How to Select and Install a Pool Heater

Selecting the Right Heater for Your Pool

Any time you start looking into a major purchase like pool equipment, you should go about it methodically and spend enough time so that you are able to make the right decision. Pool heater installation will certainly extend swimming pool season for you and make swimming an enjoyable experience even when the weather has not been warm enough in recent days to heat the water to a pleasant temperature.

In general, there are three different kinds of pool heaters. Gas heaters obviously run on gas, electric ones run on electricity, and solar heaters run on solar power. Before you begin thinking about which of the three kinds would be best, you should determine the size of your pool by measuring the surface area of the pool in square feet. From there it is a matter of deciding what is most important to you.

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Types of Pool Heaters


Out of these three kinds, of course solar pool heaters are the most environmentally friendly and in most cases, the most economical as well. Solar heaters actually use the sun’s warmth to heat the pool by pumping the water through the solar panels. In the long run, this is the least expensive way to warm up your pool, but the up-front cost is quite a bit more than it is for other kinds of heaters. But then again, solar heaters tend to last up to 20 years.


If you’re looking for the fastest way to heat up your pool, then gas is probably the way to go. There are models available in both propane and natural gas. Gas pool heaters are quite expensive and do cost a bit of money to run, but if you only heat your pool once in a while, it might be a viable option.


This is by far the least expensive option in terms of up-front costs, but it is also the least efficient way to heat your pool. It is definitely not advisable in cool climates or when you need a lot of heat, but if you’re looking for a subtle amount of heat, then this may be a good choice.

Pool Heater Sizing

Most pool heater manufacturers have a sizing chart to help you determine how big of a heater you need for your pool. Be sure to take this into consideration when choosing among the three types of heaters.

Also remember to think about your temperature rise, which is the difference between the temperature your pool water actually is and the temperature you want it to be at. This is probably the most important component when it comes to choosing the right heater, so spend some time with an expert and do the math to determine what the average temperature will be and where you will want it to be.

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Installing a Pool Heater

When it comes to installation, it is always recommended that you have a professional handle it. In some areas, a professional electrician may be required to at least sign off on the installation of electric heaters. If you do decide to attempt installation yourself, remember to install it only after the filter has been installed and before any chemicals or injection systems are put in. This will help keep the flow of clean water to the heater at a consistent, high rate. Also, read the manual that came with the heater and follow the specs for installation exactly.

Let the experts at Emerald Pools and Spas help you pick the right heater and install it. Contact us to schedule an appointment today. You will be surprised at how much money you can save by simply having the right heater!

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