Salt Water Above Ground Pool Maintenance
All pools require maintenance and a salt water pool is no different but you will notice it’s a lot easier to keep the water clean and balanced. At the start of any pool season or when first setting up your pool there are a few steps that need to be followed to ensure you create a healthy pool. If you are new to salt water systems be sure to check out our above ground pool opening page for tips and advice from our pool experts.
At the end of the season a proper pool closing routine will save you a lot of time in the spring when it’s time to start enjoying your salt water above ground pool again. If you want more information with step-by-step instructions on how to close your salt water above ground pool be sure to read our winterizing above ground pool page.
Best Above Ground Saltwater Pools To Chill And Relax
by Jared James | April 7, 2020
Above-ground pools have been a game-changer. They are cost-effective, easy to maintain, and are more versatile than their in-ground counterparts. You can set them up anywhere and their portability makes them even more user-friendly.
When it comes to maintaining pools, keeping pools disinfected is a headache. Chlorine has been a preferred choice for a long time. It is best at disinfecting the water, but it is harsh on your skin, hair, and eyes.
Above-ground saltwater pools have gained popularity over the last decade or so and not without a reason. The saltwater system makes the water soft and is gentler on the body.
Although it requires a higher initial investment, a saltwater system is less expensive to run overtime. Also, it requires relatively less maintenance.
However, we all know saltwater can rust metals. Therefore, a saltwater system can completely trust your pool over time if it is made up of any kind of metal.
Thus, if you are looking to run a saltwater system in your pool, you need to be very diligent about what kind of pool you have.
We have taken the pain for you. In this piece here, we have picked some of the best above-ground pools that either come with a saltwater system or you can safely integrate one into it.
Maintaining An Intex Saltwater System
One of the most compelling reasons to convert to a saltwater system for your pool is the ease of maintaining a proper chlorine balance in your pool. Theoretically after it is set up correctly it should run on autopilot. This is true to a point.
Most systems have an indicator alert when chlorine levels are starting to run low and it is just a simple matter of adding a little more salt to increase the salt content Ito your pool. The normal values for correct pool hygiene are between 3000 and 3500 ppm . At these concentrations the added salt cannot be noticed by taste or by unpleasant chlorine smells.
In our table above we show the recommended top up quantities when the Index saltwater system shows a Code 91 low salt alert. These values are just guide lines, so add cautiously and check as the ppm readings rise.
However from our experience we recommend doing a manual salt ppm check prior to adding more salt as the salt level monitors on many makes of generators can give misleading readings. There are various reasons for this but the most common is calcium build up on the plates in the salt cell giving a false reading.
As anyone who does any cooking knows its easy to add salt but difficult to take it away
Thats why a manual test is our preferred first option. Manual salt testing kits are cheap and easy to understand. They should be a part of any saltwater pool owners kit.
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Clorox 81040clx Premium Pool Salt Best Value
Next on our list is the Clorox 81040CLX Premium pool salt. The Clorox pool chemical and maintenance products usually work very well but cost quite a bit of money. This pool salt is the best pool salt for the money that we can find.
This is a very pure salt that dissolves quickly in your pool. The amount you will need to treat your pool will vary, but the bag does come in a 40-pound size. The major complaint that homeowners had with the Clorox pool salt was the packaging.
The bag that the pool salt is kept in is quite thin and sometimes opens up during shipping. Keep this in mind prior to opening the box to avoid spilling salt all over your front doorsteps. Open this package carefully and make sure the bag is not leaking before removing it. Outside of that, you will be getting an excellent value for this pool salt.
Next on our list is the Diamond Crystal 8526. This is a premium pool salt , but the Diamond Crystal will cost you quite a bit more money. This pool salt is very pure and will absolutely help to ensure water clarity and cleanliness.
Diamond Crystal dissolves fast and will not require any extra work on your part to make sure this is adequately mixed into your pool. Truly, the only issue with the Diamond Crystal option is the price. We have a hard time figuring out why it is so much more expensive than the other options on our list, when it seems to produce the same results.
What Is The Budget For Your Above Ground Pool
Weve come to the most critical point. Even if all else falls into place, if the budget doesnt allow, it merely doesnt. Set a budget not only for the initial investment of the pool but for the maintenance and water as well. A pool is an ongoing investment, and you need to be aware of how much money you will need to spend monthly on water, chemicals, and electricity.
