Swim Longer With Solar Pool Heater

The high price of utilities may be causing some swimming pool owners to winterize their pools earlier tan they would like. However, providing warm water with a solar pool heater could extend your swimming season without extending your budget.

Heated pools are pretty much the norm these days, especially in colder climates where water temperatures under 75 degrees or even 80 degrees are undesirable to some. Yet the escalating cost of utilities have people putting an early end to family and neighborhood swimming earlier in the year to the higher costs associated with heating the water.

A solar pool heater operates much the same as one operated by electric, gas, oil or propane, except that other than the initial costs, there is no operating expense. Since the sun hits the installed solar panels, providing power to the solar pool heater it doesn’t require any other paid utilities.

However, installation costs of a solar pool heater can be higher than other heating sources, other utilities can also be used, sharing the burden of heating the water. Even by partially powering the pool’s heater with a solar pool heater can reduce other costs significantly.

Extending The Time For Pool Use

For example, an outdoor pool in the northernmost part of the United States, is usually able to be used only up to two months without any source with which to heat the water. By using a solar pool heater, the pool can be used for up to five months. And since it’s a solar pool heater, once the initial cost of installation is paid, there are no monthly utility charges.

For a swimming pool, for example 15 feet by 30 feet, a solar pool heater kit is available for about $2,000. It can be installed professionally for another $1,000 or less. The size of the solar pool heater needed is totally dependent on the size of the pool and the geographical location. The colder the climate and the larger the pool, the larger the heater will need to be.

Solar pool heaters are powered by solar panels typically installed on a south-facing roof and must have a clear path for power connections through the house to the heater. It is recommended that run be no more than 40 feet. Most handy homeowners could install a solar pool heater themselves in about two days, it is high recommended, and in some locations required, that electrical connections be made by a licensed professional.

Using A Solar Heater For Swimming Pool

To keep your swimming pool a source of joyful baths even in cold weather, some source of heating the pool’s water must be employed. Now a day, many people choose to install a solar heater for swimming pool. The reason behind this popularity appears to be the easy and cost-effective way by which a solar heater for swimming pool raises the pool water’s temperature, usually from seven to ten degrees, and provides a warm, comfortable feeling of bath in a free and open space.

Function Of A Solar Heater For Swimming Pool

A solar heater for swimming pool basically works by forcing water of the swimming pool through a filter that leads it into a solar collector. This contains solar heat collected from the sun by means of specially designed panels. The pool water absorbs the collector’s heat and returns into the pool through the pump. Certain kinds of solar heaters serve a dual function i.e. besides heating the pool water in winter they can be run during the night and kept off during daytime. This helps maintain a cooler water temperature during the summer days.

Price And Heating Capacity

The price and heating capacity of a solar heater for swimming pool depend on the heater’s size. The most popular size of the heater is the one with 2’x20’ panels. It costs about $150 a set. Two panel sets i.e. 4’x20’ suffice to heat a 18’-24’ round pool. If you have a 16’ round pool, you can do with smaller panels i.e. 4’x10’.


Installing a solar heater for swimming pool is fairly easy and usually takes less than an hour. What you need to do is take a hose and clamps and with these, connect the solar panel to the pump. Now roll out the panel to finish your installation. Remember that you need not mount the panels permanently. You may either simply mount them up on the roof or position them by using frames available from the dealer. On first turning on the panels, they will feel hot to touch for some minutes. After that, they’ll cool down.


Though little maintenance is required for a solar heater, keeping balanced water chemistry is important as well as keeping the filter in proper working condition.

Using solar heater for the pool is very beneficial since it is totally free after you pay the initial cost. You can also use solar heaters in conjunction with another swimming pool heater. This brings down the costs by as much as 70 per cent.

Enjoy An Electric Pool Heater

A swimming pool, whether in ground or above ground, is a big investment. You probably made that investment because you enjoy the pool so much. It’s hard to wait through the nearly warm spring to start using the pool and it’s heartbreak to start packing up the swim gear so early in the fall. One good way to get more from your investment is to install an electric pool heater. Just by increasing the pool’s warmth a few degrees, you can extend swimming season and add hours to every swimming day.

Safe And Efficient

If you don’t have an electric pool heater, you’re probably using solar energy. In other words, you sit around the pool waiting for the sun to warm up the water. With an electric pool heater, you get to decide when the swimming starts. Use the thermostat to keep the water at your preferred temperature. If you like a morning swim, you can get an electric pool heater with a timer to start the warming in time for your early laps. If swimming is an activity you prefer to enjoy after lunch, the time and thermostat save energy in the morning and ensure the best temperature when you are ready to enjoy it. And if you like to watch the sunset in the pool, the thermostat will keep the water as warm as you like well into the night as you wish.

Once the electric pool heater is professionally – and safely – installed, you can decide how to use it. Many heaters use the ambient air to warm the water, using energy to disperse the existing heat rather than creating it. You can save energy by using a solar pool cover to keep the heat in the pool over night. The cover will also keep the cold rain water out. It can take an hour of energy to heat the pool up one degree. Look for corrosive-free metal parts like copper and bronze rather than aluminum. Chlorine can be harmful to some metals. Some types of electric pool heater can double as a spa heater. If you have a spa or hot tub or are thinking of adding one, you might want to look into the versatile type of electric pool heater to avoid having to buy a second heater.

