Selecting the best pool heater for me

mwemaxxowner

Bronze Supporter
Apr 15, 2020
261
Pageland SC
Pool Size
30000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
I hear ya!

From an energy expense side of things I want to go HP, but I hesitate to due to the high gallonage of my pool. If heat pumps were available in more BTUs I'd probably go that route and not bat an eye.

I'm Dominion also, and apparently the gas rates are sky high. My electric rate apparently isn't great either at .125/kwh.

I feel like my solution has to involve gas or propane to make it worthwhile doing anything at all.

I think as a supplement to the gas heater a HP would be great, but then that's further adding to the energy bill. Not to mention the approximately $4k up front for the HP.

When I took this pool on, I had no idea it was so large for a residential pool. 🤦🏼‍♂️😬 I still wouldn't have turned it down though! 😆
 
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CHBC

Member
Jun 7, 2018
11
SC
I think that if you look at the propane prices that those rates will be the highest of all the energy sources that you can use to heat a pool. Good luck with the decision!
 
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mwemaxxowner

Bronze Supporter
Apr 15, 2020
261
Pageland SC
Pool Size
30000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
You're probably right. Initially, after a couple posts here I wasn't even going to look at propane.

Then, when I figured out just how stupidly high the gas rates are, I decided it's worth checking. I suspect that won't be the best route but I'm gonna make sure! The company that would fill my propane is only 2 or 3 minutes down the road, and is the place I have my 20 and 30 lb bottles filled.

I'm ashamed to say I don't even know what the rates are I pay for my bottles to be refilled. I just have it filled and swipe the card 😆. It's cheaper than an exchange.
 
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CHBC

Member
Jun 7, 2018
11
SC
The other way to look at the amount of BTU's available is time. If you choose NG over the HP you will be able to swim quicker but not necessarily cheaper. On the very extreme sides of the season I usually plan a couple of days in advance based on weather to get the pool to temp. That probably is not necessary if I let it just run 24hr but I only run it when it is in the warmest part of the day.
 
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PoolBrews

Well-known member
Oct 16, 2019
305
The Villages, Florida
I've already considered most of that. For 2-3k$ to supplement a gas heater vs the cost of a heat pump (and the costs I see calculated to use the heat pump), I like it. I understood there is an up front cost and have already roughly calculated the panels cost and some of the plumbing.
You missed my point. I was in no way suggesting that you supplement a gas heater with a heat pump. My point is that solar alone can't heat the pool and you need to have an alternate source whether it be gas or electric. If you are installing one of these, I don't see a reasonable payback in adding solar as opposed to just heating with the installed heater. The math just doesn't add up - at least not for a heat pump in central FL.

It may come close to breaking even with gas - especially if you have to use propane.
 
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mwemaxxowner

Bronze Supporter
Apr 15, 2020
261
Pageland SC
Pool Size
30000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
I understand, I promise I do.

$2-3,000 up front would buy a lot of gas, and the amount of gas it saves me monthly would take quite some time to offset the 2-3k. I believe this is your point.

I also understand that solar will not be able to warm my pool up early or keep it warm later in the year and extend my swimming season. I'm only considering solar for the possibility of it helping maintain a warmer temperature once summer is in full swing and not have to run anything else. I'm guessing than number is around 83 degrees from what I've been reading lately. We've been swimming in it as is for years with just what big red can give us.

It would probably be best to put this 2-3k towards the gas heater first, then see just how much gas we really go through once the pool is warm and it's 95° out.
 

CHBC

Member
Jun 7, 2018
11
SC
If maintaining when the summer temps are here then the HP is definitely the way to go. It gets more efficient with heat and humidity which we have plenty of during the summer. IMHO you may be overthinking this.
 

mwemaxxowner

Bronze Supporter
Apr 15, 2020
261
Pageland SC
Pool Size
30000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
Well, everyone keeps saying a heat pump is inadequate for my gallonage. Maintaining a more consistent summer temperature isn't the main goal, but it would be nice in addition to extending the season by warming up early and staying warm later.
 

PoolBrews

Well-known member
Oct 16, 2019
305
The Villages, Florida
I would be concerned with a heat pump and 30,000 gallons in SC. My heat pump barely kept up with 18,000 gallons in GA, and couldn't keep it heated in late fall and early spring. You need a gas heater (unless they start making 400K heat pumps :))
 

Homebrewale

Well-known member
Apr 21, 2020
423
Apex, NC
I would be concerned with a heat pump and 30,000 gallons in SC. My heat pump barely kept up with 18,000 gallons in GA, and couldn't keep it heated in late fall and early spring. You need a gas heater (unless they start making 400K heat pumps :))
You must not have used a solar cover. I'm north of you and my heat pump has no trouble maintaining temperature in early spring and late fall but I keep a solar cover on it when nobody is in the pool.
 
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PoolBrews

Well-known member
Oct 16, 2019
305
The Villages, Florida
I used a solar cover in the spring and fall. The heat pump had trouble heating in Sept/Oct and March/April in a reasonable time. It needed to run most of the day. This was in Georgia.

No issues here in FL, but the heater is bigger, the pool is smaller, and the temps are better.
 
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mwemaxxowner

Bronze Supporter
Apr 15, 2020
261
Pageland SC
Pool Size
30000
Surface
Vinyl
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
I used a solar cover in the spring and fall. The heat pump had trouble heating in Sept/Oct and March/April in a reasonable time. It needed to run most of the day. This was in Georgia.

No issues here in FL, but the heater is bigger, the pool is smaller, and the temps are better.

I suspect I would probably want to be firing it up in April most of the time. We're having temps that are tickling 80 already. A few more weeks when it's solidly 80 for at least a few hours I would maybe be tempted to swim mid day on a Saturday or something.
 

CHBC

Member
Jun 7, 2018
11
SC
Reviving this thread but had some relevant info from this week. We have not been keeping the solar cover on and don’t usually until we get to where the weather is favorable to swim. We pulled it out this past Tuesday night with warmer weather coming. The pool was at 62 when I started heating on Thursday it ended up at 79 in eight hours running. Friday was cooler and rainy so I didn’t run it except for about two hours at the end of the day it got to about 80 as it started at about 78. I started it at 9 this morning and it was at 86 by 12:30 when the kids started swimming and it cut off at around 4 at 90 degrees. We will swim again tomorrow and probably not heat this coming week with the cooler weather. Cover will stay on though to preserve what we can.
 
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