Understanding the Differences: Saltwater vs Freshwater In-ground Pools

Outdoor Living Features

When it comes to installing an in-ground pool, homeowners have two main options: saltwater and freshwater pools. Both types of pools have their own unique set of benefits and drawbacks, and understanding these differences can help you make an informed decision about which option is best for you.

BPI saltwater in-ground pool with sunset in background

The benefits of saltwater in-ground pools

Saltwater pools use a process called electrolysis to convert salt into chlorine, which sanitizes the water. Saltwater pools have gained popularity in recent years because they’re considered to be gentler on the skin and eyes than freshwater pools.

Many people find that they don’t experience the same level of redness, irritation, and dryness that often occurs with chlorinated freshwater pools. Additionally, the water in a saltwater pool tends to feel softer and more pleasant to swim in.

Saltwater pools also offer energy efficiency benefits. The conversion process from salt to chlorine is more energy efficient than traditional chlorine generators used in freshwater pools.

While saltwater pools have their benefits, one of the biggest drawbacks is that they require more maintenance. The salt cells in these pools need to be cleaned and replaced regularly, and the water must be tested more frequently to ensure that the pH and chlorine levels are balanced. Additionally, saltwater pools can be more expensive to install, as they require special equipment and materials.

BPI freshwater pool with slide

The benefits of freshwater in-ground pools

Freshwater pools use chlorine tablets or liquid to sanitize the water. Chlorine pools are the most traditional and widely used method. The water in a freshwater pool is generally considered to be more clear and sparkling than saltwater pools.

Freshwater pools have a number of unique benefits. Many people think freshwater looks more clear, sparkling, and inviting than saltwater. Freshwater pools are also a lower-maintenance option. They don’t require the same regular cleaning and maintenance as saltwater pools, and the cost of installation is generally lower.

Like saltwater pools, freshwater pools also have a few drawbacks. The water in a freshwater pool can be more harsh on the skin and eyes, and it may require more frequent additions of chlorine to maintain the right chemical balance.

Choosing the right type of in-ground pool for you

When choosing between a saltwater and freshwater in-ground pool, it’s important to consider your personal preferences and lifestyle.

If you’re looking for a low-maintenance option and don’t mind the possibility of harsher water, a freshwater pool may be the best choice. If you prefer a gentler option and are willing to invest in more regular maintenance, a saltwater pool may be the way to go.

Want help choosing and designing the perfect pool for your space? Talk to our experts at BPI Outdoor Living. Explore our portfolio of poolscapes or schedule a design consultation today.

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