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Thread: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

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    Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Looking to buy a natural gas heater for our 16x32 inground but a bit baffled by my research.

    Here on TFP I see lots of accolades for Raypak and quite a few recommendations to stay away from Hayward.

    On Amazon, Raypak has mostly negative reviews while Hayward has mostly very positive reviews.

    Granted, many more Amazon reviews for Hayward than for Raypak, but still wondering why the difference between TFP and Amazon.

    Any relevant thoughts/comments/experiences?

    TIA
    IG vinyl liner, 16x32 Grecian, built 1998
    20,000 gallons
    Hayward Inline Chlorinator
    Hayward Sand Filter
    New liner last year

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    paul will chime in here soon too, but my experience with them, albeit limited, is the Raypac's are built a little better, have less moving parts and seem to hold up better. I am forever replacing parts in Haywards around here. This may be due to the fact that there are a lot of them in this area as both pool stores carry them but offer no service. I have only seen two raypacs here and both of them had pump issues when I got there not heater issues. I personaly have a hayward and would never own one again. The only reason it is still going is my ability to inexpensively fix things on it (don't ever lift the lid on mine and peek inside).

    Just fixed a bad blower fan last weekend on a 3 year old unit)
    Unknown make 18' above ground (bought used in 1999) Sparco sand filter. Hayward 100,000 BTu heater. 2 speed pump

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    In my experience with Amazon reviews, most of them are from buyers who have just received their item, or not had it for a very long time.

    Many of us have had our pools for years or decades and it's my opinon that TFP reviews about longeviety and reliability are over a much longer period of time than the Amazon reviews.

    I don't have a heater on my pool, so i can't comment one way or another about the products you mention.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    my raypak was like 600 cheaper from inyo pool than amazon. i didnt care about reviews when my raypak from 1996 was replaced in 2016. any pool part that lasted that long was getting replaced with the exact same one.
    19K IG Pebbletec with attached spa. 60sqft Cartridge filter, Intelliflow VS, 399k BTU Gas Heater, Pentair IC40. Phoenix, AZ, full sun.

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Have you looked at Jandy pool heaters? I have an Lxi that was installed when my pool was installed 8 years ago and not a problem yet...knock on wood.
    18,000 G in-ground, saltwater pool and spa, pebbletech finish, Jandy Aqualink RS-8 controls, all Jandy equipment (pumps, valves, heater, controls) built in 2008. Jandy iAqualink 2.0, Rev T upgrade, 08/2016.

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Do yourself a huge favor and get the Raypak. I have been repairing and replacing gas heaters for a living for some time now. I see them all and repair them all but from being in the field I can tell you that as of right now the most solid unit is the Raypak. Hayward used to be but since they went to their new units about 5 years ago or so, they have had issues. Jandy also used to be good under the LAARS name.

    Also consider this, of all the units currently on the market, Raypk has the simplest straight forward design and does what it needs to do with the fewest moving parts. All of the other units have extra parts like blower motors and extra control boards that when they fail, they are not cheap to replace.

    I would not personally install a product that has a failure rate as high as the Hayward and a few others. The last thing I want to do is keep getting calls from my customers complaining that the unit isn't working. Can that still happen n a Raypak, sure, but not at the level I see on the other brands.

    Just my opinion.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    +1 on the Raypak

    Sometimes it boils down to who is best at keeping things like, spiders, rats, bugs, snakes, things like that, out of their heaters... meaning jacket design.
    Factory Warranty Station for:
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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Quote Originally Posted by bernieperry View Post
    Looking to buy a natural gas heater for our 16x32 inground but a bit baffled by my research.

    Here on TFP I see lots of accolades for Raypak and quite a few recommendations to stay away from Hayward.

    On Amazon, Raypak has mostly negative reviews while Hayward has mostly very positive reviews.

    Granted, many more Amazon reviews for Hayward than for Raypak, but still wondering why the difference between TFP and Amazon.

