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Thread: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

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    Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Hi

    Newbie to TFP.

    I did a search but did not come up with a relevant thread.

    I have a 15 year old Teledyne Laars heater (LLG model). It has been a terrible unit, refusing to start every year. I did some rudimentary troubleshooting and wired it up to bypass a faulty temperature sensor and it has been good this season (until this week). No amount of fiddling can get this to turn on, and I am the point of buying a new unit. It's been nothing short of a continuous battle and it never turns on just when you need it most.

    Can I get some opinions on what would be a good unit for a colder climate (i.e. Canadian winters), where it can withstand long cold winters and still fire up reliably in the spring?

    Our local pool dealers have Jandy (Teledyne Laars), Pentair, Raypack. A lot of people on this forum swear by the Raypack heaters.

    Second question....for a cold climate do I go with a traditional pilot light or can I use a millivolt system? I am worried that the prolong exposure to cold weather will break the electronics....

    Third question....digital controls or traditional dial controls for the same reason as question 2.

    Thanks

    Ken

    I would hate to drop a couple of grand and then have the same poor experience the Laars provided me with.
    17,000 gal SWG pool
    Liner, 5 x Heliocol solar panels, Haywood gas heater, Super Pump II 1HP, Haywood pro sand filter, Haywood T cell-15, Pro Logic controller,
    Taylor test kit controlled pool
    Params - 5.0FC (if not shocking) ca-270, ALk-100, pH-7.2-7.6, NACL - 3000, CYA -60-70

  2. Back To Top    #2
    mariner138's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    I live in northern Connecticut and had pretty much the same Teledyne/Laars heater (400K BTU) installed in 2002; the unit had many digital indicators and electronic controls. I had so much trouble starting this in cooler weather every year that about 2005 or 2006, after numerous service calls, Teledyne/Jandy sent 2 technicians up from New Jersey with a van full of spare parts and test equipment; they spent all day and changed out about every part in it; it worked for a few days and then wouldn't start. I complained so much that the dealer finally refunded my money (except for sales tax) and I replaced it with a Hayward 250K BTU pilot light unit with 1 rotary dial heat control; this unit works fine - start the pilot light and it runs all season (May - mid. October). My experience has been that the fewer electronics, the more trouble-free. Maybe the newer electronic units are much better in cold climates but I'm still skeptical based my experience.
    19,000 gal kidney shaped gunite pool
    1 1/2 hp 1 speed pump
    180 SF cartridge filter
    3 floor popup floor valet
    250K BTU Hayward millivolt propane heater

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    mariner138's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    P.S. - FYI, forgot to add, pool is 19K gal. gunite construction.
    19,000 gal kidney shaped gunite pool
    1 1/2 hp 1 speed pump
    180 SF cartridge filter
    3 floor popup floor valet
    250K BTU Hayward millivolt propane heater

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    I don't have any experience with heaters let alone cold weather so I'll just say welcome to TFP to both of you!
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
    24' x 52" Round AGP. 2hp/¼hp SPL Power-Flo 2-speed pump. 200sqft Waterway Cartridge Filter. 45MHP2(3GPD) Stenner Peristaltic Pump
    Pool School ----- Pool Math ----- TF-Test Kit

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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Thanks for the welcome. I just looked at the Pentair MasterTemp. It looks very nice.
    17,000 gal SWG pool
    Liner, 5 x Heliocol solar panels, Haywood gas heater, Super Pump II 1HP, Haywood pro sand filter, Haywood T cell-15, Pro Logic controller,
    Taylor test kit controlled pool
    Params - 5.0FC (if not shocking) ca-270, ALk-100, pH-7.2-7.6, NACL - 3000, CYA -60-70

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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Pentair Master temp is the same unit as a Sta-Rite Max E Therm, just in a different enclosure.

    I sell and repair gas pool heaters for a living and each one has it's own issues. However, I find the Rapak/Rheem units to be a bit more reliable. Plus they are simple units and don't have extras on it. Things like blower motors, Hayward Universal, Pentair, Sta-Rite have blower motors, are an added expense and one more part to break down the road. Hayward Universal units have two digital boards in the unit and usually when one goes, it takes the other one with it.

    Raypak/Rheem is a decent heater and works very well with out any of the extras. As for the electronics, well I am sure many others have units that sit outside in very cold weather and there is little effect on it. In fact your car/truck has alot more electronics in it and I'm sure it fairs well in the cold.

    Good luck on your decision.
    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 Heater for Colder Climates

    Paul and Mariner, thanks very much for your responses. Paul, I was thinking the same thing about the blowers on the Pentair and the fairly limited service network (i.e. I live just outside of Toronto, in a suburb called Oakville). The Raypack being a more straightforward design would be simpler to service I imagine and parts more readily available.

