Pools have long been associated with chemicals and that ever-present "pool smell." It is hard to break free of the stigma, but it is possible with saltwater pools. Saltwater pools are growing in popularity and offer a safe, clean, and efficient alternative to chlorine or bromine pools. 

Why might you want to consider converting your pool to a saltwater sanitation system? Let’s take a look at the many benefits you’ll enjoy below. 

What Is a Saltwater Pool, Exactly?

Salt pools are also known as chlorine generators or salt generators. These types of pools have become more popular over the last twenty to thirty years. Salt is poured into the pool and brushed until it dissolves into the water. The chlorine generator is made of matching titanium plates that electrolyze the liquefied salt to make chlorine. This means that a salt pool is not chlorine-free.

All pools require some sort of disinfection device. The difference is that in saltwater pools, chlorine is created through a continuous and natural process. 

In a saltwater pool, the saltwater is passed through two charged titanium panels. The panels' job is to break down the salt in a natural process called electrolysis. 

The byproduct of this process is hypochlorous acid – aka chlorine – which continuously works to disinfect pool water hazards

Saltwater chlorine generators ensure that clean, sanitized water is constantly circulated through the pool, which helps to prevent algae and bacteria growth. 

Experience Fewer Chlorine-Related Side Effects

Chlorine-based pools can often cause nasty side effects for those who regularly swim in them. Red eyes, dry hair, and irritated skin have all been associated with continuous exposure to chlorine. 

Additionally, chlorine can cause respiratory concerns and create an almost asthmatic response in some people. This is not a concern with saltwater pools, and no noxious gasses are released from the water.

Enjoy Super-Soft Water

Did you know that water softeners rely on salt to give water a super smooth and silky feeling? Or that the same mechanism of action applies to pools with saltwater chlorine generators? 

So when you convert to a saltwater pool, you’ll enjoy swimming in water that feels as though it came directly from a water-softening system.

Enjoy Potential Health Benefits

There are several potential health benefits of swimming in saltwater pools. These pools may help enhance swimmers’ immune systems, and because human skin can absorb small amounts of salt from the water, they may help with depression, too. 

Research suggests that people with higher sodium levels may exhibit fewer signs of depression than people with normal sodium levels. The thought is that the same health benefits can transfer to people regularly submerged in water with a high salt concentration. 

Additionally, salt water is antimicrobial, so it effectively kills bacteria that could make you ill. When you enter the water, your body loses and gains water through the skin in a process called osmosis. 

The salt in the water can help draw impurities from the skin and may provide a natural form of detox with regular exposure. 

Gently Exfoliate Your Skin

Did you know salt is an excellent and gentle natural exfoliant? It’s true, and even if you have extra sensitive skin (like eczema or psoriasis), salt water can help keep it soft and smooth. Because salt is a natural skin detoxifier, it can also help prevent clogged pores as it helps slough off dry, dead skin. 

Don’t let the idea of skin cells in your pool water turn you off to the idea of converting to a saltwater pool. Those cells naturally slough off in a chlorine pool, too, but that type of pool is a whole lot harsher. 

Plus, chlorine pools still have filters designed to filter out and trap particles that shouldn’t be floating around in the water. 

Eliminate the Oh-So-Pleasant “Pool Smell”

If you’re not a fan of the strong chlorine smell generated by traditional chlorine pools, converting to a saltwater pool can help you eliminate that stench. The smell isn’t a product of the chlorine itself but rather the chloramines generated by chlorine’s natural reaction with organic particles left behind by swimmers (urine, sweat, etc.). 

Since saltwater pools generate less chlorine than is used to sanitize a traditional chlorine pool, they’re far less likely to develop that distinctive, off-putting pool stench. 

They Can Save You Time 

Even though saltwater pools use a chlorine-based system, they require purchasing and adding fewer chemicals than traditional pools. The biggest obstacle is keeping the salt content at the right level, which can be supported with a salt chlorine generator for proper circulation, making them a lower maintenance choice.

Disadvantages of Salt Pools

While salt pools can be a great option, they may not be for everyone, and some of the most common drawbacks to them include the following: 

  • Salt pools have a high upfront cost because they also require having a salt chlorine generator for proper movement and flow of the water. 

  • You must test and maintain proper salt and stabilizer levels by adding salt as needed.

  • Corrosion from salt sitting on the outside pool material can be a factor, but this can be reduced with zinc anodes and proper care. 

If you’re considering making the switch, make sure you read up on what you should know about winterizing a saltwater pool

While you can always hire the pros to close your swimming pool, it’s never a bad idea to familiarize yourself with the process. 

Get a Saltwater Pool System Installation Quote in the Twin Cities

A pool is a relaxing place to spend time with family and friends. It is meant to be a source of joy, not one of ongoing maintenance and required expenses. At Royal Pool & Spa, we care about pool repair and maintenance, so you don't have to. 

Our professional team is dedicated to creating an inviting space that's well-maintained and free of burdensome work. All you have to do is enjoy. To learn more about our services, contact us today!