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Thread: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

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    Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    All,

    Just installed a 30 foot diameter inground pool 4 foot deep. Looking to now purchase a pool heater to extend the season some here in Indiana. My current water temperature is around 65 degrees (just info).

    I thought I would ask for you help, experience, and recommendation for a pool heater.

    If I have done my math correctly, the surface area of my pool is roughly 706 sq ft. The Ambient Air temps here in Kokomo, Indiana in the month of April and September is roughly 68 degrees. So my desired temperature rise would be about 12 to 15 degrees, so I am rounding up to 20. According to some of the charts I have seen on various websites, I would need at least a 184,000 btu heater. I planned to go with at least 200,000.

    Can you guys give me your thoughts? Recommendations? Brands to go with?

    Thanks...

    Twiles
    Pool - Inground 30' Diameter, 21,000 Gallons, vinyl, Pentair SD 40 Sand Filter, Pentair Dynamo 1 hp pump, SWG, built/installed August 2013, Kokomo, Indiana.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    Natural Gas would probably be the preferred fuel if it is available. Propane would cost more, but the initial setup might be cheaper than electric. Resistive electric is expensive and heat pumps are practical if you plan on running it fairly continuously. Heat pumps are very slow to heat.

    Really without knowing more info, it is hard to make a recommendation. If your plan is to keep the pool warmed continuously, a heat pump may save you over other methods. If your plan is to just warm the pool on the weekends for a few hours, natural gas might be the best choice. In any case, covering the pool (although a nuisance) will make a big difference when it comes to the fuel bill.
    John (DIYer). Concrete, approximately 13,000 gallon in-ground pool with adjoining concrete spa. Approximately 40 years old. Hayward Super II pump for pool and legacy Anthony Sta-Rite bronze pump CF6 for spa, VA-26 filter,(2 sets), Rheem propane heater for spa. HASA Liquidator for pool.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    hoosierrun,

    Thanks for the response! I plan on using the heater for the early and late months of the season (and maybe occasionally in between as needed,,,you know how Indiana weather is). I do not have access to natural gas, only propane. I do plan on using a solar blanket (not sure how much they help) next season. The install was so late this year that I decided to wait on purchasing one (solar blanket) for now.

    I am mainly looking for size and brand recommendations. If there are other details I can provide to assist in recommendations let me know and I will provide.

    Thanks...

    Twiles
    Pool - Inground 30' Diameter, 21,000 Gallons, vinyl, Pentair SD 40 Sand Filter, Pentair Dynamo 1 hp pump, SWG, built/installed August 2013, Kokomo, Indiana.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    I really think the cover would be a good investment. You loose a tremendous amount of heat overnight and through the morning hours until you are ready to swim without some kind of cover. A cover will just slow the rate of heat loss and I think you will pay for its cost quickly. You may need a heater of 500,000 BTU (or larger) with the theory being that you back off the temp in the night and morning, and then step it up a few hours before you plan to use the pool. The size has a lot to do with how quick you can raise the temperature. Sure, you can use a smaller heater, but it will have to run much more often which means heating the pool when it is not necessary. Check with your propane supplier on recommended tank size and expected costs. You have a large pool and raising (and maintaining) a 10+ degree rise in temperature will be pricey.
    John (DIYer). Concrete, approximately 13,000 gallon in-ground pool with adjoining concrete spa. Approximately 40 years old. Hayward Super II pump for pool and legacy Anthony Sta-Rite bronze pump CF6 for spa, VA-26 filter,(2 sets), Rheem propane heater for spa. HASA Liquidator for pool.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    I agree with the previous poster that you may need a bigger heater than 200,000 BTU. That size on your pool will give a nominal temp rise of 1 deg/hr
    Unknown make 18' above ground (bought used in 1999) Sparco sand filter. Hayward 100,000 BTu heater. 2 speed pump

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    Guys,

    Thanks for the information! I will definitely get the cover for next year.

    As far as the heater goes....any particular brand to go with? or stay away from?

    Twiles
    Pool - Inground 30' Diameter, 21,000 Gallons, vinyl, Pentair SD 40 Sand Filter, Pentair Dynamo 1 hp pump, SWG, built/installed August 2013, Kokomo, Indiana.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    I have a Rheem heater and so far I like it. It has a nice digital display that gives you the water temperature and a few diagnostics such as 'No Demand' or 'Pressure Sw open'. You can see the temperature rise on the display and time each degree rise. From that you can gauge how long it might take to get to your desired temperature.

