Buying a new pool heater

Sal512

Well-known member
May 17, 2015
123
Austin, TX
#1
My 12 year old heater, pentair minimax, model 250 dv, input 250000 BTU stopped working. Fortunately i had a home appliance warranty which covers pool equipment. They are providing a new heater of the spec below as replacement. My question, is this a good model? Or should i get cash from them and buy a better heater ? Previous owner had a propane gas tank installed in the ground specifically for this heater. I would prefer a solar heater if thats better than gas

Pentair 460737 MasterTemp High Performance Eco-Friendly Pool Heater, Propane Gas, 400,000 BTU https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004VU87NW/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_o3Tczb4R9TZPA


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CJadamec

TFP Expert
Apr 29, 2016
2,194
Quaker Hill, CT
#2
That's great that they are getting you a new heater but are they making sure the gas line can handle the almost doubling of the required gas flow? Are they covering the cost of installation or just the unit?

Solar panels will give you a very different heating experience compared to gas. Since you have natural gas available that's generally the way people go. I would stay with the gas heater and look into adding solar panels to supplement the gas heater.
 
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Sal512

Well-known member
May 17, 2015
123
Austin, TX
#3
You mean the doubling of gas flow because I currently have 250k btu and proposed replacement is 400k ? I am not sure how that happened. I have attached a pic from the spec sticker of current heater



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Sal512

Well-known member
May 17, 2015
123
Austin, TX
#4
They are covering the cost of installation and unit. I have to pay a $75 deductible plus 70 for installing a block to bring it to code and another $75 for recycling fee as they haul away the broken heater


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pooldv

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Aug 10, 2012
25,006
DFW, TX
#5
You can't go from a 250k btu heater to a 400k btu without making sure that your propane tank and lines can support the additional demand. The pros here all recommend Raypak gas heaters over any other brand. Otherwise going from 250k to 400k will just heat your pool faster. It won't cost more or use more gas. It always takes the same amount of energy to heat a pool from point A to point B. A bigger heater just does it faster.

I doubt a home warranty service would switch you from gas to solar. Although, solar would be a great option for Austin if you have a clear south or west roof.
 
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Sal512

Well-known member
May 17, 2015
123
Austin, TX
#6
I think somebody made a mistake then, they probably assume my current heater is a 400k. They will only replace with the same brand and type. So if i want raypak or a solar heater, then i will have to accept cash from insurance company and buy any heater of my choice and have it installed using a repair man


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Nectarologist

Well-known member
Apr 3, 2015
496
New York
#7
FWIW, I have a 266k btu heater (nat gas) and about a 20-21k gallon pool and it's more than adequate. For an almost no cost replacement I take the replacement from the warranty co. If you get a different brand it may not be as simple as dropping the new one into place and a plumber may have to do the new pipe work. Even if the repair man is really handy it wouldn't be cheap.
 
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Sal512

Well-known member
May 17, 2015
123
Austin, TX
#8
Okay, i am leaning towards accepting the pentair 400k btu replacement proposed by home warranty company. How can i ensure that existing propane tank and supply lines can handle the additional demand ?
We dont use the heater often, probably twice a year. And we use it just to heat the spa, not the entire pool.


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Sal512

Well-known member
May 17, 2015
123
Austin, TX
#9
The pentair 400k btu is lot more expensive compared to the pentair 250k btu, so if my propane tank and supply line can handle it, i like to go with 400k btu


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borjis

LifeTime Supporter
Aug 19, 2014
2,677
Pacific NW
#11
I would ask them if they are aware they may need to install new lines if going to a nearly twice size btu heater,
just for peace of mind.
 
Jul 20, 2015
33
San Diego, CA
#12
I'm wondering if you would share who you purchased your home appliance coverage through? We have had to replace the dishwasher, dryer, and have the AC fixed so far and now our pool heater is going out so this type of coverage would have saved us some serious $$ and I would love to look into it!
 

KDpoolguy

Bronze Supporter
Mar 5, 2017
351
Palm Desert, CA
#13
We had a year of home warranty coverage thru American Home Shield. It was 'ok' because it was free with our home purchase to make use feel ok if there was a failure--and it covered pool equipment. We used it for a dishwasher and microwave, expecting a replacement, but they replaced parts to limp the appliances on until we replaced ourselves recently. Honestly, I don't recommend such a policy. Read the fine print, they don't cover more than a few hundred toward a full replacement (if needed) and when you count up the premiums and deductibles it's cheaper to set money aside to anticipate repairs. Our AC was crapping out and I argued endlessly but they refused to authorize the $1000 max and wanted to keep throwing parts at it. We let the policy lapse and now have a new AC. IMHO, Don't do it.
 

KDpoolguy

Bronze Supporter
Mar 5, 2017
351
Palm Desert, CA
#14
Back to pool heater biz, I'm in Riverside California where they apparently require Low NOx heaters, but there isn't a clear law I see. Anyone have guidance on this? I see on INYOPools.com a Raypak 266k btu for $1500 and a Low NOX version for $1769. I'd like to save the $269 and install myself. I've had the Gas Company out for a meter issue and I know they have the power to fine if there is a repair needed, etc. How would they know its Low NOX anyways? I'm not trying to avoid what seems like a good environmental requirement, but I also don't want a more expensive heater than is necessary.