Swimming Pool Maintenance: Adding Chlorine to Your Pool
Take advantage of these tips to ensure you are properly adding chlorine to your pool.
Chlorine is an important addition to any residential swimming pool, because it keeps the water safe and clean, and prevents algae from forming. However, dumping chlorine directly into the water, or tossing a chlorine tablet or two into your pool is not the right way to sanitize your pool. Instead, you must use some sort of feeder device to dissolve the chlorine slowly, so proper levels are maintained in your water. There are a number of options for adding chlorine to your pool, and some don't involve the use of this particular chemical at all! Learn about how to chlorinate your pool so you can choose the best system for your needs.
Chlorine feeders are preferable to placing chlorine tablets or granules directly you're your skimmer basket. When chlorine is moved into your pool through the skimmer, it can put undue wear and tear on your pool's equipment. Chlorine feeders can either attach to your pool pump or float in your pool water. Floating feeders are typically used in smaller pools or spas. These feeders slowly dissolve chlorine tablets or sticks to maintain optimum chemical levels in your pool. Different feeders work with different types of chlorine solids, so you want to make sure you get the right size of chlorine stick or tablet to fit into your feeder. Some are also designed to work with bromine rather than chlorine, for pool owners who prefer one chemical over the other. Read the manufacturers instructions to ensure you use your feeder properly.
If you choose a chlorinator that works with your pool's pump, you will need to decide between an on-line and off-line model. The off-line feeders are attached directly to your pool's pump with no direct line to the plumbing of your pool. These feeders are the easiest to install, and are typically used in above-ground pools. In-line feeders do need to be attached directly to your swimming pool's plumbing, so you may need a contractor to help you with the installation process. In-line feeders can be used on both in-ground and above-ground pools, and tend to be the best choice for in-ground pools that are too large to accommodate a floating feeder.
Automatic Chlorine Generators
Automatic chlorine generators are a relatively new way to sanitize pool water. These generators do not require chlorine at all; instead they work with standard salt that is used to soften water. When the salt enters the system, chlorine is produced; just enough to maintain the proper chemical balance in the pool. As with other types of chlorine feeders, pool water still needs to be tested regularly to ensure the pH balance and alkalinity are maintained properly. The biggest advantage to an automatic chlorine generator, aside from its ability to regulate your water automatically, is that the chlorine in the water is less damaging to eyes, skin and bathing suits. However, the systems are fairly pricey to install and the savings in maintenance costs may not be seen for some time.
Your pool water must be sanitized and there are plenty of ways to do this. With a variety of chlorine feeders and generators available, you can find the best one for your needs.