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Should I Get a Salt Water System in my Pool?


salt water systems for poolsNow that the summer is here, many pool owners are again facing the question that they've been asking themselves for the past few years now: Should I get a salt water system in my swimming pool?

For those readers that are already enjoying the wonders of salt, please feel free to go back to doing whatever you were doing. But for the many that have still not decided to take the plunge, please consider the following arguments to be made for such a wonderful piece of technology:

‘It Costs Too Much'

Yes, salt chlorine generators do cost a good bit of money. The average system is anywhere between $800-$2000 installed, but look at it this way: Swimming pool owners that use salt, in many cases, will spend less than $100 a year on chemicals. Yep, $100. Pretty awesome, huh? Without  salt, I've seen regular chlorine users spend well over $300 a season on chemicals. Compound this over the course of 5 years or so and you've easily paid for the system. And as for Baquacil users, the savings are monumental. It's nothing for a Baquacil user to spend over $500-$1000 on chemicals alone for just one pool season. For this reason, it is my opinion that anyone using Baquacil over salt may need a head examination.

‘It's Too Hard to Maintain'

Say what?? Salt water pools make for the ultimate low maintenance swimming pool experience. Most users check their water once a week to make sure the system is producing natural chlorine. Beyond that, there is very little one needs to do, other than balance the water on occasion. This is also why salt water pools are perfect for people with weekend homes or those that are constantly traveling and thus unable to attend to their pool. With its consistent feed of natural chlorine in the water, salt practically eliminates the ‘hard work' and vigilance issues that come with swimming pool ownership.

‘It Will Hurt My Eyes'

Again, almost never true. Keep in mind that salt pools are nothing like what we swim in when we're in the ocean. In fact, salt pools have 1/10 the level of salt that an ocean has. To give you an example, my son is 6 years old and he rarely uses goggles in our pool, despite the fact that he's is under water 50% of the time and always has his eyes open. And of the 1000+ systems we've installed, I've never had a customer that said their eyes were adversely affected by the salt.

‘It Tastes Funny'

Well, I guess if you like to drink pool water this could be the case....But seriously, just as I mentioned in the last paragraph, the salt levels are so low in the pool that most people don't even know they are swimming in it. Yes, you can taste it just slightly if you lick your lips while in the pool, but again, no customer has ever told me this was an issue of concern.

‘It Will Affect My Pool and Equipment'

Yes and No. There are debates in the pool industry as to the effect of salt water on concrete pools, with the majority of professionals, myself included, recognizing that a salt system will cause a concrete pool owner to resurface their pool sooner than they otherwise would have. The real debate lies in just how much quicker salt speeds up the process. As far as a fiberglass pool though, salt will have no impact on the shell's surface longevity. And as far as the general equipment is concerned, the only drawback we've been able to notice as a company is the fact that pump seals (w/the filter system), an inexpensive part to replace, wear out quicker with a salt generator.


So there you have it folks. If you are debating the merits of salt in your swimming pool, I do suggest you stop delaying the inevitable and make the call. I've literally had pool owners that have used Baquacil or regular chorine for years switch to salt and absolutely rave about its benefits and ease of use. After all, the whole purpose of owning a swimming pool is to relax more, not work more. Salt chlorine generators will certainly accomplish this goal.

