Heat water

#1
I am in process of constructing a 15x40 fiberglass pool with 8' deep end.

Most people are talking me out of heat pump because the fluctuating climate conditions in Rochester NY., and recommend that I purchase gas heater.

Are they correct, and if they are, what size gas heater should I buy.

My sales person is recommending 400K, but friends say 250K is fine.

Thank you.
 

CJadamec

TFP Expert
Apr 29, 2016
2,192
Quaker Hill, CT
#2
I'm assuming you are talking about natural gas and not propane. Propane is 2-4 times more expensive to run than natural gas or heat pump. I would only ever recommend a natural gas heater.

If you have a gas line that can support 400k get the 400k heater. There is very little difference in cost of the equipment. Both the 400k and the 250k heater will use the same amount of gas to heat your pool to the temp you want. The benefit to the 400k is that it will do it 30% faster than the 250k. There is no downside to going bigger on the heater.

Heat pumps do work and they will keep your pool warm for the normal swimming season we have in the northeast. I opened the first week of May this year and closed the last week of October this year. The pool was at least 83F every day we went swimming. My highest heating bill for any one month was around 120, average for the season was about 50 a month to run the heat pump.

Cost wise to run the heater, it really depends on how you plan to use the heater for your pool. If you plan to maintain your pool at temperature for the entire season a heat pump will be cheaper to operate and do a great job. If you plan on just warming your pool when you want to use it a couple times a week a gas heater is the only way to go.

Also regardless of heater choice get a solar cover for your pool and use it. It will cut your heating cost by 50-70%. Its worth every penny to get a cover and a cover roller system that makes it easy to put the cover on and off now while you are building the pool. A cover and the roller will pay for themselves multiple times over each and every season, and that includes replacing the bubble cover every 3 years or so.
 

domct203

Bronze Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
TFP Guide
Jun 4, 2015
3,959
CT
#3
Also regardless of heater choice get a solar cover for your pool and use it. It will cut your heating cost by 50-70%. Its worth every penny to get a cover and a cover roller system that makes it easy to put the cover on and off now while you are building the pool. A cover and the roller will pay for themselves multiple times over each and every season, and that includes replacing the bubble cover every 3 years or so.
This is a much overlooked key to efficient heating of a pool. Most of the heat loss will occur from evaporation at night, when the air temp is quite lower than the water temp. The warmer the water is when the heater comes on, the less energy needed to get to temp.

A quick search turned up some good info on this, here is an example:

https://www.troublefreepool.com/threads/37736-How-much-to-heat-my-pool-please-double-check-this-math
 

Nectarologist

Well-known member
Apr 3, 2015
490
New York
#4
John, also call your gas company. They should provide a worksheet to determine if your gas meter is sufficient and the supply line (as CJ said) is sufficient to supply the gas for a 400k heater. I don't have a solar cover and I heat to 84/86. The added cost was worth it to me not to have to fumble with a solar cover. I was surprised that my gas bill was as low as it was.
 

x Wild Bill x

Well-known member
May 5, 2016
52
Rochester, MA
#5
I agree with what CJadamec said. We also have a heat pump in MA and I find it works quite well. Also as previously mentioned, a solar cover and reel is worth its weight in gold as far as saving energy. Also, set your pump and heat pump to run during the warmest time of the day as they are more efficient as temperatures increase. If you go the heat pump route I recommend buying the largest and most efficient model you can afford. We have the Aquacal SQ225, it seems well built, runs well and is quiet.