What’s a Salt System?
You’ve heard the term, you probably know someone that has one, but you are still not sure what a salt system pool is. A “salt system” is a pool with salt water chlorine generation. It is a method of producing a constant supply of natural chlorine to your pool thru electrolysis. Every swimming pool requires a form of sanitization to remain healthy and clean. Chlorine has been the Industry standard for decades primarily due to its abundant supply and low cost. Now you no longer have to store harmful chemicals at your home.
Innovation and advancements in technology for your pool equipment has given us ECG or Electrolytic chlorine generators also referred to as SCG or Salt Water Chlorine Generation. A process where a piece of equipment ( salt cell) is installed in your pools circulation plumbing system and the introduction of salt into your pool water produces chlorine. I know what you are thinking, wait, I thought salt water pools are not chlorine pools. That is a misconception the pool industry has been battling for decades. For a majority of pool owner’s just simply knowing salt water goes in and chlorine comes out is efficient but let’s take a deeper look into how this process works.
Converting your current pool to a salt water chlorination pool does require some financial investment which can worry some pool owners. However If you compare the cost versus the price you are going to save big in the long run.
Some benefits of salt water chlorination are:
Some disadvantages of converting to salt water chlorination:
Initial expense: initial equipment cost, but after installation you save money on not needing to purchase and store buckets of chlorine tablets and gallons of liquid chlorine. You save money in the long run.
More complex : the need for routine maintenance: Like any piece of pool equipment it comes with a maintenance schedule just like your car does. It’s recommended by the manufacture to clean the salt cell (de scale) with a solution of muriatic acid and water every 3 months. This is something you want a trained skilled professional to do.
Wear and tear: Salt is corrosive, some pool owners have expressed concerns of the salt and the electrolysis process prematurely wearing out other pieces of equipment in their pools such as hand rails and heat exchangers and solar water heating systems lights and the masonry around their pool deck due to salt and electrical exposure. Although this is possible, it’s not likely if your system is running properly and not OVER PRODUCING chlorine. A sacrificial zinc anode and other measures can be put in place to prevent this.
Water Balance: Management of pH level, with the addition of salt your pools water balance specifically the pH will tend to raise and will need adjusted more frequently.
Is a Saltwater Pool Right for You?
A shimmering pool beyond the back door is a prerequisite for many new homeowners. Whether cooling off, swimming workout laps or using it as a beautiful party backdrop, residential pools are crucial to the modern lifestyle. Although saltwater pools have many positive points — particularly being environmentally friendly and healthier and safer — do your homework to see which type of sanitization system is right for you.
You want to try and save a few dollars and purchase some pool equipment, or replacement parts online. Now what’s next?.... Make sure you select the Buck Rogers install plan at checkout. Oh and that online extended warranty? Wait… why don’t they offer that? Ah-ha… GOTCHA!!!
No swimming Pool professional I know will want to install equipment or products purchased online by a homeowner for multiple reasons. Your swimming pool professional will have the knowledge to know what equipment would work best and what would not work at all for your specific system, no two pools are the same. Often times the homeowners make an incorrect purchase. Your pool professional does not want to be on the hook for anything beyond his control. We don’t want to be responsible for it if we don’t know where it came from. Much like any other high end goods, there are counterfeit products out there on the gray market. The other and biggest risk you are taking is the manufactures gives you little to NO warranty on their products which you choose to purchase online.
In my professional opinion an additional 2-4 year warranty is worth a lot more than the few dollars you might save purchasing items online, By purchasing online, you are taking a huge risk purchasing used or even counterfeit products, open box returned, items, or old inventory that may or may not be compatible with your current system. You also are taking the risk of purchasing items that have zero manufacture warranty. This is why I highly recommend you purchase from a pool professional.
No manufacturer wants to leave the online channel completely, after all it's a huge source of income for everyone, and it makes no sense to drop it altogether.
There is no denying however, that massive undercutting of their product rates on a gray market can dilute the value of the company's products as well as their online presence. some of you might think “it’s easier, I can browse online and pick and choose what I think I need and read reviews from customers that have bought it prior” yet for most of you your pool service professional comes to your house every week and knows your pool and equipment better than anyone why not ask them their opinion.
Your pool professional knows current electrical codes, and city and state regulations & ordinances, has knowledge of pump curves, hydraulic systems, Don’t keep your pool service professional in the dark about your desire to be more energy efficient and desire to utilize some of the latest technological advances in the pool equipment industry. A good pool service professional would have already approached you in regards to updating your old aging non energy efficient equipment.
So where’s my warranty? It’s become a huge peril of shopping online, many manufactures are taking steps to protect their authorized retailers from gray market online sales. Pool equipment manufactures are now manufacturing “Trade Series” products that are not available to online markets, but only thru pool professionals, authorized distribution and authorized retailers.
These companies aren't doing anything wrong. However, when consumers buy an expensive pool product online only to find that it isn't covered under warranty, there is only one loser in the whole deal. The consumer that bought it.
Agents of or the manufacture itself will require proof of purchase and product registration prior to any warranty repair. Also there are many additional factors that could void your factory warranty so you want to make sure you purchased and have your equipment installed by a trained skilled pool professional who will make sure the job is done correct and check all other areas of your pool equipment to make sure its installed, operating and programmed correctly. some of these factors are:
It’s not worth the little savings you might gain by purchasing pool products online rather than to purchase your swimming pool equipment from a licensed trained skilled pool professional and have them install it. The benefits you will receive are far greater than the risks involved with online purchases.
Most manufactures provide you with extended or additional warranty period and or rebates when you purchase thru a authorized distributor, retailer, or your swimming pool service professional.
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