Gas heaters warm pool water quite quickly, so you'll only need to run yours when you want to go for a dip. An electric pool heater, on the other hand, needs to stay on all the time. If you only heat your pool once in a while, a gas heater may actually cost you less.
Heaters utilize natural gas, propane, or electricity to heat water returning back into your pool. They have a lower upfront cost and raise water temperatures quickly. Although heaters have a lower upfront cost than heat pumps, they do require the ongoing expense of propane or natural gas.
Gas-fired pool heaters remain the most popular system for heating pools. Today you can find new gas-fired heater models with much higher efficiencies than older models. However, depending on your climate and pool use, they may not be the most cost-effective option when compared to heat pump and solar pool heaters.
Pool heaters may use natural gas, propane, or electricity to heat the water being returned to your pool. With a lower upfront cost, pool heaters heat water temperatures fairly quickly, but they will incur the cost of additional energy or that of propane or natural gas expense.
So, how much electricity does a pool heat pump use? About 5 kilowatts per hour per 100,000 BTU heat pump. For a general 100,000 BTU pool heat pump, the power you`ll utilize is approximately 5,000 Watts per hour. Typically, the National average for power stands at 13 cents for every kilowatt-hour.
We have found that turning the heater off at night allows the water to cool rapidly. The heater then has to burn at a higher rate in the morning to make up the lost heat. The higher you turn the burner the lower the heating efficiency and the greater the heat loss from the exhaust gases.
If you want to get as much time as possible out of your pool, however, a heater is a good investment. With a pool heater, you can easily be swimming May through mid-October, giving you a good five months of use out of your pool. That's literally double the amount of time you'd get without one.
An electric heater for your pool draws outside air in and circulates this air through an outer evaporator air coil. The liquid refrigerant within the evaporator coil absorbs the heat from the outside air and transforms it into a gas. The warm gas in the coil passes through the compressor where heat is increased.
Pool heaters have the potential to be an incredibly worthwhile investment if a family wants to utilize its new pool year 'round, or even just well into school starting in the fall. These heaters have state of the art technology that allow for comfortable swimming temperatures, even in sweater weather.
On average, natural gas burns about 1 therm per 100,000 BTUs per hour (British Thermal Units). Meaning, an average pool heater between 300,000 and 400,000 BTUs will cost anywhere from $3.30 to $4.40 per hour to heat your pool.
While adding a pool heater requires an upfront investment, it helps you maximize your investment by being able to use your pool for much more of the year. Between setup and operating costs, a pool heater costs between $300 and $5,000, with the average cost around $2,000.
Generally, most outdoor pools don't need heaters, especially in warmer climates. In some of the more northerly (or generally colder) areas, pool heaters can be virtually a requirement to make your pool water comfortable enough to swim on a regular basis.
Here's why: the average propane pool heater burns about 1 gallon of propane per hour per 100,000 Btus. Since a propane pool heater for a standard-sized pool (~21,000 gallons) outputs 400,000 Btus, you will burn about four gallons of propane per hour.
It depends on a few things to determine how long it takes a heat pump to heat a pool. However, overall a heat pump generally heats a pool after 24 to 72 hours by 20-degrees Fahrenheit. For smaller pools like a spa pool, the heat pump can heat a pool between 45 and 60 minutes.
You can expect a gas or heat pump pool heater to last 8 to 11 years, with an average of 10 years. Regular usage and maintenance is key to a longer lifespan.
Using the heater only when the water dips below a certain point keeps the energy consumption down. For the average person, a pool that is 78 degrees or higher is comfortable. If you are trying to save money or energy, run your heater only when the pool water temperature dips below 78.
The size of your pool also matters, with larger pools costing more to heat than smaller ones. On average, however, a gas heater costs around $200 to $400 a month to run. Electric heat pumps cost less, coming in at about $100 to $200 a month.
Ultimately, the amount of energy that a heater puts into the pool is equal to the heat lost from the pool. Since you lose more heat energy from a hot pool than from a cool pool, the most efficient thing you can do is keep the temperature as low as possible for as long as possible.
It may be cheaper to run the pump at night, but honestly you should run it 1 hour a day per 10 degrees of temperature at least, and it should be during the day. Running the pump at night should only be when you are doing a major chemical treatment such as algae clean-up.
Electric Pool Heater
Electric pool heaters have a low up-front cost and can operate whether it's sunny or not, but they have higher operating costs than other units. They are a good option for smaller pools located in warmer regions. An electric pool heater unit costs between $1,500 and $4,000.
Gas can heat pools and spas very quickly. A spa usually reaches its optimum temperature in 20 to 30 minutes, and a pool takes just one hour to heat up to an ideal temperature of 84 degrees.
You know those black trash bags? They can hold heat too. Fix one up to a hula hoop and if you want, cut one side of a pool noodle to add buoyancy and you've got yourself a super cheap pool heater.