If you have a pool, you’d probably love to have your water at a comfortable temperature all the time. Many heaters are being sold online, but you deserve one of the best heat pumps for pools that are on the market.
Determining which products can be considered best heat pumps for pools can be a difficult task. This is why we have decided to create this buying guide and test several products with various features. We hope that this article will help you make a choice that is great for you. In the end, only well-informed customers can make good decisions and support the right product.
Which is Better – Pool Heat Pumps or Pool Heaters?
Some pool lovers don’t even know that there are two ways to heat your pool. You can do it with pool heaters or some of the best heat pumps for pools. But how to differentiate these two devices?
Pool heaters are more popular options, especially with people who own smaller, private pools. These heaters work on a particular power source, such as electricity, propane or gas. They heat the water that they later return to the pool. The most significant advantage of pool heaters is that they are fast, and you can get warm water in a matter of minutes. At the same time, they aren’t too expensive to buy. However, they have a high holding expense, as they waste a lot of power and impact your utility bills. Depending on where you live, you may end up paying up to 10$ per working hour! Also, they have more moving parts than heat pumps, so they can break down easier. In short, they will cost less to buy, but way more to maintain.
On the other side, we have pool heat pumps that are growing more and more popular during the years. These pumps work thanks to the surrounding air and use it to keep the water heated. This is done because the outside air is passed in a heated coil that will return the water to the pool once heated. Because these pumps work on air, they are more energy-efficient than heaters. Compared to pool heaters, most of them operate for $0.75 per hour. This is hugely lower than any other heating method! Of course, even these devices aren’t without flaws. First off, they are a lot more expensive than pool heaters. Also, as they use the ambient air, they can’t work during freezing weather. So, if you want to keep your pool warm during winter, heat pumps may not be the best choice for you.
What Features to Look for in Best Heat Pumps for Pools
When trying to find several best heat pumps for pools, there are several features that you should look for. We’ll mention the most important ones.
Usually, efficiency equals power the device has. However you can also find some less-powerful models that can achieve the same results as some more expensive heat pumps. The pool temperature isn’t determined with the power the device has. Keep in mind that less powerful models might take days to reach that desired temperature, compared to the more powerful models that can reach it in a day.
Another essential thing to consider is to determine the right size of the heat pump you need. This depends on the size of your pool and the desired water temperature and the night temperature, wind exposure, and humidity. People will often ask a professional for help when determining what size of the heat pump is the best for them. Luckily, there is a calculation that might help. First, you should determine the desired water temperature. Then, measure the average air temperature during the coldest month that you plan to use your pool in. After that, subtract the average temperature of the coldest month from the average area temperature. We’ll call this the temperature rise that is required for your pool. The next step is to calculate how many square feet your pool has. The last thing to do is to multiply the surface area of the pool with temperature rise, and then multiply that by 12. This is the BTU size of the heat pump you’ll need.
Humidity can damage metal parts quickly. If you live in a coastal or rainy area, you’ll know how true this is. Heat pumps will work near water, so you should always search for a product that has a lot of protection against humidity. Another advice is to look for a pump that has a high-quality heat exchanger. This is the part that will wear out the most, and usually this is the part that will break first. If you get yourself a product that has a great exchanger, you have most likely bought yourself a product that will last you for years to come.
Easy to Install
Installing heat pumps for pools shouldn’t be something only a professional can do. If you are someone who maintains the pool by yourself, you probably don’t want to call a pool service to have warm water. Luckily, there are a lot of models that everyone can install. If you plan to take care of your own pool, always look for models that are easy to setup. Otherwise, you may have to hire a professional to help you – which isn’t necessarily bad if you don’t plan on doing the hard work by yourself.
Top 6 Best Heat Pumps for Pool
1. Hayward HeatPro Titanium 140,000 BTU AHRI Residental Pool Heat Pump, Model HP21404T
This fast-working and the efficient pump may cost a bit more than some other models, but it can heat the entire pool in just a few hours. Hayward HeatPro is a famous manufacturer of pool heat pumps, and this is considered to be one of its best models – and with a good reason.
This heat pump has an injection-molded body panel created to resist denting. At the same time, the model is rust-resistant thanks to the corrosion-resistant evaporator fin. This makes it rather durable and overall easy to maintain, even in the more humid and hot environments. If you live in warmer areas, this heat pump model might be the right one for you.
It comes with a plastic screen that protects the evaporator coil, which can easily be damaged by salt. This makes it a genuinely efficient and high-quality model.
The biggest downside is the unit’s size. It’s rather significant, so you might have a problem fitting it into most backyards. Also, if you don’t have a licensed HVAC professional to install the device, Hayward can refuse to issue you with a warranty.
