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Mineral Sanitizers for Pools

Using metallic ions to reduce chlorine or bromine usage.
 
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Alternative Pool Water Sanitizers.
 

 
 

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Floating suction powered pool skimmer. A solar-powered pool mineralizer is the easiest way to add copper and zinc ions, that help control algae and reduce chlorine consumption, by a considerable amount.  It provides back-up sanitizing actions, when chlorine levels drop, due to high bather demand.  Click above image Information.   Card On Guard, Solar UV Sanitizer, for pools and spas.

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How to use Mineral Sanitizers, in a pool? Mineral Sanitizers are devices that supply a stream of metallic ions to the swimming pool water, functioning as an algaecide and as a bactericide. Used properly, the ions are maintained at very low levels, avoiding the possibility of staining or discoloration. Mineral Sanitizers accomplish the release of the sanitizing ions without the use of electrical circuits, as is the case with Ionization units. Another type on Mineralizer uses solar power, to provide the power to ionize the metallic anodes. Mineral Sanitizers and Mineralizers are not stand alone pool water treatment products. They can reduce the total amount of chemicals required for proper pool water maintenance, but cannot destroy organic buildup or contamination and cannot destroy dead microorganisms and organic debris. The reliance on metallic ions for sanitizing, requires oxidation and the use of products such as: chlorine, bromine, non-chlorine shock or ozone. Not all of these oxidizers can be used with all Mineral Sanitizers: check with the manufacturer before adding chemicals, as to any limitations that might be suggested. Mineralizers and Ionizers can be used with bromine and all other pool & spa oxidizers. The overall water chemistry should be based upon the manufacturer's recommendations.  If problems arise, refer to the Pool Problems Page, as a source of problem-solving information, broken down into various categories.  Scroll down the page and click on the linked keywords, catch phrases or images, in the archived answers below, to access additional information, on that topic or product. 

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▼     Helpful, Problem-Solving Information, in a question and answer format.     ▼

How A Mineral Sanitizer Works?

I have a Solar-Powered Mineralizer installed on my above ground pool. I supplement it with some granular chlorine and shock. It seems to be doing a good job. My question is how does it work? Thanks.

Ed, Cleveland, OH, 6/3/2016

Solar-Powered Mineralizer for pools.
Solar-Powered Ionizers-Mineralizers release metallic ions into the water on a controlled basis. It is done without the use of electrical circuits, as is
the case with Ionization units. The mineral ions act to help control algae and bacteria. When used in a typical chlorine sanitized pool, a mineral sanitizer will reduce the amount of chlorine required.  Mineral Sanitizers and Solar-Powered Mineralizers cannot destroy organic wastes and byproducts or destroy dead algae and debris and it is recommended that the water be shocked on a regular basis, for this purpose. Because mineral sanitizing products have so little effect on the water chemistry, control of the pH and total alkalinity is less demanding. I hope that I have been helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 6/3/2016


The Shocking Facts?

I use a Solar-Powered Mineralizer and chlorine, for my above ground pool. Since it is supposed to be a low chlorine system I'm wondering if I still need to shock the pool periodically? If so should I use non chlorine shock in order to keep the pool at a low level of chlorine? Should I shock it when I open it? Thanks.

Karin S., 5/18/2014

Solar Pur Pool Mineralizer
Yes!!! Yes!!! Yes!!! Shock periodically to destroy waste accumulations and help prevent resistant microorganisms from
developing. You can use a non-chlorine shock, as it does well at reducing the combined chlorines. When you open the pool, you will need to shock with enough chlorine to establish a stable free chlorine level and clear up pool. The Solar-Powered Dual-Ion Purifier-Mineralizer will help you maintain quality water, while reducing the amount of chlorine required to maintain a satisfactory free chlorine level. I hope the information helps. Enjoy the season.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 5/18/2014


Salt Chlorinators And Mineral Sanitizers?

Your website is a great source of information that I found while doing research on alternate pool sanitizer solutions. Thank you for your time in providing this service. I hope this isn't a repeat, but I didn't find the specific info on the mineral sanitizers, and specifically not any comparison between the two in terms of effectiveness, cost and ease of use. I would very much like to know your thoughts on the relative merits of the mineral sanitizers and salt water chlorine generators.