Although the budget is a leading factor, dont merely go for the cheapest pool available in the size you need. Do the research and make sure that your low initial investment doesnt end up costing you a lot more in the end due to bad quality. You dont want to have to invest in a new pool every season. Its better to choose one that will last at least several years.
Saltwater Swimming Pool To Feel Or Not To Feel Not Really A Question
Over the 35 years of being in the pool business, I have heard many people describe the feeling of being in a salt pool. They would say how nice it feels on their skin and how healthy it felt.
We all have different levels of sensitivity of our senses, but the chances of really feeling the difference between a saltwater pool and a regular one are somewhere between slim and none.
Many years ago, I had a pool service company. It was a great business and I kept it for sixteen years before deciding to move on. During this time, salt chlorine generators for residential pools came into existence.
The early salt generator designs were slightly more complicated and definitely more temperamental. They had to be maintained well to keep working. And to make matters harder, it was difficult to tell how well it was making chlorine or if it was making it at all.
Over the next few years, the designs got better but there was still an issue of them potentially not working well. Then units came out that would need an expensive electronic board or cell replacement after only a couple of years. And although most of my maintenance clients were middle-class in-ground pool owners, many wouldnt opt for such an expensive fix.
You may be asking what this trip down memory lane has to do with this article. Well, during that time I had a lot of swimmers who thought they were swimming in a salt pool and would comment on it. They would say all these great things about how it felt to swim in saltwater.
How To Take Care Of Your Pool
Whether buying the best above ground pool, fiberglass pool, or hot tub on the market, there are is one thing to keep in mind in order to maintain a healthy pool environment you need to take care of the water! The two most obvious things to think about is water circulation, and of course, cleaning the sides and bottom of the pool itself.
Firstly, lets take a look at the importance of water circulation in a pool.
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Bestway Steel Pro Rectangular Pool
This is a fantastic smaller pool at 7.25 feet by 5 feet at 17 inches depth. The Bestway Steel Pro Rectangular pool is also available in three larger sizes to better fit it to your familys needs. It is easy to set up and uninstall and packs up nicely for storage for when its not in use.
It features extra-strong sidewalls that are made of 3 separate layers of material for added durability. Both outer layers are heavy gauge PVC material with a laminated polyester mesh between them that helps them withstand regular use and play. While the corrosion-resistant metal frames will withstand the elements.
The pool features a built-in flow control drain that allows you to drain the water from the pool quickly. Just attach it to a garden hose and lead the water away from the pool and house. As it is very shallow, this is the ideal swimming pool for families with small children. It has a water capacity of 317 gallons and can fit about 4 small children.
Although there is no filter included with the pool, there are ports in the pool sidewalls for adding a pump. Assembly with 2-3 people takes only 10 minutes.
- Very safe for smaller children
- Filter ports on the pool if you purchase a pump
- Built-in flow control drain valve
Intex Metal Frame Pool With Pump
Here well discuss the Intex Metal Frame Pool. This is a 12 foot round pool and is 30 inches deep, but there are other sizes if you need something more significant. It is a considerably smaller pool, making it very suitable for families with young children.
With this above ground pool, you get the Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter pump that works with A or C filters. The filter features hydro aeration technology that uses the power of oxygen for circulation and filtration, offering better clarity. It is equipped with a ground fault circuit interrupter for added security if the current is exposed to water. The pump has a 530 GPH and works at 110 120V.
The pool features a convenient drain plug that can be connected to a garden hose to lead the water away from the swimming pool. The sidewalls are super durable laminated 3-ply PVC material that is puncture-resistant to ensure durability. There are dual suction outlet fittings where the filter pump can be installed. The pool capacity is 1,718 gallons and can fit a family comfortably.
- Set up in less than 30 minutes
- Includes Krystal Clear Cartridge Filter Pump
- Shallow and safe for children
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Confer Above Ground Swimming Pool Curve Base Steps Ccx
This swimming pool ladder is number one on our best above ground pool ladders list, being part of a system that can be used on both freestanding pools or pools that are built into a deck. The staircase is molded from a super-strong resin that can hold up to 400 pounds and can be installed curving inward or outward.
Large, oversized mounting brackets hold the stairs stable and will reach across any top seat. The stairs are adjustable from 48 to 60 inches and are easy to assemble and install. Overall our entire team agreed that these felt the most secure getting in the pool and getting out of the pool, and were made with quality and slip resistance in mind.