    Any relevant thoughts/comments/experiences?

    TIA
    One other thing to consider is that most pool heater companies do not warranty heaters installed by the DIY person. So if you are looking to install this unit yourself, please consider this.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    We believe these guys ^^^^^.
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    I have a very clean/nice looking older Laars that worked very well this season....but going with a Raypak for sure
    when the day comes that it needs replacing.
    16x32 IG Vinyl, 13,000 Gals. Hayward S-244T sand filter, SP2810X15 pump
    (1.5 HP motor) Raypak PR266AEN (266k btu) gas heater. TF-100 Test Kit.

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Darn. I just installed a Hayward heater. I specifically chose Hayward because their warranty isn't crippled due to owner installation unlike Raypak and Pentair. It seems like a failrly simple system, so if something goes wrong, I'm sure I'll be able to repair it. But if the overall quality is low to start with, now I'm wondering if I should have gambled on the Raypak's lousy warranty.

    As to the added complications of extra moving parts (blowers, etc), isn't that more a function of meeting low-NOX requirements? I can't (legally) install the older/simpler pilot light style heater in CA.
    ~john
    24.5K G, pebble, SuperFlo VS 1.5, 48sq DE filter, Hayward H250FDN, Autopilot RC-52, Poolvergnuegen & 3 daily swimmers in season.

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Quote Originally Posted by foobert View Post
    Darn. I just installed a Hayward heater. I specifically chose Hayward because their warranty isn't crippled due to owner installation unlike Raypak and Pentair. It seems like a failrly simple system, so if something goes wrong, I'm sure I'll be able to repair it. But if the overall quality is low to start with, now I'm wondering if I should have gambled on the Raypak's lousy warranty.

    As to the added complications of extra moving parts (blowers, etc), isn't that more a function of meeting low-NOX requirements? I can't (legally) install the older/simpler pilot light style heater in CA.
    Are you sure on the Hayward warranty on DIY installs? They are one of the many outspoken manufacturers with regards to warranties. Not sure I would say Hayward is a simple straight forward system. Raypak does have a low-NOX version which adds a blower. Yes the blower is a requirement for low-NOX.

    Raypak warranty is good. Just not a 2yr one but when you have a great product, you don't need to add anything extra to get folks to buy it. My .02 cents.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Quote Originally Posted by foobert View Post
    I specifically chose Hayward because their warranty isn't crippled due to owner installation unlike Raypak and Pentair. It seems like a failrly simple system, so if something goes wrong, I'm sure I'll be able to repair it. But if the overall quality is low to start with, now I'm wondering if I should have gambled on the Raypak's lousy warranty.

    As to the added complications of extra moving parts (blowers, etc), isn't that more a function of meeting low-NOX requirements? I can't (legally) install the older/simpler pilot light style heater in CA.
    If you are in the SF Bay area, Lo NOx is encouraged, but not yet required. Southern CA is a different story as is TX.

    I wouldn't classify Raypaks' warranty (1 year) as lousy, especially if you never need use it. If you purchased and installed the Hayward heater yourself, it is only 1 year as well. Two years for pro install, but the second year is only parts, no labor.

    Only time will tell if you made the right purchase...
    Factory Warranty Station for:
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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pool Clown View Post
    I wouldn't classify Raypaks' warranty (1 year) as lousy, especially if you never need use it. .
    I suggest you read beyond the headline of their warranty:
    WARRANTY EXCLUSIONS
    This Limited Warranty does NOT apply ...
    2) if the Heater is not properly installed with a pool or spa by a qualified licensed installer

    Also, Raypak doesn't believe in the free market economy of internet sales: Internet_sales_policy


    It's their business, and they can run it how they want. But, I spent my money accordingly after reading all that.
    ~john
    24.5K G, pebble, SuperFlo VS 1.5, 48sq DE filter, Hayward H250FDN, Autopilot RC-52, Poolvergnuegen & 3 daily swimmers in season.

