Ever know of anyone who doesn't like a SWCG pool?

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Poolsean

TFP Expert
Apr 15, 2007
1,462
Ft Lauderdale, Florida
Kurt,

"I hope nothing I've written in this thread has been construed as SWG bashing. I just worry that so many people are so zealous in their praise of SWGs that it starts to smack of snake oil. SWGs are a fine product (if a little overpriced at this point) on the actual merits; they don't need hyping."

I would agree with the snake oil statement, if these comments were coming from ME only. But they are not and although you are correct, Salt Chlorine Generators don't need any additional praise, it certainly is worth hearing all the positives, in light of the initial post of "Who doesn't like their SWG?".
 

Buggsw

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 22, 2007
927
Arizona
Quote from Poolsean answering KurtV:
Poolsean said:
Kurt,

"I hope nothing I've written in this thread has been construed as SWG bashing. I just worry that so many people are so zealous in their praise of SWGs that it starts to smack of snake oil. SWGs are a fine product (if a little overpriced at this point) on the actual merits; they don't need hyping."

I would agree with the snake oil statement, if these comments were coming from ME only. But they are not and although you are correct, Salt Chlorine Generators don't need any additional praise, it certainly is worth hearing all the positives, in light of the initial post of "Who doesn't like their SWG?".
Original Post:
Buggsw said:
I've been contemplating and researching getting a SWCG for my pool this fall/winter. But the thought just struck me, I have never ever experienced being in a pool that has one.

I see so many people rave about them and how wonderful the water feels. I just cannot imagine it. Has anyone ever said they don't like the feel of it?

What is the "feel" of the water? I'm just having a hard time imagining how much different it could feel from my pool water.
Now, wait a minute, Poolsean, I detect that you are somewhat irritated about my OP. I didn't intend to bash SWCG systems with my initial post, which was, "Ever know of anyone who didn't like a SWCG pool?" and the OP questions was about the feel of it, as I have also quoted here. You were kind enough to point out some public pools that use your system, so that I might have an opportunity to experience the feel.

There are pros/cons to everything. While I was initially curious about whether anyone didn't care for the feel of a SWCG pool, I was happy to learn of things I had never considered and what I may need to consider in light of planning my pool renovation. I didn't take any of it as a show stopper to installing a SWCG system.
 

KurtV

LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
270
SE Louisiana
Poolsean said:
I would agree with the snake oil statement, if these comments were coming from ME only. But they are not and although you are correct, Salt Chlorine Generators don't need any additional praise, it certainly is worth hearing all the positives, in light of the initial post of "Who doesn't like their SWG?".
Sean,
I think you're still misapprehending my main point. To wit: Many of the things that you and other SWG advocates attribute to SWGs don't have anything to do with SWGs (e.g. water feel, eye sting, etc.). Those things come from having salty water. SWGs are, simply put, a convenient and effective source of chlorine.
 

Poolsean

TFP Expert
Apr 15, 2007
1,462
Ft Lauderdale, Florida
Buggs,

Sorry, didn't mean to offend. I didn't take your OP as anything negative on Salt Chlorine Generators and sorry if I sounded irritated, I'm not. I'm glad you asked and I'm glad the responses were positive! See?? I'm smiling! :-D

Kurt, what I am saying is that if there weren't any SWG systems, who would have thought of just adding salt to their pools? Yes, some of the attributes of a SWG is due to adding salt, but the fact that you're also generating chlorine from the added salt is more than just convenience, it's providing better water quality and oxidizing combined chlorines, as it's generating chlorine. A peristaltic bleach or erosion feeder will not provide the same oxidizing effect on combined chlorine. It's not the same concentration when injected. I've personally tested the chlorine generated between the cell blades to be in excess of 75 ppm. You will not get this effect with any other form of chlorine feed devise, except chlorine gas. You mentioned chlorine gas, but no residential pool has chlorine gas injection...period. Some service companies still use chlorine gas injection as their sanitizer treatment, but regulations are eliminating this more and more every day.
Water quality is easier to maintain than any other method. Because it is feeding chlorine every day, levels are maintained easier. OK, now I'm sounding like a salt peddler...so I'll stop.
 

