Best Above Ground Pool Heaters (2020)

You know what! Each year, more than 1,40,000 people in the USA die due to stroke. For your information, it is the sudden interruption in the blood supply of the brain.

When you stick to a healthy diet and exercise routines, you can keep the stroke at bay. However, it isn’t the case with most people.

You hate to workout, don’t you? When you can’t enjoy what you do, it is quite impossible to keep on doing the same thing. What if the workout seems like fun? Well, swimming is fun, ain’t it?

Lucky for you that it is one of the best exercises in the world. Maybe, that’s why you got an above ground pool and here looking for the best above ground pool heater.

The temperature of the pool water changes in accordance with the surroundings. Meaning, it may become too cold to dive in.

Even though you live in a tropical area, chances are the nights will turn out unbearable. How can you have a joyful swimming session then?

Pool heaters are the answer. Since you have an above ground pool in your backyard, you have to look for a matching heater. We know how dreary the search for the perfect product can be.

Guess what?

We have handpicked the best of the best for you to check out.

Best Above Ground Pool Heater

After doing in-depth research and getting customer reviews, we have prepared this list. Check it below-

1. Hayward Natural Gas Pool Heater

Best Pool Heater

The first in our list is an eco-friendly heater with low nox emission. What we are referring to here is a 150,000 BTU model. In case you want to have one with an increased capacity, you can do that from the same Amazon product page.

It doesn’t matter if your pool is a bit far from your home. The wheels of this Hayward pool heater gives you the maximum portability.

Speaking of the controls, it has a digital display with capacitive buttons. Meaning, you won’t have to wander around in vain, trying to operate the heater.

The hydraulic performance is so efficient that it offers minimal circulation time. You are eligible for a one-year warranty if something feels off.

Features

  • This heater is portable enough to transport with.
  • The patented polymer head offers ultimate hydraulic efficiency.
  • Its bypass valve design increases reliability.
  • Offers left-side or right-side electric, gas, and water connections.
  • This Hayward heater has 150,000 BTU capacity.
Pros
  • Extremely low NOx emission
  • Lightweight design.
  • Easy installation.
  • Intuitive digital display with capacitive buttons.
  • Reduced circulation time.
Cons
  • Lack of multiple color variants.
  • No solar power consumption.

2. EcoSmart Tankless Pool Heater

Best Tankless Pool Heater

Do you think the Hayward above ground pool heater we just shared above is not compact enough? Then, this one from EcoSmart is going to cheer you up. It has a small form factor, but that doesn’t limit its water heating capability. There are two variants that you can choose from.

In order to reduce the risk of burning components inside, this heater uses the company’s latest flow sensor technology.

While most of the other manufacturers still linger around the traditional pressure switch activation, this definitely is a step up.

Upfront, you can see a digital display, which indicates the temperature. Just below, with a silver knob, you get to control it.

Features

  • This tankless water heater is lightweight.
  • The flow activation technology avoids the risk of burning elements.
  • It can be used as an alternative or booster to a heat pump.
  • The highest achievable temperature is 41-degree Celsius
  • Power consumption is too low to be bothered about.
Pros
  • Digital thermostat controller.
  • Straight forward installation.
  • Smart temperature maintenance.
  • Made out of stainless steel.
  • Super affordable.
Cons
  • 3x 50Amp breakers are mandatory.

3. Hayward W3HP21004T Pool Heater

Best Hayward Pool Heater

When it comes to heat pumps or pool heaters, we can’t just overlook the brand Hayward. They have taken enough care in designing the fan blades for the quiet operation.

But wait…

You may not fancy noiseless functioning especially if you are living in a coastal area. Then, you must really look into the durability of the product because the chances of metal parts rusting are high in the place you live.

This Hayward above ground pool heater has a corrosion-resistant evaporator fin. Moreover, the stainless steel hardware with its polyethylene cover ensures maximum efficiency.

The heat exchanger, since it is made out of titanium, increases the temperature with the highest reliability.

