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Craving the summer pleasure of swimming? Even imagining yourself inside a swimming pool during winters is enough to send shivers across your spine; leave aside getting out of a comfy blanket and really doing it. If you want to experience the pleasure of swimming as you did during your summers, you have only one way out – get yourself immersed in a warm pool. Intrigued? But wait!!! We are to your rescue. Have you ever thought of “above ground pool heaters”? Yes, you heard it right. These are the proven devices that work efficiently enough to give you the summer pleasure of swimming in the winters. Excited, right?
Most of the doubts about above ground pool heaters are very common. For example – How does an above ground pool heater work? They are about their set up, repair costs, customer care, product efficiency, and dependability. The heater cost depends on its engine power, brand, services and the type of power it uses to operate. If you have a very small pool that contains a few hundred gallons of water, you may not need a heater in the first place. Since the pool warms up as soon as the surrounding climatic conditions heat up due to the sun. But, if your swimming size is large, above ground pool heater can be your best shield.
Putting a Heater In An Above Ground Pool?
Different types of pools make use of different types of pool heaters to raise the water temperature. Pools generally range in size from small ones that hold few hundred gallons of water. And big ones that hold thousands of gallons of water. In above ground pools, you can install above ground pool heater. The fitting, usage, and repair works are easy and reasonable for these kinds of pool heaters.
Types of Fuel
When we discuss pool heaters, there are basically four types of heaters: electric, natural gas, solar and propane pool heaters. Natural gas and propane units do a better job at heating pool water faster when used with proper gap. They also do a good job at maintaining the temperature of the pool if left on for the whole time. But, gas ones are more expensive to run than solar ones or electric ones. Electric pool heaters for above ground pool are gaining some real popularity as they are economical and can be used to heat the pool throughout the year. Solar cell panels can keep water temperatures of around 80-degrees. But only in areas which have an abundant amount of sunlight.
Types of Above Ground Pool Heaters
There are a lot of different types of above ground pool heaters for you to choose from. They all differ from each other in the method that they use to heat water. The sources of energy that is used to power them are different from each other.
Solar-Powered Pool Heaters
This type of heater is fuelled by the sun. There is no need to charge solar cells. Solar-powered above ground pool heaters are a popular choice for those of you who own this type of pool. These types of heaters are operated by making the water flow from the pool and being circulated into the collector. The collector is placed right where the sun rays can get to it with ease. For example: at the top of a roof. The water is heated inside the collector and then it streams back into the pool. How speedily the water goes back into the pool depends on how big the collector is. The larger the collector, the faster the pool will be heated.
Gas heaters are the best choice heater for above ground pools. This type of heater uses natural gas or propane as the fuel to heat a pool. When the fuel of gas heater is propane, the heater is named as a propane pool heater. It does not take a gas heater much time to heat up an above ground pool. But the heat will last for only a short amount of time. The water from your pool will pass into the heater that has a combustion chamber in it. After the gas goes into the combustion chamber, the gas is burnt inside of it to produce heat. Then the heat is transferred to the pool water that went in the heater before. Then the hot water is pumped into the pool.
This type of above ground pool heater is not so popular and the most energy inefficient type of pool heater. It is still a type of pool heater. These heaters use firewood as its heat source. The heat that is produced during this process is transferred to the pool water entering into the heater. Then the hot water is pumped back into the pool. To keep this type of above ground pool heater running, you need to replace the burnt out wood with new wood. Due to this reason, it is not a wise choice for you to heat your pool. These are very old school and classy though.
Best Way To Heat Above Ground Pool
There are some very simple homemade solar pool heaters you can use to heat your above ground pool for a low budget. Let’s discuss the simplest models:
Thin, dark and long hose
They are usually made of rubber or plastic to fill your above ground pool. You can make use of a 50ft hose or longer hose. So when water passes through the warm hose it gets enough time to warm up before falling into your pool. Dark color absorbs solar energy and produces heat. So you should select a dark-colored hose to achieve efficient results.
