Chlorine and Saltwater Facts:
Swimming Pool Chlorine & Bromine:
Chlorine and Saltwater Facts – Simply stated chlorine is a pesticide, as defined by the U.S. EPA, whose sole purpose is to kill living organisms.
Chlorine is still the most popular means of sanitizing swimming pool water. It does an excellent job sanitizing water, but it does so at a huge price.
Chlorine is a very caustic, corrosive chemical. It is effective because it attacks anything organic. Unfortunately, it also attacks the skin, hair, and eyes of the humans swimming in it.
Chlorine is toxic and hazardous to handle, ingest or breathe. It is also dangerous to store. Chlorine can be extremely flammable.
Chloramines, a by-product of chlorine and organic waste, are known carcinogens. Unfortunately there is no practical way of preventing chloramines from forming in chlorinated swimming pools.
Maintaining chlorine levels at minimal acceptable levels can be very difficult to do at times. Residual chlorine is highly affected by the water temperature, rain, pH, and number of swimmers. Chlorine is absorbed in the skin of swimmers and therefore the more people that swim in the pool, the more chlorine is absorbed by their skin and the more chlorine that needs to be added to the pool water to properly sanitize the water.
“We are quite convinced, based on this study, that there is an association between cancer and chlorinated water.” By Medical College Of Wisconsin research team.
The addition of chlorine to our drinking water began in the late 1800s and became the standard in water treatment by 1904. For the most part, it remains the standard today. We do not use chlorine because it is the safest or even the most effective means of disinfection, we use it because it is the cheapest. In spite of all our technological advances, we essentially still pour bleach in our water before we drink it. The long-term effects of chlorinated drinking water are just now being recognized.
According to the U.S. Council Of Environmental Quality, “Cancer risk among people drinking chlorinated water is 93% higher than among those whose water does not contain chlorine.”
Dr. Joseph Price wrote a highly controversial book in the late sixties titled Coronaries/ Cholesterol/ Chlorine and concluded, “ Nothing can negate the incontrovertible fact, the basic cause of therosclerosis and resulting entities such as heart attacks and stroke, is chlorine.” Dr. Price later headed up a study using chickens as test subjects, in which two groups of several hundred birds were observed throughout their span to maturity. One group was given water with chlorine and the other water without chlorine. The group raised with chlorine, when autopsied, showed some level of heart or circulatory disease in every specimen; the group without had no incidence of disease. The group with chlorine, under winter conditions, showed outward signs of poor circulation: shivering drooped feathers and a reduced level of activity. The group without chlorine grew faster and larger and displayed vigorous health. This study was well received in the poultry industry and is still used as a reference today. As a result, most large poultry producers now use dechlorinated water. “It would be a common sense conclusion that if regular chlorinated tap water is not good enough for the chickens, then it probably is not good enough for us humans!”
A good amount of well-founded concern about chlorine currently exists. When chlorine is added to our water, it combines with other natural compounds to form Trihalomethanes (chlorination byproducts), or THMs. These chlorine byproducts trigger the production of free radicals in the body, causing cell damage, and are highly carcinogenic. According to the Environmental Defense Fund, “Although concentrations of these carcinogens (THMs) are low, it is precisely these low levels that cancer scientists believe are responsible for the majority of human cancers in the United States.”
Simply stated chlorine is a pesticide, as defined by the U.S. EPA, whose sole purpose is to kill living organisms.
When we consume water containing chlorine, it kills some part of us, destroying cells and tissue inside our body. Dr. Robert Carlson, a highly respected University of Minnesota researcher whose work is sponsored by the Federal Environmental Protection Agency, sums the dilemma by claiming, “the chlorine problem is similar to that of air pollution.” He later adds, “Chlorine is the greatest crippler and killer of modern times!”
Breast cancer, which now affects one in every eight women in North America, has recently been linked to the accumulation of chlorine compounds in the breast tissue. A study carried out in Hartford Connecticut, the first of its kind in North America, found, “Women with breast cancer have 50% to 60% higher levels of organochlorines (chlorination byproducts) in their breast tissue than women without breast cancer.
Saltwater base pool (AKA Hypochlorous Acid Generator, Chlorine Generator, Saltwater Chlorine Generators, Salt Water Chlorinators, Salt Pool Systems):
A very common misconception is that a saltwater pool is somehow a chlorine free pool. This is not the case. A salt water pool is simply a pool that utilizes a chlorine generator to keep the pool water sanitized. Chlorine generators are the primary method of water chlorination in saltwater swimming pools, and those who have saltwater swimming pools swear to the convenience of having a salt generator. What exactly does a chlorine generator do, and how is it such a convenience to the pool owner?
A chlorine generator’s purpose is described in the name, as its purpose is to produce chlorine for your swimming pool. The immediate advantage to this is that you do not have to go to your outdoor supply retailer and buy it, nor do you have to store or even handle the chlorine. Properly functioning chlorine generators will produce chlorine constantly so long as the generator itself is running. This keeps the levels of chlorine in your pool water at a level, which prevents algae from growing in your pool. On one hand Chlorine does kill various viruses but on the other hand Chlorine contains Trihalomethanes (THMs) which are a family of very dangerous and hazardous chemicals which are collectively linked to cause cancer. THMs are absorbed through your skin which is the body’s largest organ. THMs are known to cause asthma and are also linked to bladder and colon cancer as well as being linked to reproductive issues, low testosterone and birth defects.
It works through a process called electrolysis. This is where the water that passes over the chlorine generator cells produces chlorine that transforms into Hypochlorous acid. Hypochlorous acid is what all chlorine, from liquid chlorine to gas chlorine to chlorine blocks, creates, and this acid sanitizes the water.
There are two types of chlorine generators being used in residential pools. The first is called a brine unit. These do not require the pool to have salt already in the water because these units have a tank or some kind of holding chamber that already has salt in it. Through the aforementioned electrolysis, chlorine is produced and pumped into the pool’s water circulation system. The drawback to this kind of generator is the amount of by-product produced. These kinds of generators are very messy, and the by-product they produce is not easily disposable. The other type of chlorine generator requires salt to already be in the water. Now even with this kind of generator, there are two differing types: One that generates chlorine while the machine is turned on, and one that generates chlorine regardless of whether the machine is powered on or not.
One of the major drawback to chlorine generators is the high level of maintenance required. For a chlorine generator to work properly, the device must be cleaned every few weeks with Muriatic Acid to remove mineral deposits that can build up over time. Even the slightest blockage will render the entire unit inoperable until it is cleaned. While chlorine pool generators (and salt water pools) are popular in the commercial swimming pool market, many homeowners wish that there was a safer and maintenance free alternative. However, if you are willing to put up with the extra maintenance of caring for a chlorine generator, you will find that the convenience of not having to handle any chlorine yourself hard to beat!
Be CAREFUL when using Muriatic Acid to clean you saltwater pool chlorinator, Muriatic Acid is extremely dangerous and hazardous to your health. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in a federal study. reported that there are an average of 4,700 cases of injury and illness caused by swimming pool chemicals in the United States reported annually. Don’t be another statistic!
There is a SAFE and Effective Alternative to Chlorine and Salt Treated Pools!
Just like cigarette manufacturers, there are a lot different brands to choose from that provide the same outcome. You can put lip stick on Saltwater System but at the end of the day, it is still a Hypochlorous Acid Generator.
Thank you for stopping by and learning about Chlorine and Saltwater Facts.