Swimming Pool Heat Pump: Cost and Options

Swimming pool heat pumps are one of the most economical and environmentally-friendly ways to heat your pool. Thanks to their energy-efficient process, you can save a substantial amount on your pool's overall running cost while also extending your swimming season!

Here at 1st Direct Pools, we're always happy to offer advice to our customers. If you have any questions or queries about swimming pool heat pumps, please don't hesitate to give us a call or browse through our blog!

If you're already planning on purchasing a swimming pool heat pump, why not take a look through our great selection of budget-friendly and top of the line heat pumps on our online store?


What Are Swimming Pool Heat Pumps?

Swimming pool heat pumps are energy-efficient pool heaters. Not only are they great for the environment, but they also work wonders for your wallet. Working with the pool’s filtration and pump system, a heat pump will generate hot water and circulate it around the pool, cleaning and warming your pool in one.

The heat pump is an energy-efficient heating option because it uses a small amount of electricity to capture heat from the air, which is then magnified through the heat pump’s process and transferred to the pool's water.

There are various other methods of heating your swimming pool, such as gas, oil or solar pool heaters. However, a pool heat pump is environmentally friendly and often more cost-efficient compared to other methods. Also, with proper maintenance, a swimming pool heat pump can last ten years or longer!

A woman swimming on her back in a pool

How Do Swimming Pool Heat Pumps Work?

Heat pumps do not generate their heat; they use a small amount of electricity to power a fan, capturing heat from the surrounding air. This heat is then transferred to the pool's water.

A heat pump will draw air via the fan and use a compressor to intensify its temperature; then, the heat is transferred to the pool's water via a condenser. Once the water has absorbed the heat, the process will repeat, continuously warming up the temperature of the pool's water.

This process saves energy by only powering the fan and transferring heat as opposed to generating heat itself. The warmer the ambient air temperature, the less the heat pump needs to work, and the less energy is required.

The pumps themselves are most efficient when the outside air is 7 degrees Celsius or higher, which bodes well for the UK's spring, summer and early winter weather. The colder the temperature, the more power is required to warm up the pool's water.

How Quickly Does a Heat Pump Warm a Swimming Pool?

The time it will take for a heat pump to warm the pool's water will depend on two things:

  • The pool's size
  • The ambient air temperature

In cold weather below 5 degrees, the heat pump will most likely need around 12 hours a day or more to increase the pool's water temperature by 11 degrees.

However, there are ways to support the heat pump and save additional money. 75% of a swimming pool's heat loss is due to evaporation; if a solar cover is utilised, it will help retain the pool's heat, speeding up the process and supplementing the heat pump.

How Much Does a Swimming Pool Heat Pump Cost?

A swimming pool heat pump can cost between £500 and £7,000.

The cost of each heat pump will vary depending on the model and manufacturer. Some heat pumps may be a lot more affordable, but this may be because they do not include a silent mode for overnight and evening use.

The high-end pumps may sound expensive when compared to other heating methods, but swimming pool heat pumps are an investment, and they will chip away at their initial retail price when in use:

  • An electric heater will cost around 19p per kW (heater efficiency 92%)
  • An oil heater will cost around 9p per kW (heater efficiency 75%)
  • A gas heater will cost around 5p per kW (heater efficiency 85%)
  • A heat pump will cost around 4p per kW (heater efficiency 400%)*

For example, a 15' x 30' pool that runs from May to mid-September will require around 10,048 kW to maintain a comfortable temperature if there is only a loss of 1 degree per day.

In total, this will amount to:

  • £1,909.12 to run an electric heater
  • £904.32 to run oil heater
  • £502.40 to run a gas heater
  • £401.92 to run heat pump*

A heat pump's expenditures are nearly one-fifth of the price when compared to an electric heater, meaning that, over time, heat pumps reclaim enough savings to pay for themselves. One of the heat pump’s best features is that it only needs to use 2kW of electricity to produce 6-10kW of heat.

