Best Pool Heat Pump System for Private Pool Owners

Ian Mutuli
Updated on
Ian Mutuli

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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Getting a pool heat pump could either reliably give you a warm pool, or it could get you burned. Many brands are selling these pool heat pumps online today, and while some precisely give you the product specifications, others don’t. Getting the best pool heat pump means being well-informed as a consumer.

There are days in spring when it’s warm enough for you to consider jumping into the pool for a quick dip, but the idea quickly fleets the minute you check the pool's temperature. If you don't have a pool heater, the pool's temperature will largely depend on the weather, and even then, often, it slowly heats up even when it's really hot. In the long run, it cuts the swimming season short.

Pool heaters are generally pricey, but they allow you to maximumly use your swimming pool for longer and in the convenience of when you need to, making them a worthy investment.

Here's a review of the best pool heat pumps, where we cover the good and the downside of each. This will help you evaluate and confidently identify the best heat pump for you that suits your needs on your own, even if you’ve never owned one before.

The Best Pool Heat Pump for Private Pool owners

1. Ecosmart US SMART POOL 27 Electric Pool Heater

EcoSmart SMART POOL 27 Electric Tankless Pool Heater,...
  • Flow Activation
  • Eco smart Pool Heaters are compact and easy to install for a new...
  • Set your temperature digitally to increments of 1-Degree. Set it...
  • Compatible with Eco smart Remote Control. Activation Flow - 12...
  • Can be used as an alternative to or booster to heat pump.

Electric pool heaters are a popular choice that makes the best heat pump choices, especially if you lack a natural gas line or don't want the hassle of having to keep propane for your pool heater. Electric, also known as tankless pool heaters, save on space with a design that makes them suited for both large or small pools.

This EcoSmart smart pool heater gives you a fast and efficient heating system of pools that can get up to 15,000 gallons.

Using electric pool heat pumps means that you need to know the voltage required to safely install and run the heater. It requires a 200 amp electrical control panel and connection to two or three 50 amp breakers. All that mean that it can heat pool temperatures fast since it can raise water temperature by a few degrees to 10 degrees in a 15,000-gallon pool in as fast as 13.5 hours.

It's also easy to operate, thanks to its digital control panel that lets you set precise water temperatures. Overall, it is an affordable electric pool heater that works well to make it to the best pool heater list.


  • It has flow activation - 12 +/- 2 GPM.
  • It has a compact and easy to installation.
  • It can be installed on both new or existing pools.
  • You can set the temperatures digitally to increments of 1 degree and forget it.
  • It is compatible with an Eco smart remote control.
  • It can also be used as a booster to a heat pump.
  • It is affordable.


  • It has a relatively low durability.

2. Hayward Heat Pump-W3HP21004T Model

Hayward W3HP21004T HeatPro 95,000 BTU Pool Heat Pump...
  • BEST FOR: In-ground pools that are used regularly and benefit...
  • ECONOMICAL HEATING: Using the surrounding air to heat the pool,...
  • UNPARALLELED DURABILITY: Ultra Gold corrosion-resistant...
  • CORROSION RESISTANT: Titanium heat exchanger ensures maximum heat...
  • TRUSTED BRAND: With over 80 years of experience, Hayward is an...

Considered the best pool heat pump for in-ground pools by most users and reviewers, the Hayward heat pump HeatPro W3HP21004T model. It is popularly known to heat up the pool water temperature in a short amount of time. It comes with an acoustic compressor cover with a profiled fan blade for a combination that gives the heat pump a relatively quiet operation compared to other pool water heaters, without foregoing any of its power.

If you live in a coastal region, salty air might be a problem, but this heat pump comes with a corrosion-resistant evaporator fin that is corrosion-resistant, making it a great choice for you. Most of its hardware is largely made from stainless steel, which is resistant to rust and corrosion to give you durability in years of service to its lifespan.

Unlike many heat pump pool heaters, it comes with a titanium heat exchanger that works to reduce heat loss caused by inefficiency in heat transfer. It comes in a plastic shell, but this heat pump works so well and has great features compared to most pool heat pumps; it would be hard not to put it top on the list.

