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Thread: What HEATER should I buy??

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    What HEATER should I buy??

    I need a new heater for my pool for next season. I'm starting to see some discount coupons for heaters and wonder if I should buy one now to save some $ and stick it in the garage until April 2014. My pool is a 27,000gal inground gunite 3M quartz plaster. I have natural gas. The heater I just took out was a Laars/jandy 400,000BTU which seemed to raise the temp in the pool roughly 10 degrees in very little time. Maybe 6-8 hours. Do I need another 400,000BTU heater? Or does it seem reasonable to go with the smaller unit to save even more $? What brands does anyone recommend? The JandyLaars only lasted 8 years before it started giving me a lot of trouble. I think the heat exchanger started leaking within 8 years.
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    With the size of the pool you have, I'd stay with the larger 400K (or+) heater, but that assumes you don't intend to warm the pool all the time. If you just intend to warm the pool on ... say weekends, definitely stay with the larger heater to get the temp up quicker.

    If the pool is to be heated continuously, a smaller heater could do, assuming you have it covered. Once the smaller heater is off and the water cools down, trying to get it back up in a reasonable time might be longer than you want.
    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: What HEATER should I buy??

    I'll provide you with this info on gas pool heaters. The least amount of parts inside will cost you less down the road. In other words , things like blower motors, when they break, aren't cheap. If you would like to get another unit similar to your Laars, I would point you in the direction of Raypak. As for size, if you liked the 400K you had then go for another one. Raypak sells a 266K unit which would take roughly a third more time to heat the pool. So if you want fast heat ups, go for the larger one. If you can wait a little longer to get it to temp, then go for the next size down. And as always, keep your water chemistry in check to prolong the life of the unit.

    Even if you don't buy now, in the spring there will be sales on these units as well. In fact you would probably end up with a newer 2014 model instead of a 2013 unit. Food for thought.
    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: What HEATER should I buy??

    Stay with the larger heater. A smaller heater will cost you more in gas to do the same job.
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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    I would go with any Jandy or Pentair 400k heater.

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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Raypak gets a lot of good feedback here.
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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Quote Originally Posted by petes914
    I need a new heater for my pool for next season. I'm starting to see some discount coupons for heaters

    Where are you seeing coupons?
    I need a new heater ASAP.


    14,000 gallon IG plaster pool, Cartridge Filter

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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    I was thinking going with a Hayward only because it seems every pool dealer in my area carries the basic parts for them. I've always had to order online for the Jandy. I like the idea of less parts the better off I'll be. My 9yo Jandy/Laars even had a safety for everything. If one part wasn't working perfectly the whole unit shut down and was difficult to diagnose the problem. Like the last thing to go wrong, the "fuseable link". I didn't even need it.
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Raypak is popular here too unless the dealer carries the Hayward line. My PB prefers it over all the others and he sells Pentair and Jandy.
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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Is Raypak a solid company? Come to think of it, my pool cleaner, Ray-Vac, which took a little research to figure out what it was being my pool company pulled off all the MFR labels off ALL my pool equipment and stuck their labels on everything (Blue Haven Pools) I had a warranty with Blue Haven for a new Ray-Vac head replacement after 5 years. Ray-Vac I think went out of business and I think Raypak bought them or their product line? (can't remember the exact events) but I contacted I think Raypak and they were kind enough to honor the warranty and send me a new head.
    Installed 2005. Rectangular 20' x 40' 27,000 gal. Gunite, 3M quartz plaster finish, Hayward 4 cartridge filter, Hayward 2hp pump, Raypak 400,000 BTU Cupro-Nickel heater (2014) CoverPools safety cover, Using TFP bleach method.

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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    That was good of them. Not sure about the other private label, but Raypak seems like a pretty good outfit.
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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Raypak is a solid company and has been in business for a long time. They have one of the most solid functioning heaters on the market today. Lots better then Hayward or Pentair.
    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: What HEATER should I buy??

    Thanks for the input Paul. Who else is at the top of that heap? I did find it interesting that every single builder we talked too wouldn't budge from Raypak, no matter what. Ones that were hard set on one brand only of everything else.
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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Quote Originally Posted by Brushpup
    Thanks for the input Paul. Who else is at the top of that heap?

    No one and I hope Raypak never screws it up by doing something stupid with some new engineering. It is by far the most simple straight forward heater. It's similar to the old Laars units. In fact that is what Raypak used to model their heater after.
    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: What HEATER should I buy??