Another type of homemade solar pool heaters are solar rings. These rings float on the surface of the pool to heat the water. It may surprise you when you know that one single solar ring can transfer up to 21,000 BTU a day. The size of these rings is 59 inches in diameter and hence you need to buy many of them to cover about 80% of your pool. Their life period is about 5 years and each ring can cost you as low as $20. Once you invest in solar rings, you need not worry about the energy bill. As it uses solar energy which is completely free, it is the most cost-effective choice.
Mount solar panels on the roof
This is one of the best and economic ideas to heat up the water. Solar panels cover the pool on its roof. They are low-cost, easy to install and long-lasting in all climates. If your pool reaches freezing point during winter, you can make use of collectors that glaze. But, if you live in a sunny and warm area, then you can make use of normal panels. These are cheaper compared to the glazed ones.
Natural Current Solar Above Ground Pool Heaters
Solar pool heaters depend on solar energy for fuel. Nature has gifted us with lots of resources and solar energy is one of them. It is an unconventional resource available at free of cost. You can use solar energy in many ways. It can be the solution to most of our daily chores that make use of other conventional resources.
Solar above ground pool heater models help you save money and can be your go-to solution. They work on a natural source of energy generated by the sun that is free. You will only need to sustain the investment, and the results achieved in the long run are positive.
Above Ground Pool Propane Heater
You can relish your swim even in chilly climates by using above ground pool heating system. When you live in an area where natural gas services are not available at ease, you can make use of a propane pool heater. And you can enjoy the comfort of a gas pool heater. Propane above ground pool heater installation technique is almost the same as that of LPG pool heater. But the orifice sizes for gas valve and burner differ and the gas hook-up is different. In this article, we will discuss how to install above ground pool propane heater.
Installing The Heater
The propane pool heater installation can be done in a few hours. Proper usage and fitting of your propane pool heater can help you up its efficiency. It is advised that you take the help of a pool professional while installing the heater.
Sizing your heater
You need to think about many factors while sizing a heater for your above ground pool. You have to consider pool size, the temperature difference between your pool. And the surrounding air, the humidity levels, and cool night temperatures. If your hidden pool suffers large no. of cooling factors then you will need a larger heater.
Position the heater in right place
It is important that you place the propane heaters on a non-combustible surface. Also, you need to ensure that there is a free space of 2-3 feet around the heater. To avoid fatal accidents you should not place them indoors or near windows. You need to ensure that the heater is positioned in clear outdoor. Clear sky should be accessible without any obstacles.
Plumbing work for the heater
You need to cut the return pipe that exits from the filter. Then connect the pipes that go in and out of the propane pool heater. Then, re-link the exited pipe back to the return line. Take protective steps to avoid corrosive fumes from backing up.
Connecting the power
Powering up a propane pool heater is a very simple process. You do not need a separate breaker to power up the heater. All you have to do is to tap the power from pump switch or time clock. You can use 220V or 110V and follow the directions to connect power inside the propane pool heater.
Connecting Propane Tank to Pool Heater
This is a very simple task and you can do it yourself. All you need to do is to give a call to your local propane providers and ask them to give for a connection and installing a propane tank. Then connect it to your new propane above ground pool heater. You need to be informed about the size of your pool heater in BTU’s(British Thermal Unit). As pool heater’s size plays a key role in deciding the size of your propane tank and regulators. Most of the times, you can find it on the model number of your heater.
What Size Propane Tank Needed For A Pool Heater?
A large size propane pool heaters need 500-gallon tank. Medium to small size heaters needs a propane tank of 250 gallons. Your propane service provider is the best person to suggest you the right propane tank size. He can tell you what’s best for your pool based on the size of your propane pool heater.
How Much Propane Does A Pool Heater Use?
Propane above ground pool heater operates by using 1-gallon propane per hour per 100,000 BTU’s. Propane prices change on a daily basis. A gallon of propane costs around $2.50 on an average. Propane above ground pool heater can be installed within a few hours. It is suggested to take the help of an expert professional to avoid maintenance or repair risks.
Features to Focus on While Buying a Pool Heater
Purchasing a perfect swimming pool heater for an above ground pool is not a piece of cake. You need to focus on all the features that you can. These features include the type of heater. You need to focus on the amount of heat that the heater can hold and the price of the heater as well.
