Should You Install A Pool Heater?

by Pool Builders on 03-10-2011 in Articles

These days looking after the environment is a hot topic and you may be concerned that heating an outdoor pool is not environmentally friendly. Isn't it just wasting energy, being environmentally unfriendly and at the same time very expensive?

Certainly these points need to be considered but a pool heater can greatly increase your enjoyment of your pool (and the investment in it) by making it usable all day and extending the "swimming season".

As well as the social aspects of having a pool, it should be remembered that swimming is an excellent form of exercise especially for anyone who cannot undertake more strenuous forms of exercise. A heated pool also prevents chilling and the problems caused by the loss of too much body heat which can affect very young children and the elderly.

There are a number of steps you can take to minimize energy usage so that costs are controlled:

  • Type of Heater - This is the most important decision you need to make. At present gas heaters (such as the Hayward H Series for in ground pools or the Hayward H100 for above ground pools) are the most common type but they can be expensive to run (particularly propane versions).
  • The best from an energy and running cost point of view are now electric heat pumps. A heater will never be a hundred percent efficient (about eighty percent is the figure quoted for good gas heaters) but heat pumps (such as the Hayward Heat Pump) can actually output much more energy than is used. This can happen because they do not produce heat, they in fact "pump" heat from the surrounding air into the water. Heat pumps are designed to run for long periods as they are not as powerful as gas heaters but, despite this, they still cost much less to run.
  • Pool Temperature - You want the water to be comfortable but don't heat it any more than you need to. 78 degrees is often recommended.
  • Use a Pool Cover when the pool is not in use - This is essential as a pool cover can reduce heat loss by 50%. The key function of a pool cover is to stop evaporation as evaporation causes significant cooling. Using a pool cover will also help reduce the amount of chemicals you need to use.
  • Shelter the pool from wind - Even a gentle wind can lower the pool temperature significantly.
  • Properly maintain the pool - Make sure the pool and its heating system is properly maintained.

Looked after properly, and managed carefully, a pool heater will greatly increase your enjoyment of your pool without costing the earth.

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