Salinity refers to the amount of salt in your pool water. Oceans and seas have high salinity, that is, they have significant salt content. A freshwater pond, on the other hand, has low salinity.
When it comes to swimming pools, we have two broad options – traditional chlorine pools and saltwater pools. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.
Traditional chlorine pools are the most common type of pool. They use a combination of chlorine and other chemicals to keep the water clean and safe for swimming. Chlorine is added as a sanitiser, which is then absorbed into the water and converted into hypochlorous acid. This is a highly effective sanitiser, killing bacteria and viruses on contact. However, it does have some disadvantages.
Chlorine can harm your health, especially if you’re exposed to it for long periods. It can irritate your eyes and skin, cause respiratory problems and even damage your hair. It can also react with other chemicals in the water to form chloramines, which is harmful to the pool water.
Saltwater pools are a great alternative to traditional chlorine pools. These pools use salt instead of chlorine to sanitise the water. Salt being a natural sanitiser, these pools are much safer for swimmers or anyone using the pool.
Saltwater pools: Why they might be the better option
If you are considering a pool for your home, a saltwater pool can be better than a chlorine pool for several reasons. First, handling pool-grade salt is safe and poses no health hazards. Chlorine can be harmful, especially when not used carefully.
Saltwater pools are generally better for swimming as well. The water in these pools is smoother and many seasoned swimmers prefer saltwater pools over chlorine pools for this reason. Saltwater pools generate chlorine in a regulated and steady amount, which is safer for swimmers. That means there’s no need for pool shocks, which saves both money and hassles in the long run.
Overall, saltwater pools are safer for most people. They provide a better swimming experience and are safe for kids. The day-to-day maintenance is much less than a chlorine pool, and you can avoid the nasty chlorine smell along with the skin and eye irritation it causes.
The salinity level of saltwater pools
Maintaining the right salinity level for your saltwater pool is essential. 3,000 PPM is the standard and safe salt content for a saltwater pool. A saltwater pool with a salinity of around 3000 PPM has many health benefits as well. For example, it’s healthier for people with certain allergies.
If the salinity level of your perth fibreglass pool increases or decreases significantly, it’s a sign of something going wrong. Low salinity levels lead to the growth of bacteria and algae, which will make your pool dirty and unpleasant to swim in. While high salinity levels aren’t directly harmful, they strip away the benefits of swimming in a pool with the right amount of salt.
If you are thinking about installing a saltwater pool, you must keep the following factors in mind:
- Saltwater pools are less expensive to operate.
- They are more comfortable for swimmers
- They do not require additional chlorine
- The water is softer and warmer
These are the primary advantages of saltwater pools over chlorine pools. However, there are certain disadvantages as well.
Disadvantages of saltwater pools
The first and most important disadvantage of a saltwater pool is the high cost of installation. Salt chlorine generators are expensive, and you will need to hire a professional to install them. If you are converting an existing chlorine pool to a saltwater pool, you’ll have to bear the additional cost of draining and refilling the pool with saltwater.
The cost of the saltwater pool system is not insignificant. A typical saltwater system will cost between $1,200 and $2,000, while a chlorine system can be purchased for as little as $300 to $400.
In the long run, however, saltwater pools are much less expensive to maintain than chlorine pools. The cost of replacing the salt water each year is usually around $300 to $800, depending on the size of the pool. Compare that to the $2,000 to $3,000 it costs to replace chlorine sanitiser each year.
Maintaining salt levels in your saltwater pool
The most challenging part of maintaining a saltwater pool is maintaining its salt content level. If your pool’s salt level is too low, the chlorine will have a difficult time killing bacteria and algae.
The salt content is dependent on the amount of water in the pool, the temperature of the water and the amount of chlorine used. The best way to maintain the salt level is to test the water regularly.
To measure the salt level:
- Test the water for total dissolved solids (TDS) using a TDS meter. This will give you an idea of how much salt is in the water.
- Add salt to raise the TDS level. Use a saltwater chlorinator to make sure the salt is evenly distributed.
- Test the water again to see if the salt level has been raised enough
- If the salt level is too high, use a saltwater chlorinator again to remove some of it
- Repeat this process until the salt level is correct
Saltwater chlorinators can also be used to balance your chlorine levels. You should check your chlorine levels daily, especially during the summer when the sun is stronger.
Deciding to switch to a saltwater pool from a chlorine pool can be one of the best decisions you ever take. But like all decisions, you should consider both the pros and cons. Saltwater pools are a little more complicated to maintain, but that’s only if you have never maintained a saltwater pool before. The overall maintenance isn’t much different from that of a traditional chlorine pool.
Understanding salinity levels is also important if you have a saltwater pool. The pool’s hygiene depends on the amount of salt it has. If it gets too high or too low, you won’t get the benefits of swimming in saltwater. That said, saltwater pools are generally safer and more hygienic than chlorine pools.