Unless you live in an exceedingly warm climate, it is necessary to heat your swimming pool to keep swimmers comfortable. Depending on where you live and what your needs are, you will need to add a pool heater to your swimming pool setup to guarantee that the water is enticing and usable.
The biggest mistake you can make when purchasing a pool heater is incorrectly assessing your needs. Too often, people don’t pick a heater with the capability of properly heating that particular pool. Pool heaters work by using fuel to create heat that then warms the water that has been pumped through the filter before returning the warmed water back to the pool which then raises the temperature in the whole pool.
Pool heaters are rated according to their output in terms of BTU (British Thermal Units). One BTU raises the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. If you have a heater with a high BTU count, it signifies that the heater is capable of heating water in a pool or spa quicker than one with a lower count. Measuring the surface area and volume of your pool will help you to establish how many BTUs your heater will need.
There are three popular types of pool heaters: solar pool heaters, gas pool heaters, and swimming pool heat pumps.
Solar pool heaters collect heat and energy from the sun and transfers that into the swimming pool to heat the water. Solar pool heaters really only raise the pool temperature by 10-15 degrees so it’s best used on a pool that is in an already warm climate. They also work better on lower volume swimming pools that have less water to heat.
Gas pool heaters are a very popular option for pool heating, particularly in locations where the sun cannot be relied upon to heat the water. The category of gas swimming pool heaters includes units powered by natural gas and propane. Gas pool heaters that utilize natural gas need a gas line for fuel, whereas a propane pool heater draws the fuel directly from an attached propane tank. Gas pool heaters can be more costly to install initially, but a natural gas option is typically less expensive than one run on electricity and more efficient to operate. Gas heaters are ideal for large pools because they are capable of heating a large volume swimming pool in a shorter period of time.
Finally, there are swimming pool heat pumps. A pool heat pump is a pool heater that absorbs heat from the air surrounding the unit and channels that into your pool water in order to heat it. Heat pumps are sometimes considered a combination of a solar heater and an electric heater. Pool heat pumps are powered by electricity, but as the sun heats the area around the pump it collects that heat and utilizes it to heat the pool water. While it is powered by electricity, heat pumps actually run on very little electrical energy, making them a very inviting choice for pool owners who want to have a “green” pool. Not only are pool heat pumps environmentally friendly, but very cost effective as well. Initial cost may be more compared to a gas or electric heater, but the cost to operate a swimming pool heat pump along with the energy savings will prove worth it.
No matter which type of pool heater you choose, you can make a purchase knowing that the brands we carry are reliable and high-quality. Whether you go with a Hayward, Pentair, Raypak, or Zodiac pool heater, you know you’ll have a dependable piece of equipment that will keep your pool ready for use at any time.