Swimming Pool Ionizer Mineral System For Good or Bad | What Is It? 

Chemical Free Pool Ionizer & Water Ionization.  Chlorine Free Reduces Problems With Asthmatic Bronchitis With Pool Ionization.

Each year pool stores and pool owners are bombarded with the "latest and greatest" product.  Simply toss this in your pool and you're done.  Or add this chemical and it makes pool maintenance so much easier.  Folks, this is called marketing for a reason.  And the vast majority of it is either not true, or severely misleading.  There's no substitute for  understanding what I've coined as:

"The Universal Laws of Pool Chemistry and Physics That Apply Equally To Every Outdoor Chlorine and Salt Pool In The World."

Easy Pool Chemistry

It's called chemistry and physics for a reason.  These easy to understand 1st Grade Level pool chemistry and physics laws are applicable if you're in Florida, California, Australia, Spain, France, Germany, Russia... Oh well, you get the point. 

A swimming pool ionizer works by sanitizing your pool water using copper and silver ions in place of chemicals to kill algae, bacteria, and viruses.  Your pool water is negatively charged and contains very small particles that cannot be filtered because of their tiny size.  Your pool water then gets a low voltage current which sends positively charged copper and silver ions through the swimming pool water.  The negative particles (water, bacteria, etc...) then bind with the positive charge and together they make a large particle.

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What Is A Pool Ionizer Mineral System?

A swimming pool ionizer works by using copper and silver ions in place of chemicals to kill algae, bacteria, and viruses.  Your pool water is negatively charged and contains very small particles that cannot be filtered because of their tiny size.  The water then gets a low voltage current which sends positively charged copper and silver ions through the swimming pool water.  The negative particles (water, bacteria, etc...) then bind with the positive charge and together they make a large particle.  

High pH levels can have a negative effect on the copper ions and has little effect on silver ions.  You will still need to maintain a level of chlorine between 1 - 2 ppm even when you have a pool ionizer.

Swimming Pool Ionizer

Pool Staining 

High sustained pH levels can have a negative effect on the copper ions and has little effect on silver ions.  Also, high maintained levels of chlorine can also dampen the effects of both silver and copper ions.  Pool ionizers may lead to staining on a pool's surface.  This happens when copper ions attach to the pool's surface and discolors it.  The discoloration is more noticeable on white or light-colored surfaces.  And you'll need to clean the ionizer more frequently if you have hard fill water over 400 ppm.  Over-use of any type of copper, whether it's a copper algaecide or copper ions, can also turn blonde hair green.  And maybe you thought it was chlorine that turned your little blonde princesses' hair green? 

Can I Just Use A Pool Ionizer and Nothing Else?

The quick answer is yes and no.  Yes you can use it, but if your goal is to sanitize, oxidize and kill the organic matter in the pool, you're going to need to use chlorine to accomplish that.  You must also weekly shock your pool which, in effect, negates any benefits from having a pool ionizer.  The chlorine is actually do the job.

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Advantages Of Alternative Sanitizers

Many people swear by them because they are a bit safer than normal pool chemicals such as chlorine. 

  • They are chemically stable and the copper and silver electrode grids (bars) that make the ions don't create any hazardous chemicals and is about as close to a natural swimming pool as you can get.
  • Some pool owners may say that no residual chlorine needs to be added.
  • If you need to add any extra pool chlorine, it can take around 1 ppm 
  • Some of these swimming pool owners say you don't need to add pool chlorine (Calcium Hypochlorite) unless the pool water temperature is above 90 degrees F and/or if the water becomes very cloudy.
  • Pool owners seem to like the time and money they seemingly save by not having to purchase so many chemicals.  The silver and copper ions are pH neutral which means it won't change your swimming pool chemistry like adding Calcium Hypochlorite which has a pH level of about 12.

Disadvantages Of Copper Ionization

How efficient is it? 

  • If you have a swimming pool problem like algae, swimming pool ionizers may not be able to produce enough copper and silver ions to get rid of the swimming pool algae or green pool water. 
  • If your pool is covered for a long period of time, i.e. pool winterization and you have an issue with pool algae, or worse yet, black algae the unit may not have enough juice to tackle the issue.
  • Some people will use a small dose of pool chlorine and chlorine tabs to assist in keeping up with their swimming pool care and pool water chemistry
  • Cannot kill algae spores faster than they reproduce, hence, maintaining a residual chlorine level
  • You also open yourself up to the risk of metal and swimming pool stains due to copper being added to the pool.
  • You need to have a proper spa sanitizer and sanitation for your pool.  Copper ionization can do the trick.  However, copper and silver cannot oxidize AND sanitize the water. Only chlorine can do that.

I really only have 2 issues with pool ionizers.  First is their lack of ability to kill algae and bacteria faster than it reproduces.  Remember those are physical living organisms and like all organisms, they reproduce and grow. 

2nd is the possibility of pool staining if the swimming pool ionizer is not properly used.  To get rid of metal stains, you're going to need to do an ascorbic acid treatment which is a royal and expensive pain in the wallet. 

You have the information you need to make a good judgment on the way you want to keep your pool clean and healthy.  Make the decision that's best for you, your family, and your pool.

Happy Swimming  

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