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What type of salt should I use in my pool and why?

The popularity of salt pools raises many questions. However, there are not many answers, even though many swimming pool companies are unable to answer these questions. 

What type of salt should I use for my saltwater pool?

In a pool equipped with a Pentair, Hayward or other salt chlorine generator, you must use salt extracted by mining and washing. Always use salt that is 95% or more pure. The purer it is, the less likely it will stain the pool or damage the equipment. To extend the life of your salt cell, always opt for a premium quality product. 

Here are the 3 types of salt for your swimming pool.

Although there are several different types of salt, only three types can be used in your pool. Solar salt, mechanically evaporated salt and mined and washed salt.

woman dive in salt pool

Solar salt

Solar salt is seawater. This water is diverted to a holding area where the sun evaporates the water, leaving the salt behind. This technique provides a significant contribution of organic matter and waste, what we call in our profession an impurity. To destroy this impurity, the salt system must work harder to create chlorine to remove this organic matter. 

Mechanically evaporated salt

Mechanically evaporated salt is also made from seawater, but it is heated mechanically rather than evaporating in the sun. Because heat levels are controlled, they are more precise and more effective in killing bacteria.

While this method kills bacteria and microorganisms, it also creates a very mineral-rich salt, which contains pure salt mixed with calcium, magnesium, copper, nitrites and other minerals.

None of these are good to introduce into your pool. Most of the above do not affect the cleanliness of the water but rather its balance. They can also affect your salt cell and stain your swimming pool.

Mined and washed salt

Mined salt is extracted from the earth. It is pure salt, without biological contaminants, with few additional minerals. Its average content of pure sodium chloride varies from 95 to 99%. Due to its purity and lack of contaminants, mined salt is considered the best source for use in swimming pools. Some companies like Pristiva go so far as to wash this salt 3 times (triple wash).  

Pool salt is therefore not “just salt”, it is much more than that.

The quality of salt you use makes a huge difference in the lifespan of your salt system and your enjoyment of your pool. By knowing this, you are able to make the right choice regarding the type of salt you will use in the future.