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Thread: Are more BTU's on a heater better?

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    Daisy08's Avatar
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    Are more BTU's on a heater better?

    Hi all

    We are having an 18x36 rectangular pool installed Spring 15. We 95% sure we are getting a gas heater. We have propane heat and will hook right up to our existing tank. We are rated for a Hayward H250 heater (250,000 BTU). But I am starting to think of getting the 400,000 BTU unit. We plan to use the heat ONLY for quick heat ups. We truly plan to use our solar cover most of the time to heat the pool and keep heat in. But we want the flexibility to heat the pool quickly when needed. I would think the 400,000 would heat the fastest therefore be more efficient? (cost saving)?

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Are more BTU's on a heater better?

    Welcome to TFP.

    A couple of things. First, I'm not sure how deep your pool is, so please put you pool details in your sig. Lets say it's a shallow pool. Even if so, a "quick" heat isn't going to happen, but I'm not sure what you mean by quick. It takes hours, sometimes many depending on your depth, current temp, and temp you want. My same size pool, 9' deep takes 10-12 hours to bring it up 10 degrees and I have a 400KBTU propane heater. Here, Propane is very expensive (to us) at 2.30 a gallon. It takes about 50 to get the above increase depending on air temp and wind. Using the solar cover will help tremendously however, so that is a very good idea. Lastly, for your size pool, shallow or not, I wouldn't go less than the 400K unit.
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    Mod Squad woodyp's Avatar
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    Re: Are more BTU's on a heater better?

    I don't have one, but this is a case in which bigger is always better.
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    Re: Are more BTU's on a heater better?

    A 400,000 BTU heater will in theory use the same amount of gas to achieve a 10 degree temperature rise as a 250,000 BTU heater but will do so more quickly. That is the difference. Air temperature, beginning water temperature, wind are also significant factors. A easy to use solar cover is a very wise investment here.
    22k gallon IG pebblefina, Jandy 1.5 HP VS, Jandy CV Cartridge filter, Fafco solar panels, Polaris 360 supply side cleaner, waterfall

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    Daisy08's Avatar
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    Re: Are more BTU's on a heater better?

    Thanks for the feedback. The pool will be 6.5-7ft deep- 3 ft in the shallow end. Clearly having more BTU's will not hurt and seems to do the trick on heating the pool the quickest possible way. I only want to use the heater to heat the pool quickly if we have a couple of non-sunny days. My friend has a solar cover and uses it religiously and the water is beautiful. I am not sure why so many people hate using a solar cover... it takes less than 2 minutes to roll out and back. IDK- I like my water WARM or else I won't get in the pool for very long. Maybe that's why I am willing to roll that sucker out and in to keep the temps warm... Anyway- thanks for the feedback!

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    Re: Are more BTU's on a heater better?

    You should contact your propane company to make sure that the tank and regulator will be sufficient for the intended use.

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    Re: Are more BTU's on a heater better?

    Quote Originally Posted by JamesW View Post
    You should contact your propane company to make sure that the tank and regulator will be sufficient for the intended use.
    This. And make sure that you install the proper line for the heater selected. But yes, I say go as big as you can afford.

    We use our heater the same way. Quick hit in spring and keep at temp on chilly nights. We have an auto cover and 100% full sun so we don't use a lot. We do not try to extend the season past when kids go back to school. If they are goofy enough to swim at 75 degrees, have at it.


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