In Line / In Deck Chlorinators / Should I Get An In-Line Chlorinator? / How Do I Properly Adjust My In-Line or In-Deck Chlorinator?


        What about In-Deck Chlorinators or In-Line Chlorinators?


       First, in Deck, or in-line chlorinators, that have a feed directly into the plumbing, all have some things in common with salt systems.


Let me explain why I do not like either the in-deck chlorination systems, in-line systems or Salt Systems. They only distribute chlorine when the equipment is running, and when it is running properly. If ANYTHING happens to the water flow, EVER, for ANY reason, your pool will probably be green in 24 hours or so.


If you have the adjustable floating chlorinator, whether the equipment is on, or off, doesn't make any difference. Chlorination is always occurring.


Next reason I do not like these systems. In many cases, even though the equipment might only have to run say 5 hours a day to keep the water clear, and the pool clean, you may need to run the equipment 10 hours to distribute enough chlorine to keep the pool from turning green during the off times.


If you have older cartridge filter elements, calcified elements ... which are common, no matter how long you run your equipment you may not ever get and keep a chlorine reading, with these types of chlorinators. I never recommend cartridge systems at all (Even though they make the pool industry more money than almost all the other items you can ever buy for your pool) but especially not, if they are planning on having a salt system, in deck chlorinator, or in line chlorinator installed. They are asking to spend many hundreds of dollars more than the $1000 plus annual extra cost of a cartridge filter, because “WHEN” they plug up their cartridge filter, or “WHEN” they postpose spending the $300 - $500 for new cartridge elements, … and there is no water flow, they will spend at least an extra $100 a pop, and maybe $200 a pop, to clear up the algae, and muck that will grow in their pool.

If they have a salt cell, and a cartridge filter, the debris will bypass the filter and plug the salt cell, voiding the warrantee as well. Can you say bye to $600 “WHEN” this happens? Yep, you betcha. Salt Cells, and Cartridge filters are almost always a recipe for unhappy, poor, customers.


One more thing. In deck chlorine systems DO NOT WORK. Why do I say this? If you want to keep a chlorine reading all week long, you need to put in half again, to double the amount of chlorine you would in a floating chlorinator to make sure you have a reading in a week. This means that you have itchy skin and bleached out swimsuits at the beginning of the week, and usually no chlorine reading at the end of the week. Why? Because you can never get them adjusted properly.


If you try and adjust the flow, "Just Perfect", so that half of the weight of new tabs dissolve in 7 days, and you have the exact number of tabs to keep the reading at 3.0 (Which you can't do because you can't get the old tabs out to check how much has dissolved in a 1 week period.) in most of these systems. But let’s say that you guessed, and finally got the flow adjusted perfectly. Now,  just wait a week or two till the water temperature changes, or you change the timer operating times, or your usage of the pool changes, ... and you can start trying to mess with the guessing at the adjustments again.


My advice: If you have a deck chlorinator, shut it off. Get a floating chlorinator instead. If you make me use your deck-chlor, or in-line chlorinator, I am going to charge you extra for the hassle, the increased chlorine usage, and the fact that you will either be complaining about the chlorine levels being too high, or you'll have problems with algae in your pool, cloudy water, eye irritation, … and I don’t like to hear from unhappy clients when their choices offer me no way to keep them happy.


Actually, since my reputation is worth more, and we are going to have all of these problems if we use the deck-chlor or in-line chlorinator, if you say that it is mandatory, you will have to be unhappy with a different pool man. Sorry. I know a lot of people spent extra on these, but they are ALWAYS a source of headaches, major down time in pools, much larger chemical costs, skin, hair, eye, swim ability issues, health issues, …. If you want to use it, do it yourself.


Funny, the reason many of these clients have a pool man is because, no matter what they did, their pool still turned green, or their pool was unswimable or uncomfortable to swim in, when they used it. Sorry. I am not a miracle worker. You cannot use a 4 cylinder VW engine to pull a fully loaded semi and trailer up into the mountains. Whether you try it, or I try it, sorry. It just doesn’t work.
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