How much do you really know about salt water swimming pools? These types of pools are becoming more and more popular but there are some misconceptions about them floating around as well. This article shares some basic information about salt water pools and chlorine generators.
One of the most annoying misconceptions about salt water pools is that they are "chlorine free". This can be confusing for homeowners because these pools are often advertised as being chlorine free. Do not be confused. Salt water swimming pools are not chlorine free. A salt water pool had chlorine in it but it receives this through the use of a chlorine generator. Chlorine generators have been used for a long time in industry and now they are being used in residential pools.
Some homeowners might ask the logical question: Why have a salt water pool in the first place?
Important Note: As you may already know, ocean water has an average salt content of about 35,000 parts per million, also known as PPM. People can taste salt at about 3,500 PPM. When operated properly, chlorine generators require a salt content somewhere between 2500 and 6000 PPM in the pool. A good unit that requires less than 3500 PPM would be the one to buy. Why? Because if the PPM were much higher than that your taste buds would drive you out of the pool.
When you swim in a properly treated salt water pool it is very much like swimming in soft water. This can help your skin feel less dry after swimming. In a salt water pool that uses a chlorine generator, the water itself feels smoother, and your skin feels smoother after you come out of the water. Compare this to how you feel when you come out of a heavily chlorinated pool.
So how does a chlorine generator work?
In simple terms, the main function of a chlorine generator is to produce chlorine. This means that you do not have to buy, handle, or store the chemical as you do for regular pool.
When the generator is working correctly, it will produce chlorine constantly as long as the pump is running. There are some models that produce even when the pump is not running. This allows the pool to maintain a residual level of chlorine which helps to disinfect the water as well as control algae.
In order for the generator to work at its peak, you must keep the cell clean and free of calcium and mineral deposits. If the cell gets clogged up, its performance suffers dramatically.
These units should only be installed by a reliable pool contractor. Your pool contractor help you make the right decision as to which type of generator is best for your needs.