Understanding Swimming Pool Heaters

by Pool Builders on 04-07-2011 in Articles

Your own swimming pool is a perfect refuge to take stress out of your body and relax. Whether you're stressed from work or frustrated from your business deals, soaking your body in pool water provides comfort and rejuvenation. Water relaxes tired muscles and loosens them up. Minds are refreshed. To some, swimming pools are not only good for relaxation. Some use it as part of their exercise routine. They custom built their pool to provide resistance training to keep their bodies in good shape.

With advancement of technology, a pool heater is added to maximize the use of your swimming pool especially during colder months or in the evening. Pool heaters are designed to set the water's temperature at a very comfortable degree. If the water is too cold, during the night or because of cold weather, it's difficult to enjoy. With a pool heater, everybody can enjoy their swimming pool anytime. With its benefits, a lot of pool owners invest in a pool heater to make the most out of their swimming pool.

With several heaters available in the market today, choosing the right pool heater can be a challenging task. Buying one should depend on your needs, budget and existing design of your pool and the house. There are three basic types of pool heaters. These are the following: solar, electric heat pump and gas powered. Each has its pros and cons. But having the knowledge of each type, gives the prospective buyer good information that is helpful to derive at a valuable buying decision.

The most popular heater is gas-fired. These heaters utilize natural gas or propane. They are less expensive to buy and operate. They are also designed to maintain any desired temperature regardless of the weather or climate. These heaters are efficient when heating pools for shorts periods of time and also ideal for quickly heating pools. Therefore, these heaters are a good choice for pools that are not used for regular basis.

Another type of heaters is powered by electricity. It operates in the same principle as an electric hot water tank. Electric current heats a coil, which in turn heats the water. Compared to gas powered heaters, heating water is relatively slower. And, considering the cost of electricity it is also an uneconomical choice. However, a good use of electricity to heat a pool is through a heat pump. It works like air conditioners, which transfer warm indoor heat to the outside, heat pumps transfer warm outdoor air to the water. The air heats the refrigerant, the compressor further heats the air, the air is eventually compressed into a very hot gas, and a heat exchanger transfers the heat to the pool water. Because heat is not generated but rather transferred, the result is very efficient use of electricity. Unfortunately, heat pumps are ineffective during spring and fall in colder climates since it rely on transferring warm air to the water.

And lastly, the solar powered heaters. It is economical since the source of energy is the sun that provides heat for free. However, it is the most expensive type of heaters to purchase because of its initial cost of installation. In addition, the solar collection area of the heater should also be equal the pool's surface area. Unfortunately, most urban homeowners do not have sufficient space for the required size of the solar heater. Another disadvantage is that it also requires an electric pool pump to carry water to the solar panels. This adds additional cost to the overall operation expense of solar swimming pool heaters.

Buying pool heaters can be a challenging task. But research and having the knowledge as to what specific heater suits your needs and budget can be helpful in making your decision.

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