Pool Heater or No Heater. Is it worth it ?? Sunrise, FL

JannelleeMarch 21, 2012

I am getting a pool done and right now I do not have a pool heater in the contract, but left as an option. Is it worth it. I am in Sunrise Florida. Warm most time of the year, but still is it enough that I wouldn't want one. A pool heater would run me an additional $2500-$3000. Any ideas. Options. Needed or not. And what kinds of heaters would be great. I;m scared that I don't get it and then later realize that I am not using the pool, because it's too cold. And if I do get one, scared that it's a huge bill to pay on electric or however it works. Solar???

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Just have them make the equipment pad big enough so that you can add a heater later if you decide you need one... If your looking at Heat pumps which I really like then have them make sure the electric panel is big enough to add one.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 6:09AM
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If you have a roof that is no more than two stories and contiguous and has a strong southern exposure and doesn't take a long plumbing run to reach, solar may be a viable option for the pool only solution in your geo. Any other pool only solution is likely to be a heat pump.


    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 8:22AM
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Thank you. Muddy Water. Will tell them on that pad and hook up. Thx
Scott, I do have a one story and really straight slant roof. No cool curves or turns on rooftop. And I checked on those solar panels, but have no clue how that is set up. Will ask.
So there is Heater, Heat Pump, and Solar. All three are different. ???
Cool. Thx.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2012 at 1:17PM
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Solar uses hollowed, black panels that are on your roof capturing the sun's infrared to warm the water running through them. The two brands of panels that are top rated are Fafco and Aqautherm. I use the latter as I feel it has better hardware. This system is based on how many square feet are used. More square feet in the sun normally equates to more BTUs injected into the water. A southern exposure is best as it offer the best angle towards the sun. This system uses very little extra electricity.

A heat pump draws the warmth in the air and injects it into the water. For residential pools, heat pumps tend to max out at about 125,000 BTUs but due to the differences in temperatures and humidity levels throughout a given day, it may put out 130,000 BTUs or it may only do 40,000 BTUs. Its always drawing about 30 to 40 amps at 240VAC so there is a point where they can become a very inefficient resource or a very efficient one. To look at them as a reverse cycle air conditioner would not be a bad idea since that is essentially what they are.

When people refer to a pool heater, the generally mean a gas fired pool heater. Some use natural gas and others use propane. The efficiency of these units is typically in the low to mid 80s percentage wise at almost all times.


    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 9:47AM
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i live in west palm beach and use a natural gas heater to heat my pool on demand.love it

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 1:55PM
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We have solar and a Heat pump. We are in North Jacksonville. We use the solar as the primary source to heat the pool and the heat pump to give added heat or to maintain temp of the pool if we are swimming at nite. Our pool temp is 92 degrees and we have been swimming since the middle of February. We also have a pool cover. We love having both. Why have a pool and not be able to use it when you want to? Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 7:48AM
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@brentr, do you have an attached spa and if so, how long does it take to heat the spa? I figure about 20 minutes at 80 degrees and 80% humidity and more if the temp outside is lower, if you do.


    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 3:49AM
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@Scott, we do not have a spa. Our solar seems quite efficient. Look at our solar install.

Here is a link that might be useful: Our Solar System Install

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 5:45AM
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Wow thanks guys.
I do not have a spa. So The gas heat is efficient and good at monthly expense. I am so scared. I get people saying my electric bill will go from my usual 150.00 a mth to 350.00 a month if I get a heater. And I am so scared my husband will go nuts when he sees that and says, I told you no heater. So does anyone know, about how much more is the monthly FPL, (light bill). We pay now 150.00 a month. The solar panels sound like the best deal. But I found out over the weekend my PB does not install those or provide them. He does have heaters, like the gas and the heat pumps. So out of the two, gas would be the best money efficient. Correct.
Thank you all.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2012 at 9:15AM
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Jannelle, look at my solar install. I interviewed 3 solar installers and like the aquatherm dealer. There were rebates and it is in the price range that you are expecting. They also had the best warranty. There is also a Florida rebate available however i never received mine, something about the state running out of money, however we are very happy with ours. The added extra cost to your electric bill is the cost of running the pump. I have calculated our cost to be about $30-$50 per month, with the lesser cost during the hotter months as the pump would only run 2 hrs per day. Hope this helps

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 5:01AM
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Thanks Brent. Cool Pics of the pool build and then the solar install. How much was the solar install and all? And Aquatherm, is it in Sunrise, FL. I will check on that.
I did get my equipment pad to be extended for the possible heater. So my PB is now doing a pad of 3 x 7. Should be enough. I hope. Or is that too big. I can't go 4 x 6 because my silly walkway on side of house between my house wall and fence is only five feet wide. So he thought going with 3 x 5, which is what he needed with a bit extra. I think 7 should be plenty. 3 x 7 pad. Do the solar panels need pad or is it just wall space.
My pool continuation work started yesterday. SO exciting to finally see it come back up to a change. This is my pool in October after my first pool builder left my site, (went bankrupt, and took my payments. Long, Horrible, Story). Now my new pool builder started yesterday and wow. They got all the excation done, limerock, and sand down and compacted. Today they are doing the pavers lay down (while I'm at work). I'll try to upload a picture of that. They are awesome. Great people. They promised and delivered. I'm so not used to that. Plus very kind with my requests like the concrete pad extended. (Thanks to you guys and your thoughts). Now if I can only think of any more requests. Anything else I should ask or check on.???

Like my Sunshelf. Did I ruin it by putting it on the second shelf. They mentioned that the bubbler won't really do any effect. And maybe I could turn that bubbler line to a return line. Any thoughts. Or should I just leave as a bubbler and do a rigged job afterwards to make it bubble. Confused.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2012 at 11:28AM
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As long as you keep your pool covered on cold nights your pool will retain heat from any source you choose.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 11:12AM
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Cool. Thanks. Has anyone ever used those solar rings. The rings that you just throw in the pool and supposedly heat up your pool on it's own with solar. ???

    Bookmark   April 1, 2012 at 10:26PM
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Solar rings don't really heat the pool very well. They do help hold the heat in at night however though how much varies from pool to pool. They do this by helping to hold evaporative losses to a minimum. Solar covers and liquid covers work similarly.


    Bookmark   April 2, 2012 at 9:17PM
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Reviving this thread--
what did you choose and how big is your pool?

We have existing pool in FL south of Sarasota that faces East--although pool is in sun most of the day there is shade w/the patio roof on the lanai...
We are getting heater priced but have no choice but electric...
We don't have good solar side and that is too expensive since we are seasonal vs full time users...
Our pool has no spa and is about 15K gallons...
how big a heater would be most effective since it will need to heat after we have been absent and pool is cold?
Our fuse box that the electrical will connect to is inside the garage and not that close to the side where the heater will go...the electrician says he needs 100 ft of cable...
should that be run through a conduit or can he run it through the attic (tile roof) to where the fuse bux is?
We are in TX now and my husband doesn't seem to want to wait until we are in FL in just couple of weeks...

    Bookmark   October 6, 2013 at 6:25PM
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