The Facts Need To Know About Swimming Pool Heaters

by Pool Builders on 04-17-2006 in Articles

If you been considering getting a heater for your swimming pool to help extend the swimming season, you probably have a lot of questions that you would like to have answered. So here are some facts about swimming pool heaters that you really need to know.

First of all, a heater will help you set your water temperature at almost any comfort level possible. Most experts recommend around 78° for swimming pool water to be the most comfortable, but many folks actually prefer warmer water, even 80° or more.

Since the sun can only heat your pool water to 78° for a very short time during the year, a pool heater will enable you to dramatically expand the swimming season each year. For those that live in northern climates, it may actually be able to almost double the season, and for those in slightly warmer climates, it can even triple the swimming season.

Using a pool cover is highly recommended even with a swimming pool heater, because it helps prevent heat loss from the pool water to the air, and holds it in instead. In fact a good insulating pool cover can reduce heat loss by 50% or even more.

So what types of swimming pool heaters are available? Perhaps the most common is the gas-fired heater that uses LP gas. This kind of heater generally is less expensive to begin with, and the cost of using it tends to be less than other heaters as well. Another type of pool heater is the oil fired heater. These can be used in areas where LP gas is not generally available. And some pool heaters run on electricity, but these tend to be the most expensive of all to buy and maintain.

Finally, there is the solar pool heater to consider. Initially, it sounds like a great way to save money when you use the sun's energy for free. However, there are drawbacks to using solar pool heaters too, the first of which is their initial cost. Swimming pool solar heaters can cost as much as 25% to 50% of the cost of the entire swimming pool, making them easily the most expensive swimming pool heaters to buy. But they also take up quite a bit of room too. In fact, the general rule of thumb is that the solar collection area should equal the surface area of the pool that it is heating. Many pool owners do not have an open area sufficient for solar collectors of that size. And finally, a swimming pool solar heater requires a larger electric swimming pool pump to deliver the pool water to the solar panels, adding even more to the overall expense.

Most gas-fired heaters on the other hand cost only a bout 6% to 10% of the cost of your swimming pool to install, making them a much less expensive alternative for swimming pool heating.

Hopefully, this article will help you understand more about the choices that you have available for swimming pool heaters, and what you can expect from each type of heater that is on the market.

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