Salt Water vs. Fresh Water Swimming Pool Maintenance
Both saltwater and most fresh pools use some form of chlorine to keep water clean, clear and bacteria free. In freshwater pools, liquid chlorine is added as needed. Swimming pool owners using the Caribbean Clear Copper & Silver ionization system by Caribbean Clear Systems of South Florida are the exception and use virtually no chlorine compared to salt or traditional chlorination systems.
More and more South Floridians are swimming on the salty side.
Saltwater is one of the fastest growing trend in aquatic maintenance systems, however copper/silver ionization is becoming very popular as well.. Ease of maintenance and much lower monthly expenses have made saltwater swimming pools common among hotels and resorts, while ionization systems are taking the home market in South Florida by storm.
Saltwater swimming pools contain a smaller amount of the salt than in seawater – 3,000 to 5,000 parts per million compared to 35,000 ppm in the ocean. However, care should be taken to prevent contact with metal objects. In pools reinforced with rebar, salt can weaken critical foundation support over many years.
A salt water purification system conversion can cost $2,000 to $10,000, and annual maintenance between adding salt and replacing the salt generator element every five years keeps overall maintenance costs around the same as a traditional chlorine based system. The silver/copper ionization process typically costs less than salt system conversions and the annual maintenance costs average much less.
Pool manufacturers have seen an overall acceptance of salt systems over traditional chlorine and is now seeing a trend from salt systems to the safer and more economical ionization systems.
According to industry insiders customer satisfaction is much higher with salt systems over traditional chlorine. And now with the Caribbean Clear ionization system, customer satisfaction is off the charts, when
when you take into account purification system installations made by customer referrals as tracked by the National Pool Builders Association.
With a salt system, you don’t need to add chlorine on a regular basis. Salt systems are in effect miniature chlorine generating factories and produce enough chlorine to purify. Another advantage is the water is softer and feels better on the skin.
The down side is salt systems require you to add acid to maintain its chlorine balance. And when the South Florida Temperatures reach extreme temperatures in the summer month you’ll need to add chlorine as the system can’t keep up with bacterial loads. Additionally you have the corrosion associated with salt system. We caution our customers to not use all metal ladders and support poles as they tend to show signs of rust over the years.
The newer ionization systems all the negatives associated with salt systems are eliminated. The one advantage the salt systems have is the softer water.
Liquid chlorine and other chemicals needed by a freshwater pool cost $300 to $500 per year.
Both saltwater and fresh pools use some form of chlorine to keep water clean, clear and bacteria free. In fresh pools, liquid chlorine is added as needed.
Saltwater systems depend on a “salt cell” in its generator to create chlorine. The cell uses electrolysis to break salt – a sodium-chloride compound – into hydrogen gas and hypochlorous acid. The gas evaporates; the weak chlorine acid cleans the water. The salt compound reforms in the water and the whole process happens again.
That all-important salt cell needs to be replaced about every five years, a $500 to $700 expense.
Caribbean Clear Chlorine Alternative swimming pool systems has been serving South Florida for over 20 years. If you live in Palm Beach, Dade or Broward and are thinking about upgrading your swimming pool system to salt or copper/silver ionization, get in touch with Caribbean Clear for helpful information.