Both chlorine and saltwater pools have their own unique features that make them great. If you are on the fence, you are definitely not the only one. In this blog post, we will discuss which option is the best by comparing the advantages and disadvantages of both saltwater and chlorine pools.
Saltwater and Mineral Pools
It is a common misconception that salt water does not contain chlorine because the water comes from the sea. But the reality may come as a shock to you. Saltwater is not free of chlorine and is not even relatively close to seawater. Saltwater pools are designed with a method called electrolysis that produces sufficient chlorine to sterilise the water in the pool. Typically the chlorine level is between 3 and 5 parts per million (ppm)
- Saltwater and Mineral pools can require less attention and fewer chemicals compared to chlorinated pools when the water is tested regularly to stay within nominal ranges.
- The water anecdotally feels gentler on the eyes and skin. A Mineral pool is often a preferred swimming experience
- The amount of chlorine in salt water is sufficient to sterilise it but not sufficient to fade costly gear and swimwear.
- Mineral pools contain Magnesium and Potassium which you absorb through your skin while swimming
- Saltwater can cause damage equipment, materials, and finishes more so than a chlorine pool. You will have to bear this in mind when selecting heating, interior lining and any surrounding brickwork. This can become a significant cost if it does lead to deterioration.
- The electrolysis process will increase pH and this can lead to cloudy water and more difficulty keeping chemistry levels stable
- A saltwater system can struggle when the water is warm and there is a high bather load. You will need to adjust the settings to suit the time of year and how much the pool is being used. It may require a manual dose of chlorine to bring the chlorine level up.
- Saltwater systems require the cell to be cleaned when calcium builds up.
Chlorine pools are regularly chosen because they are easy to maintain. Unlike saltwater pools, chlorine is added to the water rather than producing it naturally for disinfection. This needs to be added to keep the chlorine level between 3 and 5 parts per million (ppm).
- Chlorine pools require less use of electricity. This is because saltwater pools require a specific generator to transform salt into chlorine. Chlorine pools only require a pump to feed the chlorine into the pool.
- Chlorine systems are commonly fully automated to self regulate and self dose the chlorine and the acid to reduce the frequency of water testing by the home owner.
- Using a self regulating system can mean the chlorine level is stable at a low set point, where it is hard to detect in the water and keeps the pool sparkling and clear.
- Chlorine drums and acid drums will need to sit next to the pool equipment. Additional work may be required if you want to hide these.
- Self regulating chlorine systems have a probe which can get dirty and out of calibration
- Regular topping up of the chlorine drums can be tiresome
The traditional chlorine pool systems has been around for decades, which makes it an ideal choice for most people. However, the choice is completely yours. There are other systems nowadays that are becoming very popular, such as fresh water pools which use and ioniser combined with a saltwater chlorinator. Also, Ozone is commonly used in conjunction with a Chlorine pool or a Saltwater pool which can allow you to run a much lower chlorine level. For more information regarding quality pools, please contact us here.