Pros
  • Durable injection molded UV-resistant body panels.
  • Maintains ideal temperature all the time.
  • Chemical corrosion resistance.
  • Minimal turn-around time.
  • Easy installation.
Cons
  • No multiple color variants.
  • Lack of digital screen.

4. Raypak Natural Gas Pool Heater

Best Pool Heater

Not everybody’s pool has the same size. Meaning, the required capacity of the heater should also vary in order to get the desired result. If you have a fairly big above ground pool, you must look into this Raypak heater of 206,000 BTU.

Though it has nothing to offer design-wise, you will find it highly portable and easy to use with its mechanical thermostat.

The one thing that makes this stand out from the rest is the wind resistance. So, you won’t sense a sudden decrement in the pool temperature even on a cool breezy day.

The company claims they test every single unit right before packing it up, in order to ensure maximum fuel efficiency.

Features

  • This heater features high heat capacity.
  • The thermostat can be manually set to your liking.
  • PolyTuf powder coating and polymer headers keep the heater away from rust.
  • Sports minimal design.
  • The millivolt ignition system doesn’t require external power.
Pros
  • Internal current generating mechanism.
  • Wind resistant.
  • Offers maximum heat transfer.
  • High fuel efficiency.
Cons
  • May not be appealing for design fanatics.
  • Only for residential use.

5. Pentair Stainless Steel Heater

Best Pool Water Heater

Are you looking for a small but best pool heater? Do you not want the fancy BTU numbers? Then, Pentair Stainless steel heater is going to rejoice you.

As is the case with almost all the listings in this article, you won’t get anything fancy with the outlook. However, it can heat up your pool much faster than you ever think.

Energy efficiency is at the peak here. Since its small BTU number, the usual energy consumption is low. Moreover, the internal saving mechanism brings consumption even down.

If you have a tiny pool in your yard, for which you don’t want to spend a significant amount of energy every night, you should eye on this heater.

Features

  • The heater works without making irritating noise.
  • An accurate digital thermostat is available.
  • Absence of sheet metal that avoids rusting.
  • With a bit of time spent, you can install it yourself.
  • You get a 2-year warranty.
Pros
  • Unobtrusive design.
  • No long waiting time.
  • High energy efficiency.
  • Low NOx emission.
Cons
  • Vertical fixtures are difficult to connect to water supplies.

6. Hayward Electric Spa Heater

Best Electric Above Ground Pool Heater

We know! We already covered two Hayward products. Nonetheless, we can’t resist adding this one to the list. Sporting all the features of heaters twice its size, Hayward electric spa heater is going to be an asset for your above ground pool.

The small form factor reduces the need for having a large space to occupy the product.

Upfront, you see a mechanical knob to tinker with the temperature. With that being said, you never know the accurate measurement, though (the maximum it can offer is 40 degrees Celsius).

This heater has been designed with after-sales service in mind. Meaning, the servicing is not going to be a hassle if you encounter any difficulties.

Features

  • Mechanical thermal knob to control the temperature.
  • The tank is made out of stainless steel.
  • You can place it even in a congested area.
  • Threaded head and safety sensor electric heating elements are also made of stainless steel.
  • Simple access to internal controls.
Pros
  • Availability of indicator lights.
  • Commendable after-sales service.
  • Includes a flow switch.
  • Easy to install.
Cons
  • More suitable for in-ground pools.

7. GAME SolarPRO Curve Solar Pool Heater

Best Solar Pool Heater

It’s no secret that heating is an energy consuming process. Do you think a pool heater is going to increase your electricity bill by a significant margin? It’s high time you look into a solar alternative.

Yeah, you heard it right.

Solar pool heaters are available in stores. What we got here can increase the temperature by 5 degrees in 4 days for an 8,000-gallon pool.

The manufacturer has gone with a curved design for the sunlight trapping part as it maximizes the heat collection.

Although the cover is transparent, it doesn’t project out the heat that goes inward. The adjustable legs can be utilized based on the available space.