KurtV

LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
270
SE Louisiana
Poolsean said:
...
Kurt, what I am saying is that if there weren't any SWG systems, who would have thought of just adding salt to their pools? Yes, some of the attributes of a SWG is due to adding salt, but the fact that you're also generating chlorine from the added salt is more than just convenience, it's providing better water quality and oxidizing combined chlorines, as it's generating chlorine.
First, the veracity of the first statement in the above paragraph aside, who cares where the idea came from? How is that in any way germane? Second, unless you're willing to provide some evidence to support your assertions about the superior water quality, we'll continue to disagree on that point.

A peristaltic bleach or erosion feeder will not provide the same oxidizing effect on combined chlorine. It's not the same concentration when injected. I've personally tested the chlorine generated between the cell blades to be in excess of 75 ppm. You will not get this effect with any other form of chlorine feed devise, except chlorine gas...
Ok (maybe), but so what. Does this supposed difference show up when comparing an SWG equipped pool with a properly maintained pool without an SWG? Look at the non-SWG pools kept by the longtime members here and at poolforum.com for the answer to that question.

Water quality is easier to maintain than any other method. Because it is feeding chlorine every day, levels are maintained easier. OK, now I'm sounding like a salt peddler...so I'll stop.
Bingo. That's what I've been saying throughout this thread; it's easier to keep a good pool with an SWG. That's the one thing you say here that doesn't sound like something an unscrupulous salt peddler would say.
 

crazycanuck

Well-known member
Mar 29, 2007
294
Ontario, Canada
KurtV said:
Poolsean said:
I would agree with the snake oil statement, if these comments were coming from ME only. But they are not and although you are correct, Salt Chlorine Generators don't need any additional praise, it certainly is worth hearing all the positives, in light of the initial post of "Who doesn't like their SWG?".
Sean,
I think you're still misapprehending my main point. To wit: Many of the things that you and other SWG advocates attribute to SWGs don't have anything to do with SWGs (e.g. water feel, eye sting, etc.). Those things come from having salty water. SWGs are, simply put, a convenient and effective source of chlorine.

So are you saying that the lack of eye stinging comes from having salt water? I thought eye-stinging comes from having high CC? I think if I had salty water and high CC I would still get stinging eyes.
 

KurtV

LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
270
SE Louisiana
crazy,
It can come from both. High levels of CCs will definitely make your eyes sting, but there is a good bit of stinging, at least for most people, in any fresh water. Highly saline water (like seawater at 35000 ppm) will also sting the eyes. The closer the water is to the salinity of tears (about 9000 ppm, I think), the less eye sting.
 

pooladdict

TFP Guide
In The Industry
May 14, 2007
819
New Brunswick Canada
My Two Cents worth.

SWG are basically maintenance free pools. Simplier, easier, nicer. Anyone who is stating that SWG's are not, either has a vested interest in pools turning green or has not seen one in action. Love the comment about rising ph, ohhhh thats tough to check for. As for just doing chlorine production, cmon man, what about the CC's that get obliterated everytime the cell is charged. Four Pools in my lil corner of my street. I am the only SWG, gotta love seeing all of them coming back from PB with trunk loads of "Magic Potions" that will cure their pools problems. Hmmm lets do some really quick math from what my neighbors have done.

Mine...SWG...$1500 Canadian. Some PH Down, ZIP ELSE

THeirs, all have purchased on average 400 to 500 in chems a year, I asked them. Add that up, not to mention the extra purchasing of GOGGLES they all have and need, unless they want their eyes to look like a drunk after a four day binge.

PB's side, sell one SWG, experience no problems at all, and rarely if ever see the customer again. Hmmm not good retail business sense.

Rik
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
34,428
Sebring, Florida
Well, time for my two cents worth.

I think KurtV's thoughts are on the money. SWG's are a convenience for sure (and I may purchase one soon). They have side effects. These side effects may not even be relevant to you but you should be aware that they exist.

Clorox has side effects, too. I may get banned from the dump because of soooo many clorox bottles. My wife complains the jugs are too heavy but I tell her not to do it on the same days she has to split wood and mow the grass. :lol: :lol:

It is too simplistic to view SWG's as the final "magic bullet" that so many of us would like to have for our pools. Like anything you purchase, you are naive if you don't consider all the factors. I would liken it to purchasing a 400 horsepower SUV without considering the operating costs.
 

