One of the many choices you’ll have to make when deciding what kind of pool you want for your home is whether you want a saltwater or chlorine pool. Both saltwater and chlorine keep your pool free of bacteria, mold, and other unwanted contaminants, making it safe for you to swim in. However there are a few differences between the two methods which are worth mentioning and may influence you one way or the other. Read on to learn how saltwater pools and chlorine pools work as well as the differences between them.
Saltwater pools work by using dissolved salt to keep your pool clean. Via the process of electrolysis, the salt chlorinator unit breaks the salt down and adds it to the water. Note that this unit is called the salt “chlorinator” unit. This is because chlorine is a byproduct of the process by which salt is added to the water. So, there is chlorine in saltwater pools, even though they’re not called chlorine pools. There’s just less of it than there would be in a chlorine pool.
Chlorine pools use chlorine tablets to keep the pool water clean. The tablets can be put in a separate pump unit which pumps the chlorine into the water, or in a unit that floats in the pool and slowly releases chlorine over time.
Saltwater vs. Chlorine
Cost – Though more expensive to setup initially, over time saltwater pools are less expensive to maintain than chlorine pools. You might spend $30 on salt for the entire season as opposed to $60 a month on chlorine, which adds up over time.
Safety – Both methods will keep your pool clean. Here chlorine has an advantage in that if bacteria are found in the pool or pH levels are off, chlorine will clean it up faster than salt (1-2 days vs. 3-5 days). Both are safe to swim in, but salt is easier on the eyes and skin, as there are fewer chemicals involved. Saltwater pools also won’t fade your swimsuit as fast as chlorine pools, and they won’t leave you feeling like you just got out of the ocean either.
Maintenance – Saltwater pools require less of an investment than chlorine pools in terms of time spent on maintenance. Still, both pools require the user to maintain the proper amount of salt or chlorine in the water to keep the pH at the correct levels.
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