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Saltwater Pool vs. Chlorine Pool

Which Type of Pool is Better for You?

Building a home pool is a big investment. We want to make the process just a little bit easier for you. Use the information below to learn more about the differences between saltwater pools and typical chlorinated pools.

Saltwater Pool

The Good:

- Softer water, gentler on skin
- No eye irritation
- Chlorine generator eliminates need to handle or store chemicals
- Low maintenance
- Lower operating cost on month-to-month basis
- Salt is very affordable

The Bad:

- High initial cost to install chlorine generator
- System becomes less effective with cold water temperatures
- Takes longer to disinfect pool
- Salt can be corrosive; may affect decking, metal parts, etc.
- Continuous use of generator will be reflected on electric bill

The Bottom Line:

1. Saltwater pools have become increasingly popular in the last several years. Rather than adding chlorine tablets to the pool, a chlorine generator is installed to convert salt into a mild form of chlorine. This process is repeated continuously to ensure that the pool remains free of bacteria and other contaminants. Many people find that the saltwater is gentler on skin than traditionally chlorinated pools. You can also avoid buying and storing chlorine tablets that can be on the more expensive side.

2. On the other hand, saltwater has a tendency to be corrosive. Over time, this may damage pool accessories like diving boards, light fixtures, and pool linings. This is especially true in cases where a standard chlorine pool is converted to a saltwater pool.

3. When building a new saltwater pool, the initial design can incorporate specially designed construction materials to prevent most of these potential issues. If you are not interested in “getting your hands dirty” or closely monitoring the pool’s water quality on a daily basis, a saltwater pool is probably a great choice for you. However, if you or someone in your family is allergic to chlorine, be wary that a saltwater pool is not necessarily a chlorine-free pool.

Chlorine Pool

The Good:

- Chlorine is very efficient, disinfects quickly and efficiently
- Lower upfront cost than saltwater pool
- Not corrosive like saltwater

The Bad:

- Presence of chloramines can cause eye and skin irritation
- Water quality must be closely monitored and tested regularly
- May need to hire a pool cleaning service
- Strong chlorine smell
- Chlorine tablets cost more than salt

The Bottom Line:

1. Traditional chlorine pools are still a great choice. If you currently have a chlorine pool, it may be easier to keep it that way. Although it may be cheaper to operate your pool on a monthly basis, the construction materials of your pool were likely not designed to handle the effects of saltwater. These monthly savings can disappear rather quickly if your pool ends up needing major repairs due to the effects of the salt.

2. Chlorine is very effective at killing bacteria that has the potential to cause illnesses and infections. It is constantly working as new bacteria are introduced into the water. If the pool is maintained properly, you should be able to avoid all of the potentially harmful effects of the chemical, including the strong odors and eye irritation.


+ Cost of Installing a Pool

+ Cleaning a Green Pool

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About the Author

ProMatcher Staff, ProMatcher
Orlando, FL 32803

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