Problems with Chlorine Generators
A common misconception is that a salt water pool is somehow a chlorine free pool. This is not the
case. A salt water pool is simply a pool that utilizes a chlorine generator to keep the pool water
safe and sanitary. Chlorine generators are the primary method of water chlorination in salt water
swimming pools, and those who have salt water swimming pools swear to the convenience of
having a salt generator. What exactly does a chlorine generator do, and how is it such a
convenience to the pool owner?
A chlorine generator's purpose is described in the name, as its purpose is to produce chlorine for
your swimming pool. The immediate advantage to this is that you do not have to go to your
outdoor supply retailer and buy it, nor do you have to store or even handle the chlorine.Properly
functioning chlorine generators will produce chlorine constantly so long as the generator itself is
running. This keeps the levels of chlorine in your pool water at a constant level, which prevents
algae from growing in your pool.
It works through a process called electrolysis. This is where the water that passes over the
chlorine generator cells produces chlorine that transforms into Hypochlorous acid. Hypochlorous
acid is what all chlorine, from liquid chlorine to gas chlorine to chlorine blocks, creates, and this
acid is what ensures that your swimming water is clean and sanitary.
There are two types of chlorine generators being used in residential pools. The first is called a
brine unit. These do not require the pool to have salt already in the water because these units
have a tank or some kind of holding chamber that already has salt in it. Through the
aforementioned electrolysis, chlorine is produced and pumped into the pool's water circulation
system. The drawback to this kind of generator is the amount of by-product produced. These
kinds of generators are very messy, and the by-product they produce is not easily disposable.
The other type of chlorine generator requires salt to already be in the water. Now even with this
kind of generator, there are two differing types: One that generates chlorine while the machine is
turned on, and one that generates chlorine regardless of whether the machine is powered on or
The major drawback to chlorine generators is the level of maintenance required. For a chlorine
generator to work properly, the device must be clean of any mineral deposits that can build up
over time. Even the slightest blockage will render the entire unit inoperable until it is cleaned.
While chlorine pool generators (and salt water pools) are popular in the commercial swimming
pool market, many homeowners choose to go with fresh water pools because they do not require
as much maintenance. However, if you are willing to put up with the extra maintenance of caring
for a chlorine generator, you will find that the convenience of not having to handle any chlorine
yourself hard to beat.
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