Depending on the size you settle for, the Hayward heat pump gives an output of 95,000 or 140,000 BTU output per hour, which works to bring in-ground pools to the perfect temperature. This energy-efficient electric pool heater requires a 230-volt connection. Like other heat pumps, it operates as a heat energy exchanger that draws warm air from the surroundings and uses it to make the pool warm.

You can control the pool temperature from the heater’s digital LED control panel. What's more, it's a great choice for any swimming pool since it can be installed on both new and existing pool systems.


  • It has an acoustic compressor cover with a profiled fan blade that gives it a quiet operation.
  • It has an ultra gold corrosion-resistant evaporator fin.
  • It is largely constructed of stainless steel hardware.
  • It has a titanium heat exchanger.
  • It has heavy-duty scroll compressors.
  • It has durable, injection-moulded, UV-resistant body panels that are resistant to rust and wearing out.
  • It has a polyethene screen that protects the evaporator coil to maintain peak efficiency.
  • It is one of the best for inground pools.


  • It comes in a plastic shell that may not stand up as well to the elements.

3. GAME 4714 SolarPRO Contour Solar Pool Heater for Intex

GAME 4714 SolarPRO Contour Solar Pool Heater for Intex
  • For pools up to 10,000 gallons, Solar Dome Heater creates "Green...
  • Water Capacity 1.5 gallon. Heats 5 degrees Fahrenheit in 6 days.
  • 1.5 HP Pump, upto 19 GPM flow rate
  • Injection molded, foldable legs
  • Adapters for Intex & Best way pools included

This contour solar pool heater is essentially a miniature greenhouse 'dome' that you can use to heat up your swimming pool. It only takes up 28x 28 inches which means that it is compact enough that you won’t need to sacrifice a large portion of your yard to accommodate long heating tubes.

In sufficient direct sunlight, this solar heater can handle a maximum heating capacity of a swimming pool that is up to 10,000 gallons at 5° F in only 7 days. It has a heating system with all the adaptors included to work with Intex and Best Way swimming pools.

Unlike other exchange pool heater pumps, it uses the greenhouse effect of steam and evaporation to heat water rapidly. As well, the heat inside the chamber of the solar panels reduces the growth of algae or other microorganisms, making this heat pump relatively low in maintenance.

It requires a pump to work, but even so, it is one of the most efficient heating technologies that uses solar panels, and that is ideal even in places where the sun's availability is less predictable. Since it's quite affordable, installing two of these heating equipment for a large pool is probably best in most climates.

However, you should be aware of how incredibly hot the water can get while it's performing at its peak. Another downside is the fact that the included hoses are too short to position anywhere but right next to the filter, although you can always buy extensions if need be.


  • It is extremely efficient.
  • It easy to set up.
  • It is relatively affordable.
  •  It requires low maintenance.
  • It has metal connectors that are strong and durable enough for long-term constant use.
  • It has a streamlined design that would look really good in your back yard.
  • It has large tubes that provide a steady flow of water through the device.


  • It requires a pump to work.
  • The device can get quite hot.
  • The pump needs to be adjusted so as not to overdo the pressure.

4. Aquapro VIGOH77 In-ground Pool Heat Pump

If you're looking for a high-quality heat pump for heating pools, the Aquapro VIGOH77 pool heat pump is another great choice. It has a titanium heat exchanger that is one of the most durable and most efficient materials. It comes with digital temperature controls for easy use, meaning you can easily get the exact pool temperatures that you’re looking for with this model.

In addition, it comes with PVC slip fittings, which make it one of the easiest electric heat pumps to install compared to many heat pumps. As an added advantage, the Aquapro VIGOH77l can also be used to cool water. This comes in handy, especially when you accidentally heat the pool or spa too hot and want it to get back to comfortable temperatures.

Most people might need to have it professionally installed since it needs a 230/208V outlet. Wiring it at 120V would mean that most people would be able to set it up themselves.