To assist you to comprehend more about these features, I am going to describe them more in depth for you.
Type of Heater
Before going shopping for an above ground pool heater, you need to decide if you want to get a solar powered, gas, or wood burning heater. If you stay in a climate that is warm, almost every day, then it is a good idea for you to buy a solar powered pool heater.
Not only will it an effective way for you to heat your pool, but it will also be cost effective for you. Then again, if you live in a chilly climate, you need to buy an electric or gas pool heater as they will deliver the best result.
The heating capacity of an above ground pool heater is the total of heat that it can hold. It is calculated in BTUs (British Thermal Units). Heat energy is calculated in BTUs. One BTU increases the temperature by one degree Fahrenheit. The heaters used in above ground pools have a BTU rating that is lesser than pools that are in the ground. The cause for this is that above ground pools are smaller than in-ground pools. Various types of pool heaters come with their individual BTU rating.
The higher the rating is, the faster they will warm up your pool. You also will also have to pay more as your heaters BTU rating goes up. Even though you are paying more for your heater, your heater will heat up a lot quicker than your neighbors.
There are a different number of brands of above ground pool heaters in the market. Each brand has a different heating capacity, appearance, and size. Determining which brand to get can be established on which brand has been trustworthy throughout the past. If you have never purchased an above ground pool heater before, then go through this article. You will get the best rated above ground pool heaters in the current market.
How much you are looking to spend on your above ground pool heater is the most vital factor. It is necessary for you to look for features when you are looking to buy a pool heater. A good thing to have in mind is that an above ground pool heater usually has a long lifespan. They last for ten years or longer on an average.
Wondering what would be the best pool heater for your above ground pool? So, if you are thinking of how much money you are going to spend on your heater, make sure that it is enough to buy a quality pool heater. It must have the heating capacity that your pool requires.
Here we’ve reviewed the top 7 best above ground pool heaters on the market in 2019.
7.Hayward H400FDN Universal H-Series 400,000 BTU Pool and Spa Heater, Natural Gas
An efficiently heated pool can let you control your swim season. It must provide luxurious comfort that fits your lifestyle. This series of models manufactured by Hayward offers the most durable, hydraulically efficient solutions for any pool. Because of their low NOx emissions, you can enjoy efficient luxury and peace of mind – season after season.
Superior Hydraulic Performance and Reliability- Patented polymer header design provides superior performance to save energy. It also protects against the damaging effects of erosion from high flow conditions to further improve reliability.
Intuitive and easy to read L.E.D. Control Panel- It features a digital display which provides temperature readout, conditioning and electronic ‘lock-out’ of temperature set-point. Since its NOX emission levels are comparatively lower, it is also very much environment-friendly. It is designed to resist gradual wearing away that comes with having a lot of water flow through it.
Intelligent Switching- This heater has a special feature that allows it start working right away whenever it notices a slight temperature change in water. It can switch to standby mode when it senses low pressure of water.
However this level of autonomous control leads to fusing the circuit one too many times.
According to a verified customer on Amazon, It is very easy to install and it works like a charm as well. Although he told us that we may need some DIY skills and basic electric and plumbing skills to properly install the heater. According to him, you will save yourself over $1000 doing it yourself as compared to hiring a pool guy. He advised us to spare an extra hand so that we can get the old unit out and a new unit in.
6.FibroPool FH055 In Ground Swimming Pool Heater
FibroPool FH055 is a large capacity pool heater. It has an output of 55,000 BTU’s, the FH055 is rated to heat above-ground pools up to a 21′ round sized pool. This above ground pool heater uses a Copeland high-pressure differential compressor and a titanium heat exchanger. It runs on standard 220 v supply.
Simple Installation And Digital Display- This heater has a quick installation process which takes less than 30 mins. Easy set digital display allows for quick adjustments from the unit for optimal convenience.
Sleek design. Slim profile, weather-proof- case is designed to accommodate different placement options. Easy side access to standard fittings minimizes installation time and hassle.
Eco-friendly- It is powered by clean electricity, making it less harmful to the environment as compared to traditional, gas-powered heat pumps. By installing this very heater you can extend Your Swimming Season longer than your neighbours. It will ensure comfortable swimming conditions down to an outdoor temperature of 40°Fneighbors, extending your swimming season by months.
