by Pool Builders on 03-14-2012 in Articles

Everyone loves and enjoys the comfort of a warm swimming pool from which springs calm, strength and new life. Now, that can only be possible if you own a swimming pool heater. There are a variety of sizes of pool heaters out there, the dilemma though is knowing which one is right for your swimming pool. So, your ultimate goal is to have a one that can heat your pool to the desired temperature level in the shortest time possible. My heartfelt wish is that this article helps you determine the correct heater size for your pool.

The capacity of this heater is rated in measurements know as BTU. BTU stands for British thermal unit, this is the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. And since there are 8.33 pounds per gallon, it takes 8.33 BTUs to raise one gallon of water by one degree Fahrenheit. This means that pool heaters with more BTUs heat the pool water faster than the ones with lower BTUs. It is very important that you know the number of BTUs required to heat your swimming pool.

First and fore most, determine the surface area of your swimming pool because the larger the surface area, the more the number of BTUs required to heat the pool. Larger surface areas provide room for easy escape of heat, so a heater will need more BTUs to provide enough heat. And the surface area also helps one determine the gallons of water in your swimming pool. To calculate the surface area of a pool, follow the guidelines below.

€ For a rectangular pool;

Surface area = length * width

€ For an oval pool;

Surface area = length * width * 3.14

€ For a round pool

Surface area = length * width * 3.14

Use the surface area figures to calculate the pool volume of water in gallons.

Now you can determine the temperature you are interested to raise. This is possible by subtracting the air temperature from the desired temperature. The temperature you are interested to raise is important for calculating the number of BTUs you need per gallon of water.

Assuming the amount of temperature to raise is 100F, the number of BTUs per gallon will be 83.3 BTUs (since it takes 8.33 BTUs to raise one gallon of water by one degree F, the number of BTUs is got by multiplying the amount of temperature by 8.33 BTUs. To get the total number of BTUs required for the whole swimming pool, multiply the number of BTUs per gallon of water by the total pool volume. Assuming total pool volume of water is 1000 gallons, and the number of BTUs per gallons is 83.3 BTUs. Total number of BTUs will be equal 83300.

However, there are also other factors you must consider when selecting a pool heater due to the fact that they come in different models.

€ The most commonly used ones are gas powered though there are also electricity powered ones. Gas pool heaters come in two types; natural and propane gas heaters. They are both efficient and highly performing though operating a propane gas heater is far more expensive than operating a natural gas one.

€ Pool heaters have two types of ignition; millivolt and electronic ignition systems. The millivolt ignition uses a pilot light that must stay lit to initiate the heating process. The electronic ignition pool heater uses an electronic heating process and it costs more than the millivolt.

€ The level of emissions produced by pool heaters differs depending on their designs. Low nox is designed to release less emissions and it heats the pool faster because of higher rate of heat transfer. The traditional/normal pool heaters release more emission.

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