- Requires a professional to install
- Rather large in size
2. Raypak 013331 133000 BTU Titanium R8350TIE Digital Heat Pump
The Raypack’s R8350TIE heat pump is unique as it can work with most remote control systems. It’s a great choice if you plan on replacing your old heat pump but don’t want to change the remote or simply want to own a remote-controlled model.
Another good side of this model is its base configuration with four ports. Thanks to this, it can fit most plumbing arrangements, and you might even be able to install it by yourself. If you had issues with some older heat pumps, this model might still work.
It isn’t as energy-efficient as some other, similarly priced heat pumps. However, you can disconnect it without any issue, thanks to the internal bypass. It has an excellent rust and corrosion resistance thanks to the grade nickel found in its heat exchanger. This makes it a great model for people living in more humid areas.
Also, this might be one of the quietest models on the market.Also, this might be one of the quietest models on the market.
- Can fit almost any plumbing
- Easy to install
- Requires more energy than similar models
3. Pentair UltraTemp 90 High Performance Pool Heat Pump 460930
This middle-priced model is created for people who don’t want to spend too much money but are still prepared to pay for quality. It comes with a control panel, as well as an LCD display. This makes controlling the temperature super easy, and everyone can adjust it to their likings. Still, it cannot cool the water like some other models, but this usually isn’t a problem for most pool owners, as the water tends to be cold even in warmer days. It has better internal diagnostics than most other pool heat pumps, so if there is an error, you will know precisely what is wrong with this device.
This device is durable, but we’d still recommend hiring a professional to install it, as it will prolong its life span. It operates on a titanium heat exchanger, which are some of the more efficient and high-quality exchangers. Also, it has an automatic defrost feature, which makes it one of the rare heat pumps that can work in cold climates.
Last but not least, this heat pump comes with a 10-year warranty, which is more than many other similarly priced models.
- Automatic defrost feature
- 10-year warranty
- Can’t cool a pool
4. AQUAPRO VIGOH77 75,000 BTU Titanium Heat/Cool Pump
If you are looking for a high-quality product, this might be one of the best heat pumps for pools for you. It has a heat exchanger made of titanium, which is one of the best materials for the job. The model also has digital temperature controls, so you can adjust everything without any issues. This model can make the water colder than it is, so it is a truly multi-functional product. Many people don’t really see the purpose of this; however, if you live in a hot area or overheated your pool, the cooling feature is a great addition.
The slip fittings are from PVC, so you can install it with ease. The biggest downside of this unit is that it requires a 230/208V outlet. You will most likely need a professional to set up everything, and it might not fit every household.
- Heat exchanger made of titanium
- Can cool water
- Digital controls
- Requires 230V outlet
- Smaller than most models
5. FibroPool FH120 above Ground Swimming Pool Heat Pump
If you live in a colder area, this might be the right heat pump for you. It can heat your above-ground 7,500-gallon pool quickly and without too much hassle. This unit is durable, easy to install and use, and it is one of the more efficient models. It has a 120V heat pump, rare to find in the latest months, despite 120V being preferable when it comes to pool heat pumps. It is also suitable to use in coastal areas, as it is resistant to salt and corrosion.
The heat exchanger is made of titanium, which is always the best choice. The high-pressure compressor makes it really energy-efficient. It can save you a lot of money on utility bills. It has a simple but durable design, and the unit can last you for years with minimal maintenance. All electronic parts are labeled, and if anything breaks, you can easily replace it.
Another great addition is an extended cable that can extend the distance from the shelter to the pump.
- Can be installed in under 30 minutes
- Energy efficient
- Works on smaller pools
6. Puri Tech 127,000 BTU Quiet Pool Heater
This heating pump has a titanium heater that can last you for a decade. It can meet the needs of most residential and commercial pool owners. At the same time, this is one of the quietest models on the market.
It’s energy-efficient and can work efficiently while also saving power. It is also useful if you plan to heat your spa, no matter the temperature outside. It is high-quality and made for large pools. If you have in-ground pools that are up to 35,000 gallons, this is an excellent product for you. However, one annoying feature is that it works on a 230/208V outlet, so you will most likely require a professional to install.
This Puri Tech’s heater is made of commercial-grade titanium, so it is one of the highest-quality devices you can find. It comes with an excellent heating compressor that can save a lot of money yearly. This is also enhanced by the saving optimizer. In fact, this model can save you up to $2000 a year!
- Great for any pool
- Energy efficient
- It works on a 230V outlet
Any pool owner deserves the best heat pumps for pools. They can expand your swimming season and make any pool party more enjoyable and comfortable. Most of these pumps are also great for spas, so you can have that luxurious experience from your property’s comfort.
Every pool is different, and every owner has his own preferences. If you have calculated the size of your pump accordingly and decided on the necessary features, we are sure that you can find a model that suits your needs on this list. Keep in mind that what works for your neighbor might not work for you, so you should always look for a product that best suits your needs.