Category Archives: pool heat pumps

Heat Pump VS Heater

Unless you live at the equator, you’re most likely going to need to heat your pool water. We’ve all excitedly jumped into a pool only to be shocked by the frigid water and what do we do? Swim as fast as we can to the ledge and hop out shivering our tails off of course! Even in warmer climates, a comfortable water temperature means a more joyful swimming experience and a longer swimming season. Invest in a heat pump or a heater to get the most out of your pool. But do you know how to pick the right one? Here’s a breakdown of the pros and cons of heat pumps vs. heaters:

Heat Pump

Heat pumps use an electrical source to transfer the energy needed to heat the outside air using a compressor component. The heat created is then pumped into your pool and the cold air is blown out from the top of the unit. Heat pumps are best used in a relatively warm climate or during the warmer months, ideally one that stays above 50℉. They are a very environmentally-friendly way to heat a pool for the whole season and are energy-efficient. That means you can leave the heat pump on longer and keep your pool not too cold, not too hot, but just right. Just don’t tell Goldilocks. Heat pumps typically have a higher initial cost than a heater but require less energy to do their work, so the lifetime cost may be lower, depending on your climate. Remember, you will need an electrical source to plug your pool heat pump into.


Heaters use either gas or propane to heat your pool water. They offer a powerful way to heat your pool quickly and on demand. If you live in a colder climate or need your pool heated less frequently, then this is the option for you. Heaters can increase your pool water temperature by several degrees per hour, so if you decide to have people over tonight, just fire it up and your guests will love your warm pool! You will need a hookup to a gas line or a propane tank. To decide whether gas or propane is ideal for your needs, consider the cost and access to gas or propane in your locality.  

Brothers Pool carries the best in pool heating options. If you’re looking for a heat pump, ask us about our Aquacal heat pumps. For a heater, ask for the Starite MaxEtherm heaters. You can reach us at (203) 265-5980 or check out our store at 250 Main St. in Wallingford, CT.

Are Heat Pumps Loud?

One of pool owners’ main concerns when installing a heat pump, along with energy-efficiency and effectiveness at heating the pool, is the noise created when the heat pump is running. After all, you don’t want your heat pump to be an annoying and hulking nuisance when you are trying to enjoy the tranquility of your pool! You also don’t want to bother the neighbors. So the question is, are heat pumps loud?

Decibel Count

The answer varies quite widely depending on the brand of heat pump as well as the condition it’s in. If your heat pump is making grinding, whooshing, or other strange noises, it is probably a sign that it requires some troubleshooting and maintenance. The top brands of heat pumps generally run at about 55-70 decibels, with Aquacal being the lowest at 54 decibels. Don’t be fooled, there is a massive difference between 54 and 70 decibels. We usually don’t think about everyday noises in terms of decibels, so if this is still too abstract, another way to think about it is that a heat pump is just slightly louder than an average a/c compressor.

Troubleshooting Your Heat Pump

Your heat pump has valves that backflow the refrigerant between heating and cooling modes. Many pool owners notice that their heat pump gets louder during the winter. This is because the heat pump’s defrost mode is kicking in and causing the aforementioned valves to shift, causing a whooshing sound, according to Hannabery HVAC. These sounds are normal and are simply a sign of your heat pump working overtime in the cold. The sound should abate as the pressure in the heat pump equalizes.

Abnormal Sounds

If you hear a loud grinding noise as if metal is hitting metal, you should immediately turn off the unit and inspect it. A piece of debris like a stick could be stuck in the fan blades and can end up causing more damage to your heat pump. If the blades are broken or bent, they can rip up the copper coil, causing refrigerant fluid to leak. If you think your heat pump is making abnormal noises, call in the experts at Brothers Pool to diagnose the issue.

Have any additional questions? Our wonderful staff are happy to assist, just give us a call at (203) 265-5980 or stop by the store at 250 Main St in Wallingford!

What Size Swimming Pool Heat Pump Do I Need?


It is still warm outside but in another couple of months temperatures will start to drop. Now is the time to consider purchasing a pool heater if you don’t already own one.

A common question that consumers ask us when shopping for swimming pool heat pumps is: “How big does my heat pump need to be?” You should have a trained swimming pool professional size your swimming pool heat pump, as its size will depend on many factors. There are, however, general formulas we provide to our customers to approximate heat pump size. We explain how to use these formulas in this article.

Heat pumps are sized according to required BTU (British Thermal Unit) per hour of the swimming pool. Consumer often make the mistake of purchasing under-sized units – units with insufficient BTU output per hour. Under-sized units must run longer in order to heat swimming pools. These longer run times translate to decreased efficiency and higher operating costs. Use the following instructions to approximate the BTUs per hour your heat pump will require.

  1. Determine your desired water temperature in °F.
  2. Determine the average air temperature of the coldest month during which you plan to use your swimming pool in °F.
  3. Subtract the average air temperature from your desired water temperature to calculate the required temperature rise.
  4. Calculate the surface area of your swimming pool in ft2:
    1. Circular pools: radius x radius x 3.14
    2. Kidney-shaped pools: length x width x 0.75
    3. Oval-shaped pools: (0.50 x length) x (0.50 width) x 3.14
    4. Rectangular pools: length x width
  5. Calculate the required BTU output per hour: surface area x temperature rise x 12


By following these steps, you can quickly and easily approximate your required heater size. Remember, however, that only a licensed swimming pool professional such as Brother’s Pools can perform a proper sizing analysis!

Information in this article was taken from AquaCal – makers of fine Swimming Pool / Spa Heat Pumps.

How a Pool Heat Pump uses Electricity

heat pumps

If you are a swimming pool owner, you already know the importance of a swimming pool heat pump. If you are in the market for a home swimming pool, you’re likely going to get an education in heat pumps.

There are lots of things to know about pool heating pumps. The first thing deals with cost. We all want to keep our energy bills at a reasonable cost, so one of the first questions will likely be, “How much energy is needed for this heat pump?”

It’s a fair question. Yet, it’s important to understand how energy consumption factors into the overall cost of a swimming pool heat pump. It’s also important to be aware of the impact the heat pump will have on the environment.

Pool heat pumps tend to be very efficient, at least compared to fuel and gas burners. The reason for this efficiency starts with the design process. Pool heat pumps use the surrounding air to heat the swimming pool. The air is pulled into the heat pump by a motor turning a fan blade. The motor consumes only a small amount of electricity. This allows for an energy-efficient and cost-effective method of swimming pool heating.

If you have questions about a pool heat pump, stop in to Brothers Pool. The team at Brothers Pool is prepared to provide answers to your heat pump inquiries.


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Brothers Pool

250 Main Street. (RT 150)
Wallingford Connecticut 06492
P: (203) 265-5980
F: (203) 294-1601

Driving Directions

In Connecticut take I-91 North or South to exit 15. Take Route 68 West towards Wallingford and Cheshire. Turn left at the intersection of 68 and 150 (Main Street). Brothers Pool is about 1 mile on the left.

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Monday - Friday: 10am - 7pm
Saturday: 9am - 5pm
Sunday: 11am - 3pm