Saltwater Chlorinators are essential for maintaining clean and sanitised swimming pools. These systems use saltwater cells and electrical currents to convert the saltwater into chlorinated water. Consequently, this acid effectively sanitises your pool water.
Over time, the chlorinator cell can become dirty and clogged, affecting its performance. It is generally recommended to clean saltwater cells at least twice a year, although the frequency may differ based on factors such as the size of the pool, its usage, and environmental conditions. In this guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of cleaning a chlorinator cell, enabling you to keep your pool crystal clear and safe for swimming.
Understanding the Saltwater Chlorinator Cell
Before diving into the cleaning process, it’s crucial to have a basic understanding of how a chlorinator cell works. The cell consists of titanium plates coated with a thin layer of a precious metal called ruthenium. When the cell is energised, electrolysis occurs, converting salt into chlorine gas, which is then dissolved in the water. Over time, calcium scale and other contaminants can build up in the cell, impeding the chlorine production process.
How to Clean the Saltwater Chlorinator Cell
Remove a Chlorinator Cell
To effectively clean a salt cell or chlorinator cell, it is necessary to detach it from the overall system. Prior to removal, it is crucial to ensure that the saltwater chlorinator system is turned off. The chlorinator cell must not be removed without first disconnecting the power supply, as it operates using electricity to convert salt into hypochlorous acid. Taking this precaution will prevent any unexpected electric shocks.
Gathering the Necessary Tools for Safety
Ensuring your safety while handling a saltwater chlorinator cell and various chemicals requires proper protective measures. To safeguard your well-being, wear safety goggles, latex gloves, and a mask. These protective gears will shield you from any potential harm, including harmful fumes. Moreover, consider wearing coveralls to provide an extra layer of protection against accidental splashes.
Steps to Clean a Chlorinator Cell
1) Rinse the cell: If the scale layer is not heavy, use a water hose or pressure washer to rinse off loose debris and dirt from the cell. Be gentle when cleaning delicate plates.
2) Prepare the cleaning solution: If the above does not help, take a plastic container to mix one part of muriatic acid or vinegar with four parts of water. Note: If using muriatic acid, always add the acid to the water, never the other way around.
3) Submerge the cell: Carefully place the cell in the container, ensuring it is fully submerged in the cleaning solution. Allow it to soak for approximately 15-20 minutes. Avoid prolonged exposure to acid, as it can damage the cell.
4) Scrub the cell: After soaking, use a soft-bristle brush to gently scrub the cell’s plates and remove any remaining scale or deposits. Pay attention to the areas with the most buildup.
Rinse thoroughly: Once the cell is clean, rinse it thoroughly with water to remove any traces of the cleaning solution. Ensure all acid or vinegar has been washed away.
Reinstall the cell: Prior to reattaching your chlorinator cell, it is important to allocate some time for a thorough inspection to verify that all fittings are in a perfect state and devoid of any damage. Should you observe any indications of excessive wear and tear on any of the components, it is advisable to promptly replace them without delay. This preventive action will help you avoid potential future damage and costly repairs.
Test and monitor: Turn on the power and test the chlorinator to ensure it is functioning correctly. Monitor the chlorine production levels over the next few days to ensure optimal performance.
Regularly cleaning your salt cell is essential for maintaining a healthy and hygienic swimming pool. By following this step-by-step guide, you can effectively clean your chlorinator cell, remove scale and deposits, and ensure the efficient production of chlorine. Remember to prioritise safety throughout the cleaning process and consult your specific chlorinator’s user manual for any additional instructions or precautions. With a clean chlorinator cell, you can enjoy sparkling, clean pool water all summer long.