Wanting to use your swimming pool all year round and not just in those warm summer and spring seasons?
Now you can buy have the ability to purchase a pool heater. These are available in a variety of different types from electric, gas, solar, or via a pool heat pump.
Like any product, you have to think about what is right for you by having the knowledge of how a pool heater works to find the one perfect for your size swimming pools and how much your budget allows, and last, but not least weighing up the pros and cons till your heart settles on the perfect pool heater for you.
How do Pool Heaters Work?
An Electric pool heater uses a resistor element and an electrical current to generate the warmth needed to heat your pool water. The water is then pumped out of the unit and then circulated back through your pool water. Choosing an electric pool heater is an effective use of heat source, but as it does require a lot of electricity usage it can be a costly endeavor leaving you with a very high power bill.
It may also incur you having costs elsewhere as you may need to modify your house’s electrical panel to handle the extra addition.
A pro for the Gas pool heaters is that it can warm your pool very quickly and maintain your ideal temperature no matter what the weather, climate, or outside temperature is. They work on either natural gas or LP and use your existing pump and heat coils to circulate the water and the heat.
As we know solar pool heaters use the energy from the sun and have added other components including a solar collector, filters, pumps, and control valves. The pool pump circulates the water through the filter and then the solar collected which is where the water hears returns it nice and warm to the swimming pool.
This process can also be completed during nighttime hours to cool down your pool during those scorching hot days.
Type of Pool Heater:
As listed above in the opening paragraphs, there are three main types of pool heaters that you can choose from. All of these like any product, come with their advantages and their disadvantages.
Gas Heaters tend to be cheaper and faster options but they do have a shorter lifespan and the operating costs over time can be higher as you are reliant on the price of gas. If you choose to go propane for your gas, you will also need to factor in the cost of a gas tank.
Electrical heaters are more energy-efficient and have less maintenance but they are slow to warm up your pools and the immediate costs monthly on your power bills can be high. Whereas Solar powered heaters are best for the environment and require again less maintenance but they have the lowest heating power and take up more space compared to the other heaters.
Overall, the type of heater that you choose to go with for your family will be highly influenced by your budget – short and long-term, heating power, and space.
Depending on where you are situated, the environment has a direct impact on the effectiveness of your pool heater, no matter which one you choose e.g. if you live in a windy place, then the pool will lose heat faster so you may go with an electric or gas heater.
However, if you live in a place which gets very cold over winter then suggest sticking with a gas heater as the others will prove to be redundant. Whereas if you live somewhere with lots of warmth and sunlight then a solar-powered heater might be your best option.
Pool Type, Shape, and Size:
When selecting a pool heater, you need to take the above into careful consideration as it will determine how much water you are wanting to warm and the capability of that particular heater.
If you have a swimming pool that covers a large surface area, this will lose heat quicker than a small one, and vice versa a small swimming pool does not need a large pool heater as that would be a waste of finances.
Once you have figured out the area and cubic capacity of your pool, then you can discover which pool heaters produce enough heat for your swimming pool back home. The heating power for pool heaters is measured in BTU (British Thermal Units).
If you choose to go solar-powered, then you should look at the size heater with an area of roughly 70% of your swimming pool size.
Electric Pool Heater Vs. Heat Pump:
Though both the electric pool heaters and heat pumps run on electricity, they are different products in comparison.
The initial costs of setting up a pool heat pump can be more costly than an electric heater but overall can save you five times less the amount of money than a gas or electric heater per month, which means long-term you would be saving a lot more money. Heat Pumps can last up to ten years minimum which is longer lasting than electric heaters.
Choosing an electric heater is initially less expensive but monthly will increase your power bills. They do however have a smaller carbon footprint and can be used if you have an indoor spa area.
Q. Can I Install/repair a pool heater myself?
Like most products, generally speaking, anyone with a level of technical skill could but it is preferred and highly recommended that a professional install the pool heater that way they can test it accurately and ensure that everything is in working condition and replace parts on the spot if needed without having to muck around. If your pool heater needs repairing, it also pays to have a professional come and have a look to ensure your heater is working properly and safely.
Q. Are pool heaters noisy?
Like most heaters and electric equipment, they do have a noisy operating level but most are relatively quiet and muffle the sound that is produced.
Q. Can I leave my pool heater on overnight?
It is advised to leave your heater on overnight as if you do turn it off during the evening period when the temperature drops the heater will be forced to work harder and end up costing you more in your utility bills.
Q. What does it mean to winterize a pool heater?
Winterizing is a process that is mainly done with gas heaters to protect them when the climates drop. To do this you will need to turn off the gas flow using the valves, turn off the heater and then open the pressure switch ( do not completely remove it), open and remove all the drain plugs and finally blow out the heater using either a vacuum or leaf blower to drain all the remaining water out of the heater so that you have made completely sure that there is nothing left inside your heater to freeze.
As proven, a pool heater is a great purchase if you use your swimming pool all year round, and that when purchasing the correct heater, you remember to choose one that matches your swimming pool size and location. If you follow this guide, then you should be able to narrow down your options and find the best pool heater that is not only economical but also efficient for your pool heating needs.