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Home Pools Pool Accessories 3 Best Propane Heaters for Your Hot Tub: Hot Water in Minutes

3 Best Propane Heaters for Your Hot Tub: Hot Water in Minutes

If you are scared of a large variety of propane heaters for hot tubs, this is no longer a problem. We took into account all the important criteria and chose the top 3 to share them with you.
3 Best Propane Heaters for Your Hot Tub: Hot Water in Minutes

After buying a hot tub, we immediately imagine relaxing in warm water and forgetting all the worries. However, most manufacturers prefer to save on production, so the hot tub has very weak built-in heaters, which spend several hours to minimal water heating. This is why people are often disappointed in the technology of hot tub and stop using them.

But you can heat the water much faster and tens of degrees higher by using an additional propane heater. Agree that it is very attractive to be able to heat your hot tub to the desired temperature in any weather. That is why we have compiled a detailed guide on the choice and operation of propane heaters for hot tubs.

Comparison Table: 3 Best Propane Heaters For Hot Tub

Despite the huge variety of propane heaters, only 3 models are really effective for hot tub. We will consider only them.

Hayward W3H400FDP
Hayward W3H400FDP

Winner in the category
Record holder in heating speed
Characteristics:
BTU/HR: 400,000;
Type: In-Ground;
Width: 32.8";
Depth: 39";
Height: 29.5;
Voltage: 110V / 220V

Benefits
✔ The fastest heating due to high power;

✔ Effective work in cold weather;

✔ Ease of controls;

✔ Minimal temperature loss during heating thanks to a system that eliminates the ingress of cold into the heater itself;

✔ Easy-to-read LED control panel

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Raypak Propane Digital Heater
Raypak Propane Digital Heater

Winner in the category
Best digital heater
Characteristics
BTU/HR: 406,000;
Type: In-Ground;
Width: 43";
Depth: 35.3";
Height: 31;
Voltage: 110V / 220V

Benefits
✔ Only these intelligent system of the self-regulating torch allows indoor use;

✔ Digital control due to intelligent heating control system;

✔ Flexible installation due to connectors to several types of pipes

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Hayward W3H150FDP
Hayward 150FDP

Winner in the category
The most cost-effective heater
Characteristics
BTU/HR: 150,000;
Type: In-Ground;
Width: 21";
Depth: 29½";
Height: 24;
Voltage: 220V

Benefits
✔ The lowestenergy consumption due to smooth heating technologies;

✔ Easy-to-read LED control panel;

✔ Easy to install

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How Did We Choose The Best Propane Heaters

If you choose an additional heater for a hot tub, then you have probably seen dozens of selections, according to which any heater will be ideal for you. We also have such ratings that cause only anger and indignation. That is why we have divided readers into certain segments and selected the best heaters just for them, so that you will never be disappointed in your purchase:

  • First of all, we looked at hot tub heaters with the highest rating;
  • We found 20 models which run on propane;
  • Then we selected 5 models for a detailed review (excluded outdated ones or models with fewer reviews);
  • After that, we analyzed more than 100 customer reviews;

This methodology helps us understand what is most important for propane hot tub heater users. We were able to highlight the best criteria for each model. After comparing our results, we listed the top 3 propane heaters for the hot tub. You can see our calculation methodology in the picture below. 

ByRossi® analysis methodology
ByRossi® analysis methodology

What To Pay Attention To When Choosing Propane Heaters

The following are the 3 most important factors to consider:

  1. The first factor should be the pool heaters’ power. The power of a propane heater is measured in BTU. Accordingly, the larger this value, the more powerful the heater. Therefore, if you regularly use a hot tub, we recommend choosing the most powerful heater, which heats water to maximum temperature in minutes. That is, you do not have to look at the thermometer for several hours, waiting for a minimum increase in temperature, as is usually the case with built-in heaters.

Hayward W3H400FDP (review) demonstrates these characteristics. This model can heat water to a scorching temperature even in winter. So with this heater, you will never have to worry about how much time you need to spend on heating the water.

  1. The next important criterion is venting. Propane is a gas, so its use can lead to suffocation and air pollution. Especially since the energy does not come from the gas distribution system, but from a separate tank. Accordingly, the pressure of the substance is much lower, and small emissions are possible. You should also be especially careful when using the heater in the room because if the emissions are not ventilated, the whole room will be filled with very toxic substances.

That is why for those who prefer to relax in the hot tub indoors, we recommend the Raypak Propane Digital Heater (review). This heater is best suited for indoor use. It is equipped with an intelligent control system that prevents the accumulation of harmful substances and filters them.

  1. Since your energy costs will be ten times higher than the price of the heater itself, it is very important to remember about energy efficiency. Keep in mind that very powerful heaters that heat water in a few minutes consume a lot of energy. Because propane is an expensive fuel, it can cost your wallet quickly.

Spending hundreds of dollars a month to heat a hot tub is definitely not very attractive, so we recommend the Hayward 150FDP (review) for economic people. This heater has the lowest level of BTU, which minimizes energy costs.

Based on these criteria, we have selected the 3 best propane heaters for hot tubs.

A Detailed Review Of Each Model

Hayward W3H400FDP — Record Holder In Heating Speed

Record holder in heating speed

BTU/HR 400,000 
TypeIn-ground
Voltage110V / 220V

Pros

  • Heats up 3 times faster than competitors;
  • Work in cold weather without reducing power; 
  • Minimal temperature loss during heating thanks to a system that eliminates the ingress of cold into the heater itself; 
  • Easy-to-read LED control panel 

Cons

  • Some individual heaters are not compatible with propane tanks;
  • High price

If you use the hot tub more than a few times a week, then you’re probably tired of waiting for several hours when the water heats up a few degrees. Therefore, in this case, you need a heater that can heat water to the desired temperature in a few minutes.