How Much Does It Cost To Maintain An Above Ground Pool
On average it can cost up to $300 a month to maintain an above ground pool. It really depends on how long you run your pump filter and the size of your swimming pool. While filters and chemicals add to the cost of maintenance, electricity is by far the largest monthly expense. With smaller above ground swimming pools maintenance cost could be as little as $50 a month.
Four Observations That Helped Me Determine That Saltwater Pools Dont Cause Added Rust
Over the years, Ive had many discussions about whether or not saltwater causes rust in an above-ground swimming pool. Almost all that have been in disagreement with me were just pool owners with a bad experience with rust. Others were just internet trolls wanting desperately to just be right based only on their emotion and logic even if they dont have any real-world experience with above grounds.
Intex Krystal Clear Saltwater System
If you want to go green while still enjoying the best of your pool season, this one is definitely meant for you.
The Intex Krystal Saltwater system uses titanium electrolytic cells and natural sault to produce natural chlorine for your pool that is safe and better for the people using the pool and for the environment.
It produces soft clean water that is comfortable and luxurious for a swim at any time of the day without the potential harm of unnatural chemical additives.
This is the solution that would make your friends and guests appreciate your pool that much more because it wouldnt cause the trivial issues of swimsuit fading, or red burning eyes or even hair discoloration.
This is the perfect one-stop solution for any environment-friendly pool owner.
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Solaxx Saltron Reliant Saltwater Chlorine Generator For Pools Up To 30000 Gallons
- The Solaxx Saltron Reliant connects to the return line of the pool with PVC pipe or flexible PVC pipe
- Includes a control box that features easy push button icons with LED indicators.
- The flow switch allows you to install the saltwater system vertically or horizontally
- Will work for any sized above ground pool and inground pools up to 30K gallons
- Includes 3 power cord with standard 115V plug
- Includes a longer manufacturer warranty than most saltwater chlorine generators 3 years as opposed to 1 like most other units.
- Made in the U.S.A.
The Reliant system produces a pure, elemental form of chlorine by electrolysis of salt added to the pool water. After the salt is converted to chlorine and bacteria has been killed, the chlorine reverts back to salt and this process is ongoing. The salt concentration is very low and the water feels soft, silky and sparkling clean!
What To Consider When Looking For The Best Above Ground Pool
1. When is the best time to get an above ground pool?
Prices for pools can vary throughout the year. The cheapest deals appear from October and onwards through the winter season with prices getting higher again as late spring and summer draw near again. If you have a place to store the unopened boxes, you might want to take advantage of a good deal, however you should keep in mind that if the pool has a problem you will usually not be able to send it back after 30 60 days.
2. What type of pool should you get?
There are various types of above ground pools. The most common are the easy set pools and metal frame pools. Easy set pools have soft vinyl or PVC walls and an inflatable ring that lifts up the pool walls as you fill it with water. Metal frame pools are sturdier, as they have steel bars supporting the vinyl or PVC pool liner and can hold up more water in different pool shapes.
3. What shape of pool do you want?
Above ground pools usually come in circle, oval, rectangle, and occasionally square shapes. Depending on what you plan to do with the pool, the shape can make a big difference. Those who want to exercise should get rectangle pools for lap swimming, while those looking to swim recreationally can deal with any shape and should pay more attention to how much space they have to set up the pool.
4. Which brand should you buy?
5. How big of a pool do you need?
6. How easy is it to set up the pool?
7. Is the pool safe?
8. What is the pool made of?
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Best Above Ground Saltwater Pool Reviews & Buying Guide
Whenever the topic of swimming pools crop up in the past it is the perennial in-ground that the conversation would center around. But that has changed drastically in recent times with the above ground swimming pool now the hot topic among those who have one in their backyards or those contemplating of getting one. The pros and the cons of having either an in-ground pool or an above ground pool would be discussed quite animatedly with the latter always bound to win the argument. Such are the advantages of having an above ground pool instead of an in-ground pool.
The above ground pool has revolutionized this recreational sport with many families in the United States able to afford one and also enjoying it to the optimum. The proliferation of the above ground pool brought new innovations into the pool industry which were absent in the past. One stands out strikingly among all others and that is the introduction of the above ground salt water pool. The advantages of using salt as the sanitizing agent instead of chlorine and other chemicals have brought a silver lining into the lives of those who have been allergic to the latter.
We look at what all this fuss is about that has propelled salt water above ground pools into the limelight and brought a glow on the face of pool owners who are using this new phenomenon.