What Is The Best Above Ground Pool Heater

Above Ground Pool Heater

Getting inside an icy swimming pool makes you very uncomfortable especially during cool climatic conditions. If you really want to experience the ecstasy of swim as you did during your summers, you need to put yourself in a warm pool. This can be achieved by making use of ground pool heaters.

These are the proven devices that work efficiently while being faster. Above ground pool heaters are categorized based on the type of energy they make use of in order to operate. They are generally categorized as wood heater, electric pool heater, propane pool heater and solar pool heater.

Each model has its own pros and cons and hence you need to match the right model based on the size of your above ground pool.


Best Above Ground Pool Heater - MY Picks

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

Most of the FAQs about ground pool heaters are about their installation, maintenance cost, customer support, product durability and reliability. The heater cost mainly depends on its engine power, brand, services and the type of power it uses to operate.

If you have a very small pool that contains few hundred gallons of water, you might not need heater in the first place since the pool warms up as soon as the surrounding climatic conditions heat up due to sun.

However, if your swimming size is large, ground pool heater can be your best survivor.

Let’s discuss some of the frequently asked questions in detail:

Can you put a heater in an above ground pool?

Different types of swimming pools make use of different types of pool heaters to warm up the water.

Above ground pools can range in size from small that holds few hundred gallons of water to big that holds thousands and lakhs of gallons of water. Smaller ones can make use of heat pumps as they are energy efficient and are intended to prove years of pool comfort.

In above ground pools unlike hidden water pools, you can install above ground pool heater. The installation, operation and maintenance are quite easy and reasonable for these kinds of pool heaters.

How Heat above The ground pools

Most of the DIYs to heat above ground pools are solar models as they save lot of money and contribute in reducing greenhouse effect. Homemade solar pool heaters are inexpensive and simple.

The pool systems that use DIY solar pool heaters are constructed by making use of simple, inexpensive and unglazed plastic collectors. Hence, the pool itself is the thermal storage for the complete system.

To filter pool water, pumps are used that circulate water through solar collectors. The simplest DIY solar pool heater can cost you as low as $100.

Best way to heat above ground pool

There are a number of simple homemade solar pool heaters that you can use to heat your above ground pool within a very low budget. Let’s discuss about simplest models:

  • Thin, dark and long hose: Make use of a long, thin and thick colored hose, usually made of rubber or plastic to fill your above ground pool. Usually, you can make use of a 50ft hose or longer so that the water that pass through the warm hose will get sufficient time to warm up before falling into your swimming pool. Since dark colors absorb solar energy, it is wise to choose a dark colored hose to achieve efficient results.
  • Solar rings: Another type of DIY solar pool heaters are solar rings that float on the surface of the pool to heat the water. You might be surprised to know that one single solar ring can transfer upto 21,000 BTU a day. The size of these rings is usually 59inches in diameter and hence you need to buy many of them to cover about 80% of your pool. Their shelf life is about 5 years and each rings can cost you as low as $20. Once you invest in solar rings, you need not worry about energy bill as it makes use of solar energy which is completely free.
  • Mount solar panels on the roof: This is one of the best and inexpensive ideas to heat up the water that is covered with solar panels on its roof. They are inexpensive, simple to install and durable in all climates. If your pool is bound to reach below freezing point, you can make use of glazed collectors that give efficient results. However, if you live in a sunny and warm area, then you can make use of unglazed collectors that are cheaper compared to the glazed ones.

Will a solar cover actually heat my pool?

Solar covers are inexpensive and simple solution to pool warming. Make use of solar blanket that covers your pool while getting soaked in solar energy, thereby transferring the solar energy to the pool waters to warm them up.

Ideally, by using solar blanket, the pool temperature increases by 5 degrees for every 12 hours of coverage. Solar blanket covers your pool to benefit you in many ways like minimizing water evaporation, safeguarding the heat in the pool, preventing debris from entering your pool thereby reducing the quantity of chemicals needed to add to your pool.

