Heater advice??

gtfireftr

Active member
May 21, 2014
28
0
Westport, MA
#1
I am considering putting a heater on my pool to extend the season.
Any advice is welcome..... I do not have access to natural gas, so it would have to be propane, or a heat pump.

THanks
 

ps0303

TFP Expert
In The Industry
Jul 6, 2011
3,952
0
53
FL
www.gastekservice.com
#2
Propane is probably expensive but really nice as it would heat up faster when you wanted it. I see you only have a pool so probably a heat pump is the way for you to go. You will find some goo info on this board for either type you decide to go with. Costs for the units, gas or electric are pretty close. Just keep in mind that on a heat pump, when your outside dips below 60 the unit is not as good at producing heat. You will probably be able to extend your season by a month or so in fall and then open earlier in the spring.
 

bk406

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2009
2,690
0
Central Massachusetts
#4
I live in worcester county, gt, and I can tell you it wont extend the season much. Those nasty 45-53 degree days with an east wind we get in early and mid May, that heat pump might was well be at the bottom of the pool. I have a heat pump, but I put a 400k BTU propane heater on 2 years ago. I havent run the heat pump since.
 

Citizen

In The Industry
Oct 2, 2014
92
0
Orlando, FL
#5
Aquacal has a heat pump operating cost estimator that might be useful for you in determining if it would be worth it to own one in MA. I am thinking it's probably not, as Paul indicated they are very inefficient at temps below 60. Do you know what you are paying per kWh?
I thought Aquacal's calculator was a little difficult to use so I normally go with Raypak's. Maybe I am just simple lol but Raypak's calculator is a bit more straight forward for me.

Raypak Sizing Calculator: http://roxwebdev01.pixelgate.net/gas_sizing/Raypak.php?appid=1
 

ps0303

TFP Expert
In The Industry
Jul 6, 2011
3,952
0
53
FL
www.gastekservice.com
#6
I live in worcester county, gt, and I can tell you it wont extend the season much. Those nasty 45-53 degree days with an east wind we get in early and mid May, that heat pump might was well be at the bottom of the pool. I have a heat pump, but I put a 400k BTU propane heater on 2 years ago. I havent run the heat pump since.
This sounds like a real life scenario to me. Gas is the better way to go but if you only have propane as an option, it can get expensive.
 

bk406

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2009
2,690
0
Central Massachusetts
#7
Solar cover is a must. Hard to tell how much it cost me for the pool. I use the propane for a fireplace insert in the winter too, as well as cook with it. My best guess is I spend around $800a year on the pool heat. But i only heat it up when i want to use it. But the solar cover, i cant emphasize enough, is a must have.
 

robl45

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2007
779
0
Parkland, FL
#8
Heat pump cost estimators are a bit misleading. You have to account not only for the electric for the heatpump but also for the electric the pool pump is using when you are running it 24 hours a day to heat your pool with the slow heat pump. Also the warmer the air is by the heat pump, the more efficient it is so if your heat pump is on the south facing side, it will work better. My old heatpump had to go on the north facing side of the house and was less efficient than my new one on the south facing side. I had propane at my old house before I swapped for heatpump, I just couldn't deal with 600 plus bills every time I needed to fill the propane tank. A solar cover would be an absolute must in Mass, one of the reasons I moved out of there and down to Florida. Also for a 26000 gallon pool, you would likely need 2 heatpumps as one big heatpump will barely handle the pools down here and most of them are 12000 gallons.
 

zethacat

LifeTime Supporter
Sep 23, 2013
810
0
Dallas-Ft. Worth Metroplex, TX
#9
Heat pump cost estimators are a bit misleading. You have to account not only for the electric for the heatpump but also for the electric the pool pump is using when you are running it 24 hours a day to heat your pool with the slow heat pump.
This is true, but you should not need to run your heat pump 24 hours a day. If you are just using it to extend swimming season, and not for spot heating in the dead of winter, it should only need to run for a few hours per day at most to maintain the desired temp.
 

robl45

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2007
779
0
Parkland, FL
#10
This is true, but you should not need to run your heat pump 24 hours a day. If you are just using it to extend swimming season, and not for spot heating in the dead of winter, it should only need to run for a few hours per day at most to maintain the desired temp.
I guess it depends on where you are. I had to run it 24 hours a day in winter and still it didn't keep up. And winter in South Florida has a better temperature range than most places that are trying to extend a month before or after. I didn't have a cover though. Still my electric bill was over 400 dollars higher than normal.
 

swimcmp

In The Industry
Nov 8, 2011
1,038
0
50
Moberly,MO
www.centralmissouripools.com
#11
With a heat pump it is recommended to run pump continously so the heat pump can maintain temps rather than try to jump temps. That being said I would choose a gas heater in MA over a heat pump. Here in Missouri about the earliest we can gain anything consistently is from mid April maybe to mid October. A cover is a must with a heat pump whether it be a solar blanket or a auto cover.
 

zethacat

LifeTime Supporter
Sep 23, 2013
810
0
Dallas-Ft. Worth Metroplex, TX
#13
Probably true in Dallas, but in Massachusetts in the first half of May, you can get days that are 53 degrees with an east wind. Down right brutal.
53 and windy isn't too bad. A heat pump will still work. As long as the average daily temp is 60, it's worth it to run the heat pump. After that, it becomes more of a drain on your wallet. But as I had stated in my original reply, I don't think MA is a good location for a heat pump. Also depends largely on the size of your pool. My 14000 gal pool doesn't require much to heat it up.
 

robl45

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2007
779
0
Parkland, FL
#14
I don't know about you, but when its low 60's, my spa would take an hour to heat up, takes 15 minutes when its 80 plus degrees, a heat pump at 53 will barely do anything. In mass with a large pool, gas is the way to go, but its expensive. My friend had a decent size pool with a gas heater in mass, and they were quite wealthy and still his dad didn't want to turn the heater on because it cost so much.