This particular above ground pool heater neither comes with customer manual nor warranty. This model consumes a large amount of electricity as compared to others.
According to a verified customer on Amazon, this product is pretty awesome and it looks pretty good and works like a dream. Her husband was an electrician, so he was able to do all of the installation work himself. She said that this pool heater runs pretty quietly. So quietly that she even had to actually keep checking if it was running.
5.EcoSmart SMART POOL 18 Electric Tankless Pool Heater, 18kW, 240 Volts with Patented Self Modulating Technology
This particular heater operates by using flow sensor technology instead of the usual pressure switch activation. This reduces the risk of burned elements, which increases its reliability and longevity.
Compact And Smart Control- Smart Pool series comes with digital thermostat control so you can set the temperature exactly where you want it. It is smaller as compared to the other above ground pool heaters and hence you will have no trouble installing it. This heater also comes with a two-year limited warranty.
Extreme Durability- The two-year warranty covers everything but labor, other handling faults, and the heating elements. This particular model is very easy to install, it is very attractive to look as well.
This model heats up water very fast but uses up a large amount of power which is a matter of concern and it doesn’t come with a water enclosure. But based on its ability to heat up the pool in a short period of time, it is a clear choice if the cost of electricity is not a concern for you. It saves up to 60% on your water heating costs with the most advanced, self-modulating technology available.
A verified customer on Amazon described this product as very simple to install. He was using a 1.5 hp pool pump to pump the water from his pool to the heater which was in the shop about 50 away. He said that he enjoyed 2-3 weeks longer pool season than his neighbors.
4.Sungrabber Solar Pool Heater for Above-Ground Swimming Pools
EcoSmart SMART POOL 18 Electric Tankless Pool Heater, 18kW, 240 Volts with Patented Self Modulating Technology
The SunGrabber solar heating system will quickly heat your swimming pool with free, reliable heat from the sun. A perfectly designed solar system will provide maximum heat for your pool. Sungrabber solar heater captures the free renewable energy from the sun to heat your pool. Solar heating of your pool helps you reducing the amount of electricity you use.
The Best Kind of Eco-friendly- This is an environment-friendly mat which uses the sun to heat your pool. This natural solar technology increases the temperature of the pool water by approx. 3-5 Degree C (5-9 Degree F) depending on weather condition.
Simple Installation- This Solar heater is very simple to install. Maybe the simplest as compared to others. This can extend your pool season and make you feel very comfortable as it can heat the whole pool in just a few hours.
Some of the times the clamps and hoses that come with this model are just not up to the mark. But, this is a pocket-friendly and efficient pool heater. So this is an absolute choice for those who want to extend their pool season with a minimal amount of money.
One of my friends who recently bought this product said this heater is very simple yet effective. She was looking for a massive increase in temperature which needed multiple units. She added a 27’ round pool and installed one of these just to knock the chill off in the early season and late season. She said she might add another unit. She also cautioned us that direct sun is the only source here and that we shouldn’t be expecting scalding water in a cloud environment. She gave us a rough estimation of an increase of 5-10 degrees in the water being returned back into my pool on sunny days.
3.Sun2Solar Blue 15-Foot Round Solar Cover|800 Series|Heating Blanket for Above-Ground Swimming Pools
This heater is just necessarily a solar blanket made from a film of thousands of tiny bubbles. These bubbles work together to collect and retain heat both at night and day. These bubbles transmit UV rays into free heat for your swimming pool with thousands of small air bubbles built into this blanket. When sunlight passes through these bubbles they produce heat from the sun to your swimming pool for a more enjoyable swim. After everyone has called it a day with wrinkled fingers from too much fun in the sun, make sure to place this solar cover back over your swimming pool. With the Sun2Solar solar blanket, you don’t need to lose all of that warmth generated throughout the day when the sun sets. You can rest assured that your pool’s temperature does not drop too much by protecting it at night by the use of a solar blanket.
