Traditional methods of pool and spa sanitation, including the use of chlorine and bromine for water treatment, are less than ideal for many pool operators. Chlorine is a toxic, caustic, corrosive chemical. It is an eye and skin irritant for bathers; it corrodes pool equipment and accessories, and is harmful to the environment. Chlorine exposure has been linked to certain cancers, including bladder and colorectal. There are alternatives available to chemical pool treatments. Pool operators are more often turning to more natural methods of water sanitation to reduce the levels of toxic chemicals used in water sanitation.
Ionizers are one alternative to chlorine use. Ionizers use the natural bacteria and algae killing properties of several minerals including copper, silver or titanium. This helps eliminate microorganisms in the water. Ionization can help to eliminate the requirement of adding corrosive chemicals (like chlorine). This, in turn, will help to eliminate the most common chemical-based side effects. Ionization means fewer eye problems and fewer skin irritation issues. Moreover, you won’t notice as many problems with your pool equipment when you switch to ionization. Ionization is both eco and people friendly. Pool water treated by copper ionization is akin to swimming in bottle water.
One alternative sanitizer that is popular today is the salt water chlorine generator. But this is not truly an alternative, as chlorine generated on site is introduced into the pool. None of the side effects of using chlorine are eliminated, and the water still has the feel, taste and smell of chlorinated water.
Ionizers will eliminate those side effects. There is no chlorine taste or odor to the water in a pool sanitized by ionization. Ions will not negatively impact the pool equipment or accessories, and indeed will prevent calcium scale from forming. Copper ionization converts calcium to bicarbonate, unlike the chlorine from salt water chlorine generators. Copper ionization systems are easier to maintain since they work within a calcium hardness range of 200-2,000 parts per million (ppm) as opposed to salt water chlorine pools, which function in a much narrower range of 200-400 ppm.
The effectiveness of chlorine, whether added by hand or generated on site, is hindered by such factors as temperature, bather load, sunlight and rainfall. Copper ionization systems are not effected by these factors and function equally as well with twenty children in the pool as the function with two adult bathers.
Salt water chlorine generators do not offer a truly chlorine free swimming pool environment. They come with all the side effects of regular chlorine use, and an increased cost. For the health and environmentally conscious pool operator, ionization is a better alternative and best to have a chlorine free pool.