Superior Co-Op HVAC’s Recommended Pool Heat Pump
The NEWLY redesigned HeatWave SuperQuiet® SQ145 comes equipped with all standard features. The Patented ThermoLink Titanium Heat Exchanger at its core makes this unit a power-house that’s built to last.
- Corrosion proof cabinet with AquaTop
- Scroll Compressor – for quiet operation
- Microprocessor Controls
- Off-Set Plumbing
How do pool heat pumps work?
Heat pumps use electricity to capture heat and move it from one place to another. They don't generate heat.
As the pool pump circulates the swimming pool's water, the water drawn from the pool passes through a filter and the heat pump heater. The heat pump heater has a fan that draws in the outside air and directs it over the evaporator coil. Liquid refrigerant within the evaporator coil absorbs the heat from the outside air and becomes a gas. The warm gas in the coil then passes through the compressor. The compressor increases the heat, creating a very hot gas that then passes through the condenser. The condenser transfers the heat from the hot gas to the cooler pool water circulating through the heater. The heated water then returns to the pool. The hot gas, as it flows through the condenser coil, returns to liquid form and back to the evaporator, where the whole process begins again.
Higher efficiency heat pump pool heaters usually use scroll compressors versus the reciprocal compressors of standard units.
Heat pump pool heaters work efficiently as long as the outside temperature remains above the 45ºF–50ºF range. However there are now pool heat pumps that can work below this, they are designed by AquaCal and use IceBreaker technology. The cooler the outside air they draw in, the more energy they use. However, since most people use outdoor swimming pools during warm and mild weather, this usually isn't an issue.
What size pool heat pump do I need?
You should have a trained pool professional from Superior Co-Op HVAC perform a proper sizing analysis for your specific swimming pool to determine pool heater size.
Sizing a heat pump pool heater involves many factors. Basically, a heater is sized according to the surface area of the pool and the difference between the pool and the average air temperatures. Other factors also affect the heating load for outdoor pools, such as wind exposure, humidity levels, and cool night temperatures. Therefore, pools located in areas with higher average wind speeds at the pool surface, lower humidity, and cool nights will require a larger heater.
Heat pump pool heaters are rated by Btu output and horsepower (hp). Standard sizes include 3.5 hp/75,000 Btu, 5 hp/100,000 Btu, and 6 hp/125,000 Btu.
To calculate an approximate heater size for an outdoor swimming pool, follow these steps:
- Determine your desired swimming pool temperature.
- Determine the average temperature for the coldest month of pool use.
- Subtract the average temperature for the coldest month from the desired pool temperature. This will give you the temperature rise needed.
- Calculate the pool surface area in square feet.
- Use the following formula to determine the Btu/hour output requirement of the heater:
Pool Area x Temperature Rise x 12
This formula is based on 1º to 1-1/4ºF temperature rise per hour and a 3-1/2 mile per hour average wind at the pool surface. For a 1-1/2ºF rise multiply by 1.5. For a 2ºF rise multiply by 2.0.
Determining Heat Pump Swimming Pool Heater Efficiency
The energy efficiency of heat pump swimming pool heaters is measured by coefficient of performance (COP). The higher the COP number, the more efficient. However, there is no standard test for measuring the COP. Therefore, you really can't compare the COPs of different models unless you know that the manufacturers used the same test for each model. For example, the same heat pump will operate at a higher COP when the outside air temperature is higher.
Typically, manufacturers measure the COP by testing a heat pump pool heater with an outdoor temperature of 80ºF and pool temperature of 80ºF. COPs usually range from 3.0 to 7.0, which converts to an efficiency of 300%–700%. This means that for every unit of electricity it takes to runs the compressor, you get 3–7 units of heat out of the heat pump.
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