    Any other input is appreciated and welcome.

    Ken
    17,000 gal SWG pool
    Liner, 5 x Heliocol solar panels, Haywood gas heater, Super Pump II 1HP, Haywood pro sand filter, Haywood T cell-15, Pro Logic controller,
    Taylor test kit controlled pool
    Params - 5.0FC (if not shocking) ca-270, ALk-100, pH-7.2-7.6, NACL - 3000, CYA -60-70

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    Vette's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Quote Originally Posted by ps0303
    Pentair Master temp is the same unit as a Sta-Rite Max E Therm, just in a different enclosure.

    I sell and repair gas pool heaters for a living and each one has it's own issues. However, I find the Rapak/Rheem units to be a bit more reliable. Plus they are simple units and don't have extras on it. Things like blower motors, Hayward Universal, Pentair, Sta-Rite have blower motors, are an added expense and one more part to break down the road. Hayward Universal units have two digital boards in the unit and usually when one goes, it takes the other one with it.

    Raypak/Rheem is a decent heater and works very well with out any of the extras. As for the electronics, well I am sure many others have units that sit outside in very cold weather and there is little effect on it. In fact your car/truck has alot more electronics in it and I'm sure it fairs well in the cold.

    Good luck on your decision.
    Any experience with heat pumps? We are looking at one over natural gas. Getting a 220v line to our equipment pad would require less work than a natural gas line.
    11,700 gallon 21' round 54" deep all-resin AGP - June 2012
    Waterway 1HP 2-speed pump / 100 sq ft cartridge filter
    Hayward 150,000btu Natural Gas heater
    I use and recommend the TF-100 for testing

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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    I only work with gas heaters. What's the cost of running a 220 line vs gas line? Heat pumps and gas heaters costs are similar though.
    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,

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Pool-creetin's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    A heater will heat up the pool quicker than a heat pump. IMO I think the more southern area's would benefit more from a heat pump than us northern folk. I use my heater to bump up the temp just before i swim or have partys. My average cost to run varys but is never too bad. The most i have paid for heat is $100 a month to heat the pool but i am conscious on run time. Now if you heat the pool day on end your results will vary, and cost will go up to operate. Where i can bump up the heat 6 degrees in 4 hrs on a cooler day (80-84) it would take a heat pump much longer. Like yesterday for example water was 79 in the AM and i raised it to 90 in 7 hrs. (Wife likes it warm.) Now that the weather is warm i can keep it warm with little run time. Cool days like upper 70's and below i dont bother running it as no one wants to swim on the those days anyways. You can keep it warm with a solar blanket, But i find them a PITA to put on and off, and they will make your PH crash if left on too long. If i left my cover on for more than 2-3 days ph would crash and become acidic.
    I have a raypack and love it!!! 2 yars strong and not an issue. My last hayward i ver had a year where i did not have to spend money on it fixing it. My heater is my baby though. I take it in for the winters.
    26x16 rockwood keyhole vynil inground, waterway cartridge filter and swg, variable speed pentair pump, extra large skimmer with 2 main drains in deep end and 2 returns,Rheem raypack 206 natural gas heater, hayward tigershark qc robot. Being installed in late may early june. Woot!

  11. Back To Top    #11

    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Thanks....I just ordered the Raypack. I am looking forward to it.Ken
    17,000 gal SWG pool
    Liner, 5 x Heliocol solar panels, Haywood gas heater, Super Pump II 1HP, Haywood pro sand filter, Haywood T cell-15, Pro Logic controller,
    Taylor test kit controlled pool
    Params - 5.0FC (if not shocking) ca-270, ALk-100, pH-7.2-7.6, NACL - 3000, CYA -60-70

  12. Back To Top    #12

    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Quote Originally Posted by Pool-creetin
    You can keep it warm with a solar blanket, But i find them a PITA to put on and off, and they will make your PH crash if left on too long. If i left my cover on for more than 2-3 days ph would crash and become acidic.
    Hmm, that doesn't happen to me. I've had my cover on for 5-6 days at a time. I always make sure to take it off at least 1 day per week.

