors might influence your monthly cost and they include:
- Current cost of electricity or gas
- The size of your swimming pool and heater
- Your desired water temperature
- The temperature in your location
- Whether your facility is covered or not
- Extreme weather, like high winds or heavy rains
Maintaining Pool Heaters
Buying and installing a pool heater is just the first step. You need to maintain this system as well, so as to extend its life and hence your time in your swimming pool. Proper maintenance will increase your swimming season by months.
Solar Panels Pool Heater
The most significant part of maintaining a solar pool heater is to maintain your swimming pool and it’s filtration system as you would. Clean them as regularly as possible to ensure smooth flow is supplied to the panel collectors, and the pool’s chlorine and pH levels are at the right level. Additionally, inspect the solar panel for smooth operation at the beginning of every swimming season. A good maintained solar heating system shouldn’t feel hot when you touch it.
Natural Gas or Propane Pool Heaters
The most used type of pool heater is the gas heaters. These units are connected via propane or natural gas tanks. Insects and spiders like to hide in these heaters. It is advisable you frequently clean the debris and spider webs from the system as it might clog off the burning holes. You may clean them using a vacuum cleaner or manually. Furthermore, it is recommended that you check the gas supply frequently pipes for any leakages using a soap solution.
Pool Heat Pumps
Another type of swimming pool heater often used by pool owners is a heat pump. This heater produces the heat with the assistance of a radiator. The radiator might get covered with some minerals present in the air, which hinders the heating process. You can take the radiator out and clean with a brush. Other elements might get damaged to the level of needing a replacement. It is vital to change this element to avoid creating an electric shock.
Facts About Swimming Pool Heating
Here are three facts about swimming pool heating. They will help you decide which pool heater to buy and how you can minimize heat loss.
Guidelines to follow when heating your pool – Taking into account that you need to minimize fuel consumption and conserve energy, any unnecessary swimming pool heating shouldn’t be done (unless you are on solar pool heater). You are the best person to determine what kind of use you wish to put your pool into. Use of a swimming pool for exercise, therapy, recreation, or just enjoyment will require heating it. It won’t contribute to your pleasure or health unless you heat it enough to enjoy comfortably.
How Warm Should My Pool Be? – That will depend on you. The temperature recommended for competitive and recreational sports by the American Red Cross and swimming coaches are 78 degrees Fahrenheit. This level coincides with fuel conservation campaigns. Young kids, older people, and other usually require 80 degrees Fahrenheit or even warmer. Although 78 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit takes in about every swimmer, how warm your facility should be will depend on your preference.
Do I Need a Pool Cover? – Most certainly. A good cover will reduce heat loss by over 50 percent depending on your area and weather. An uncovered pool might lose up to 6 degrees Fahrenheit overnight; a good cover will reduce this loss to 3 degrees Fahrenheit or even less. The pool cover will help to reduce fuel costs by minimizing heat loss and hence less heating. It also minimizes water evaporation – one gallon of swimming pool water that evaporates takes about 6,000 BTU of heat with it.
Some Items You May Need for Your Swimming Pool
- Pool Pump
- Automatic Pool Cleaner
- Robotic pool cleaner
- Pool Filter
- Suction Pool Cleaner
- Pool Cover
- Solar Cover
- Chlorine Tablets
- Above Ground Pool
- Pool Shock
- Salt Water Chlorinator
Installing a swimming pool heater enables you to enjoy your pool at suitable temperatures throughout the year. However, choosing the best pool heater isn’t as easy as running to the store and picking one of the shelves. You need to conduct a research to get a heater that can heat your pool and still be within your budget.
We hope that the above guide has been of great help to you and good luck finding the best unit for your swimming pool.