So, not only is shocking a saltwater pool okay, but it's actually important to your pool's health. Shocking is the process in which you overload your pool with chlorine (3-5 times the normal amount) to improve your pool's cleanliness and kill off organic matter.
Shock your pool once a week with Salinity Surge Shock or Salinity Oxidizing Shock. Pool shock works as an added defense against bacteria and contaminants. With Oxidizing shock, you can use your pool after just 15 minutes!
Yes, a salt water pool has a reduced cost of operation as compared to a traditional chlorinated pool. This cost savings is primarily because chlorine is generated from salt and there is no need to buy chlorine. Additionally, salt water pools require fewer chemicals to keep the water clean and clear.
As shocking has a tendency to push metals out of solution and salt (even when labeled as pure) can contain trace amounts of metals, it is recommended that you add salt at a different time from shocking.
The only time that it is important not to add salt is in the first 30 days after plaster is applied. Otherwise it is fine to go ahead and add salt. Run the pump for 24 hours after adding salt and turn off the SWG for those 24 hours.
The saltwater chlorinator needs a sufficient flow of water for effective operation. A dirty skimmer basket, clogged or dirty filter, and a clogged pump strainer, can cause insufficient water flow for the chlorinator to produce less chlorine.
For safe swimming conditions, the ideal salt level is going to be between 2500 ppm and 4000 ppm. An overly salted pool will generally not be a major problem (aside from salty-tasting water), but at levels over 6000 ppm there may be corrosion damage to some of the metallic equipment.
Salt Water Pool Cost
Homeowners pay an average of $25,000 to install a new salt water swimming pool, compared to the cost of installing a traditional pool, which has a price tag of about $23,000 on average. Cost to build a standard, 20,000-gallon pool can be as low as $12,000 or as high as $67,000.
To reach the initial salt level recommended by the salt system manufacturer (usually 2400-3200 ppm), you will need to add about 200 lbs of pure pool grade salt (NaCl), per 10,000 gallons of water.
Pros of Saltwater Pools
There's less chlorine and less of the heavy chemical scent and content. They're gentler on the skin, with less irritation to the eyes, hair and swimsuits. The water has a softer, silkier feel to it compared to chlorine water. They have lower maintenance costs than chlorine pools.
Chlorine kills mould and bacteria faster than a salt pool will; this makes the pool water clear, clean and safe to swim in. Your swimming pool will have to be tested with a pH kit and chlorine tablets added as required to balance out the pH levels.
If you own a salt water pool, you probably know how big of a problem algae growth can be. Once these organisms contaminate the pool, they can grow and spread quickly. Both chlorinated and salt water pools need proper water chemistry levels in order to prevent algae growth.
Just like a chlorine-based pool, saltwater pools turn cloudy when chemicals are not balanced. You need to ensure that all chemicals are balanced all the time to avoid cloudy water and growth of algae. The major causes of cloudiness are chlorine, pH, Salinity, total alkalinity, cyanuric acid, and calcium hardness.
Generally it's better to have the level on the high side than low, so 3800 should be fine.
On average, most pools will need the saltwater generator to be on 8-12 hours per day. This will produce adequate levels of chlorine to properly sanitize the pool's water.
Test the water that water has just left the chlorinator - it should have a very high chlorine reading. (Remember that if it is extremely high it may bleach the test tablet so you may have to dilute the water you are testing). If there is no chlorine reading, the chlorinator will not be working.
Wait until the shock process is complete, then put in the salt. It'll dissolve right away and be ready for the SWG by the time you get ready to use it.
Sometimes a saltwater pool's chlorinator isn't creating enough chlorine, and the water can become cloudy or develop algae. When this happens, a bit of chlorine can save the day, said Hunker. You can add extra chlorine to the pool through calcium hypochlorite, sodium hypochlorite, or chlorine tablets.
For most people, the big selling point for saltwater pools is, well, the salt! The lower-chlorine saltwater is better for swimmers' hair, skin and eyes. Additionally, it also tends to be less harsh on pool toys and swimsuits. So saltwater offers better longevity for your accessories.