Natural Gas Vs. Propane Pool Heaters

Gas-fired pool heaters pack a powerful punch and will heat your pool’s water quickly. Gas heaters may run on either natural gas or propane, and although both gasoline will create your pool only as warm and comfy as another, differences in the energy content, distribution methods and cost of each fuel type may make one of these obviously suited to your needs and priorities.

Environmental Effect

In comparison to many different fuels, natural and propane gas burn cleanly and efficiently. Propane generates more carbon dioxide when it burns than natural gas will, but even propane produces fewer harmful pollutants and greenhouse gases compared to other petroleum-based fuels. In addition, propane itself isn’t regarded as a greenhouse gas in its fresh condition, but natural gas is; in case of a leak, propane is supposed to have less of an ecological impact than natural gas.


Assuming you have access to natural gas service, obtaining the fuel into your heater will probably be simpler if you decide on natural gas than it’d be if you choose propane. Natural gas comes to you via a permanently fixed line, and there’s always more gas available. Propane, on the other hand, requires a storage tank, which, besides being unsightly, needs to be refilled whenever it runs dry. This usually means you have to actively manage your heater gas supply rather than just counting on it being there once you want it.

Energy Density

If it comes to the total amount of energy you can get from a given volume of gas, propane has a definite advantage over conventional gas. A cubic foot of propane may produce approximately 2,516 British thermal units — or Btu — of warmth, while a cubic foot of natural gas produces just about 1,030 Btu, providing propane almost two and a half times the energy density of natural gas. A propane pool heater will use a portion of the fuel a natural gas heater might use to warm the same volume of water.

Gas Price

Propane’s advantage concerning energy density falls apart once you compare the cost of the two fuels. Provided that the cost of natural gas is roughly 40 percent of propane’s cost, it’ll be cheaper to gas your pool heater using natural gas than with propane. In most regions of the nation, as a result of shortages of propane, the cost difference is even greater than that, and natural gas is nearly always a more cost-effective fuel option for your heater.

See related