Gene G., Madison, AL, 7/7/2016


A salt chlorinator is a complete pool sanitizing system. About all you'll need on a regular basis is some acid to lower the pH. It
Model SR salt chlorine generator, for all types of pools. is like maintaining a chlorine pool without the headaches or the handling of chlorine. It is highly automated and controllable. Need more chlorine - just dial it up. A Solar-Powered Dual-Ion Purifier-Mineralizer adds metallic ions to control algae and bacteria. However, you will still have to add chlorine or non-chlorine shock on a regular basis, to perform the necessary oxidizing function. In either case, the water chemistry must be maintained. A salt chlorinator will cost more initially. While I don't have specific figures, I suspect that over the life of the unit, the cost will be very competitive and possibly lower depending upon individual circumstances. Some salt cells are rated to last 5 years or more, depending upon the location. Mineral sanitizer cartridges have life expectancies of about 6 months, by comparison. You can use both products, together. That will allow you to maintain a lower level of free chlorine and that will make control of the pH easier and extend the life of the salt cell. I hope that the information proves to be helpful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 7/7/2016


Replacement Time?

Maybe you could settle a bet once and for all. Myself and a buddy (who also owns a pool) both use a mineralizer system. Many people tell me it's a placebo effect but I know it works and I swear by it. I have 0.5 chlorine levels and my water is always balanced. Here's the question: My buddy was told that the requirement to replace the cartridge once per season is artificially created by the manufacturer. He states that as long as you can shake the cartridge and hear plenty of "minerals" in it, it will still continue to work. The instructions state that the mineral mix will become inert after a period of 6 months so even if you here them. Any comments from the water chemist side of the house? I would hate to be prematurely throwing my cartridge out as the price of these things keep going up every year and I would like to maximize my investment. Thx in advance, your site is terrific. Regards,

Brian W., 8/14/2006

Solar Pur Pool Mineralizer
Does the house get to skim a piece of the wager? I am sure that the product was intended to last about 6 months, which works out fine for the
northern area. In the south, you'll need two for the year. As the water passes thru the mineral sanitizer, metallic ions are allowed to enter solution. How much and how fast can depend on flow rate thru the unit, temperature and time. The unit is expected to last 6 months, dispensing an adequate amount. As the metals become depleted, the rate of addition starts to fall off. By 6 months, a replacement is suggested to assure that there is a continuing supply on the sanitizing ions. Depletion does not leave the cartridge completely empty, so hearing granules, while shaking the cartridge, ir proof of nothing.  Otherwise, algae could grow abruptly! A Solar-Powered Ionizer-Mineralizer, uses anodes to release the metallic ions and this type of product is intended to last for long periods of time, no just a few months. Enjoy the season!

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 8/14/2006

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Mineral Sanitizers, Enzymes And Oxidation?

Hi Alan. Have you ever heard of a natural enzyme product? If so, could you use this effectively with a mineral sanitizer to eliminate chlorine? Thanks.
 
Vince, 6/23/2012
Unltravioloet (UV) sterilizers, for all ypes of residential pools and spas.

There's no reason that you cannot use an enzyme product with a Solar-Powered Mineralizer. It can help eliminate oily residues and some organic
byproducts, but it will not replace the chlorine.  Mineral sanitizers require the occasional presence of oxidizing agents, such as chlorine to decompose wastes and organic buildup. You will still need chlorine, but 1 PPM should be sufficient, for most pools. Enzymes are not oxidizing agents. If you want to minimize chemical additions and still provide the necessary oxidation, with chlorine, bromine, ozone or hydrogen peroxide. You can reduce overall chemical usage, by adding an Ultraviolet Sterilizer, which adds no chemicals of its own.  I hope that the information proves useful.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 6/23/2012


Need To Replace Cartridge?

