If a summer of swimming in chlorinated pools has left you with frizzy hair, irritated eyes, and itchy skin, then this is for you.
According to the National Swimming Pool Foundation, a growing number of pool owners are switching to new technologies that promise better disinfection, easier maintenance, and fewer health side-effects than standard chlorinated pools.
For example: 80% of new public pools use UV-light generators, which disinfect water by shining beams of ultraviolet light through it. Other systems use ozone gas to kill bacteria.
But the most popular alternative for home pools is a “saltwater” system, which generates pure chlorine by blasting salt with electricity. Experts say an estimated 1-in-9 North Americans now use saltwater systems, because the water ends up crystal-clear, feels softer on the skin, and it doesn’t leave your body smelling like chemicals.
As you might expect, the new pool systems are expensive to install. For instance, saltwater chlorine generators start around $1,000! However, considering that a year’s worth of chlorine tablets cost around $700, experts say you may actually save money over time, because the new systems use only a-tenth of the normal amount of chlorine.