    +1 love my heater when I need to use it. My minimax has seen two winters and has yet to have any problems.
    Aaron
    [ Vogue Vectra 24' AG | Hard plumb: Hayward Power-Flo Matrix 1HP 2-speed, 27" sand filter & Pentair MiniMax 100 NG | Taylor K-2006 | Central IL ]
    Powered by: TFP, PoolMath & TFTestkits

  13. Back To Top    #13
    GreatCanadian's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    How does a pool cover affect pH? Would be interested in knowing that in case we leave home for a week or so.
    13'x22'x52" 8,000 gallon ProSeries Pool with Borates
    Intex 110 pound Sand Filter with Zeobrite, 2650 gph pump, 0.95 hp
    Bestway SWG
    AquaPro ECO500 50,000 BTU heat pump
    GLI Whirlwind Solar Cover Reel, TF-100 Test Kit

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    Pool-creetin's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatCanadian
    How does a pool cover affect pH? Would be interested in knowing that in case we leave home for a week or so.
    Water oxigenates thru surface movement. A cover will block O2 from exchanging. Warmer water holds less O2 than cold.
    26x16 rockwood keyhole vynil inground, waterway cartridge filter and swg, variable speed pentair pump, extra large skimmer with 2 main drains in deep end and 2 returns,Rheem raypack 206 natural gas heater, hayward tigershark qc robot. Being installed in late may early june. Woot!

  15. Back To Top    #15
    GreatCanadian's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    So if the O2 can't exchange, the pH drops?
    13'x22'x52" 8,000 gallon ProSeries Pool with Borates
    Intex 110 pound Sand Filter with Zeobrite, 2650 gph pump, 0.95 hp
    Bestway SWG
    AquaPro ECO500 50,000 BTU heat pump
    GLI Whirlwind Solar Cover Reel, TF-100 Test Kit

  16. Back To Top    #16
    Pool-creetin's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Yes, Warm water already is low on O2. Cutting it off from exchanging co2 it will build up dropping ph.
    26x16 rockwood keyhole vynil inground, waterway cartridge filter and swg, variable speed pentair pump, extra large skimmer with 2 main drains in deep end and 2 returns,Rheem raypack 206 natural gas heater, hayward tigershark qc robot. Being installed in late may early june. Woot!

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    Swampwoman's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    I too live in Michigan, and used to live in Ontario, and I just want to confirm that locally, pbs and those in the know advise against heat pumps in this locale due to climate, just like Pool Creetin says. Heat pumps also don't operate under 40 degrees (which is fine, as you'd have the pool closed) but I would not especially trust them to handle sustained sub-zero weather because I would expect them to have been designed for climates less harsh. Could be wrong on that.

    My pool is new to me so I have no means to compare, but my Hayward seems to tick along just fine. Then again, all my equipment is actually inside a "pool house" structure, so it is babied a bit. I was told it is all original, meaning 12 years old.
    In ground extended Grecian, 22,000 gal, Hayward 220t sand filter, vinyl liner, dolphin m4 supreme.
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  18. Back To Top    #18

    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Got the Raypak with the electronic ignition and the digital controls....I'll update the thread once I have had a chance to try it. Thanks to all who commented. I had a local contractor come out and do the Gas, Electrical, and plumbing for $375. The gentleman was nice enough to pick it up for me from the pool shop and also took the only one away, so I am very pleased. Ken
    17,000 gal SWG pool
    Liner, 5 x Heliocol solar panels, Haywood gas heater, Super Pump II 1HP, Haywood pro sand filter, Haywood T cell-15, Pro Logic controller,
    Taylor test kit controlled pool
    Params - 5.0FC (if not shocking) ca-270, ALk-100, pH-7.2-7.6, NACL - 3000, CYA -60-70

  19. Back To Top    #19
    Pool-creetin's Avatar
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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    Quote Originally Posted by kdedesko
    Got the Raypak with the electronic ignition and the digital controls....I'll update the thread once I have had a chance to try it. Thanks to all who commented. I had a local contractor come out and do the Gas, Electrical, and plumbing for $375. The gentleman was nice enough to pick it up for me from the pool shop and also took the only one away, so I am very pleased. Ken
    Congrats on the rheem, mine has the same features. Very nice heater and built solid. Seems to out perform my old hayward big time.
    Thats a great price for gas and electrical!
    26x16 rockwood keyhole vynil inground, waterway cartridge filter and swg, variable speed pentair pump, extra large skimmer with 2 main drains in deep end and 2 returns,Rheem raypack 206 natural gas heater, hayward tigershark qc robot. Being installed in late may early june. Woot!

  20. Back To Top    #20

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    Re: Pool Heater for Colder Climates

    which Raypak is it?

    Bernie
    Bernie

    20,000 Gallon (16 x 32), IN ground, Vinyl Pool
    Hayward Single Speed 1-1/5 Hp Pump - 3/4 HP "Booster" (?) Polaris 280 Vacuum
    48 Sq Ft, 96 GPM, Diatomaceous Earth Filter
    Pool is approximately 15+ years old- Newer than 1985
    Hayward 300,000 BTU H300MV Heater (Milli-Volt UGH!!)

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