Hayward Pool Heaters – How To Choose a Pool Heater

Note: When you buy through links on poolgizmo.com, we may earn an affiliate commission. The availability and prices of the products are accurate at the time of publishing and are subject to change. The availability and price information displayed on the Amazon at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of the products.

Choosing a Hayward Pool HeaterThe sun is shining and there isn’t a cloud in the sky. The pool glistens as the sunlight reflects from the surface. Without a second thought, the bathing suit is on and you jump right in.  You almost swallow a lungful of water as the coldness of the water makes you gasp and shriek.  Even though the weather is amazing it was still late spring.  The water was still pretty cold and it quickly brings back the memory from autumn that maybe a pool heater would be a great idea.


Hayward Pool Heaters - Above Ground Pool

It’s a well-known fact among pool owners that maintaining a comfortable water temperature, especially in the cooler months either side of summer, allows you to get much more use out of your pool.  It may even allow you to extend your pool season.

Swimming pools and spas are significant investments and therefore it makes perfect sense that you should look to maximise their use whenever possible.  It also makes sense that when you use the pool it is a reasonable temperature.  Nobody is going to enjoy being frozen stiff in a pool and being in a hurry to get out.

Image Source

What You Will Get From This Guide

This guide is based upon reviewing the various types and models of Hayward Pool Heaters and pool heaters in general.  We have done the long and tedious job of pulling together hundreds of product reviews and most commonly asked questions and answers.  This research and analysis have allowed us to bring you a guide that will enable you to choose your next pool heater with confidence.

We will explain the different types of pool heater and identify which will be the best for your current situation or requirements.  If you have a further question please a comment in the area below.  We would love to hear from you.

Why Choose a Heater from the Hayward Pool Heaters Range?

We have discovered that Haywood Pool Heaters are extremely efficient and ensure you get the biggest bang for your buck.  Hayward is a name associated with quality and also the market leader offering best in class pool heaters to the trade and general public.

You can be sure you are getting an excellent product that should serve you well for many years to come.  Also, be rest assured that there will be plenty of support and a readily available supply of parts if things ever happen to go wrong.

They can be used to heat in-ground pools, above ground pools, spas, and hot tubs.  Both fresh and saltwater setups are catered for and all units are certified by the Canadian Standards Association.

Hayward pool heaters are suited to several applications with the most common being ‘constant temperature’ and ‘fast heat’ modes. Constant temperature mode keeps the pool the desired temperature with intermittent heating. Fast heat mode is another method that can rapidly warm a pool to the desired temperature as and when you need it.  This is great if you only want to heat the pool for special occasions like as a birthday party.

Most heaters also have a selectable pool or spa setting.  This doesn’t actually change anything but recalls a stored temperature setting from memory.  You can edit the stored settings to configure the heater to remember your preference for the required temperature.  This is very handy if you have the heater setup to heat multiple sources.

We will go further into the different requirements you may have and how the various types will either aid or hamper you as we go through the article.

Again if you have any questions as to whether a certain type of Hayward pool heater would be right for you just ask the question in the comments area below.

Types of Hayward Pool Heaters

There are a few different types of pool heater in the Hayward range with the common aim of achieving a warm pool but by utilising different energy sources.  The common types are:

  1.     Propane Pool Heater
  2.     Natural Gas Pool Heater
  3.     Electric Pool Heater (also known as a heat pump)
  4.     Solar Pool Heater

To decide which type is the best fit for your situation the first thing to look at is your local environment.  Ideally, the most cost effective would be the best choice but thought also needs to be given to fuel and power sources.  For example, it is no good buying an electric heat pump if there are no power points close to the installation area or the ambient temperature is just too low.

Some gas heaters also require a power source to drive the control unit for temperature setting and monitoring. So again, double check before you purchase.

Hayward Propane Pool Heater

Propoane Gas CylinderA Hayward propane pool heater would be an excellent choice if you would like the lowest cost of setup and installation. It is also the simplest so you will most likely be able to complete all of the installation yourself without professional help.

The most difficult part of installation with this method is plumbing in the water pipes. This could be made more complex if you are wanting to connect multiple water systems to the heater to heat more than one pool. This method woudl require the installation of isolation valves to control the flow of water.

Once plumbed in, all you would need to do is purchase the propane cylinders and accessories and connect them to the pool heater.


Using gas, whether propane or natural, is the fastest way to heat water with a pool heater.  However, gas is more expensive than electricity and solar so that needs to be taken into consideration.

Propane is also a portable fuel source.  If you have a smaller above ground pool such as an inflatable pool you will have the option to take it anywhere you want. It puts you in a position where you can move around the garden with ease.  This would not be possible with a fixed gas supply.


The main downsides to a propane heater are the slightly higher cost of the gas because you are buying in smaller volumes versus using natural gas.

Also, the requirement to keep replacing the cylinders as they become empty can become a chore.  How often you have to do this depends on how much gas you are using.  If you are likely to be using a large amount of gas a fixed natural gas supply would be the better option.

Hayward Gas Pool Heater

Oil and Gas RefineryJust like propane pool heaters, a Hayward gas pool heater is fast and efficient when it comes to heating water.  They are plumbed directly into the gas supply from the utility company and you shouldn’t need to touch the gas supply again.

