How to Choose the Right Pool Heater
Making the decision to add a heater to your pool can greatly extend the amount of time each year you are able to enjoy using it. Although here in Florida the temperature doesn’t drop as drastically as other areas of the country, a heater can help maintain a comfortable temperature in your pool year-round. There are several different types of pool heaters and each one has its own benefits and requirements for use.
The types of pool heaters are divided by the type of energy source they use to heat the water. This includes gas heaters, electric heaters, heat pumps, and solar heaters. Each of these heaters has its own advantages and requirements for best use. Choosing the right one depends on your needs and priorities.
Gas pool heaters, as the name implies, use gas as the fuel source to heat your pool. These are the most commonly used heaters, as they are effective in any climate. Water is circulated through a pump where it passes over heated coils and then returned to your pool.
One of the best things about gas pool heaters is that they are able to heat the pool very quickly. If you don’t use your pool, spa, or hot tub often, these heaters are great at bringing the temperature to a comfortable level faster than other heaters.
Gas pool heaters are also a cost effective way to keep your pool comfortable year round. The upfront cost is less than some other heating sources and they last up to 15 years. This makes them a great long term investment.
Electric pool heaters use electricity to heat the water in your pool. This water is pulled into the heater and then re-circulated through your pool to keep a consistent temperature. This does bring electricity close to your pool area.
Efficient and space saving:
Electric pool heaters are great sources of heating. They are very efficient, require little space, and provide a clean form of energy. They do however use a lot of energy to operate, so they are not the right choice for all climates.
Great in temperate climates:
While electric pool heaters are not the best for all climates, they work very well in relatively temperate climates. If your temperature doesn’t drop too low they are an efficient way to heat pools and their energy costs will stay relatively comparable to other heating sources.
Heat pumps are one of the most energy efficient ways to maintain the temperature in your pool. They do this by moving heat rather than creating heat. A refrigerant in the lines is heated by the outside air and then transferred to the water being circulated through your pool.
Heat pumps in the right climate are a great investment, and cost significantly less to use then other sources. Since they aren’t having to physically create heat to warm the pool electric costs remain low.
Need to be in temperate climate:
Since they work by pulling heat from the air, temperatures outside need to remain above at least 45° in order to work efficiently. When the temperature drops too low there is no more heat that can be removed from the air, making them ineffective. In a temperate climate such as Florida these systems are a great, energy efficient way to keep your pool comfortable.
A solar pool heater uses energy collected from the sun to heat the water in your pool. They use your pool pump to draw the water in to be heated and then circulate it back through the pool.
Most energy efficient:
Solar pool heaters are the most energy-efficient of all the heaters available. After installing there will be no energy costs associated. They are more expensive initially but should pay for themselves within 1 to 7 years.
Little to no maintenance required:
One of the other benefits to solar heaters is that they require very little maintenance as long as the unit doesn’t get damaged, and they can last up to 20 years before needing to be replaced. These units are not as effective as gas and electric heaters, but in a temperate climate with a lot of sun, these can be one of the better options.
Deciding to invest in a pool heater can seem like a big step. However, having a consistent temperature in your pool year-round will allow you and your family to enjoy it more frequently.