Saltwater Pool Vs Chlorinated Pool
A saltwater pool gets cleaned using a filtering system called a salt chlorine generator. The system uses electricity to turn salt into chlorine, which cleans the pool.
In a chlorinated pool, chlorine tablets or granules are physically added on a regular basis for the same purpose.
In both pool types, its important to still check the pH levels and alkalinity of the pool so it stays sanitized and the chemicals stay balanced.
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What’s A Salt Water Pool
A salt pool has a salt cell that creates its own chlorine by causing an electrical reaction between the salt and the electrode.
So, instead of manually adding chlorine to your pool once a week, your pool is creating its own naturally. The difference is, though, that it is higher quality than the chlorine you can buy and it doesnt cause the same reactions to the skin and eyes.
It also doesnt produce those nasty chloramines people tend to have trouble with.
And you will never taste it because it doesnt even contain as much salt as human tears.
Salt Water Pool Test Kit
A salt water pool test kit costs about $15 to $55, and saltwater test strips cost $11 to $25 for 40. A test kit lets you know if you need to rebalance the salinity and pH level of your saltwater. To keep a healthy pool, the water should be tested once a week. Not all salt water pool test kits give results for the salinity of the water, so check to make sure the one you want to purchase gives that result.
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Using Chlorine As Pool Disinfectant
Chlorine has been a traditional product for pool cleaning for over 50 years. It became the standard because technology and available disinfectants made the pools easy to clean and maintain.
Pool disinfection often relies on chlorine tablets to clean and disinfect pool water from germs, bacteria, and algae. Tablets are dispensed into an external chemical feeder or in-pool floating device mounted next to the pool equipment.
The most convenient way to dispense chlorine tablets into a pool is with an external automatic feeder. While the pump is running, the water flows over the tablets, the tablet chlorine dissolves slowly in the pool water.
Changing the distribution rate to keep your chlorine levels in the optimal range can be easily done with the dial on the chemical feeder. The dial adjusts the amount of water flowing over the tablets this changes the rate at which the tablets dissolve and are released into the pool water.
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How A Salt Chlorinator Works
Salt chlorinators convert salt into a self-regenerating supply of pure chlorine, creating softer and safer water to swim in. Simply add pool-grade salt to your pool and let it dissolve. The chlorine generator will convert the dissolved salt into fresh, pure chlorine that offers complete sanitization and comfort while swimming.
Not only does a salt chlorination system require less maintenance, it costs less and is a more convenient sanitization method than traditional chemical chlorine sanitization.
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Salt Water Pool Conversion In 5 Steps
After you have purchased your salt system it’s time to install it in your existing pool plumbing system. It should be installed at the end of your plumbing after the pump, filter and heater right before the return valve to your pool. This ensures that the freshly chlorinated water that has passed through the salt system and cell enters the pool directly.
The ideal setup is to run your control panel and pool pump from the same power source and timer to ensure simultaneous operation. This keeps the entire system is in sync and ensures that the pump is running during chlorination. You can print off our salt water pool installation diagram for easy reference.
If you decide on a system that requires a more complex installation you will be required to do some basic plumbing and electrical work. It’s recommended that you hire a plumber or pool professional to complete the conversion if you arent comfortable with either of these tasks. If you want to try on your own you can follow our step by step guide on how to complete a salt water pool conversion.
1. Establish Location for Installation
In most inground swimming pools you will be adding the salt system in your existing plumbing that is fitted for 1.5-2.5 inches diameter. It should be installed after the pump, filter and heater and within proximity of the power source and control panel.
2. Plumbing, Flow Switch and Check Valve
3. Sacrificial Zinc Anode
4. Control Panel and Power Supply
5. Adding Salt
Draining The Pool Comes First
Use a garden hose or other hose and siphon the water out of the pool. Use a local storm drain or additional adequate space for all of the water from your pool. You may need to move the hose near the end of the draining.
Siphoning the water requires places one end of the hose in the pool and then sucking on the other end. Once the water starts flowing from the pool, gravity will continue emptying all of the water. Ensure a quick drain with a weight on the end of the hose that is in the water.
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Cost Of Converting A Chlorine Pool To Saltwater
To convert a salt water pool into a chlorinated pool, you can expect to pay anywhere from $500 to $2,500.
Of course, the overall saltwater pool costs will ultimately depend on the type and size of your pool.
Here are a few associated costs with salt water pool conversion:
- Salt water chlorine generator system: $100 – $1,800
- Salt: $25 – $180 .
- Installation: $300 – $500
- Salt Water Pump: $690 – $920 for an inground pool
- Filter: $500 – $1,600 for an inground pool
- Heater: $550 – $10,000+
When it comes to determining how much salt you need to add to your pool, you can use a standard 20,000-gallon salt water pool as an estimate, which requires anywhere from 10 to 12 40lb bags of salt.
