Saltwater pool systems have been all the rage over the last few years and for good reason. Switching to a saltwater pool will provide you with the most soft luxurious pool water you can imagine. Not only does your water become “softer” there are also many more benefits that come with a salt water pool system like reduced use of chemicals, saving money, and less maintenance. Let’s break down why should switch to a saltwater pool.
Install Costs of Your Salt Water System
First things first, installing your saltwater pool system will take some upfront costs to purchase the new equipment and install the plumbing lines. While upfront costs might seem high, sometimes in the $600 – $1,000+ range, the benefits and cost savings down the road will end up in your advantage.
Initial salt water systems can range from a couple hundred dollars to a couple thousand dollars depending on how elaborate you want to go with the system. If you’re simply looking to switch from chemicals to salt for the most basic transition you can start with an Intext Pool Saltwater System for around $200. If you’d like a bit more advanced system we recommend going with a Hayward, Pentair, or Jandy saltwater system that start around $600. You can even explore pool automation systems that “run” your saltwater pool for a couple thousand dollars but that’s for another post.
How Saltwater Pools Work
Now switching to a saltwater pool system isn’t a simple switch and forget it, there is still some maintenance that’s involved. Salt water pool systems operate by adding salt to your pool. Yes, salt. The salt is now circulated through your pool and runs through the “salt cell” where a process of electrolysis happens as it passes through a pool’s filter system. This electrolysis takes away the ‘sodium’ part of salt and what is left is chloride, or chlorine. This form of chlorine is very natural, and does not have the normal byproducts you will find with other types of chlorine- ie. red eyes, strong odor, etc.
Please note, you will still need to balance the pH of your pool water so be sure to have a good, reliable water testing kit. Remember, it all starts with you pH.
Saltwater System Maintenance
Like most pool equipment, it will need to be cleaned and serviced to ensure it’s working properly. With most salt systems this process involves first cleaning the salt cell with a high pressure hose removing the scale build up. Next you’ll want to use a mixed 4:1 solution of water to muriatic acid (one gallon of water to one quart of acid). A word of caution, be sure to always add ACID to WATER…….Never add WATER to ACID. Now you’ll want to set the metal end of your salt cell into the acid mixture and let rest for 15 minutes. Repeat if necessary. The acid mixture can be stored and used again if desired. It’s a good idea to clean your cell every three months.
So really the only time you need to maintenance your pool would be adding salt any time your add new fresh water to your swimming pool or after a heavy rain. Then every three months check your salt cell to determine if it needs a good cleaning. That’s really about it, now your daily chore of adding chemicals to your pool will be long behind you…..unless you enjoy that kind of thing?