It may not seem like a swimming pool owner in Arizona will be wondering how to extend your pool season with a pool heater, but there will come a time — probably rather soon — when you will feel the chill in the air and you will still want to swim but when you dip your toes into the pool and it’s chilly, you may want to think about installing a pool heater.

The swimming pool contractors from Express Pool Care in Goodyear, Arizona can work with you to help you understand the which type of swimming pool heater is best for your lifestyle and your unique swimming pool type and style.

There are three basic types of pool heaters including.

  1. Solar
  2. Gas
  3. Electric — heat pump models

Once you understand the pros and cons of each type you can make a decision on whether a pool heater makes sense for your family pool.

Extend your pool season with a pool heater

Solar heaters draw power from the sun  — a plentiful commodity in Arizona. The heater works by pumping wter from the pool into the filter where some of the water is diverted into the solar collectors, heated then sent back into the swimming pool. When looking at solar pool heaters you will be exposed to glazed and unglazed collectors. The glazed collector is made with copper tubing on aluminum plate; unglazed utilizes heavy dity rubber or plastic panels and an ultraviolet light inhibitor. The glazed collectors cost more, but are more durable than unglazed collectors.

A solar heating system can cost anywhere from $3,000 and higher to purchase and have installed. Your pool contractor can help you determine the correct size heater for your pool water size and depth. Keep in mind that a solar pool heater and its collection panels will take up a lot of backyard space so for its many benefits and low cost of operation, that will be a consideration for many pool owners.

Solar heater pros:

  1. Environmentally friendly
  2. The money you save in heating costs will pay for the installation and purchase
  3. They use a free source of energy — the sun
  4. They can last about 20 years

Solar heater cons:

  1. You need to have a lot of direct sunlight in order to heat the water.
  2. They are pricey (as are other models) up front
  3. They take up a lot of yard space and definitely do not add to the aesthetics of your landscaping

Gad pool heaters use natural gas or propane to heat the water. The water passes through a burning hot tube then back into the pool. Whether you use natural gas or propane will depend on the availability in your area of the country. Natural gas and propane heaters are essentially the same price to purchase the equipment. The cost is about $2,000 to $4,000. It may cost you up to $500 per month in increased utility bills so make sure you budget for that.

The pros:

  1. They are relatively inexpensive
  2. It heats the water quickly and doesn’t rely on ambient temperatures

The cons:

  1. It uses gas
  2. It is costly to operate
  3. If there is no natural gas in your area you will have to have a propane tank installed and they are not usually attractive
  4. They are not environmentally friendly

Pool heat pumps warm the water using the ambient air. This is also a style that will serve Arizona pool owners well for many months of the year — depending on which area of the state you live in. Heat pumps cost more than gas pool heaters up front, but are less expensive to operate over the long run. You can purchase a heat pump for between $2,000 and $3,500. If you want to keep your pool water at 80 degrees, you will pay about $1,500 in utility costs to heat the pool water.

Heat pump pros:

  1. They are inexpensive to operate
  2. They can last for up to two decades
  3. They are environmentally friendly
  4. They are a viable option to solar heating

Heat pump cons:

  1. You will have to run a 220V electrical outlet
  2. They don’t operate efficiently in cold temperatures
  3. They are slow to heat the water

If you and your family want to extend the time you spend in the family pool, adding a pool heater can do just that. Some Arizona pool owners also opt to have a hot tub or spa installed as a way to extend time in the water, but still closing the pool for the season.