Salt water pools not only add value and beauty to your property but they also contribute to healthy living. If you are considering installing a pool or upgrading your existing one, it may be time to look into owning a salt water pool. Neave Pools can offer you a variety of designs that are stunning and affordable or work with you to create an original design.
Salt Water Sanitization Systems have revolutionized swimming pool maintenance. Like all great technologies – it is simple and it just works.
Let’s start by clearing up the most commonly misunderstood thing about salt water pools: they do not use salt in the place of chlorine; rather they use salt (sodium chloride / NaCl) to manufacture chlorine (Cl2). The pool owner goes from being a consumer of chlorine products to a manufacturer of their own cleaner safer chlorine. The second most misunderstood thing about salt water pools is the salt concentration. To be clear, swimming in a salt water pool is nothing at all like swimming in the ocean. In fact, the salt level is more similar to tear drops than it is to ocean water – which is one of the reasons salt water pools are so comfortable to swim in.
Salt levels of note:
- 3,500 ppm – Pool Water
- 7,000 ppm – Tear Drops
- 35,000 ppm – Typical Ocean Water
- 332,000 ppm – Dead Sea
Swimming in a salt water pool is far more comfortable than swimming in a traditional chlorine pool. This is due to the presence of the salt itself. The higher concentration of salt in the pool makes the water softer on the skin and eyes. Much like water from a well that has been treated with a water softener, it makes the water feel smoother and less abrasive.
Salt generators, also known as chlorine generators, use diluted sodium chloride in the pool water to manufacture chlorine gas that is added right at the filter system, thereby eliminating the need for human involvement. As any pool water analyst will tell you, eliminating human error is a huge leap forward in simplifying the task of keeping water clean and sparkling.
Advantages of owning a salt water pool:
- Contain far less chlorine than conventional pools. This fact alone makes the decision easy. The strong odor of chlorine is eliminated from the swimming area.
- Dry skin, burning eyes, bleached hair and ruined bathing suits become a thing of the past.
- The environment also benefits because harsh chemicals are no longer necessary in the routine maintenance of your pool.
While salt water pools require less maintenance, they are not maintenance-free. Neave Pools can offer professional pool maintenance as part of our array of services to keep your salt water pool beautiful and healthy.
If you are interested in a new salt water pool or want to convert an existing pool, contact the experts at Neave Pools for more information concerning their advantages and installation. You and your family will soon be relaxing in your new salt water pool.
How Salt Water Pools Work
As mentioned above, chlorine generators use diluted sodium chloride to manufacture chlorine gas that is added at the filter system. Not only does this eliminate the need for human involvement, but it introduces pure chlorine into the water, unlike the tablets and powder shocks which are mixed with additives and binder chemicals that can alter water chemistry. As an example, a UV light stabilizer called cyanuric acid is mixed in with some chlorine tablets. This chemical acts to drop the pH in the water which is the cause for swimming pool eye irritation. When the water is too acidic or too basic our eyes become irritated. Chlorine tablets contain acid which makes it difficult to keep the pH neutral – this pH bounce is eliminated with salt systems since the acid and other binder chemicals are not used.
Chlorine is an ideal chemical to sanitize and oxidize pool water. Historically the methods used to add and regulate chlorine have had their faults – especially in commercial pools where bathers tend to notice extremely high levels of chlorine. The ideal chlorine range is between 1 and 3 ppm (Parts per Million). However when people add shock or chlorine tablets to a pool the level can skyrocket to as high as 9 or 10 ppm, making the water very uncomfortable, drying skin, bleaching bathing suits and turning hair green!
That overly high level of chlorine dissipates rapidly leaving the pool shocked… but not sustainably sanitized… so if it is not shocked again soon, the water can begin to develop algae and turn green. As you can see, traditional methods of chlorinating pools involve spiking the chlorine high enough to last until the next time the owner or service technician can treat the water.
You can think of a salt generator as the “cruise control” of chlorine –maintaining a slow, even, and steady chlorine presence at the proper levels in order to make it effective, efficient and non irritating.
One of the more fascinating things about the salt water system is that it doesn’t consume the salt in the process. As the chlorine breaks down it returns to a salt state. This means that once balanced the only time you need to add salt is when there has been excessive evaporation and splash-out that requires adding more pool water. This is most significant in the spring after being closed for winter.
Over the decades the pool industry has seen a lot of attempts to eliminate or reduce chlorine. None of them lasted the test of time because ultimately they were not effective at maintaining a well sanitized and clear body of water at a reasonable price. Salt generators, however, are not only succeeding but are truly revolutionizing swimming pool maintenance.