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Thread: Used Pool Heater

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    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Used Pool Heater

    Hi guys

    I have the opportunity to buy a 5 season old Raypak RP2100 digital for $400. The unit looks pretty good on the outside but if you open it up there is a bottom tray that has a lot of rust debris on it. The thing above it which looks like a burner has a bit of rust on it too. The owner turned the heater on and it seemed to work but obviously didn't fire up due to no pressure.

    Is this a smart buy? I was considering solar but I'll have to cut down a tree to make it work at a cost of $3000 or more. Propane will be cheaper in the interrim. Can anyone comment on the rust? Is there any good inspection I can do? I checked the winterization plugs and it looks like it was properly winterized.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Used Pool Heater

    That seems like a good price to me. Just keep in mind that you will spend way way more than that in propane, so the cost of the total purchase will be much higher. In that context, a $100 plus or minus is not a big deal. It also means that you need to be aware that buying a heater only make sense if you are going to also buy the gas required, and that means you are making a $1000+ commitment, not a $400 commitment.

    By the by, it is often impossible to determine what kind of shape a used heater is really in. Bad chemistry will damage the inside of the heat exchanger, which is not practical to examine.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    Re: Used Pool Heater

    Hmm.. He reduced the price further to try to entice me. I told him the wife wants a heat pump. Can anyone comment on the cost of operation of a good heat pump vs propane? I would love to go solar, but my worry is that I will have to roast the pool during the day in order to get it to stay comfortable in the evening.

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    JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Used Pool Heater

    In the long run solar heat is dramatically less expensive. If you have somewhere to put the panels then go with solar heat!

    The pool water does not change temperature all that much from day to night. If you use a solar cover I would only expect a couple of degrees difference. Water holds a lot of heat and it takes quite a while for that heat to leak out of the water.
    19K gal, vinyl, 1/2 HP WhisperFlo pump, 200 sqft cartridge filter, AutoPilot Digital SWG, Dolphin Dynamic cleaning robot
    Creator of PoolMath and Pool Calculator. Other handy links: Support this site, TF Test Kits, Pool School

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    X-PertPool's Avatar
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    Re: Used Pool Heater

    If you see any rust I would definitely pressure test the heater to see if it holds water, if the heat exchanger is a leaker its very expensive to replace and usually ends up being a 'replace heater' than 'repair heater' issue.
    -Kevin
    X-Pert Pool Service
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    22,000 gal / 16' x 32' / Vinyl / Hayward s244t /Pentair SuperFlo 1 hp

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    Re: Used Pool Heater

    I went with my gut and decided against it. When it came down to propane costs, heater costs, tank costs, tank installation costs, etc solar looked very attractive. Even if solar turned out not to work well enough it still looked attractive enough to try. So far I'm not too disappointed with solar heating either.

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: Used Pool Heater

    A heat pump would be much less expensive to run than a gas heater. I have had both here in Florida. With the constant rise in energy costs I just installed solar. Do some math on what a gas heater or heat pump may cost you, do not just look at an annual cost, project out ten years. Now you may feel that the tree removal bill is more reasonable.

  8. Back To Top    #8

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    Re: Used Pool Heater

    I didn't actually have to cut down the tree. It blocks about 1/4 of one panel until about 8am. Not really a big deal. I still get a motherload of heat out of it. For most of the day the water coming out of the jets is plain old hot

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