Thanks for going to the trouble of running your web site. It is a big help! Now, on to my problemÖThe first three years I had my inground pool, I would get the water tested weekly and it was always perfect. I figured, ďHey! This ainít that hard.Ē At about the three year point, I added solar heating. Since I have a pool automation system, I programmed it to maintain the water at 83 degrees. The second thing I did around that time frame was add a Solar-Powered Mineralizer. The last thing that changed was that I added a pool cleaner, which I kept in the pool full time. Well, paradise is over and the once a week maintenance on water chemistry I used to do is now about three times a week and I cannot get a grip on what is wrong. Water check is not bad (today), pH a little low and combined chlorine at 2 which is way off, so I added three tablets to my chlorinator to bring that in line. Very little rain. Not real sunny, though this is Florida. Basically, Iíve gone from once a week maintenance to three times a week and Iím not really getting anywhere. I have not added an algaecide at this point because I feel that well balanced water should prevent any algae bloom. I used to add 2 tablets of chlorine every week and that was perfect, now it is 2 tablets every other day and doesnít seem like enough. Well, thatís the history and all the facts I hope you need. Specific questions are can I run the pool cleaner all the time; does the setting of 83 degrees on the automation controller affect anything adversely; and does the smaller mineral purifier cartridge present a problem? I havenít changed the cartridge in a while, but Iím not wholly convinced that it really needs to be changed every six months like Ďtheyí are saying in the local pool store. I keep the filter clean and the attached spa and pool steps gets brushed down for algae when needed. I really thought I had a handle on all this stuff but now, I realize I donít and Iím needing help. Thanks again for hosting the site and I hope to hear from you soon.

Jim, Florida, 5/20/2005


Warmer water does place extra demands on the sanitizing system. However, 83 degree is not high and should not be part of this problem. The fact that you are getting a combined chlorine level of 2 PPM, would seem to indicate that you are not keeping up with the demand of the pool. I suggest that you use a non-chlorine shock, as it will help convert some of the
ColorQ digital water analyzer. combined chlorine into free chlorine. The Solar-Powered Dual-Ion Purifier-Mineralizer should be able to help provide backup sanitation and reduce the amount of chlorine , required to maintain any given level. Shock with monopersulfate or chlorine and see if you can't keep the free chlorine at 1-3 PPM and the combined chlorine at less than 1 PPM. Testing with a tester like the LaMotte Insta-Test Strips or, even better, a ColorQ all-digital Water Analyzer will help provide the right information, without any color-matching or guesswork. You might also want to have the water tested for phosphates, as that can accelerate algae growth. The use of trichlor can lead to increases in the cyanuric acid levels over time. These higher stabilizer levels can lead to chlorine becoming less effective - that is you'll need to maintain a higher level to get the same results. Over 150 PPM is high and requires a partial water replacement. Have you ever considered a salt chlorine generator? You seem to want to make things easier. A SCG can be a stand alone sanitizing system. It can be used with the mineral sanitizer and will allow you to maintain a lower chlorine level, extend the life of the salt cell and make pH control easier, with no chemical buildups to be concerned about. You'll have less odor, better feel and no more chlorine to buy, handle or store. I hope that this information will get you back on track.


Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 5/21/2005


Do I Need Shock?

Hi Alan, I know I am dense, but I want to get this straight. The Solar-Powered Mineralizer instructions say to use a shock before each use and 3 TBS each week. If I add an ozonator, then I no longer have to use the shock. Is this right? Thanks.

Roland C., 8/2/2009


It's a really good question. The ozonator will provide the necessary oxidation function and the Solar-Powered Mineralizer will provide additional sanitizing action. The ozone does not remain in the water for extended periods of time and for this reason a persistent backup sanitizer is required. Unless the pool takes a sudden turn for the worse and needs a quick boost in oxidizer, shock should not be required, if you maintain a 1 PPM level of free chlorine. But, that is unlikely to happen, if the pool and equipment are operated properly. You will be better off trying to maintain a concentration of free chlorine that favors to lower end of the 1-3 PPM range and this will act as confirmation that the ozonator and mineral sanitizer are working to meet the needs of the pool. I hope that I have cleared it up for you.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 8/2/2009


Concerned About Copper?

We have used a mineral sanitizer system for the last 2 years with great results. We can keep our chlorine levels low and the water stays perfectly clear. This year, my wife has seen info that indicates that this system may not be good for the pool, as it introduces copper into the water Can you please shed some light on this subject? Thanks.

Bill, 5/30/2004
Solar-Powered Mineralizer for pools.

Solar-Powered Dual-Ion Purifiers-Mineralizers and ionization units usually release a stream of metallic ions, into the pool water, for the purpose
of providing sanitizing benefits. The ions are at extremely low levels, so as not to cause staining and/or discoloration. I assume that this is the issue that you were addressing.  The instances, where copper can present a problem, result from the use of copper sulfate, corrosion of copper heater cores or excessively high concentrations, due to over application. I hope that I have provided some enlightenment.

Sincerely. Alan Schuster, 5/31/2004

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