Especially when you live further up north and want to extend the pool session beyond the summer vacation, a pool heater can be a necessity. There is a wide array of models and sizes. Let us introduce the different options, so that you can decide which heater will work best for your swimming pool.
Direct Electric Heaters
Although there are a few advantages to direct electric heaters, we would not recommend them for a reasonable size inground pool. In general they are not as powerful as gasheaters and costly to run. But they are relatively simple devices which should run reliably for many years and you do not need to worry about exhaust gases or air flow, which offers more flexibility when it comes to find a good spot for the heater.
Natural Gas Pool Heaters
Gas pool heaters are a popular choice, since they are reliable and do not get affected by weather changes. Most of the new heaters have an efficiency rating from 80-85%. They can be considered environmentally unfriendly, when there are more efficient ways of heating a pool. In general gas heaters are powerful and can heat a pool in a few hours. If you are thinking to heat your pool just on the weekends, these heaters might be the right choice for you. They are relatively reasonable priced, whereas the cost mainly depends on the size of your pool.
Electric Heat Pumps
Electric Heat Pumps are cheap to run, environmentally friendly and very efficient. Since a heat pump does not actually produce heat, but pumps the existing heat from it’s surroundings into the water, it can reach an efficiency rate of 100 percent. Unfortunately the efficiency decreases with the air temperature. That means, the colder it gets, the longer it takes to heat your pool. This won’t matter much, if you want to heat your pool most of the time during the season. In that case an electric heat pump will be a great choice.
If you have enough space and enough sun, a solar heater is the best space for you. They require very low maintenance, are long lasting, environmentally friendly and run on free sun-energy. But there are a few disadvantages too. The area for the solar collectors needs to be at least 50 to 80 % of the surface area of your pool and even in ideal conditions the heat output can’t match those of a gas pool heater or electric heat pump. Even during the hottest days of the summer it might take several days before the water temperature is raised the same amount, a gas pool heater can reach in a few hours. In short: It really depends on your location whether a solar pool heater will work for you.
When you have decided on one option, find out how to choose the right size pool heater for your personal pool.