    Good deal. Give me hope that we are installing the best then.
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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Had a Raypak, switched to a Pentair Master Temp 400.

    Should have stuck with Raypak.

    Rest easy.

    Uncle Dave
    20K Gallon Gunnite pool/900 Gallon in ground Spa/2HP WhisperflowSpa
    Pentair Master temp 400/Hayward Sand WZeobrite/Jandy RS-8 Aqualink/Jandy 2HP Epump
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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Quote Originally Posted by Davegvg
    Had a Raypak, switched to a Pentair Master Temp 400.

    Should have stuck with Raypak.

    Rest easy.

    Uncle Dave
    What are the reasons for why you should have stayed with Raypak? I'm sure readers would like to hear the words from another homeowner.

    Thanks.
    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: What HEATER should I buy??

    Certainly Paul,

    The raypak was much simpler to work on and standard stuff like cleaning out a burner box was a lot easier.
    I gave it a seasonal burner brush out/ clean out and in 10 years I had it nothing really "failed" except a knob that was hit by a contractor.

    In the time I've had the Pentair (4-5 years) it has needed-

    A gas block replacement - have fun diagnosing that one and I'm still trying to figure out how something like this could have failed.The tech had the entire unit in pieces all over the yard.

    2 thermal regulators (basically a thermostat)- these tend to get "stuck" closed resulting in heater that fires up fine but then shuts off in 3-4 minutes. It's about a 100 dollar part (If I recall) with a custom fitting mounting the assembly the heater and you have to improvise getting it open and closed with something like a screwdriver while working under the pressure of a spring. Not the end of the world but why?

    An ignitor unit- unit just stopped firing after year 3.

    A pressure switch that went bad causing heater shut off after 10-12 minutes because it "thought" there wasn't enough flow. Its failure was intermittent- fun.

    Comparing the ownership experience to the Raypak which "just worked" the Master Temp has been a letdown.

    Uncle Dave
    20K Gallon Gunnite pool/900 Gallon in ground Spa/2HP WhisperflowSpa
    Pentair Master temp 400/Hayward Sand WZeobrite/Jandy RS-8 Aqualink/Jandy 2HP Epump
    12 - 4x10 Panels/Zodiac G3-T5 / BBB

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    Re: What HEATER should I buy??

    Quote Originally Posted by Davegvg
    Certainly Paul,

    The raypak was much simpler to work on and standard stuff like cleaning out a burner box was a lot easier.
    I gave it a seasonal burner brush out/ clean out and in 10 years I had it nothing really "failed" except a knob that was hit by a contractor.

    In the time I've had the Pentair (4-5 years) it has needed-

    A gas block replacement - have fun diagnosing that one and I'm still trying to figure out how something like this could have failed.The tech had the entire unit in pieces all over the yard.

    2 thermal regulators (basically a thermostat)- these tend to get "stuck" closed resulting in heater that fires up fine but then shuts off in 3-4 minutes. It's about a 100 dollar part (If I recall) with a custom fitting mounting the assembly the heater and you have to improvise getting it open and closed with something like a screwdriver while working under the pressure of a spring. Not the end of the world but why?

    An ignitor unit- unit just stopped firing after year 3.

    A pressure switch that went bad causing heater shut off after 10-12 minutes because it "thought" there wasn't enough flow. Its failure was intermittent- fun.

    Comparing the ownership experience to the Raypak which "just worked" the Master Temp has been a letdown.

    Uncle Dave
    All the things I find wrong with many of the Pentair's I work on. Now when people see me harping on these units as being inferior, at least they won't think I am making it up.

    Whenever I go to a new customers house for a service call I always ask if it's ever been worked on before. Almost every Pentair has been worked on before and they are 5 years or less in age. Every Raypak that I've worked on, not many and I know there are plenty of them out there, they have gone close to 10 years without a single repair. To me that says something good about Raypak.
    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: What HEATER should I buy??

    Another vote for going with the larger unit. Since you had a 400K BTU heater, I would stick with that. If you go with a smaller unit (after having a larger one), you will likely be disappointed. It will take a fixed number of BTU's to heat a given amount of water to a desired temperature and the larger unit will get you there faster.

    Another aspect I'm seeing from these posts is that simplicity in design is an important consideration. More "features" means more complication and the potential for more breakdowns and higher repair bills. With that said, the one safety I recommend (and it's probably standard on all models) is a heater shut-down if the pump is not running.
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