Chlorine Free Pool

by Pool Builders on 03-06-2008 in Articles

The chemical chlorine is the most widely used and effective method of sanitizing a swimming pool or spa. Typically a pool owner must buy, transport, store and handle the caustic chemical during the water treatment process, and the presence of the chemical in the water often causes problems for swimmers. Eye and skin irritation, hair discoloration, pool equipment corrosion, and a growing problem with sensitivities to chemicals are several of the many reasons that owners are looking for alternatives. There are several alternatives available today to the traditional routine of pool maintenance that may also improve water quality for the people that use the pool.

As more and more pool owners look for alternatives that don't involve chemicals, ionizers have found a place in the spotlight. Using the natural bacteria and algae killing properties of minerals like titanium, silver, and copper, the process of ionization can ensure you don't need damaging chemicals like chlorine. That, in turn, can help to ensure your swimmers don't suffer the problems that are often caused by those chemicals including skin and eye irritation issues. Moreover, you won't have to worry about harm being done to your equipment. If you're eco-conscious or you just want your swimmers to have a better experience, ionization is the right answer.

There are two types of ionizers: floating and installed. Several companies manufacture ionizers, including ECOSmarte, Sunshine and Floatron. All ionizers rely on a charge passing through the ionizer chamber. This charge can be generated by solar power or supplied from another source. Electrodes rest in the inner chamber. While copper is the most common material for these electrodes, some are made of titanium or silver. Once the current is pushed through the mineral based electrodes, ions are created and moved through the water that comes into the chamber. They then head out to the pool where they combine with problem microorganisms and kill them. As a whole, the process is not dangerous and quite successful.

The main difference between the two types of ionizers is the manner in which the electrical charge that produces the ions is created. Floating ionizers, like the Floatron, create this electrical charge via solar energy, therefore on cloudy days, the ionizer does not operate at maximum efficiency. Installed ionizers, and there are many of those on the market, utilize a direct electrical supply, and run at maximum efficiency as long as the pump is running.

There are several problems with the floating ionizer, which can be alleviated by the use of one of the many installed devices on the market. One, the power source for the floating ionizer's power requirements must be met by solar power. In certain areas, adequate sunlight is not available continuously. In this case, other methods of sanitation must be employed. The final problem some floating ionizer operators confront is the presence of the ionizer itself. It must float freely in the pool. If there are children using the pool, not only can the unit be a possible hazard to the children, it is tempting for children to play with the unit. An installed unit solves those problems and offers the same or better water quality.

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