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Swimming Pool Heaters vs. Solar Heaters

Want to live that ‘swim when you want’ lifestyle? If so, then you will need to invest in a pool heating system that will allow you to enjoy your pool all year round. The good thing is that there are many pool heating options available that you can choose from. You just need to do some research, so that you can choose the right swimming pool heating option for you. 

Here’s a guide on the basics of pool heating and whether you should go with a traditional swimming pool heater or solar heater.

What are Swimming Pool Heaters?

Swimming pool heaters are popular options for heating your pool, and for good reason. Heaters use natural gas, propane or electricity to heat water returning into your pool. 

People who have some familiarity with pool heaters usually think of gas pool heaters or pool heat pumps when talking about pool heating options since they are widely known.

  1. Pool Heat Pump 

A pool heat pump uses a combination of electricity and air to heat a pool. It operates via a heat exchanger, which draws heat from the air and transfers it to the water in your swimming pool.

Pool heat pumps are also energy efficient since they capture heat instead of generating it. One of its advantages is that it can collect heat from the air even if there is no sunlight, such as during the evenings or on cloudy days. 

  1. Gas Pool Heater

A gas pool heater operates by allowing water from the pool to pass through a filter and then through a heater. It runs on natural gas or propane depending on your pool system. The gas from either LPG pipes or a propane tank burns in a combustion chamber and heats the pool water as it passes through its pipes. 

Keep in mind that your pool heater should match the size of the pool, so that it can do its job efficiently. A heater that is too large for your pool will consume more fuel and eat up your heating budget while a heater that is too small might not perform as intended as well.

A professional can help you decide on the right heater size for your pool. 

Gas pool heaters are highly efficient, fast and reliable. Since it heats the water quickly, it is perfect for people who want to swim in their pool all the time. 

What are Solar Heaters?

Solar heaters may be less common than the more traditional gas pool heater or pool heat pump, but is known as a more eco-friendly pool heating alternative.

A solar heater is one of the most affordable and environmentally friendly ways of heating your pool since it mainly uses natural energy from the sun. 

Solar heaters work by transferring cold water through a filter and then through solar panels, which are placed on the roof of your house. Once the sun’s energy heats the water collected, the water is transferred back into the pool. 

Solar heating systems are economical and can last for a long time, making it a long-term investment worth considering. 

Should You Choose a Swimming Pool Heater or Solar Heater?

Both swimming pool heaters and solar heaters come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages. There is no definite answer if you ask which one is better. 

The right pool heating pool system for you depends on many factors. Choose the option that works best for you. 

Here’s an additional quick list of pros and cons that you should consider before making your choice. 

Swimming Pool Heater


  • Able to quickly heat your pool
  • Do not rely on climate or weather conditions


  • Less environmentally-friendly since it consumes gas or electricity
  • More expensive to run

Solar Heater


  • Comes at an affordable cost
  • More environmentally-friendly since it uses renewable energy


  • Use can be limited since it relies on direct sunlight to function well
  • Requires sufficient roof space to accommodate solar panels

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