There are several misconceptions about salt pools. The first is that it is an alternative to chlorine. Most customers who call to inquire about converting their pool “from chlorine to salt”. A salt pool is a chlorine pool in every way. The simple explanation is that the salt cell converts the sodium chloride in the salt into chlorine. A pool with a salt chlorine generator must maintain the same chlorine levels as a pool that uses chlorine pucks or sticks.
The second major misconception is that a saltwater pool uses fewer or even no chemicals. We regularly hear that “I have a salt pool so I don’t have to add anything but salt”. This cannot be further from the truth. A pool with a salt chlorine generator still needs balanced water to maintain sanitation and clarity. A byproduct of the salt to chlorine conversion causes the pool’s pH to rise steadily. This has two major effects, high pH causes cloudy water and even more importantly, chlorine becomes less effective at higher pH. This means that without maintaining a proper chemical balance a salt chlorine generator becomes effectively self defeating.
Does this mean that you should not consider converting your pool to salt? Not at all. A salt chlorine generator is a reliable way to introduce sanitizer to your pool, never runs out of tabs and almost all generators have a boost function that can help to keep your pool clean and clear after a day of heavy usage. Many people think that they like the feel of salt water more than fresh water. If your reasons for considering a salt pool as well as your expectations for the equipment are sound they are an effective addition to your pool.
A quick look at major manufacturers of salt chlorine generators.
The most commonly seen Hayward salt chlorine generator is the TurboCell. The strengths of this system are in the control board. This cell is easily programmed and has a display that is capable of conveying a lot of information.
Pentair offers the Intellichlor. This system is the most user friendly with the most simple interface. Up and down buttons control the output hitting both at once activates the 24 hour boost function. There are no other buttons or separate control centers. Status indicator lights alert the user to possible errors and salt level problems. The lights are labeled so no error codes need to be deciphered.
Jandy has a variety of salt chlorine generators. The AquaPure is the most commonly seen version. This system’s strength is in its ability to be tied into Jandy pool automation and the replaceable sensor pack. This is the only major manufacturer scg that has any replaceable parts on the cell itself.
If you’d like to convert your pool to a salt pool, give our Service Department a call at 908-509-8040 or send us an email to email@example.com and we’ll have a conversation with you about how to accomplish the conversion and what the costs will be.