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Whats wrong with a company who would rather have their heater installed by a competent installer? I'm sure that YOU can install your heater. But your ability is not the same as all the other DYI'ers out there. Iv'e seen my share of scary installs out there...

    If you were selling a product that has a "moderate to significant" level of liability associated with just the install alone, Would you want to pay out warranty for things that wouldn't even be an issue if you, or someone you trained, installed it? How about warranty-ing the same thing over and over for a year, or however long you dared to make your warranty, because the install was incorrect, causing the part to continually fail? All the while the customer/ DIY'er telling assuring you that the install was "good to go"?

    The manufacturer is not trying to punish you for wanting to get the best deal possible, they are covering themselves from bleeding (as explained above) to death, or even worse, sued. BTW, that line has always been in the warranty, even before the internet. It probably wouldn't be an issue if not for the fact that you can not only kill yourself, but your whole family if something goes wrong with that heater due to an incorrect install.

    I have no problem with you buying a heater on line. Its your right to shop the best deal. I will even do the competent install for you. Do i have a different scale for internet installs? Yes, and why shouldn't i? You are still getting a heck of a deal than what you would have, had you supported your local mom & pop or more PC, "brick & mortar" shop. Those online guys sell those heaters to you for less than i can get them!

    "That's all i got to say about that..."
    Forest Gump

    To be honest, i don't see many Hayward heaters, so i don't know of the longevity of them. I would have to think if EVERY heater they made had problems, they wouldn't be around for very long. And I have known of Hayward throughout my entire pool industry career. So i suppose they can't have a horrible product.
    Factory Warranty Station for:
    Jandy/Zodiac, Pentair, Sta-Rite, Raypak, Polaris,
    and Paramount pool cleaning systems.

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Hayward used to make a good gas heater but since the new FD units came out, non stop problems which equals more $$ for me. I see the following issues with Hayward, leaking heat exchangers in 18-24 months, keypad deterioration due to lack of protection from the sun/weather, bad display board do to keypad issue, and a short on the ignition control board that also takes out the display board. Way too many issues on one unit but like I said, it makes me good $$ when I get called for repairs.

    I see no issues with any company limiting the warranty on their products. It's their product and a certain level of knowledge is required in order to install correctly. Why should a company pay for repairs caused by an incorrect install?

    I agree with Pool Clown with regards to online sales. The online guys are going for quantity to make a buck and could care less about you or the product. I really can't see how they can offer free shipping though. Freight charges are not cheap.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Thank you all for your thoughts -- I may have touched a nerve, even if we are all in nearly total agreement. I voted with my dollars, and, only time will tell if I'll still be happy with that decision as the years go by
    ~john
    24.5K G, pebble, SuperFlo VS 1.5, 48sq DE filter, Hayward H250FDN, Autopilot RC-52, Poolvergnuegen & 3 daily swimmers in season.

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    How about the rheem heat pumps just got one seems to be fine so far


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    Quote Originally Posted by foobert View Post
    Thank you all for your thoughts -- I may have touched a nerve, even if we are all in nearly total agreement. I voted with my dollars, and, only time will tell if I'll still be happy with that decision as the years go by
    I do wish you luck with the Hayward. I just hate seeing people spending their money on what I see as a faulty product. A word of advice, keep very good track of all your pool water readings and do them at least once a week. At the very least you can show them to the Hayward reps when/if they have to come out due to a leaking system.
    Paul
    http://www.gastekservices.com A word of caution: When working with gas and electrical you might want to consider a licensed contractor. Consider the value of your life and others around you. If you would like to provide a review of the help I provided, please use the following link to leave a review. gastek - Google Search,

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: Pool Heaters - Who to Believe?

    And keep the area IN and around the pool equipment as clean as you can. Don't make it inviting to pests.
    Factory Warranty Station for:
    Jandy/Zodiac, Pentair, Sta-Rite, Raypak, Polaris,
    and Paramount pool cleaning systems.

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