If you are going to go down the route of a natural gas pool heater then you need to ensure you do your planning well.  The installation will mean the gas point will be fixed and once it is setup will cos further money and hassle if you want to move it at a later date.


You will pay slightly less for natural gas in comparison to propane because you are effectively buying in bulk from the gas company and don’t have the added overhead of the cylinders and transport costs.

Unlink propane you are also never going to have to keep swapping out the supply for a new bottle.  If the gas company runs out of gas you will most likely have bigger problems that heating your pool.


The installation will also most likely require a professional which again pushes up the cost of this type of pool heater.  Gas is not something you should mess about with so we would always recommend having a professional install your pool heater to ensure it is safe.

However, after analysing customer reviews, it does appear that many DIY proficient purchasers have gone down the route of doing most of the install themselves – especially when swapping out an old heater for a new one. An exchange is the easiest installation to perform owing to the fact most of the pipes and connections are already in place.  If doing a like for like replacement it will be even easier.

General Considerations For Propane and Natural Gas Hayward Pool Heaters

Natural Gas FlameThe cheapest models of Hayward pool heaters contain a pilot light and a natural draft blower.  This pilot light is used to light the unit and also generate electricity using the Seebeck effect.  This millivolt electricity is used to power the heating controls.  The benefit of this is no power hookup is required.

The next models up in the range have done away with the pilot light and use a fixed power supply.  This means an electric hookup is required and therefore reduces the flexibility of the system.  It does mean the control panel has much more in the way of functionality and also allows for the provision of a digital monitoring display and temperature setting.

Hayward Electric Pool Heater

A Hayward electric pool heater, also known as a heat pump, use electricity to extract heat from the air surrounding the heater via a heat exchanger.  The heat is then compressed and converted to energy which is then transferred into the water as heat.

The physical requirements for operating an electric pool heater are they require a level base to rest upon and you must have an electrical outlet close by the installation area to power the unit.


Electric heaters are more economical to run than their gas equivalents.  On the flip side, it is, unfortunately, more expensive than the free sunlight option offered by solar heaters.

One great benefit of electrical heaters is there are no emissions from the unit to worry about. Natural gas and propane will both produce emissions, even if they are designed, built and certified to be Low NOx.  Even though no emissions are produced from the heater itself there will still be the emissions created at the point of electricity generation.  This is certainly something to consider if you are concerned about the environmental impact of your pool.


Like Solar Heaters, this type of heater has its limitations.  If the air temperature is below 45 degrees Fahrenheit, it will simply not be able to extract heat from the air efficiently.  On the flip side, if the air temperature is a lot warmer the pump will be far more efficient.

If you are wishing to heat your pool during periods where the temperatures fall below 45 degrees Fahrenheit then a gas heater would be much more suitable.  This could be key if you are looking to heat a spa during the winter months.

Hayward Solar Pool Heaters

If you have a large amount of daylight and great weather a solar pool heater may work really well for you.  They work by harvesting the sun’s energy to heat the water in a solar collector.  The warm water is then pumped back into the pool and cooler water from the pool is again run through the collector to be heated.


After the initial investment of the equipment, the energy source is free and unlimited.  You may have some maintenance costs throughout the lifetime of the product but other than that the rest is provided by mother nature.


Cloudy Weather

If you live in an area that is regularly cloudy or overcast then an alternative fuel source would be more beneficial.  It is also possible to run a hybrid system that will make use of the sun when available but falls back to a secondary power source such as propane or natural gas to ensure the required amount of heat energy is produced.  A secondary power source, however, will drive up costs. You would, therefore, need to make a decision whether the solar route is worth the investment.

Daylight Hours

Some locations a distance away from the equator may also suffer from low amounts of daylight during autumn and spring.  This is due to the natural tilting of the Earth which brings about the seasons.  Again, if you have this problem a different type of pool heater may be more useful to you.

Shadows and Shade

If you are going to go with a Solar Heater it is also worth monitoring the proposed installation location throughout the day to check for any shadows.  These may be cast by objects such as trees or buildings.

If shadows do pose a problem they can drastically affect the performance of the system.  This is due to the fact this type of system only works to its full potential with direct sunlight.

If the installation location is in the shade or obstructed by shadows another location should be sought.  It may also be possible to have branches removed from trees to prevent the shadows but this could be damaging to the tree in question.  If you cannot get around issues with shadows and shade then another heater type could be more suitable for you.

Models Available

Hayward does not produce a specific all in one solar heating system but they provide the control system for one. In order to utilise the control panel, you will need to also purchase a solar collector.

What Size Pool Heater Do You Need?

If you have a large in-ground pool, unique installation or location factors then a professional site survey would be recommended.  If you have a smaller above ground pool or spa/hot tub then it is possible to get a general idea of size of heater required by performing a few simple calculations by following the guide put together here.


As you have discovered there are heaters suited to several installations. Hopefully by now, you will be clearer on which type of Hayward heater is right for you. If you have any further questions the this guide has not covered please ask in the comments and we will do our best to get the answers.

Here is the Black Friday deals article related to pools.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *