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When choosing a Heat Pump there are three crucial elements to consider; sizing, design and pool environment.

To determine what size Heat Pump is right for you the questions to ask are:

  1. Pool details; water capacity, type of pool (fibreglass, concrete, acrylic, vinyl) in-ground or out of ground, has it a cover & what sort of cover.
  2. Environment; is it indoor/under cover/sheltered, wind rating, lowest, highest & average air temperature.
  3. Your expectations; make the season more comfortable, extend the season, swim all year round, what is the desired water temperature.
Summerwave Heat Pumps

Pool Type

Surprisingly, Fibreglass Pools are the warmest of all. Concrete Pools are tricky, as they conduct heat/cold through the concrete to the soil, so effectively you are heating the water, the concrete & the soil surround. Vinyl in-ground pools are not too bad, but any portion of a Vinyl Pool that is out of the ground really drains the heat from the water quite quickly.

The importance of a Pool Cover

If you choose not to use a cover on your pool at all, please expect to be recommended a larger size Heat Pump as a cover slows down heat loss dramatically. A simple Solar Blanket (one of the bubble wrap covers) works really well at retaining heat on an outdoor pool. On an indoor pool a Thermal Blanket is the recommendation. If a cover is not possible, please consider the use of Liquid Blanket. This is the fallback option as it does retain some heat in the water as well as slowing down water evaporation.

The Pool Environment

This plays a huge role in determining the size and model of Heat Pump required. The warmer the ambient air, the smaller the Heat Pump. The colder the ambient air, the larger the Heat Pump. This includes night time as well as day time. Therefore, where you live & the typical weather temperatures for your location play a huge role in choosing a size. Wind is often an over-looked factor. Wind can rip the heat our of pool water. Choosing a larger size can combat these issues.

Sun on the water of the pool helps a lot as well as access to sun-warmed ambient air. Indoor Pools are notoriously difficult to heat as they usually have neither. Again, a larger size can overcome this problem.

Summerwave Heat Pumps

What Type & Model of Heat Pump Would Work Best For Me


Type of Heat Pump:

The position of the Heat Pump may determine the type of Heat Pump you purchase; a front venting or top venting model. Heat Pumps must be able to ‘breathe’; have enough ambient air to draw in for the heat exchange process and then enough open air space to vent out the cold air.

Front venting models draw in warm ambient air pre-dominantly from the back, requiring 300-500mm clearance from any obstruction. They vent the cold air out in front (horizontally) and require up to 3m (dependent on the obstruction; solid or partial) open air clearance out in front.

Top venting models draw in the warm ambient air from the back, left & right sides, requiring 200-500mm clearance from any obstruction. The cold air is is vented up (vertically) requiring up to 2m (dependent on the obstruction; solid or partial) open air clearance above.

Failure to provide the right ventilation may result in reduced efficiency and increased noise. Summerwave have Installers & Technicians who are happy to assist with choosing the right position for your preferred Heat Pump model to maximize efficiency.

Front Venting Heat Pump                               VS                                     Top Venting Heat Pump

front & top venting
Heat Pump Position

Where you place the Heat Pump may influence the type you require, front venting or top venting. As described, front venting Heat Pumps require more open-air space than top venting Heat Pumps. However, if you do not have a lot of room consider wall or roof mounting your Heat Pump, just like you do with an Air Conditioner. This often overcomes the space issue. Both front and top venting Heat Pumps can be roof or wall mounted. You will need the appropriately sized & weight rated Air Conditioner mounting brackets to be secured to your wall or roof. All of our Heat Pumps can be operated by your Smart Phone via your home WiFi modem.


Summerwave Heat Pumps


Model of Pool Heat Pump

Once you have a type of Heat Pump in mind (front or top venting) you need to choose a model. Most people choose a model based on one of three things:

  • Efficiency – this also impacts on your Carbon Footprint. The more efficient a Heat Pump the less power is drawn to do the same job, therefore the smaller your Carbon Footprint.
  • Power – are you restricted by the power you have available? Do you want a 3 Phase power unit? Do you only have Single Phase power? Do you only want a plug-in model even if it means it is not as efficient?
  • Size – In Pool Heat Pumps, bigger is better. Bigger means it will use less electricity to heat the pool. However, if you have loads of PVC Rooftop Solar Panel to offset your house electricity, it can potentially cost you nothing at all to heat your pool. In this instance there may be no advantage to go bigger than what you need, simply stay with the size that is right for your pool and your requirements.
Summerwave Heat Pumps

Please call our expert team or drop us an email. We would love to assist you with the right type, model and most importantly; size! We really do have a model to suit just about everyone.

Thermal Cover, 27°C water

Pool Size (L)AdelaideBrisbaneCanberraHobartMelbournePerthSydney
20,000 - Autumn/Spring10KW10KW10KW10KW10KW10KW10KW
20,000 - All Year10KW10KW10KW10KW10KW10KW10KW
30,000 - Autumn/Spring10KW10KW13KW13KW10KW10KW10KW
30,000 - All Year10KW10KW15KW17KW13KW10KW13KW
40,000 - Autumn/Spring13KW13KW15KW17KW13KW13KW13KW
40,000 - All Year17KW15KW17KW21KW17KW15KW17KW
50,000 - Autumn/Spring13KW13KW17KW21KW15KW13KW13KW
50,000 - All Year17KW15KW25KW25KW21KW17KW17KW
60,000 - Autumn/Spring15KW13KW21KW25KW21KW15KW15KW
60,000 - All Year21KW15KW25KW30KW25KW21KW21KW
80,000 - Autumn/Spring21KW15KW25KW30KW25KW21KW21KW
80,000 - All Year30KW17KW35KW42KW30KW25KW30KW
100,000 - Autumn/Spring25KW15KW35KW35KW30KW25KW25KW
100,000 - All Year35KW20KW50KW50KW42KW35KW35KW
120,000 - Autumn/Spring25KW17KW42KW50KW35KW25KW25KW
120,000 - All Year42KW21KW50KW70KW50KW35KW42KW

*Average pool dimensions used. Pools with larger surface area will suffer greater heat loss.

*Pool (solar) cover used for calculations.

*Average environmental conditions used in calculations for Heat Pump sizing in each location.

*At cold water start up, the Heat Pump will need to run for a longer time to reach temperature.

*This table is a guide only. Please consult a Summerwave representative for more accurate Heat Pump sizing.

*Summerwave accepts no responsibility for incorrect sizing based on this table.

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