Used Heater - What questions to ask and is it a good deal?

crek31

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Jun 28, 2009
877
I have an "opportunity" to buy a used pool heater. It is a Hayward, 100,000 BTU originally purchased three years ago. Was used one season in a pool sanitized with Nature 2. Supposedly it worked perfectly. After one year the original owner moved and gave his pool and heater to his son, who has used the pool but stored the heater unused for two years and has ultimately decided his family does not need the pool warmer than it is without hooking up the heater. Thus, it is offered for sale for $300 including the regulator, which he said would normally be an additional purchase. He says the heater lists for $900 (although I'm seeing it for 699 after a rebate). He mentioned the ignition is electric.

1. Anyone have any specific questions one should ask before buying a used heater?
2. Does it being used on a pool with Nature 2 in anyway effect its future function or life?
3. Does $300 seem like an appropriate price?

Thanks in advance for any insight -- I need to make a decision in a few days so I'm hoping you all can help. OH - I would plan to put it on a bigger pool next year, likely at least 18' x 48" and maybe bigger. The next pool will have 1.5" hoses.
 

crek31

Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Jun 28, 2009
877
Oh, also:
4. Does it having been stored for two years in any way effect whether it will function correctly or shorten its life?
 

X-PertPool

TFP Expert
In The Industry
Jun 12, 2009
1,385
Exeter, PA
Pull the pressure switch and look for heavy corrosion or discoloration from bad water chemistry. The heat exchanger is the most expensive part that can be damaged easily by low ph
 

JasonLion

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May 7, 2007
37,880
Silver Spring, MD
It is very difficult to determine what kind of shape a used heater is in, so very difficult to know if you are getting a good deal or not. If you are comfortable with things like pulling the pressure switch, you can get some idea of what condition it is in, but without some experience at what you are supposed to be seeing you might not be able to tell even that way.

It is rare that someone sells a heater that is working well, usually they sell a heater because it has been having some kind of problem. The great majority of people who have actually investigated used heaters have found out that they were bad deals. It is possible to run into a good deal, but it isn't common and it isn't easy to verify.
 
G

Guest

100K is awful small. If gas is cheap, and you have plenty of time (and if it is a good heater) then it might be a good deal.

I wouldn't expect the water temp to raise quickly though. A 400K heater on a 1,000 gallon spa will raise temperature approx. 1 degree per minute (on average). That heater is 1/4 the size, and your current pool is bigger than a spa!
 

frustratedpoolmom

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May 20, 2007
12,177
SWSuburban Chicago, IL
I had (died in May after 9 years) a 125,000 btu Laars heater on my 24' pool and it was fine for our pool, though we prob paid and extra $60 or so in May, June and August to keep the pool at 86-90 degrees... be sure to use a solar cover.

I'm always leary of used heaters only because they seem to have frequent issues the first year or two (ours did and I read about them all the time on here) and you may find your deal isn't a great deal after all. With new, at least you have a warranty, KWIM?
 

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