The Best Kind Of Eco-friendly- This type of pool heater uses the sun’s rays to help warm your swimming pool. The use of a solar cover helps in preventing up to 95% of pool water evaporation. When not using the pool, keeping it covered reduces the vast amount of water lost into the environment. With this above ground pool heater, you can fill up your swimming pool less and enjoy it more.
Easily adjustable according to your pool Size- Some of your pools may be of a different shape. It may be over or undersized perhaps. In this case, getting the right fit is as easy as finding a marker and a sharp pair of scissors. You should have the bubbles facing down to the water and trace a line on the cover showing while cutting cut off the additional material. You can cut it down confidently knowing this won’t affect the manufacturer’s warranty.
However being a pocket-friendly solar heater it can work efficiently for 1 entire season at max 2 seasons. After that, you’ll have to replace it with another one. Sometimes you may get to see too much algae in your pool.
One of my distant cousins recently bought this economic solar heater for their 24’ round, above ground pool, according to him this cover fit perfectly and seemed to have been well manufactured. He said that it was thinner than the thick mil cover they had last season which was way harder to get on and off the pool without help and didn’t work that efficiently either. He wished he knew about this product before.
2.Hayward H100ID1 H-Series Above Ground Pool Heater
This is an electricity based above ground pool heater. This type of heaters is reliable. This heater comes with advanced technologies like acoustic compressor cover and profiled fan blade as well as it is made up off highly durable titanium which makes it the most durable out of all.
Acoustic compressor cover and profiled fan blade- This particular heater has an acoustic compressor cover and profiled fan blade which ensure quiet and smooth operation of the heater.
Durable injection molded UV-resistant body panels- This heater by the Hayward series has a special durable injection molded Ultra Violet resistant body panel which helps the heater being impervious to rust and deterioration.
Durability And efficiency- It is a very efficient heater which can be installed simply by plugging in 120v electric cord supply. This heater can warm up your pool quickly as per your demand and this unit have a very easy controlling system which makes it an absolute choice in the market.
Few customers complain about the heater being delivered to them without any refrigerants and few also complain about the service and shipping of the product. But you can always call up Hayward and contact for customer service.
Not so eco-friendly- Being electricity-run machinery it is not considered as eco-friendly. And increasing electricity unit prices may make this heater lability for you rather than being a wise investment.
A recent happy customer of the heater said that the heater itself was very easy to install, and it fired up right away, raising his 7500-gallon pool 15 degrees in about 3 hours. He also said that this heater is major overkill for the size of his pool, but that’s what he wanted. It ran pretty quietly considering the size of the fan and compressor. He absolutely recommended this heater.
1.Pentair 075457 Valve Replacement Natural Gas MiniVolt Pool and Spa Heater
Pentair 075457 pool heater is a high-Performance natural gas Pool heater which runs of Natural Gas. It is certified for low Nitrogen Oxide emissions; tough, rust-proof exterior.
Special rotating digital display-This heater contains a special rotating digital display. It allows the users for easy viewing of the readings.
Manual Gas Shut-off system- It also has a manual gas shut-off system. This function takes place when the heaters need service. The new design ensures safety and reliability as it has a tough exterior and easy to use digital controls. This device ensures safe operation through a series of features.
Smart switching- It contains a water pressure switch that senses the pump is running to prevent overheating. It has high limit switches that assure the heater turns off when water temperature exceeds factory-set limits. It has a stack flue sensor that also guards against overheating. These heaters offer comparatively high efficiency, convenience, and reliability features you want in a pool heater.
Out-performs all it’s competitors- It outperforms other pool heaters with faster heating-up, compact design, super quiet operation and easy to use.
This model is very easy to Install and the most efficient one among the rest. It is a very durable gas heater and it breaks down in very rare cases. The only problem you may face in the near future is leakage in the valves but you can just contact customer services for easy repairs.
That was a brief overview of the most popular above ground heater models available in 2019. We have given a bird’s eye view of some of the crucial factors that you need to consider before buying a pool heater. But never forget to evaluate your needs and get the most suitable pool heater which serves your purposes whether its a solar one, a propane one or an electric above ground pool heater; the choice is yours. So, what are you waiting for? Get yourself a pool heater and enjoy winters like summer dunking in your pool.