Blue Wave
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Hayward HeatPro
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Hayward Universal
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Jandy
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Pentair
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Raypak
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SmartPool
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Solar Sun Rings
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Pool Heaters Review

Why Buy a Pool Heater?

A pool heater makes an excellent addition to any home that has a pool. Not only can you extend your outdoor entertaining season but these devices can heat your pool quickly and efficiently. Pool heaters work by burning fuel, which is converted into heat. The heat passes through a heat exchanger, which heats up water that is drawn from your pool. The goal is to obtain a heater that is big enough in size to heat the pool water faster than the rate at which the heat is lost on the surface. A few pool heaters on the market include the EcoSmart Smart POOL 27, the Hayward Universal and the Smartpool SunHeater.

Pool Heaters: What to Look For

Choosing a the right pool heater means finding the one that's the right size for your pool, making sure it uses an appropriate fuel and ensuring that it has the right level of flexibility to meet your needs. Pool heaters are a luxury item, but the benefits can outweigh the expense.

Size
Pool heaters are rated based on the number of British thermal units (Btu) they put out. A single Btu has the ability to raise 1 pound of water 1 degree Fahrenheit. The greater number of Btu a pool heater has, the faster and more efficiently it can heat your pool water. Several factors can influence the number of Btu your pool requires, including the surface area of the pool and the temperature rise. The surface area is the top of your pool's water that is exposed to air, and the temperature rise is the temperature that you want your pool water to be minus the outdoor air temperature. Most pool heaters specify on the packaging how big of a pool they are capable of heating. A heater that is too small can work too hard and not provide sufficient heating. A heater can never be too large for a pool.

Fuel Type
The most common types of fuel for heating your pool include electric, propane, solar and natural gas. Propane and natural gas heaters are very effective but are generally used on pools that are not heated very often. It is expensive to use a gas heater to keep your pool at a consistent temperature, but if you simply need it for occasional use it works quickly. Electric heaters are ideal for keeping your pool at a specific temperature year round. They can maintain temperatures of between 80 and 90 degrees, even when outside temperatures drop low. It is cost effective and is an excellent alternative when your home is not solar compatible. Solar pool heaters can help maintain pool temperatures around 80 degrees. Solar panels are generally installed on the roof of your home and utilize the sun's rays to keep your pool warm.

Control Panel
Control panels help you control the temperature of your pool water and help you make adjustments without guess work. Control panels can be digital or analog, while some pool heaters only offer a temperature monitor. The less expensive models may not even come with a control panel, so you have to monitor your pool water with an external thermometer.

By understanding the options for a pool heater, you can choose the most appropriate one for your pool. The right type of heater can help you obtain the desired pool water temperature efficiently and effectively.