  • It has a 100% pure commercial grade titanium heat exchanger.
  • It has digital temperature controls for exact temperature adjustments.
  • It can also be used to cool water.
  • It is designed for trouble-free and durable performance.
  • It has been AHRI certified in its performance.
  • It has electronic self-diagnostic codes that help determine the issue for you.
  • It has a high-temperature lock-out feature.
  • It is compatible with most remote systems
    It has a limited lifetime warranty.


  • It needs a 230V hookup.

5. Hayward W3H250FDN Universal Gas Pool Heater

Hayward W3H250FDN Universal H-Series 250,000 BTU...
  • BEST FOR: In-ground pools and spas with a surface area up to 750...
  • PREMIUM PERFORMANCE: The Hayward Universal H-Series 250,000 BTU...
  • CORROSION PROTECTION: The Universal H-Series boasts exceptional...
  • ENERGY SAVINGS: The efficient, industry-leading design reduces...
  • EASY-TO-USE: Intuitive front control panel provides easy...

Depending on the size that you settle on, this pool heat pump model gives an output of 150,000-400,000 BTU per hour. The Hayward universal pool heater runs on natural gas, meaning it has a low environmental impact and therefore meets the clean air-quality standards.

It makes use of a cupronickel heat exchanger that prevents corrosion, making it suitable for saltwater and chemically treated in-ground pools. It lets the owner control the water's temperature using the digital LED control panel, while the front panel gives service professionals access for maintenance. Like most Hayward pool heat pumps, it can be installed both on new and existing pool systems, making it an ideal choice for most swimming pools.

The cupro-nickel heat exchanger and forced draft system in the pool gas heater move air through the combustion chamber and bypass valve at a precise flow rate eliminating factors such as outside weather variables. These factors can affect the performance of a pool gas heater.

Installation is greatly flexible since it can be installed on both new and existing equipment pads. It also has excellent saltwater and chemical corrosion resistance that makes gas heaters well suited for the coastal regions.


  • This natural gas heater has an output of 250,000 BTU.
  • It reliably delivers premium performance for durability.
  • It has a durable cupro-nickel heat exchanger that offers great protection against corrosion and failure that can be caused by unbalanced water chemistry.
  • It has an industry-leading hydraulic design that reduces circulation pump run time which in turn provides energy conservation.
  • The front-panel access allows for easy service and maintenance.
  • It has an intuitive control pad for owners to have easy operation.
  • It has a low NOx emission that meets air quality standards, thereby ensuring low environmental impact.


  • This gas pool heater will need a natural gas line, or you'll have to keep propane on hand for the pool heater.

Factors to Consider to Get the Best Pool Heat Pump

A. Durability

We all know that humidity, moisture, salty water, and air can wreak havoc on metallic parts, so it’s best to invest in a pool heat pump with parts that are protected against these elements. Also, check for a heat pump with a durable heat exchanger since this part usually takes a lot of wear and is usually the part that breaks down first.

B. Efficiency

Efficiency, in this case, inversely scales with power. A less-powerful pool pump model can achieve the same results you could get with a more powerful pool heat pump with a little bit of patience.

However, it could take a more efficient model with less power, a day or two, to get to the same temperature level. The good news is you can speed up the process by using thermal pool blankets for maximum heat transfer.

C. Easy installation

Generally, installing a pool heat pump should be easy for pool owners, especially if you maintain your own pool. Particular manufacturers make this process much easier than others. So if you're going to do the job yourself, make sure to go for pool heat pump brands that provide easy installation.

Frequently Asked Questions on the Best Pool Heat Pump

1. Which is the most efficient pool heating system?

Consider using a swimming pool heat pump in average air temperature and climates for energy-efficient pool heating power. A solar heater is one cost-efficient way to heat your pool since it has low annual running costs.

2. Is it okay if I run my pool heat pump through the night?

The heat pump converts and transfers warm air to your pool, so running it during the day is best for energy efficiency. However, if you're hoping to go for a swim in the early morning and would want it at 85° in the morning, you'll have to run it at night.

Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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