Features

  • You don’t have to expend electricity.
  • The curved shape traps maximum solar heat.
  • This heater increases the temperature by 5 degrees in 4 days.
  • It is suitable for both in-ground and above ground pools.
  • Gradual heat increasing mechanism for convenience.
Pros
  • Adjustable legs.
  • Durable construction.
  • Perennial heat trapping.
  • Impressive design profile.
Cons
  • Not suitable for those who want quick heating.
  • More space is needed than regular pool heaters.

8. SmartPool SunHeater-Solar Heating System

Best Solar Above Ground Pool Heater

It always is a wise act to look at multiple listings before you stumble upon a product. That’s why we have included yet another solar pool water heater.

Coming from SmartPool, it evidently equips more solar panels than the previous one. Of course, it is a bit big. But you know what! The area and size of the panels do affect energy production.

Inside the package, you get end caps, stainless steel hose clamps, Teflon tape, and hoses for the second collector. The instruction manual is available in English, French, and Spanish. So, bid adieu to installation dilemmas.

If your round pool has a dimension of 12 to 18 feet (12 to 24 feet for an oval), you will only need a single box. As the measurement increases, you have to go for more.

Features

  • The heating systems are completely made in the US.
  • Polypropylene collects maximum heat without dissipating to the surrounding.
  • A multilingual instruction manual is available.
  • Every peripheral equipment is included inside the package.
  • Apparently, the maintenance cost is low.
Pros
  • Maximum heat collection.
  • Can increase up to 10-degree a day.
  • Exhilarated durability.
  • Saves electricity bill.
Cons
  • Rainy days are going to be dysfunctional.
  • May not go to the extreme temperature like an electric pool heater.

9. FibroPool FH 220 Swimming Pool Heater

Best Swimming Pool Heater

Next up in our list of best pool heaters is FibroPool FH 220, which is suitable for all hot tubs. However, you need to know that you can’t use it as a spa heater. In order to make this work, you need a heat pump. And, this one can transfer heat up to 20000 BTU per hour.

Inside the package, you get union connectors and hose adapters. With only 100lbs of weight, you will feel it easier to carry around. Of course, FH 220 is an electric heater with the maximum energy efficiency in its class (4.85 COP to be exact).

Features

  • Best energy efficiency (4.85 COP).
  • 20,000 BTU per hour heating capacity.
  • Suitable for pools up to 7,500 gallons.
  • No need for a bypass valve.
  • Best for all hot tubs.
  • 240 Volts- 60 HZ American Voltage.
Pros
  • Thermal indicator.
  • Minimal design.
  • Lightweight.
  • Easy to install.
Cons
  • May feel a bit slow.
  • Cannot maintain a temperature higher than 93 degrees.

10. Doheny’s Above Ground Solar Heating Systems

Best Solar Pool Heater

You may be wondering. Why on earth we haven’t included one more solar pool heater! Don’t worry. Here comes yet another machine that works on solar power.

Installing this above-ground pool heater is not going to be a sweaty job. You can get it done even without professional knowledge.

One thing you have to keep in mind is that the mounting kit is required for installation, which the product package doesn’t include.

Once you get over with the installation, you will find out it can increase the temperature up to 15 degrees.

Features

  • This heater works on solar power.
  • You can install it without technical knowledge.
  • The product offers a 5-year warranty.
  • Fitting accepts flexible pool hoses.
  • Offers minimal design.
Pros
  • Saves energy.
  • Maximum heat supplement.
  • Salt water compatible.
  • Easy to install.
Cons
  • Package lacks mounting kit.
  • May feel difficulty to find connectors.

Conclusion

So, here we are, at the end of the list. You have got ten of the best above ground pool heaters to give you a comfortable swimming session even on winter nights.

What if you ask us for one product to go with?

Well, we can’t help but recommend the first three (Hayward Natural Gas Pool Heater, EcoSmart Tankless, and Hayward W3HP21004T).

Just in case you decide to go with solar energy, you have three choices (GAME SolarPRO Curve, SmartPool SunHeater, and Doheny’s Above Ground Solar Heating Systems).

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