Chlorinator Buying Guide
Chlorine, you either love it or hate it; either way we have you covered. The key to proper water balancing is maintaining the correct level of chlorine for your pool water’s needs. Luckily, the top pool manufacturers have added items to help you keep that right with little to no effort. You have 3 different types of chlorinators offered today: Floating Chlorinators, Standard Tablet Feeders, and Salt Chlorinators.
Standard feeders and floating feeders make chlorine constantly and can only be adjusted. Salt Chlorine Generators will only make the chlorine when you need it.
We will start with the traditional chlorine based chlorinators as those are still currently the most popular options.
Floating Chlorinators are offered in a variety of sizes, shapes and colors; you can even get them with decorative tops and designs. Floating chlorinators accommodate the tablets right in the device itself and often have a slot based dispensing system. With a slot based system, you would adjust the flow of water allowed in the device by rotating a section of the chlorinator, which exposes more of the slots. For the models that do not have a slot based adjustment, such as a popular Sig-Fish Chlorinator, you would need to see packaging or description for adjustment options. The Sig-Fish Chlorinators have a floating bobber with a fish attached to the bottom of the line. You actually use the fish’s body to store the tablets and the chlorine will be dispersed while the fish swims under the water. Floating Chlorinators are the cheaper method of chlorine dispensing.
Standard Tablet Feeders are a popular option for both in-ground and above-ground pools. An In-Line Chlorinator is installed direct into the plumbing line while the Off-Line Chlorinator version is set off to the side and would have tubing connected to the existing plumbing line. Both options would feature a dial to adjust the flow. Standard Chlorine Tablet feeders will normally work with the 1” or 3” tablets or sticks, but check the details to confirm capacity as they are offered in different sizes. Some manufacturers even offer a see-thru body design that allows you to visibly check to see if there are still tablets remaining. Pricing for these will vary depending on the capacity and installation method.
Now, for those who want a chlorinator but may not prefer traditional chlorine: the salt chlorinator option. Salt Chlorine Generators convert salt to chlorine. It is the same type of chlorine your pool is used to but isn’t as harsh as the tablet, granular or liquid version. Salt Chlorinators require you to maintain a specific amount of salt, the salt level, and will only produce chlorine when needed. This will save you time and money and will normally keep your pool balanced longer. By using a salt generator and keeping the salt levels correct, you will minimize the chance of algae growth, the water will feel much cleaner and no longer be sticky-feeling, and you will save money as your pool will have the proper levels of chlorine at all times. Salt Chlorine Generators have a large variety of options; you can get basic generators that only produce as needed or you can get the pricier models that control all the balancing required. Salt Chlorine Generators do have some normal wear items, such as the replacement salt cell, which will need to be replaced every few years.