Trying to decide between a salt water pool or a chlorine pool? Salt water pools are gaining in popularity, but they’re still not as common as chlorine pools. Here are all the details, pros, and cons of each one so you can make the right decision for your lifestyle.
Pros and Cons of Salt Water Pools
A salt water pool uses dissolved salt to keep your pool water clean and sanitized. Salt water pools do contain chlorine, which is essential to keeping your pool clean, but these pools use a lot less of the harsh chemicals than chlorine pools.
The salt in salt water pools creates chlorine naturally when it is run through the salt chlorinator unit. All you need to do is to add salt to the system when your pool needs it. You will monitor the pH levels of the water and make sure that the salt-to-water ratio level is consistent. Depending on weather factors and pool use, you will need to add some salt weekly or monthly.
Salt water pools have many pros that make them a better choice for some homeowners. They require less maintenance; you won’t need to mess with chlorine tablets or other chemicals. This will save you money in the long run, since chlorine tablets can cost around $50 per month, depending on pool usage and other factors. With a salt water pool, you will probably only spend around $20 to $30 for the whole season.
Your health and well-being will also benefit from a salt water pool. You won’t deal with stinging eyes or a strong chlorine smell. Salt water is easier on the skin than chlorine pool water. Your hair will be less damaged. Your swimsuits will fade less and your pets and other animals will be safer in a salt water pool.
However, salt water pools can be more expensive to install, though they will pay for themselves in a couple of years thanks to less expensive maintenance. Also, the pH levels of salt water can fluctuate quickly, so you might need to check the pH levels often if you get a lot of rain or backwash.
Pros and Cons of Chlorine Pools
A chlorine pool is maintained with chlorine tablets that are added to a pump unit that is separate from the pool, or to a floating disbursement device that is in the pool at all times. The floating device dilutes the tablets over time, keeping your pool clean.
Chlorine pools are more common than salt water pools, so the materials and chemicals you need to maintain your pool are always easy to find at many pool stores. These tablets are strong and very effective at keeping your pool water clean, and will prevent a buildup of bacteria in your pool water. If your pool water already has bacteria present or if your pH levels are seriously off, the chlorine tablets will be able to clean your pool water much faster than a salt water system can.
The cons to owning a chlorine pool include more maintenance, since you’ll need to measure the chemicals and the pH levels of the water more frequently and pay more per month for the tablets. And chlorine pools can make your skin feel dry, sting your eyes, and dull your hair and bathing suits.
In all, salt water pools are healthier for your body and require less maintenance, but chlorine pools are more economical to install and include strong cleaning chemicals that can clean your pool water more effectively. The good news is that either method you choose is sure to keep your pool safe and clean for your family and friends.