When making your selection, make sure that you choose an electric pool heater that is appropriate for the size of your swimming pool. Have your dealer explain how to install and maintain your heater. Be sure that you understand all of the safety requirements. Water and electricity are not naturally friends. Once you know what to do and how to do it, your biggest job will be to enjoy your pool while your neighbors are still waiting for the morning chill to dissipate.

Swimming Pool Heater Adds To Enjoyment

Nobody enjoys swimming in cold water, which is why most people installing a pool opt for a swimming pool heater to keep the temperature more comfortable. Several options exist, including gas, heat-pump and solar power. Which option is chosen by the pool owner will be determined by their budget.

Understand, most swimming pool heaters operate on the same premise. Water is pumped from the swimming pool, through the heater and back into the pool where the heated water raises the temperature level of the pool water. A thermostat installed on the line into the pump records the temperature of the water in the pool and stops pumping until the temperature drops below a pre-set temperature.

How the water is heated is what determines the cost. There are two variables to consider when deciding the type of swimming pool heater is best for your pool. The initial cost and the annual operating cost. Some may offer cheaper installation costs, but prices of utilities and the climate in the area, may make them expensive to operate during the season.

Installation And Operating Expenses

Of the three main types of swimming pool heater, gas, either natural or propane, is the cheapest for initial installation. For comparison purposes an example of a 15 foot by 30 foot kidney shaped pool will be used. A gas swimming pool heater will cost roughly $1,200 and another $500 for installation. A homeowner can usually install a swimming pool heater themself, but it is highly recommended that connections for gas and electric be left to a licensed professional.

A heat pump swimming pool heater is more expensive to install, about $3,900 including installation and a solar powered swimming pool heater will run about $3,000 with installation. Their operating costs are what sets them apart.

A gas swimming pool heater will cost about $1.20 to realize a dollar’s worth of heat. On an average, it’s expected to cost between $1,000 and $1,500 per season to operate on propane. Depending on the price of natural gas in the area, it could cost about 50 percent less.

A heat pump swimming pool heater, on the other hand will cost about 20 cents for $1,00 worth of heat, bringing the annual cost of between $250 to $500 per year, which can offset the initial cost. A solar powered swimming pool heater will cost about $30 to $75 in electric to operate the pump required for water circulation, but not for the power itself.

To Heat Or Not To Heat: Pool Heater Options

What’s more enjoyable than a brisk dip in the pool on a hot, sultry summer day? One second you’re perspiring and wishing it was October, and the next second you feel that exhilarating shock of cold water – instant refreshment! Hot days and cool swimming pools are the things heaven is made of.

Then there are the nippy days of winter when you’ve cranked the furnace up a few notches and put on a long-sleeved shirt. When you look into the back yard at your pool, you see one of two things: either an empty, covered pool that’s waiting patiently for summer days or you see a full pool with enticing tendrils of steam rising into the frosty air. Your pool heater is working perfectly! You and your partner and/or guests relax in the warm water while around you autumn and winter pass like summertime dreams.

If you plan to use your outside pool year round, a pool heater is a must unless you’ve a fondness for icy cold water. Like outdoor spas and hot tubs, pools properly equipped with a heater can create a soothing warmth and sense of well-being. Consider: in Yellowstone National Park, the burbling natural hot springs and geysers are a point of congregation for elk, buffalo, and bighorn sheep; nature’s own pool heater! Most living creatures seek warmth during cold winter days, and you’re no exception. A dependable heating device gives you year-round enjoyment instead of having to wait until summer to enjoy a cooling dip.

What Are My Pool Heater Options?

Keep in mind that the first hot water heating systems were steam-driven. While this method is still used in homes, it won’t work well with pool heaters. When buying a home with a pool or when constructing an outdoor pool, first decide if you want to use the pool year-round. If so, consider equipping your outdoor recreation pool with a good quality pool heater that’s housed in a small structure close to the pool. You can set the heater’s temperature to suit your own comfort, depending upon the weather. Although some like to bask in a hot pool during a rainstorm, this isn’t a good idea due to the possibility of lightening strikes. But in cold weather, a pool heater allows you to enjoy the warmth and comfort even during a light dusting of snow.

Pool heaters are predominately electrically-powered, the “industry standard.” Under construction, the heater will simply plug into a power source in its shed, while the heating elements are custom-fitted into the empty pool. Once the heater is working properly, you can refill the pool with the heater gently warming the incoming water.

Pool heaters aren’t cheap, but fairly priced, you can expect to pay around $700 depending upon the size of your pool. This is not a do-it-yourself project; the company that built the pool is best qualified to install the heater. Unless you’re an electrician and pool service technician, leave this project to those who are. The installer will give you an estimate that includes labor as well as parts. Since most pool heaters today are digital, the installer will give you a demonstration as to how the device works, and what to do if it isn’t working properly. Just like your pool in general, the heater will require seasonal maintenance; failing to service your heater as recommended will void the warranty if something major goes wrong.

When the December sky darkens and wisps of steam rise from your backyard pool, there’s only one thing to do: enjoy!