Salt Water vs. Chlorine Pools

Salt Water vs. Chlorine Pools

What’s better than taking a splash on a hot summer day? Absolutely nothing!

While a lot of people opt to just go to the beach to get the dynamic sun + water combo, there are those who prefer to just stay in and soak in a pool instead. If you’re a part of the latter category, then you either have a pool or are thinking about getting one.

Owning a pool is never easy. The first step is understanding the popular types and making a choice. That’s what this guide will help you with.

Salt Water Pools

How they work

Now, to be clear, there is actually chlorine in salt wallet pools. This is why a lot of sources even go as far as saying that in essence, saltwater pools and chlorine pools are the same. However, the difference here lies in the fact that the chlorine level present in a salt water pool is much lower than that of a traditional chlorine pool.

In addition to that, the chlorine that you get in a salt water pool isn’t added by you. Instead, it’s created by the electrolytic process that occurs within a salt water generator that is usually a part of the system as well.

So, due to these lower chlorine levels, you’ll find that salt water pools tend to be less drying the surface of your skin.

The Costs; Upfront and Long-Term

At the onset, you’ll find that saltwater pools are a tad expensive. This is because for them to work, you will also need to get a salt water generator. This generator is what will provide a steady dose of chlorine, thereby extending the pool’s life by halting the development of algae.

In addition to the price you’ll pay to purchase it, you will also get some additional costs for constantly running the generator as well. The expert recommendation is that you keep the generator running for about 10 to 12 hours a day during the summer and six hours a day in the winter. However, keep in mind that this can vary based on factors such as the frequency of use, weather conditions, and more).

However, even with all of these costs, you also ought to consider how long you will be keeping the pool itself. The generator costs more than the chlorine pool chemicals as you keep the pool even longer. Also, if you want to learn more about the different costs of them, you should know that with a chlorine pool, you won’t have to regularly add chemicals to keep the water clean.

To wit, make sure that you keep an eye on the generator when you purchase it and figure out the schedule that works best. You don’t want to keep paying utility bills while you don’t have to use the pool, so make sure that you optimize its usage time as much as you can.

As regards other concerns, you’ll be glad to know that with a salt water pool, you only need to clean your pool once a year (except for taking out leaves and bugs, that is).

However, when the time comes to clean, you will need to drain the pool, put in new filters, wash the surface of the pool, and check out the chlorine generator as well. All of these might be labor and time-consuming, so be prepared.

Also, if the surfaces around your pool are dark, then you might get some salt water ring smears. There’s a high propensity for salt to be corrosive, so any lights or pool liner used could get damaged as well. So, feel free to ask your pool installer for the best type of light or loner to use around the saltwater pool

The Chlorine Pools

To begin with, the truth is that a chlorine pool is actually less expensive than a salt water pool. However, the problem with them is taking care of them over time. A chlorine pool has an inconsistent pH balance, and you will need to keep an eye on it to ensure that it’s maintained.

Usually, your installer will provide you with a maintenance list to go with your pool. Take a water sample to a pool supply store, and they’ll get you a list of chemicals to keep it safe and clean.

For chlorine to be effective, ensure that the pH is between 7.2 and 7.6. Calcium should be between 200 and 300 parts per million, and alkalinity should be between 100 and 150 parts per million as well. You’ll need to add chemicals for these figures to be maintained, so be careful.

Pool Maintenance

While a salt water pool can stay clean with less work (thanks to the generator), chlorine pools will require a lot of supervision. For instance, you’ll need to chock your pool every 3 to 4 weeks to kill bacteria. Also, ask for direction from your pool installer and ensure that you adhere to them. You will so need to know how much chlorine is in the pool, so you can discern how much to add.

Also, note that chlorine could mix with various forms of human output- such as urine, sweat, and saliva. These turn to chemicals known as chloramines, which cause skin irritation, eye irritation, and the “chlorine smell” that pools have. While chlorine can kill contaminates, these chloramines still remain in the water, and you’ll need even more chlorine to kill them.

Usually, these chloramines are killed faster with salt water pools.


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