Intex above ground pool heater

One thing you must know about Intex above ground pool heater is that, Intex does not make them. However, it is quite easy to find an above ground pool heater that fits your Intex pool. The top suggestion to find an alternate for warming up Intex pool is to use solar pool heater that does not make use of gas or electric power to operate. These are the cheap and best options available in today’s market.

Above The Ground Swimming Pool Solar Heater

Above Ground Solar Pool Heaters

Solar pool heaters are designed for both above ground and in ground pools. They make use of sun’s solar energy to heat the pool. Solar pool heaters benefit you in numerous ways. They work efficiently while proving to be environment friendly and cost efficient.

Solar above ground pool heaters work by circulating the water through a spacious heat exchange surface, thus allowing the pool to absorb sun’s heat. Most of the pool owners from cool countries enhance their solar pool heating system with traditional electric heating system.

In such cases, you can compare the costs incurred by both the systems to only find out that the solar pool water heater far outweighs the benefits while being incomparably cheaper.

Solar Pool Cover

Solar pool covers are one of the cheapest and cost efficient models often recommended by the pool builders. This heating system can extend your swimming season by two months.

The important characteristics of a solar pool cover heating system are as follows:

  • Convert solar energy into usable heat for heating your freezing pool. Usually, this system helps to increase the pool temperature by 5 Degrees Fahrenheit for every 12 hours of coverage.
  • The heating system covers the pool to retain the achieved heat within the pool. It works efficiently to prevent the heat from escaping the pool.
  • Water evaporation is minimized to great extent. Every gallon of water that is evaporated removes about 8,000 BTUs of heat.
  • The cover prevents from debris entering the pool, thus reducing chemical depletion. This in turn reduces the cost for chemicals.

DIY Solar Pool Heater

Most of the DIY pool heaters are of solar models. One of the best things about DIY solar pool heaters is that their construction is very simple. They can be built with ordinary daily used materials and assembled with ordinary tools that most of the average house owners have with them.

Let’s discuss about a simple DIY model:

Tools/Items Required:

  • 12 VDC submersible pump
  • Solar PV panel
  • Dark colored rubber or plastic landscape hose with about 1/4 diameter width, and 1000 to 1500 feet length
  • Tools like junctions and joiners for assembling the heating system

Construction method:

  • Cut the tube into equal lengths of 100 feet each. Remember that the longer the length, the more will be heat. Hence 100 feet would be adequate.
  • Arrange the tubes properly and build the connections by assembling them to your panel using ‘T’ joiners and junctions.
  • Optionally you can mount the tubing to a dark painted plywood sheet or you can leave it to stay on the floor. It can be a better idea to leave it on the cement floor so that they can take the heat reflection from the cement.
  • Place the constructed panel in a slanting position directed towards the sun. If you want to place the panel on the ground level then the pressure on the pump head will be less. However, if you want to place it on the roof then, you might need a high power pump that can handle more pressure.
  • Connect the tubing to your pump.
  • Now, aim the PV panel towards the direction of the sun and connect it directly to the pump.
  • Drop the pump in water.

Natural Current Solar Pool Heaters

Solar pool heaters run on natural current, solar energy. Nature has gifted us with abundant resources and solar energy is an unconventional resource available at free of cost. Solar energy applications are numerous and can be the solution to most of our daily reliable activities that make use of other conventional resources.

It is wise to make use of this unconventional natural resource as an alternative to other conventional resources and do our part of responsibility to the nature by saving them.

Solar above ground pool heater models help you save money and keep yourself from freezing. They work on natural source of energy generated by the sun that is absolutely free. You will only need to incur investment costs and the results obtained in the long run are beneficial.

For DIY models, most of the constructions are absolutely simple and can be made of ordinary materials that are available in our day-to-day life.

Install/hook Above Ground Pool Propane Heater With Instructions

PropaneAbove Ground Pool Heater

You can enjoy your swim even in freezing climates by making using of pool heating system. If you want to enjoy the comfort of a gas pool heater, but live in an area where natural gas services are not easily available, you can make use of a propane pool heater.