Marcus Sheridan

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I was told that the high mineral content of west Texas water is problematic for salt systems. What are your thoughts on this?
Posted @ Sunday, April 18, 2010 9:36 AM by Curtis Pittman
Hi Curtis. Salt systems are used all over the world. They are prolific in Australia and I know many, many pool owners in Texas that have had great success with them. That being said, I seriously doubt you'd have any issues.
Posted @ Tuesday, April 20, 2010 6:41 PM by Marcus Sheridan
Can you use a saltwater system on an above ground pool with liner?
Posted @ Thursday, July 07, 2011 7:30 AM by D. C.
Posted @ Wednesday, August 31, 2011 10:06 AM by nora
Hi Nora, you're going to have to buy a salt system and attach it to your filter system. Your best bet is to call a pool service person.
Posted @ Wednesday, August 31, 2011 10:28 AM by Marcus Sheridan
Do I need to use Mineral Springs Renewal weekly with my chlorine generator?  
I have used a chlorine generator for years in my inground pool in MN and the local vendor recommended Mineral Springs when I had it installed. Several years later, after paying about at $25/week, I think I have been a fool.
Posted @ Monday, September 05, 2011 4:42 PM by Tom D
Hi Tom, and thanks for the question. My opinion is that a good salt system by no means needs the help of a Mineral springs or any other like system. I'd suggest trying straight salt and see how that goes. Good luck! 
Posted @ Saturday, September 10, 2011 8:06 PM by Marcus Sheridan
The info has been greet. Currently, I am srearching for the best pool. Decided fiberglass, salt and now- I need to pick size and manufacture. What is the deal with the diff. warranty levels-20yr to 50 years? Why a huge differance?
Posted @ Saturday, September 17, 2011 4:44 PM by Caroline
Will a salt system help with an existing algae bloom? I have been battling black spots in my pool all season long.
Posted @ Thursday, August 23, 2012 6:17 PM by Melissa Olesko
There so many salt system in the market. For 90,000 litre inground pool, what would be your recommended salt water system brand name? 
Thank you
Posted @ Thursday, May 23, 2013 9:15 AM by Hakan
I am currently using Baquacil in my 18' round above ground pool. Do I have to drain it and refill it to switch to the salt system?
Posted @ Tuesday, July 16, 2013 10:05 AM by George Peebles
I am purchasing an above ground 27' round pool (17000gal). I want to do saltwater can my Krystal clear sws be used with this size pool? It was used on approx 7000gal pool. Any help would be great. Trying hard no to spend $1000 on sws that I have been told is what I have to have, thanks
Posted @ Thursday, February 20, 2014 2:27 PM by Dolly
How is pool tested for amount of chlorine in the water?  
Posted @ Tuesday, April 29, 2014 4:05 PM by Sasha
How does heating a pool affect the salt water system?
Posted @ Thursday, May 01, 2014 2:27 PM by Sasha
I have been using chlorine in my 81ft pool do I have to drain it to start using the salt water system this year
Posted @ Monday, May 05, 2014 8:32 AM by shirley
I have been using chlorine in my 18ft pool do I need to drain it before starting to use the saltwater system
Posted @ Monday, May 05, 2014 8:34 AM by shirley
Will converting to salt hurt the aluminum deck around my pool
Posted @ Monday, May 12, 2014 6:54 PM by michael green
I'm on my 2nd above ground pool. The only reason i bought a new one is because I LOVE my salt water pool and wanted a bigger one. The 1st chlorine pool i had was costing lots in chemicals. I purchased a saltwater generator and converted it myself, it’s that easy. I added the salt, I shock every once in a while and that's it. I'm in Texas, this is the best system ever. It's easier on your skin too. No regrets here.
Posted @ Thursday, June 19, 2014 9:31 AM by Sylvia
Hello! We just purchased our first intex metal frame pool 15x48 and also purchased the salt water system. My question is do we have to wait until the system is done running (6 hours) before we can use it for the first time?
Posted @ Wednesday, June 25, 2014 6:16 AM by yolanda
Hi Marcus thanks for taking the time for my questions. I live in New Jersey having just recently purchased a home and there is an in ground pool Here which is concrete up to 4 feet and then block up to the top which is about 9 feet deep. It has been drained for about five years now and was coded in fiberglass I am in the process of stripping the fiberglass down to the block and concrete what is my best procedure know in preparing this Pool to become a saltwater pool.
Posted @ Wednesday, June 25, 2014 7:45 PM by Padraig
Have a above ground pool how do I convert it to a salt water pool
Posted @ Friday, August 08, 2014 7:37 PM by Casey Simonton
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