Which Type Of Swimming Pool Heater Should You Get?

Adding a pool heater is a popular swimming pool renovation. By adding a heater, you could extend your swimming season and make your pool more appealing on cooler days. 

There are three major types of swimming pool heater to choose from. Each of these types has benefits and drawbacks that homeowners should evaluate before heater installation begins.

The gas-powered heater

This type of heater includes either a propane or natural gas tank. Capable of keeping the water at a constant temperature, gas-powered heaters work much like a gas heater in a home. They burn fuel and spread the resulting heat around the pool to heat the water.

A gas-powered heater is definitely the best option if you live in an area with a fairly cool climate. The only major drawback is the cost of the fuel. When using this type of heater, you will be constantly paying out money to maintain pool temperature. However, considering recent drops in gas prices, a gas-powered heater may be more appealing than in previous years. 

The electric heat pump heater

While electric heat pumps provide a more affordable means of controlling the temperature of pool water, they are also less effective than gas heaters. An electric heat pump can extend your pool season a few months each year, but they could allow you to swim year round if you live in an area with a warmer climate.

Another drawback of this type of pool heater is that it is initially fairly expensive. An electric heat pump heater will probably cost upwards of $2,000, and the cost of labor will make installation even more expensive.  

The solar pool heater

As the name implies, a solar pool heater uses the sun's warmth to heat pool water. While the most environmentally friendly pool heating option, solar pool heaters will not heat as well in cloudy weather or when solar collectors are under shade.

Solar pool heaters will consume a small amount of electricity when heating pool water to direct water into the heater with a pump mechanism. 

Which heater should I choose?

To a certain extent, your decision will depend on what particular factors are important to you. If you're something of an environmentalist, you'll probably want to go with a solar pool heater. However, you should note that this type of pool heater tends to cost at least $3,000 to both purchase and have installed. This makes solar pool heaters the most expensive pool heating option. 

Remember that a gas-powered heater is the most effective at heating, especially in colder climates. If fuel costs become excessive, you can always turn your heater off when it's not needed or when you want to save money.