Hayward W3H400FDP has exactly these characteristics. This is one of the most powerful heaters on the market with a capacity of 400,000 BTU, thanks to which you can heat the water in your hot tub to a scorching temperature, even in winter. Also, the heater does not pass cold in heater construction due to the system of restraint of cold air that accelerating the process of heating even more. 

However, it should be understood that such rapid heating causes a large use of energy resources. If you use a hot tub every day, then unlike the Hayward 150FDP (review), you will have to spend several hundred dollars a month on propane. But it is quite acceptable for the opportunity to heat your hot tub in a few minutes in any weather, .

Raypak Propane Digital Heater — Best Digital Heater

Best for indoor hot tub

BTU/HR 406,000
TypeIn-ground
Voltage110V/220V

Pros

  • The only model that works indoors
  • Smart digital control
  • Flexible installation due to connectors to several types of pipes

Cons

  • Construction is not completely waterproof;
  • If used carelessly, the interface may break

Most propane heaters have a manual control system, which consists of many levers and buttons. Because of this, starting the heater turns into a real challenge for many people. In addition, you often have to restart the entire system to regulate the temperature, which, you will agree, is not very comfortable during relaxation.

However, Raypak Propane Digital Heater is radically different from other heaters. Due to the intelligent self-regulating torch system, this heater ventilates harmful substances very well and prevents their accumulation. Also, digital control allows you to start this heater in seconds after a hard day’s work, when you just want to immerse yourself in a hot tub.

Unfortunately, the ventilation system slightly reduces the power of the heater. Therefore, although the power of this model is 406,000 BTU, it actually heats the water a little slower than the Hayward W3H400FDP (review). However, if you want to run your heater with one button instead of reading the instructions for hours, then Raypak Propane Digital Heater is ideal for you.

Hayward W3H150FDP — The Most Cost-effective Heater

The most cost-effective heater

BTU/HR 150,000 
TypeIn-ground
VoltageIn-ground

Pros

  • Low energy consumption due to smooth heating technologies; 
  • Affordable price; 
  • Easy-to-read LED control panel

Cons

  • Slow heating;
  • Does not work from all outlets

You will need to spend several thousand dollars to buy a hot tub heater. But that’s not all the costs you have to make in order to get a chance to relax in the hot tub. You should also keep in mind the cost of energy resources on which the heater works. That’s why if you don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars a month on propane, you should choose the most energy-efficient heater.

Hayward 150FDP has these characteristics. With a capacity of 150,000 BTU, this heater consumes a minimum amount of energy to heat water. Moreover, this model is twice cheaper as its direct competitors.

Of course, the Hayward W3H400FDP (review) can heat the water in your hot tub several times faster, but it should be understood that these products are designed for different people. If you use your hot tub no more than 1-2 times a week, and you can do some things while the water heats up, then the Hayward 150FDP is the best option for you. This heater not only heats the water in your hot tub but also does not force to spend all your savings on propane.

What Is A Propane Storage Tank?

Keep in mind that you will need to spend a few hundred dollars on a tank for safe storage of this gas in addition to the cost of propane itself.

These tanks differ in their size. These can be small portable tanks of 100 gallons or very large containers of 1000 gallons. It is clear that the larger the tank, the less often you have to fill it.

However, the purchase and regular maintenance of such a tank can be expensive for people who use their hot tub only a few months a year, so many consumers rent their propane tanks from fuel companies and pay for them monthly. The fuel company also performs tank maintenance, so all you will have to do is enjoy the relaxation in the hot tub and not think about technical issues.

However, if you use your hot tub for most of the year, it will be more profitable for you to buy your own tank. In this case, you will have to carry out independent maintenance of the tank, but after one consultation with the installer, this procedure will not cause you any difficulties.

Safety Precautions When Using A Propane Heater

Propane hot tub

Propane, when burned indoors, produces carbon monoxide, which can enter your airways and lead to brain intoxication. Therefore, be sure to check whether this model is intended for indoor use when buying a heater.

Also, keep in mind that propane is a gas that is heavier than air. In case of leakage from the tank, it can accumulate around the floor. If even a small spark occurs, for example, the water heater light comes on, it may ignite. Therefore, always check for leaks from the propane tank to be safe. 

Propane Hot Tub User’s Experience 

Most consumers emphasize that even the smallest leakage of propane is easy to feel because during its production, the manufacturer adds a unique odor, so the slightest leak immediately becomes noticeable.

Summary 

In general, if the built-in heater of your hot tub has a small capacity, the propane heater is a very effective device to be able to heat the water in your hot tub in 20-30 minutes to any desired temperature.

Of course, the cost of the heater, propane, and a special tank can be quite high. But you can heat your hot tub much faster compared to other types of heaters for the same money. Agree that this is a very attractive investment.

FAQ

🌠 Which propane heater heats water the fastest?

Hayward W3H400FDP is a record holder for the speed of water heating. With this device your hot tub will be ready for use in 10-20 minutes. You can find more information about this model in our article.

🔨 How to install a propane heater?

You will need the help of a qualified technician to install a propane heater, as propane is a flammable substance and it is impossible to work with it without prior preparation.

💸 Which is the most budget propane heater?

Hayward 150FDP is the most budget heater that can heat a hot tub. This device is equipped with all the necessary functionality that you may need to increase the temperature in your hot tub.

💰 How much is a propane heater for a hot tub?

Prices for propane heaters for hot tubs range from $4000 for the premium Hayward W3H400FDP to $2000 for the budget Hayward 150FDP.

💡 Where to store propane for heating the hot tub?

To store propane for heating the hot tub, you need to either buy or rent a special tank.

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