De-winterizing an old Hayward H series gas heater before opening pool

al27

Well-known member
Sep 11, 2017
82
TN
I’m getting ready to open our swampy pool by myself for the first time and need to know what I need to do to de-winterize our old Hayward H series gas pool heater which stopped working a few years ago for some unknown reason. We never used it so we never bothered fixing it or buying a new one. There is no bypass valve so I assume that our pool guy winterized it last fall since water passes through it. It looks like our gas heater is a Hayward H Series, model # H200 with electronic ignition and I imagine that it is 10-15 years old. I downloaded the manual that someone else posted on here, and read the spring start up instructions on there. According to the instructions, it says that I need to make sure the drain valve is closed, turn the manual gas valve outside of the heater to the “on position”, turn the electricity on, and turn the gas valve to the “on position”. I'm a bit nervous about doing these things since I have no experience with gas heaters so I have a few questions:
1. Since the heater no longer works and I have no intention of ever using it, do I need to turn the two gas valves on or would it be safer to leave them off since I don’t know what is wrong with the heater and will never use it all summer? If water is just flowing through the heater and I never intend on using it, I wasn’t sure if there was a reason why these two gas valves needed to be on.
2. If I need to turn these two gas valves on, where are they located? Is one of them located inside of the heater, which will require opening up the cover? Are the valves labeled so it will be easy to tell how to turn them to the on position?
3. I read online that some pool pros loosen the pressure switch when winterizing a gas heater to prevent it from breaking when water trapped inside freezes, and this pressure switch needs to be reconnected at spring opening. It looks like our heater has a pressure switch but there is no mention of disconnecting it in the owner’s manual during winterization. How can I tell if our pool pro loosened it before winterization, and what tool needs to be used to reconnect it? If the heater isn’t going to be used, do I even need to check to see if this pressure switch has been loosened or disconnected? If I can avoid opening up the heater’s cover to check the pressure switch, that I what I’d like to do since I have no experience with gas heaters. I want to make sure I do everything right with regards to this heater so I can hopefully avoid having to call my pool guy who is now booked until the end of May with pool openings. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
26,598
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
NO, do not turn on the gas valves if you do not intend to use the heater and if the heater has not been checked out by a professional.

The water pressure switch is part of winterization of a Pentair MasterTemp heater. Different heaters have different requirements depending on the placement of the switch. If the water pressure switch was loosened or removed you will see the water leak out of the heater fairly quickly after you turn on the pump.

When you turn on your pump look around the heater, and other equipment, for leaks. That will tell you if you missed something.

If you are not going to use the heater you should install a Heater Bypass - Further Reading It is just a diverter valve, a check valve, and some PVC.
 
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al27

Well-known member
Sep 11, 2017
82
TN
NO, do not turn on the gas valves if you do not intend to use the heater and if the heater has not been checked out by a professional.

The water pressure switch is part of winterization of a Pentair MasterTemp heater. Different heaters have different requirements depending on the placement of the switch. If the water pressure switch was loosened or removed you will see the water leak out of the heater fairly quickly after you turn on the pump.

When you turn on your pump look around the heater, and other equipment, for laks. That will tell you if you missed something.

If you are not going to use the heater you should install a Heater Bypass - Further Reading It is just a diverter valve, a check valve, and some PVC.
If I don’t need to turn on the gas valves since I do not intend on using the broken heater, do I need to turn on the electricity to the heater and put it into standby mode? I will eventually get a heater bypass installed but I cannot do this right now since my pool guy is busy opening pools now. If I postpone getting a bypass installed until later this summer, could this cause any problems? Money is tight so I’d like to postpone getting the bypass installed, if possible.
 

ajw22

Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
26,598
Northern NJ
Pool Size
35000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Salt Water Generator
SWG Type
Pentair Intellichlor IC-60
If I don’t need to turn on the gas valves since I do not intend on using the broken heater, do I need to turn on the electricity to the heater and put it into standby mode?

No, you can leave the heater power off.

I will eventually get a heater bypass installed but I cannot do this right now since my pool guy is busy opening pools now. If I postpone getting a bypass installed until later this summer, could this cause any problems? Money is tight so I’d like to postpone getting the bypass installed, if possible.

It is fine to let the water circulate through the heater as long as there are no leaks in the heater.
 
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