    Be sure that the heater you buy has an electronic start (it will require 120 VAC power). I think gas pilot (millivolt) heaters have pretty much gone away, but find out for sure in case someone tries to sell you one. My propane supplier was telling me that my old pilot heater was costing me an additional $15 to $20 a month whether or not I was using it. Also there will be an efficiency rating associated with each heater model so you can make comparisons. I really don't know what ones stand out as the better units and which ones might give problems.
    John (DIYer). Concrete, approximately 13,000 gallon in-ground pool with adjoining concrete spa. Approximately 40 years old. Hayward Super II pump for pool and legacy Anthony Sta-Rite bronze pump CF6 for spa, VA-26 filter,(2 sets), Rheem propane heater for spa. HASA Liquidator for pool.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    hoosierrun,

    Thanks for the help! Time to start shopping....

    Twiles
    Pool - Inground 30' Diameter, 21,000 Gallons, vinyl, Pentair SD 40 Sand Filter, Pentair Dynamo 1 hp pump, SWG, built/installed August 2013, Kokomo, Indiana.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    Quote Originally Posted by twiles
    Guys,


    As far as the heater goes....any particular brand to go with? or stay away from?

    Twiles
    I won't get into the whole discussion on which brands are best. Some are definatly better constructed than others, no doubt about it. However, most of the important parts such as gas valves and sensors are made by one or two comapnies that supply to all the manufacturers. My suggestion as something to consider is, buy something that there is local service for. Buying someone elses suggestion of "the best" won't do you any good if you can't get someone out to service it when the time comes.
    Unknown make 18' above ground (bought used in 1999) Sparco sand filter. Hayward 100,000 BTu heater. 2 speed pump

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    All the builders I talked too here like RayPak, no matter what brand of other equipment they sold. I don't know much about heaters, but this is what we are going with.
    TFP Moderator
    Essential Links:
    ABC's Of Pool Chemistry, Test Kits, SLAM Your Pool
    28K Gal IG FreeForm, CLI Quartz, Pentair 36"SF & VS Pump, Dolphin M5, Rheem

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    There are good brands and better brands. Each unit no matter who makes them have an issue or two. The difference is how the manufacturer addresses and resolves the issue. Some companies don't acknowledge they have issues while others do but quietly take care of it.

    The thing to think about is the cost to run the unit. You mention you only have propane where you are at. If this is the case you really need to look at the cost to operate the unit because propane is usually not cheap. So do you have an idea as to the cost to operate say a 400K BTU heater? It's important to consider this cost to operate as you might not be too happy with the first bill you get to run the unit.
    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: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    I second ps0303's advice above...propane is expensive and will cost an arm and a leg to heat with. The suggestion above of a solar cover is great advice. Even if you do decide to heat it, the cover will really help reduce the heat loss at night. I get at least a 5F bump (usually more) with just the solar cover on at night.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    Heat Pumps were mentioned. Although it heats slowly, because of the BTU output, your alternative to spot heating when you're going to use the pool is to maintain the temperatures at the beginning and end of your pool season. The Heat Pump will be a reliable and economical cost of operation option to a Propane or electrical resistance heater.
    For instance, an AquaCal T135 heat pump, www.aquacal.com, will run approximately 7 hrs/day to maintain a covered pool to 86 degrees in April. Less hours as it gets warmer. The T135 puts out 141,000 BTUs but only needs to run long enough to make up the heat lost overnight. Without a solar blanket, you should not consider heat pumps.
    Sean Assam - Sean@teamhorner.com
    National Accounts and Commercial Products Manager
    AquaCal Heat Pumps www.aquacal.com
    AutoPilot Salt Chlorine Generators www.autopilot.com

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    Re: Looking for Pool Heater Recommendations - Your Advice?

    Guys,

    Great information! All of you have given me a ton of information to think about. For now, I will purchase a solar blanket for the pool. Unfortunately I will not get a chance to try it out until next year as the temps here in northern Indiana have dropped enough that the water temp is hovering around 65 degrees. So, I will soon close it up for the winter and look forward to the spring.

    I appreciate all the input....lots to think about.

    Twiles
    Pool - Inground 30' Diameter, 21,000 Gallons, vinyl, Pentair SD 40 Sand Filter, Pentair Dynamo 1 hp pump, SWG, built/installed August 2013, Kokomo, Indiana.

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