Typically, 40lb bags of salt run about $5 to $6 each. On salt alone, you’ll probably spend around $50 to $70.
When it comes to salt water pool maintenance, you can expect to pay about $100 per year.
This cost includes chemicals and salt. Compared to a traditional chlorine pool that costs around $300 to $800 per year to maintain, saltwater is far more cost-effective. You’ll also need to account for the salt cell, which you’ll have to replace every 3-5 years. Salt cells can run from $200 to $700 and can add to your electricity bill when running. Expect to spend around $40 more on your electricity bill each month.
What Is The Cost Of A Pool Salt System Conversion
Converting to salt water pool systems isnt as expensive as you might think. Conversion doesnt require total drainage of the pool or any new construction.
A saltwater pool does require some unique equipment. The most significant is the salt chlorine generator or chlorinator. Some models cost around $800, but others have price tags of $2,000 or more. Youll also need a sacrificial anode to prevent salt from corroding metal components of the pool, and youll need the pool salt itself. Those items are comparatively inexpensive, however.
When you factor in labor costs to install the new equipment, expect to spend somewhere between $1,500 and $3,000 to convert a traditional pool to a saltwater pool.
But again, a saltwater pool is cheaper to maintain. There may be upfront costs, but you will save money over time.
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Converting Pool From Chlorine To Salt
Converting a chlorine pool to a salt water pool requires three very important things asalt chlorinator system,something called a sacrificial anode,and pool salt. The salt chlorinator system is the system that will replace your traditional chlorine system. Its prepared with the pool salt to produce salt chlorine as necessary.
What To Know About Salt Water Systems For Pools
One of the main assumptions about salt water pools is that theyre extremely salty. In fact, the salinity of a salt water pool is much lower than the ocean. This means its much gentler on your eyes, hair, and skin than a swim at the beach.
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Another common misunderstanding is the belief that salt water pools are entirely chlorine-free. They arent! With a salt water swimming pool, youll still need some chlorine to clean and balance the water. Even so, youll need far less chlorine than you would with a regular pool.
Chlorine is present in all tap water and with a salt water pool, chlorine levels wont be much higher than in water from your tap. That being said, its still important to make sure your pets dont drink the pool water, as the salt and other stabilizers can be toxic if too much is ingested. If you, your pet, or any other swimmers swallow a bit of water by accident, you probably dont need to worry. But as with all types of pool water, its something you should avoid.
How Salt Water Pools Are Easier On Your Hair Skin And Eyes
If you have a chlorinated pool, chances are high that your kids have picked up a few pairs of swimming googles over the years. Opening your eyes underwater in a chlorinated pool is painful after all, youre allowing chemicals to come into contact with some of the most sensitive tissue in your body. Salt water is saline, and saline is the main ingredient in eyedrops and contact solution. Salt water pools are a lot gentler on your eyes, skin, and hair because theyre naturally biocompatible.
Saltwater Pool Conversion Steps
Converting your traditional chlorine pool to a salt system is not as difficult as you may think.
You won’t even have to drain your pool and refill it with fresh water.
Because saltwater pools also use chlorine , the transition can take place in four relatively simple steps:
If you’d like to work with a professional to install a new saltwater pool, or to convert your existing pool to use a salt water system, get in touch with a River Pools builder near you today:
Congratulations! You are now the proud owner of a saltwater swimming pool. Let’s go over how much that might cost.
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Check Your Existing Systems
The first step is to examine all of your existing parts and systems. This includes the pipes, interior pool material, pumps, and all other systems that either touch or are close to your water. I recommend this for one reason: You need to know if salt will hurt those systems before you convert.
Its possible to replace smaller parts early, but if your interior pool material is a bad choice for saltwater, then you may need to wait until you replace it to switch over. At that time, you can change to a material that works better with salt.
If all of your components are suitable for the conversion, then youre ready to proceed.
What Tools Do I Need To Convert My Pool To Salt Water
Before you start the work on converting your above-ground chlorine pool into a saltwater pool, you need some essential tools.
These tools are necessary for water draining, filling, connecting the saltwater filter device, and creating the perfect salt-to-water ratio include:
- Saltwater control box: This is the device that does the saltwater chlorine magic. The pump in this unit takes water from your filled pool, cleans it, and puts salt and a small amount of chlorine back in for fresh pool water.
- Salt cell
- Drain hose
- 240-volt outlet
Once you have this small list of tools assembled, you can begin work on draining your current chlorine pool and filling up the new saltwater pool.
Remember that a saltwater pool needs a different control box than your old pool. The area where the old control box gets installed may require some retrofitting for the chlorination device installation.
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The Pros And Cons Of A Saltwater Pool
Even if you think you have made your decision to convert your above-ground pool into a saltwater pool, there are many pros and cons that you should know. Before conversion, take a look at the following pros and cons list so that any issues that come up or questions you have might get answered or resolved more quickly.