*These figures have been updated to represent the increase in gas and electric tariffs in Autumn 2021. The cost of electricity has been estimated at the UK's average of 17.50p per kWh.

An aerial view of a pool

How Much Does it Cost to Run a Swimming Pool Heat Pump?

A swimming pool heat pump's running cost will depend on various factors, such as the swimming pool's size, its initial temperature and the outside temperature of the pool. To make things a little easier, we have a table that should give you a rough idea of what to expect:

Pool Volume (Litres) Typical Pool Size Heat Required Per Day (kW) Heat Required Per Season (kW) Estimated Heat Pump Running Cost
8,000 12' Round 9.3 1,256 £50.24
16,000 15' Round 18.6 2,512 £100.48
25,000 18' Round 29.1 3,925 £157
40,000 12' x 30' 46.5 6,280 £251.2
64,000 15' x 30' 74.4 10,048 £401.92
100,000 20' x 40' 116 15,700 £682

Swimming Pool Heat Pump Installation Costs

As mentioned above, swimming pool heat pumps are an investment. When working out the expenses and taking your budget into account, it's worth having an idea of what the installation fee will entail on top of the purchase.

When installing a heat pump, it's best left to a qualified electrician. Although installing a swimming pool heat pump may cost a little more than other pool heaters, it's worth remembering that it will be cheaper to run in the long term.

Recommended Swimming Pool Heat Pumps

Here at 1st Direct Pools, we provide an array of poolside products and equipment. If you're currently trying to find the perfect heater for your pool, we highly recommend looking at our great range of heat pumps. Below, we've chosen a great selection of heat pumps, from top-of-the-line models to more affordable alternatives.

Aqua Inverter Heat Pump

The Aqua Inverter Heat Pump was made especially for us here at 1st Direct Pools by Fairland, a world leader in pump inversion technology.

Full-Inverter Technology powers these heat pumps, so both the compressor and the fan will independently run at their optimum speeds and adjust accordingly to meet the unit's needs, increasing its very competitive level of performance.

Key Features:

  • Silent mode for evening and overnight use
  • Saltwater safe
  • Auto defrost
  • Variable fan and compressor
  • Manufacturer's warranty

Aqua Inverter Heat Pump

Aqua Inverter Turbo-Pro – TurboSilence Heat Pump

After five years of development, the Turbo Pro Inverter Heat Pump provides its owners with a TurboSilence control system. The heat pump is 10x quieter than standard heat pumps and saves double the energy of its competitors.

You can install this heat pump for indoor and outdoor pools; it can operate in temperatures between -15 and 43 degrees Celsius and has built-in Wi-Fi.

Aqua Inverter Turbo-Pro Heat Pump

Inverter Comfortline

The Inverter Comfortline intelligently adjusts its heating capacity from 20-100% according to your heating demands. For example, when the summer season starts and the heating demand is high, the heat pump's compressor and fan will run at 100% to ensure fast heating.

To maintain the temperature, the heat pump will slow its speed to maximise energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

This heat pump provides:

  • Saltwater safe technology
  • Silent mode for evening and overnight use
  • Auto defrost, allowing the pump to function at 0 degrees
  • Manufacturer's warranty

Inverter Comfortline Heat Pump

Heat Pump Accessories

When purchasing a swimming pool heat pump, it's best to make a few smaller investments to support the heat pump’s lifespan, such as a pool bypass kit or a heat pump cover. These simple but effective accessories help to protect your pump or bypass the unit to prevent damage.

A swimming pool bypass kit will allow water to easily bypass the heat pump or other equipment in winter when the pool is out of use; this will prevent the water from freezing inside your equipment and causing potential damage.

A heat pump cover is helpful for when the heat pump is out of use, as it will help protect it from the elements throughout the winter.

We hope this guide to swimming pool heat pumps has provided you with enough insight into the general cost of a heat pump and our available products. If you require any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact our expert team.​