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Thread: Electric heat pump

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    Electric heat pump

    Hello all. I have an electric heat pump for a 27000 gallon in ground pool.... The heat pump seems to only bring up the temp 3 degrees a day....I have a 2 speed pump... Should I run It at low .....( less water flow but feels hotter) because of the shape of the pool. (a mountain lake) I have trouble getting a blanket..so each night I lose whatever temp I gained. I hate to close the pool this early but I am nervous what my electric bill will be if I keep running it.

    Thanks for any help

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    Bluegrassman's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    More flow is better. Raising a large volume of water a few degrees at a time is better than raising a small amount of water several degrees at a time
    For a cover, can you purchase a rectangular cover that will fit the max length X max width of your pool, then trim to fit. Just stretch it out evenly across pool and start cutting.
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Yeah, more flow is better, but any increase in efficiency you gain by operating the heat pump on high speed filtration is more than lost due to the added cost of running the pool pump on high speed. Heating a pool isn't necessarily a very inexpensive endeavor. With your heat pump, the least expensive way to heat it would be to cut a cover as described, than operate the heatpump / low speed pool pump as much as necessary to keep the pool warm.
    18k gal inground, everbrite finish, 505 sq ft; 1.5 hp two speed whisperflow; rheem 5100ti 100k btu heat pump; 3 sheer descent falls; DE filter; swg (cell out and using trichlor for now)

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    Re: Electric heat pump

    It has been on high all day only up 1 degree since 8 am this morning (6hrs) ....temp is 75 it's 63 outside....just switched it to low....will see what happens in the next 6 hrs.....next two days forecast to be in the 80 so should be better.....lust wish neighbors would take down their huge trees that block the sun in the fall!! Only shallow end gets sun right now and only between 12 and 3. Trying to get it up to 84 for the weekend

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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Pool is 19 x 38 mountain lk shape.... Do u think I can get away with buyIng the 18x36 or should I spend the extra 40 and get the 20 x 40 ?

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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by Njpoollover
    Pool is 19 x 38 mountain lk shape.... Do u think I can get away with buyIng the 18x36 or should I spend the extra 40 and get the 20 x 40 ?
    Going the 18x36 route could leave up to 74 Sq ft of uncovered surface area. I don't know the physics of it, but I suspect that is enough area lose a lot of heat. Personally, I would spend the extra $40 and get one I could cut to a perfect fit. However, either way you go should give you an appreciable improvement.

    A side benefit of the blanket is it will lower your chlorine loss as well
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    From reading on here, I thought it was pretty typical for heat pumps to not be able to do much once the air was down close to 60 degrees. You are loosing heating capability and also loosing heat to evaporation due to the lack of a cover.

    Usually if you want to maintain a heated pool when the weather is that cool you would likely need a different type of heater I think.
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle
    From reading on here, I thought it was pretty typical for heat pumps to not be able to do much once the air was down close to 60 degrees. You are loosing heating capability and also loosing heat to evaporation due to the lack of a cover.

    Usually if you want to maintain a heated pool when the weather is that cool you would likely need a different type of heater I think.
    For residential heating the cutoff to switch to emergency heat is more like 40 or even lower.
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    Bluegrassman's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    I believe the effective operating temp on most pool heat pumps is outside temp needs to be > 45 F
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Really ... I must have recalled incorrectly
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    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle
    Really ... I must have recalled incorrectly
    Not necessarily. The balance point calculation depends on the heat loss (which surface area will impact as well as ambient air temps). This site shows some of the complexity in traditional heat pump installation:
    http://www.arthurhewett.com/id26.htm

    I'm sure there are pools somewhere that based on the size heat pump and the size pool can't operate well above the 40 degrees I quoted.
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle
    Really ... I must have recalled incorrectly
    No, you're pretty well spot on. Below 60 degrees, they spin the meter, that all. This time of year, a heat pump with no solor cover = about what you are seeing. And you cant compare a pool heat pump efficiency to a HP for a house. The difference in BTU need to heat a pool compared to a house is enormous.

    No matter how much I harp on this, much to the chagrine of heat pump salesmen, this is really, really typical.
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by bk406
    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle
    Really ... I must have recalled incorrectly
    No, you're pretty well spot on. Below 60 degrees, they spin the meter, that all. This time of year, a heat pump with no solor cover = about what you are seeing. And you cant compare a pool heat pump efficiency to a HP for a house. The difference in BTU need to heat a pool compared to a house is enormous.

    No matter how much I harp on this, much to the chagrine of heat pump salesmen, this is really, really typical.
    That is very interesting. So let's say we are having 50-60 degree nights, but 70+ degree days. Would you recommend only running an electric heat pump during the daytime hours given those variables?
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegrassman

    So let's say we are having 50-60 degree nights, but 70+ degree days. Would you recommend only running an electric heat pump during the daytime hours given those variables?
    Thats the conundrum. 70+ degree days, a heat pump will put heat in the pool. But the nights get so chilly that the amount of heat they transfer is about equal to whats lost, so it basially a wash. Sure, a HP will move some heat at 55 degrees, the amount lost negates the amount put in. Personally, I wouldnt waste the power running it at night with those low temp. The problem is that this time of year it might take all day to get to 70+ degrees. So even if you run it during the day, the best you can acheive is maybe 2-3 degrees before it starts to cool down. Thats why i dont recommend a heat pump to extend the pool season in that type of climate. HP's work great during the traditionalb swim seasonn. But to extend it on either end, you need gas.
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    Bluegrassman's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Thanks. When I add a heater next spring, it will definitely be an NG unit!
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    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Are there any geothermal heat pumps made for pools? In my area of the world (Southeastern US) the ground never freezes and maintains a pretty constant temp.
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Geothermal is more expensive than 30 years of lp or ng. Heat pumps will work in the right situation. We have several 24 x 50 with auto covers that maintain 85 degrees from april tthrough october but the auto cover is the only way that is done.
    Over 30 years in the pool business
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    Are there any geothermal heat pumps made for pools? In my area of the world (Southeastern US) the ground never freezes and maintains a pretty constant temp.
    Check this out
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    UnderWaterVanya's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluegrassman
    Quote Originally Posted by UnderWaterVanya
    Are there any geothermal heat pumps made for pools? In my area of the world (Southeastern US) the ground never freezes and maintains a pretty constant temp.
    Check this out
    This is kind of the opposite - it uses the pool as the geothermal heat sink. I am curious how much warmer the pool gets in the summer with this system and how much cooler it goes in the winter.
    Inlaws Pool Boy since June 14th 2012, Pool built ~ 2003, In-Ground, 16'x32'
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    Bluegrassman's Avatar
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    Re: Electric heat pump

    I see what you mean, but in our area it would still work because this time of year we are still running the a/c to cool the house during the day as we see temps in the 80s. . However night temps have been dipping into the 50s and 60s, so we personally could definitely benefit from the cooling the house while heating the pool technology this applies. For example it was 54 early this morning, but now it's 85. Tomorrow's forecast is low 60, hi 87. By the time we no longer need to cool the house, it will remain too cool outside for us to be swimming.


    **edited to include additional details
    18x36 Vinyl IG ~27,000 gal, Intelliflo VF Pump, 300# Sand Filter, Polaris 280 w/Pentair Booster Pump, Pentair EasyTouch w/ IC40 SWCG
    TF100 Test Kit
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