Some of the pros and cons of a saltwater pool include:
- Saltwater is more healthy for the human body: Chlorine is a chemical that is not great for the human bodys skin, hair, or eyes. It also stings your eyes if you open your eyes underwater in a chlorine-rich pool. A saltwater pool is more healthy for the human body and is gentler on the skin and eyes.
- Save money on chlorine: With a saltwater system, salt gets converted into pure chlorine. This conversion process means you dont have to buy chlorine and add it to your pools water. Once your system gets set up, you will save money on chlorine purchases for the future of your pool.
- Low maintenance: a saltwater chlorinator is a low-maintenance pool. The pool needs less maintenance than a chlorine-rich pool because of the gentler chemical mixture. You also no longer need to regularly add chlorine to the water since the chlorinator does that naturally based on the salt cells salt.
Why Do A Salt Water Pool Conversion
Chlorinated pool water can be hard on you because of chemicals called chloramines. These compounds are created when the chlorine in your pool water comes into contact with things like urine and sweat, and they can be harmful in two ways.
First, they arent effective at disinfecting the water like chlorine, so water cleaning is inhibited. Second, they cause irritation of the eyes, skin, and lungs. Strong chloramines can build up in the air surrounding a pool, especially indoor pools. When the air is thick with these chemicals, it can even cause coughing or trigger an asthma attack.
Frequent exposure to chlorine can even cause some people to develop an allergy or sensitivity to the chemical. And for those who are already sensitive to it, swimming in a chlorine pool can cause rashes, hives, and itchy skin beyond the simple dryness you may experience from chlorine exposure.
If you have respiratory problems, such as asthma or allergic rhinitis, you may find your symptoms exacerbated by frequently swimming in a chlorine pool. If your pool is causing you discomfort, a salt water pool conversion could be just the solution youre searching for.
On the less serious side, if youre a blonde, youve probably experienced your hair turning green in a pool sanitized with chlorine. Colored hair can look great, but this probably isnt exactly the look youre going for. So why does it happen? Science!
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Everything You Need To Know About Saltwater Intex Pools
Its no secret that Intex pools are some of the most popular and affordable options on the market. But what you might not know is that they can be easily converted to become a saltwater Intex pool.
Switching from chlorine to saltwater can be a great choice for pool owners who have sensitivities or children with allergies and for those who dont want to be caught up on the incoming chlorine shortage.
What Exactly Is A Salt Pool
Before the critics jump into the comment section to correct us, we understand that the name itself may be a tad misleading. A salt pool is an alternative option to the standard chlorinated swimming pool. As water passes through the cell, electrolysis occurs.
Electrolysis is the process in which the salt and water split into hydrogen and hypochlorous acid and converts to chlorine. Sure, you are still using chlorine to sanitize your pool, however, its just in a different form.
Another thing that might be misleading is the idea that a salt pool mimics water you find at the beach. Although I do love the beach, this is inaccurate. To compare, ocean water is at 50,000 parts per million while a salt pool sits close to 3,000 ppm. Therefore, it is only a fraction of the amount of salt you find at the beach. The cool thing about salt systems is once the chlorine finally breaks down, it becomes salt again.
The chlorine produced by salt is a higher quality than the traditional chlorine. By converting to a salt pool, you no longer need to purchase chlorine tablets, liquid chlorine, or shock.
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Be A Pool Owner Worth Your Salt
While a salt water pool will save you money on chlorine, remember that your pool will still need upkeep to maintain clean, crystal clear water. But if youre concerned about the pitfalls of chlorineand youre tired of green hairsalt water conversion may be the perfect solution for you.
Starting Up The Salt Chlorine Generator
It is very important to start off with good pool water. Your water chemistry should start off at the following values:
Salt: 3,000 3,500 PPMFree Chlorine: 1.0 3.0 PPMpH: 7.2 7.8Cyanuric Acid : 50 75 PPMTotal Alkalinity: 80 120 PPMCalcium Hardness: 150 400 PPM
At start up it is best to shock your pool from an outside source like a standard granular pool shock. Then, wait until the chlorine level has returned to between 1 to 3 PPM before turning on the salt system. Now its time to kick on your salt system. We suggest setting the system to 50% chlorine production and let the system run for 24 hours. After 24 hours test your pool water with a good test strip to see if your free chlorine is between 1-3 PPM. If your chlorine is too high or too low, dial your chlorine product up or down in 10% increments and retest your chlorine in 24 hours. Repeat this process until the proper chlorine level is reached. The nice thing is that once the salt system is dialed in it is pretty much a set-it-and-forget system, because it is always there producing natural chlorine for your pool at the desired amount to keep your pool crystal clear. Salt systems also have a superchlorinate feature which shocks your pool. So if you ever run into demanding water conditions then this feature comes in handy to shock your pool and get your pool water looking clear again.
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