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boy jumping into salt water pool

Should I Switch to a Saltwater Swimming Pool?

Have you thought about taking the plunge to converting your chlorine pool into a saltwater swimming pool?

Saltwater swimming pools have been around for over a decade and continue to grow in popularity. Using salt water in your pool provides you with easier maintenance, stress-free operation, and a consistently clear pool when treated properly. They’re also a much-preferred option for swimmers who are prone to dry skin or negative affects from store-bought chlorine.

The Benefits of a Saltwater Pool

Although chlorine pools are much more common than saltwater pools, more people are making the switch to reap salt water’s completely safe, natural, and convenient way of keeping their pool clean. There are also many other benefits to salt water that make the decision to switch much easier:

Taking a saltwater swim

Saltwater pools contain a salt level that is very close to that of human tears. This eliminates any worry about red or itchy eyes if you don’t wear goggles underwater.

Also, salt water provides the purest form of chlorine (salt is NaCl – sodium chloride). When the salt cell operates, it splits the molecule and injects pure, natural chlorine into the pool. This natural chlorine is free of any additives or filler chemicals, so you will no longer experience dry skin, that dreaded chlorine smell in your hair or on your bathing suits and towels, or any other issues associated with store-bought chlorine.

Clean, clear water with minimal effort

Since salt systems continually dispense a controlled amount of natural chlorine into your pool, you never have to worry about manually adding chemical chlorine, even during the hottest of days. If your salt system is maintained and operating properly, it will take care of your sanitizer needs for you over the course of the pool season. The result is crystal clear, sparkling water all summer long!

Minimal negative affects of store-bought chorine on your pool and equipment

By switching to a salt system, the unit that dispenses the natural chlorine is always placed downstream of all your vital pool components, sending it directly to the pool where it’s supposed to be. This is a great alternative to concentrated chlorine passing through your equipment and 

Saltwater pools save you money

Perhaps best of all, salt systems save you money over the long term. By converting to a saltwater pool, you no longer need to spend hundreds of dollars on chlorine pucks and liquids every pool season. All you need to do is ensure the salt level in your pool is correct, and your salt system will take care of the chlorine dispensing for you.

This not only saves you money on chlorine maintenance costs, but also helps you avoid an algae breakout, which would incur added expenses on having to take corrective measures with your pool whenever you are away or forget to manually add chlorine to the pool water.

Clearly, the benefits to having a saltwater pool are numerous. However, to ensure the best swimming experience possible, be sure to properly prepare your pool for the conversion.

Converting a chlorine pool to a saltwater pool

Chances are, switching from a chlorinated pool to salt won’t require any changes to your existing pool setup. However, there are a few preparations you may have to take, depending on the age of your pool, the type of equipment you use, and composition of your surrounding landscaping.

Inspect your concrete

If you have a very old concrete pool, consult with a pool professional to discuss if the concrete needs to be restored before converting to salt water. Newer or restored concrete, as opposed to aging concrete, perform best with saltwater pools.

Upgrade your heater

Most pool heaters sold over the last decade or so feature a “cupro-nickel” heat exchanger that works well with salt water. If your pool heater is older, consider replacing your old heater or check with a pool professional before switching to salt water.

Natural stone landscaping

If you have or are planning elaborate water or waterfall features that are made up with natural stone, check with your landscape designer before converting your pool to salt. They can make recommendations as to which materials work best with salt water.

Using a saltwater chlorinator

You can enhance your saltwater pool experience by installing an inline salt chlorinator to your pool system to automatically add salt to your pool as needed. Although salt doesn’t evaporate and remains in your pool, you may still need to make minor salt adjustments during the season due to water dilution from heavy rains, backwashing your filter, or loss of water from pool use and splashing.

We recommend the Hayward® Aqua Rite salt chlorinator. Its internal salt cell, plumbed inline with the return pipe, contains coated metal blades that use electrolysis to split the salt water flowing through it into hydrogen and hypochlorous acid. It also features a display that alerts you to any issues with salt levels or chlorine production.

The salt cells come with a 1 – 5 year warranty, depending on the model. The savings that you receive from a salt system instead of having to purchase pool chlorine offsets the cost of replacing the salt cell. You’ll save time by automating the chlorination system instead of worrying adding chemicals, leaving you free to enjoy your saltwater pool experience even more.

As always, you’re welcome to call us or visit our store if you need any advice or have any questions about saltwater pools. Our award-winning team is here to help!

Saltwater Pool Help in Etobicoke, Port Credit and Mississauga

Since 2004, the award-winning pool experts at Lakeshore Pools & Hot Tubs have been helping both chlorine and saltwater pool owners in the Mississauga, Oakville, and the Western Greater Toronto Area keep their pools in top-running order all season long. We promise to treat your pool like it’s our very own. Call us today at (905)-891-8818 or visit our store at 309 Lakeshore Road East in Mississauga to learn more!

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