Propane above ground pool heater installation is same as that of LPG pool heater except that the orifice sizes for gas valve and burner differ and the gas hook-up is different. In this article, we will discuss how to install/ hook above ground pool propane heater with instructions.

Installing the Heater

The propane pool heater installation can be done in few hours. Proper maintenance and installation of your propane pool heater can help you optimize its efficiency. It is better to take the help of a qualified pool professional to install the heater.

They expertise in the field and hence can perform complicated maintenance or repair tasks. The installation instructions are as discussed below:

  • Sizing your heater: You need to consider many factors while sizing a heater for your above ground pool like pool size, temperature differences between your pool and the surrounding air, humidity levels and cool night temperatures. If your hidden pool suffers multiple cooling factors then you will need a larger heater.
  • Position the heater in right place: It is very important to place the propane heaters strictly on a non-combustible surface and ensure that there is a free space of 2-3 feet around the heater. Avoid placing them indoors or near windows to avoid fatal accidents. Ensure that the heater is placed in clear outdoor, where above it is a clear sky without any obstacles.
  • Plumbing work for the heater: Cut the return pipe that exits from the filter. Connect the pipes that run in and out of the propane pool heater by making use of ‘schedule 40 PVC’. Then, relink the exited pipe back to the return line. Take precautionary steps to avoid corrosive fumes from backing up. This can be done by ensuring that you move the chlorinators towards downstream, after the heater. See that they are at the ground level.
  • Connecting the power: Powering up the propane pool heater is very simple as you do not need a separate breaker. You can simply tap the power from pump switch or time clock. You can use 220Vor 110V and simply follow the directions to connect power inside the propane pool heater.
  • Position the propane tank: If you wish to bury your propane tank under the ground, you can do so. For this, you will need to construct a removable fence around the tank. You can also fasten the tank and paint it in a fanciful design.
  • Connecting Propane Tank to Pool Heater: This is one of the simplest tasks you can do. All you need to do is to give a call to your local propane providers and let ask them to give you a quote for in stalling propane tank and connect it to your new propane pool heater. You would require informing them about size of your po ol heater in BTU’s as pool heater’s size (output in BTU’s) will define the size of your propane tank and regulators. In most cases, you can find it by looking at the model number of your heater.

What size Propane Tank do I need for a Pool Heater?

Usually, large size propane pool heaters need 500 gallon tank while medium to small size heaters need a propane tank of 250 gallon. Your propane service provider can be the best to suggest you with the right propane tank size based on the size of your propane pool heater.

How much Propane does a Pool Heater Use?

Usually, a propane pool heater operates by using 1 gallon propane per hour per 100,000 BTU’s. Propane prices are not constant and on an average, it costs around $2.50 per gallon of propane.

Propane above ground pool heater can be installed within few hours and it is suggested to take the help of an expertized professional to avoid complicated maintenance or repair risks. The installation procedure is just like how you install a gas pool heater except that the orifice sizes differ.

Above The Ground Pool Heat Pump

A heat pump can be the best solution for your pool that freezes throughout the cool climatic conditions. Heat pumps are more economical than the traditional gas heaters. You can use the energy of heat pump only when you want to warm your pool.

A pool heat pump makes use of electricity to pull the heat from surround air and transfers it to the pool water. Hence it is ecologically safe and clean while proving to be cost efficient. Read More..


If you want to extend spending your time in an above ground swimming pool even after summer, you can make it possible by using above ground swimming pool heaters. These heaters come in various models based on the type of energy they to operate.

Among all, above ground pool solar heaters are the most inexpensive and simple and these come in various models to support different types of swimming pools. Based on your swimming pool construction system, you can select the right model that benefits you in a better way while costing you minimum.

Bryan Mallory

My name is Bryan Mallory and I have over 25 years of experience in swimming pool, spa maintenance and repairs. With my experience and knowledge I can return your pool back to its best and keep it in peak condition.