KurtV

LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
270
SE Louisiana
pooladdict said:
My Two Cents worth.

SWG are basically maintenance free pools. Simplier, easier, nicer. Anyone who is stating that SWG's are not, either has a vested interest in pools turning green or has not seen one in action. Love the comment about rising ph, ohhhh thats tough to check for. As for just doing chlorine production, cmon man, what about the CC's that get obliterated everytime the cell is charged. Four Pools in my lil corner of my street. I am the only SWG, gotta love seeing all of them coming back from PB with trunk loads of "Magic Potions" that will cure their pools problems. Hmmm lets do some really quick math from what my neighbors have done.

Mine...SWG...$1500 Canadian. Some PH Down, ZIP ELSE

THeirs, all have purchased on average 400 to 500 in chems a year, I asked them. Add that up, not to mention the extra purchasing of GOGGLES they all have and need, unless they want their eyes to look like a drunk after a four day binge.

PB's side, sell one SWG, experience no problems at all, and rarely if ever see the customer again. Hmmm not good retail business sense.

Rik
Here's a pretty good post post on estimated operating and maintenance costs for an SWG. Bottom line in this analysis is about $21.00/month plus the initial cost of the SWG. That figure includes a cell replacement at the 5 year mark. Amortizing a $1000.00 initial cost over 10 years (not sure how valid that is but it seems a reasonable assumption) and subtracting the cell replacement cost over the second 5 year period (this assumes you'll replace the whole unit instead of just the cell at the ten year mark), your total monthly cost would be in the neighborhood of $25.00/month.

Let's compare that to the Grocery Store pool care method. I use about 12 3-quart jugs of bleach a month on average at a cost of roughly $1.09 (including tax). We pick that up once or twice a month on normal grocery runs so I don't incur any additional travel costs. That's ~$13.08/month.

This analysis ignores the cost of salt since that's the same in my case (I keep about 2500 ppm in my pool).

So what does your extra $12.00 per month get you? Well, you don't have to lug bleach bottles around or find a place to store bleach or deal with the occasional leaking jug. You don't have to add chlorine manually and risk damaging clothing. That's generally but not always true as some SWG owners shock their pools with other chlorine sources after a particularly heavy bather load and/or to save wear and tear on the salt cell). You don't have to find someone to add bleach while you're on vacation (though I try to manage CYA so that I can use tri-chlor pucks when I'm going to be gone for more than a couple of days). You can probably get away with testing chlorine and pH every 3 or 4 days instead of every day or 2 (though that's a bit of a slippery slope).

What does your extra $12.00/month not get you? It won't make your eyes feel any better; the salt does that. It won't reduce your combined chlorine if you stay on top of your free chlorine level; I've never found any CC in my pool in over a year and a half of continuous operation. It won't save you from purchasing "magic potions" from the pool store; I never put anything in my pool but bleach and muriatic acid (and borax once) and probably never will. It won't, if you ignore your pool and the water chemistry, always keep you from getting algae or having an unsanitary pool; just look around on this forum and poolforum.com for stories about people with SWGs who are fighting algae blooms.

So, is that ~$12.00/month worth it? I'm still on the fence personally (just wrote me eldest daughter's first tuition check this month) but the answer is clearly yes for many people. The new AutoPilot Total Control systems (and the imitators that will surely follow) will probably alter the equation for me; especially when the prices descend from the stratosphere. Those are actually getting you pretty close to a maintenance and trouble free pool.
 

Rangeball

Well-known member
May 25, 2007
785
Kurt, that's pretty much the analysis I did last year. I was more conservative, allowing only 3 year cell life, as my luck generally runs that way...:(

The only thing that has me rethinking this is recent claims of the intex SWG stand alone unit making as much chlorine as the big high priced units. First year cost would be a savings or no more than a break even. If I replaced the cell every year, it would cut my bleach cost for my pool in half.

I wish I could see one up close and personal so I could figure out how it could be scabbed into my 1.5" return line :)
 

Poolsean

TFP Expert
Apr 15, 2007
1,462
Ft Lauderdale, Florida
No offense Kurt, but this is starting to sound like a "Gun's don't kill people. People kill people." type discussion.

