How Long Do Pool Heaters Last?

Pool heaters are truly a wonder! They allow us to enjoy swimming almost all year round. But how long do they last anyway? That's what we'll talk about today. We've done the research, and here's what we found out.
Pool heaters have an average life expectancy of 6 to 12 years. But if you use them properly, keep them well-maintained, and make sure that the pool has balanced water chemistry, you can help them last longer than expected. 
Keep on reading so that we can tell you more about the lifespan of pool heaters. This article will also answer if you can leave the pool heater on all the time and if it's worth investing in a pool heater. Let's get started!
texture of the blue solar film for the swimming pool underwater, How Long Do Pool Heaters Last?

What is the average life of a pool heater?

Bubble wrap like pool cover pulled over a swimming pool to keep in heat overnight

Who says you can only go swimming during summer? With pool heaters, you can go for a swim any day and any time you want without worrying that the water is too cold when the sun's out. You'll be perfectly comfortable swimming in warm water despite the chilly weather.
There are three types of pool heaters: gas, electric, and solar.
  • Gas-powered pool heaters are effective in making the water hot in a short amount of time. However, their operational cost can be quite expensive.
  • Electric-powered pool heaters take longer to heat the water, but they are cheaper to operate once they have reached your preferred temperature.
  • Solar pool heaters are expensive to purchase, but you won't have to spend on their operational cost as long as the sun is shining.
In a nutshell, these heaters take in water from the pool to bring it inside the heating tank so that the water that goes back to the pool is warmer.
Swimming in a pool is not just for recreational purposes. Many people use the pool for exercise to keep themselves fit and healthy. Swimming develops muscle strength.
Some are recommended to swim as part of their therapy so that they can be on their way to healing and wellness. You can move easily in water while reducing any pain and swelling that you might be experiencing.
Because of these reasons, more homeowners find it necessary to use heaters on their pools. This will make it possible for them to use the pool and swim comfortably anytime they need to. But like all appliances, these pool heaters have an expiration date.
It's natural for pool owners to be concerned about the lifespan of their heaters to be able to manage their expectations and make the necessary preparations in case the heating device is nearing the end of its life expectancy.
On average, pool heaters have a lifespan of 6 to 12 years. But there are some that can last for more than 20 years! Their life expectancy would depend on the pool owner's usage and maintenance of the unit and keeping the pool's water chemistry balanced.


There are various ways for you to help your pool heater last longer. For example, you can use pool covers to conserve the heat. This way, the appliance doesn't have to work so hard in maintaining your desired temperature.


Pool heaters should be scheduled for maintenance and inspection at least once a year. Experts will check its performance and safety and have the different components cleaned, adjusted as necessary, and properly lubricated.

Water Chemistry

The cleanliness of swimming pools is maintained with the help of different chemicals. Pool owners need to ensure a healthy balance between the pool's alkalinity and its calcium content.
Too much or too little alkaline can cause corrosion, while too much calcium will lead to the formation of white scales, which will hinder the smooth flow of the water to and from the heater. It is recommended to conduct weekly water tests to be certain that the pool has optimum water chemistry.
With proper usage, regular maintenance, and the right water chemistry, pool heaters can very well last longer than their average life expectancy.

Can I leave my pool heater on all the time?

texture of the blue solar film for the swimming pool underwater

Technically, yes, you can leave your pool heater on all the time. No one's prohibiting you from doing so. The real question here is, would it be practical to do so, considering that it'll impact your energy bill?

Pool owners are conscious about their power consumption and would like to know if leaving the heater on all the time would be more energy-efficient rather than having to turn it on and off periodically.

Experts tell us that heaters consume more energy when they are heating cold water. Once they reach the desired water temperature, then they don't have to work as much anymore. So, when you turn off the heater at night then turn it back on in the morning, it'll have to work hard again to provide you with a comfortable temperature for swimming.

Besides, you'll have to wait for a long time before the water temperature reaches your desired level since you're starting from scratch. This would mean lost time that you could have spent having fun in the pool.

However, it would still depend on your pool use and plans. If you use the pool regularly, it would be wiser to lower the temperature setting when you're done using the pool for the day rather than turning it off completely. This way, when you need the water to be warmer again, the heater won't have to work extra hard, and it won't take so much time to bring the temperature back to your desired level.

But if you have other plans for the weekend or you know that you won't be using the pool for a couple of days, then it makes more sense to turn it off completely. This will help you reduce your energy consumption and costs.

Is a pool heater worth it?

Aerial view of a new autonomous house with solar panels and water heating radiators on the roof and green yard with blue swimming pool.

Let's face it. Swimming pool heaters aren't cheap, and heating a pool of water can definitely take its toll on your energy bills. So, is it worth investing in one?

The answer really depends on you. The good thing is that there are a lot of pool heaters out there that are built with such good quality. With proper maintenance and care, they can serve you well for 20 to 30 years, which is a fairly decent amount of time that you'll get for your investment.

However, you should also consider the length of time that you want to spend swimming, the location of your pool, and the climate in your area.


If your pool is located in a shady area in your property, there will be plenty of times when the water would get too cold for your liking. It can get cold at night and during rainy summer days. If this is the case, having a pool heater is worth it because you get to have fun in the pool no matter if it's day or night, and you won't care if the sun is out or not.


You also have to consider the climate in your area. If you're blessed with sunny weather during most parts of the year, then it won't make much sense to get a heater. But for those who live in colder places, having a heater will allow you to swim comfortably in warm water until winter comes.

Length of use

If you think about it, having a pool heater will have you enjoying your swimming pool for over five months compared to just two when you don't have one. You can have fun in the pool from May to around mid-October, so you're able to get the most out of it.

This is really the main point anyway, right? When you want to maximize the use of your pool, then getting a good quality pool heater is definitely worth it.

As far as energy bills are concerned, there are several ways to make your heater more energy-efficient:

  • You can use swimming pool covers, manage your pool temperature by setting it between 78 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Turn the heater off when you won't be using the pool for several days.
  • Reduce your filtration time.
  • Consider downsizing your swimming pool pump.

You can reduce the cost of heating your swimming pool with these practices, so you don't have to worry about your energy bill every month.

Final Thoughts

texture of the blue solar film for the swimming pool on the water

Pool heaters are expected to last for 6 to 12 years. But when you use your heater properly, have it maintained regularly, and keep your pool's water chemistry balanced, you can enjoy the convenience that it offers for more years to come.

You may also visit the following links for some related reading:

5 Electric Pool Heaters For Inground Pools

Are The Water Heater And Furnace Connected


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