Inground Pool Heater 101

by Pool Builders on 03-21-2010 in Articles

Although some feel that it is unnecessary, having an inground pool heater can extend your outdoor swimming season from a few months late in spring to early fall. Whether for leisure or fitness, your inground pool heater can give you more months of swimming beyond the warm season.

There are actually three different types of inground pool heater that offer a variety of sizes. Depending on how often you use your pool and other preferences, you are able to determine if gas-fired, electric heat pump or solar pool heater will work best with your requirements.

A gas-fired inground pool heater is fueled by either natural gas or propane. This type of heater can maintain pool water temperature at any given season. Depending on the ambient air temperature, a gas inground pool heater can raise water temperature between 5 and 8 degrees Fahrenheit. Advances in mechanical technology have enhanced efficiency of this type of heater. While this option is the least expensive, maintenance and operating cost may be more expensive than other types of heaters. This makes gas-fired heaters ideal for pools less frequently used. Typically a gas heater will last 5 years. However, in areas where gas is not available, a gas-fired inground pool heater is not applicable.

An electric inground heater is an efficient system for heating pool water. It is more commonly known as a heat pump because it makes use of a pumping device called compressor. This compressor operates a typical vapor compression cycle similar to air-conditioning and refrigeration but in reverse to transfer heat from the ambient air to the pool water. This type of heater has the capacity to heat water using the surrounding air above 45 degrees Fahrenheit. A heat pump will cost more than a gas heater but the cost of maintenance and operation is much lower. A good heat pump can be operational up to 10 years if properly taken care of.

The third type of inground pool heater is powered by solar energy. A solar heater makes use of stored energy from the sun. This is done by installing solar panels to catch solar energy that is converted to hear on the pool water. This is supposed to be the most expensive system but it pays off in the long run as it does not require too much cost to operate. It is also considered environment friendly as it utilizes renewable energy. A solar heater will require space as the size of the solar panel is proportional to the size of the pool. Solar panels are usually installed at rooftops or some place that is exposed to sunlight most of the time. In regions where there is limited sunlight, this type of heater could be inappropriate. A solar heater can give you up to 15 years of service if you maintain it properly.

You can choose among the three types of inground pool heater and you will surely get efficient heating for your pool. For better results, it is recommended that you consult with a pool professional to determine what inground pool heater best suits your needs.

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