A Salt Chlorine Generator has a single purpose, generate chlorine on site by using a salt solution added to the pool.

The additional benefits are the "attributes", which are as a result of adding salt and generating chlorine in this manner. While you can have the same "soft water feel" just from adding salt to the pool, really, no one would have ever thought of doing so on their own, so how the idea came about came about is germane. Kinda like Borates...who would have thought to add 20 mule team to their pool?
Do I have supporting evidence to my statements? I guess the comments from the previous posts are only attributes for adding salt?

Look, I'm not trying to say everyone needs to have a salt pool. I am saying there ARE unique benefits to a SWG, not just convenience. Are there "pools that are just as well sanitized and just as sparkling as any SWG equipped pool. We just have to work at it a bit more. Which is just another way of saying it's less convenient to keep a pool this way."? I'm sure there are many pools maintained this way! I have faith in poolforum and TFP members using the BBB method, having well sanitized and sparling pools! SeanB has a whole slide show of these types of pools!

I think we can agree that properly maintained pools can have equal water characteristics as a SWG.
I think we can agree that just adding salt to a pool provides similar soft water feel.

However, I don't think there's any denying statements about differences (kids not wanting to swim in non salt pools, people with dermatitis conditions being able to stay for hours in a SWG pool, etc) from people going from a traditional chlorine pool to a salt water pool...and not wanting to go back. The neighborhood kids use to go pool hopping, but where do they ultimately end up? THEY tell me they like my pool better. Do I tell them it's a salt pool? (no, I don't - I just smile :-D )
It's amazing when I hear from commercial property owners who comment to me that their members know there's been a change in their public pool, from the apparence, to the feel of the water. And these are suppose to be well maintained pools to begin with.

I'm NOT looking to be confrontational (and to me, I think my last few posts have been that way - sorry), I just don't agree with you that it's all contributable to adding salt.
 

KurtV

LifeTime Supporter
Mar 29, 2007
270
SE Louisiana
Sean,
I'm not trying to be confrontional either, but my rhetorical skills clearly aren't up to what I think is the indisputeable logic of the case I'm trying to make. That case is really a fairly narrow one and it's far from SWG bashing.

I just think that everyone benefits when we put the facts on the table. Part of putting those facts on the table is accurately ascribing cause and effect. One example: Your eyes don't burn because of the salt, not because of the SWG. That's it.

And that's (way) more than enough from me on this.
 

Poolsean

TFP Expert
Apr 15, 2007
1,462
Ft Lauderdale, Florida
Kurt,

I don't view your posts as SWG bashing at all. :hammer: That's all I'll say.


Now Duraleigh, on the other hand. :roll:
I'm waiting for the men AND women to slam him!
"Clorox has side effects, too. I may get banned from the dump because of soooo many clorox bottles. My wife complains the jugs are too heavy but I tell her not to do it on the same days she has to split wood and mow the grass."

It's quite obvious why the women would not be happy with his remark.
But men, why in the world would he want to blow a good thing for us and have her do the wood and yard on the same day....AND of course like me, expect her to make dinner and do the laundry too?! Good lord man. Spread it out! Balance, man. It's all about balance!

:whip:
 

SeanB

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Well, here's my thought on the matter.

My youngest daughter has pretty severe eczema so getting a swg was a forgone conclusion for us. Could just addind salt have helped her skin? Yes. Was I going to go to the trouble of addind salt and not get the side benefit of chlorine generation and less work for me? No.

IMO, if you are going to do one, you might as well do the other. Again, that's jmo.
 

Poolsean

TFP Expert
Apr 15, 2007
1,462
Ft Lauderdale, Florida
SeanB,

You need a handshake emoticon so I can extend it when I get out of sorts...

But I wonder though, would have just adding salt have helped her skin? Did you happen to try that before adding the salt system?
 

SeanB

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
Poolsean said:
SeanB,

You need a handshake emoticon so I can extend it when I get out of sorts...

But I wonder though, would have just adding salt have helped her skin? Did you happen to try that before adding the salt system?
I couldn't say. We knew we wanted a swg from the start and had it installed at the time the pool was built, so it's all we've known. To date, her skin has never shown any signs of dryness or irritation even after lots of swimming so we are quite pleased.

Oh, and here you go, just for you...
:handshake:
 
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