Definition – A heat pump is not a pump.

A heat pump is a heat exchange system, based on an air conditioning system running in reverse cycle. The unit takes the heat from the surrounding air and transfers this heat to the heat exchanger. The heat exchanger coils are encased in a container with the pool water being pumped through. The heat in the coils is transferred into the pool water. Air to water heat pump.

This heat exchanger is generally made of titanium, to be able to withstand the corrosive nature of swimming pool water. A heat pump still requires a water pump to circulate the pool water through the heat pump.

The price of the heat pumps is generally determined by:

 

  • The size of the unit.
  • The quality of the titanium heat exchanger of the heat pump.
  • The inclusion of electronic expansion valves and associated electronic software. This provides the unit with a more flexible operating range, thus being more efficient, especially in cooler weather.
  • The inclusion of sophisticated de-icing systems to allow for operation in cold weather.

 

The real good news, is that the heat pumps available today, are far superior to the heat pumps sold only a few years ago.

 

As with any form of artificial pool heating, it is very important to have a pool blanket to limit the heat losses. This, coupled with the fact that a heat pump has a very slow heat up time, means that it becomes very uneconomic to not limit the heat losses from the pool water.

 

The advantage of using the heat pump, is that you have many options in the sizing of the unit to:

 

  • You can fit solar electric panels to provide free power to run your heat pump.
  • You can choose a unit that just takes the chill of the water in the summer months.
  • Or you can choose a unit that has superior cold weather performance to heat the pool all year round.
  • You can upsize the unit to heat the pool quicker so you can maximise the running cost saving using free solar power.
  • You can choose an inverter system that is super quiet to run, and can run on the cheaper “off peak” power.

 

A heat pump, or more accurately, your heat exchange system will obviously be very efficient in warmer weather, as there is more heat to exchange. In cooler weather, with less heat to exchange, performance of the heat pump will drop off sharply.

This is the reason why it is so important to choose the correct model and size for your pool, and to meet your expectations of the heating systems performance.

 

The following chart shows recommended pool heat pump sizing for your pool size and your desired swimming season. The estimated running costs are indicative only, and will depend on how you use the pool, and the cover.

The estimated running costs do not include any offsets by solar PV panels.

The electricity price is based on a price of 26 cents per KW/H.

 

12 Months Swim Season

 

Surface

Volume

Minimum HP size

 Annual

Pool cover on

 Annual

Pool Size

M2

Litres

no pool cover

Running Costs

18 hours per Day

Running Costs

7m x 3m

21

29,500

18 KW

$3,250

9 KW

$830

8m x 3m

24

33,500

 18 KW

$3,700

 9 KW

$950

8m x 3.5m

28

39,000

22 KW

$4,300

 9 KW

$1,100

8m x 4m

32

45,000

 22 KW

$4,960

 12 KW

$1,270

9m x 4m

36

50,000

 26 KW

$5,500

 14 KW

$1,400

9m x 5m

45

65,000

 47 KW

$7,100

 14 KW

$1,850

10m x 5m

50

70,000

47 KW

$7,700

18 KW

$1,970

12m x 5m

60

85,000

50 KW

$9,400

18 KW

$2,400

 

Summer Autumn Spring (9 Months)

 

Surface

Volume

Minimum HP size

 Annual

Pool cover on

 Annual

Pool Size

M2

Litres

no pool cover

Running Costs

18 hours per Day

Running Costs

7m x 3m

21

29,500

14 KW

$1,970

9 KW

$500

8m x 3m

24

33,500

 14 KW

$1,140

 9 KW

$570

8m x 3.5m

28

39,000

18 KW

$2,600

9 KW

$670

8m x 4m

32

45,000

 18 KW

$3,000

 9 KW

$760

9m x 4m

36

50,000

 22 KW

$3,350

 12 KW

$850

9m x 5m

45

65,000

 26 KW

$4,350

 12 KW

$1,100

10m x 5m

50

70,000

26 7KW

$4,680

14 KW

$1,200

12m x 5m

60

85,000

47 KW

$5,680

14 KW

$1,450

 

Summer Season (6 Months) Solar Replacement

 

Surface

Volume

Minimum HP size

 Annual

Pool cover on

 Annual

Pool Size

M2

Litres

no pool cover

Running Costs

18 hours per Day

Running Costs

7m x 3m

21

29,500

9 KW

$1,160

9 KW

$400

8m x 3m

24

33,500

 14 KW

$1,317

9 KW

$450

8m x 3.5m

28

39,000

14 KW

$1,533

9 KW

$530

8m x 4m

32

45,000

 18 KW

$1,769

9 KW

$600

9m x 4m

36

50,000

 18 KW

$1,965

12 KW

$680

9m x 5m

45

65,000

 22 KW

$2,555

 12 KW

$880

10m x 5m

50

70,000

22 KW

$2,751

14 KW

$950

12m x 5m

60

85,000

26 KW

$3,341

14 KW

$1,150

 

Astral Pool Heat Pump Calculator

Calculate what heat pump is suitable for your pool and how little it will cost to operate each month.

Download heatpump guide