AquaCal TropiCal 90 Pool Heat Pump
The T90 pool heat pump from Aqua Cal’s TropiCal line combines state-of-the-art features for a reliable and affordable unit. To maximize efficiency, the corrosion-resistant evaporator has a large surface and the tube-in-tube heat exchanger is made of titanium to eliminate any corrosion from harsh pool chemicals. Also, the fan grill is vinyl-coated to protect the unit’s internal components from rust and other damage. With an automatic defroster and 90,000 BTUs, this unit is great for keeping your pool warm even when the temperature drops into the 40’s.
AHRI Standard Rating Conditions. Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute.
80°F/ 80°F/ 80%
Used as the basis of comparison for performance characteristics.
This institute operates to standardize the testing and performance data for all heat pumps. Seer Ratings and Performance data must be factual, accurate and verified.
80°F / 80°F / 63 %
BTU: British thermal unit. A BTU is the measured amount of heat output the unit will produce. The BTU output will vary with the ambient air temperature and humidity levels.
COP Coefficient of Performance = KW out/KW in; KW in = KW out/ COP.
The higher the number, the less electricity used. The coefficient of performance of a heat pump is the measured ratio of kilowatt usage compared to the kilowatt output. The greatest value a heat pump provides a pool owner is to deliver a warm pool or hot spa at the lowest possible cost of operation.
Heat pumps are available in single or three phase units.
A Three-Phase or Multi-Phase heat pump has 2 or more speeds with a high and low setting.
A single-phase heat pump has one setting for cooling and heating. Single phase heat pumps cycle air at one speed and may take longer to heat depending on the temperature.
Pool Water Flow
National: Two (2) Years Parts. Five (5) Years Compressor. Two (2) Years Labor.
Florida: Five (5) years labor, Seven (7) years parts, lifetime on the titanium heat exchanger.
North East: (CT, DC, DE, MA, MD, ME, NH, NJ, NY, PA, RI, VA, & VT): Seven (7) Years Parts. Seven (7) Years Compressor. (2) Years Labor. The Manufacturer's Patented ThermoLink Titanium Heat Exchanger carries a lifetime warranty on the titanium tubing part only.
Pool Size: 40x20
Pool Size: 15,000 Gallons
Since I was having some HVAC work done on the house, I paid the crew to install the pool heat pump too since they had installed them before. In hindsight I paid them way too much as it took just an hour for two guys and I could have done it myself with a little help to place the unit. Oh well.
In December/January in the Phoenix area, the days are cool (50-60F) and nights are fairly cold (35-40F) and while the heater can most definitely raise the water from an initial 50F to our desired 90F (with the thermal cover on), it really struggled to do so. It took 5 days to get there (running 12 hours a day) and then it had to run 6-8 hours a day to maintain it. Unless you have guests and plan on doing a LOT of swimming in Jan/Feb it probably isn’t worth heating those two months in a desert climate like this, but yes it is capable if you REALLY need it. To be fair, Asa actually did warn me about this so it wasn’t a total surprise, but just be aware if you have similar climate.
It is now mid-February and a different story. The days (70-80F) and nights (50-60F) are warmer and the heat pump easily maintains the desired 90F, running 2-3 hours a day to make up for the overnight losses (again, thermal cover on). Based on our high natural gas rates and low winter electric rates, I am saving a lot of money and projecting a 3 year payout on the incremental upgrade cost over replacing my aging gas heater which I had to do anyway. Also, since it heats so slowly I now keep the water at 90F and we can use it any time, unlike the gas heater which I used only when we wanted to swim (since it heated much faster) and let it cool off in between use, so we found we didn’t swim nearly as much. In March and April we have more visitors coming and expect to swim every day and it should be even easier to maintain.
Bottom line, after almost three months I am happy with the heat pump and think you will be too so long as you know how it struggles when the air temperature is low and that it heats the water much, much slower than gas… so once you get it to the desired temperature you’ll probably want to maintain it there. On the plus side, the pool is ready to use all the time so you will end up using it more.