Our Top Tips For Cleaning A Pool Without Using Chemicals

Written By Timothy Te

17th August 2021

The first thing we really have to answer is that is it really possible to clean the pool without the use of chemicals? Strictly speaking, we will need to use some sort of chemical treatment to keep the pool 100% sanitised. But there are actually ways to get your pool sparkling clean while keeping chemical use to a bare minimum. Here at Mr Pool Man, we don’t recommend the use of 100% chemical-free pools because that’s just asking for trouble.

Salt water chlorination

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One of the easiest and most convenient ways to get the pool sanitised without constant use and handling of chlorine products is to install a salt water chlorination system like the Water TechniX Atomic Salt and Mineral Chlorinator. What this does is that with the added salt or minerals to the pool, the electrodes on the salt water cell converts it into usable chlorine that actively sanitises your pool. This is probably the most effective method in sanitising your pool while minimising the handling of chlorine.

So yes, in a manner of speaking, you’re not technically adding chemicals to your pool but you have a device that utilizes the natural elements (salt and minerals) in your pool to create the chlorine to be used.

Manually cleaning the pool

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*Please note that you will be using your existing vacuum plate that suits your pool, not necessarily the Poolrite S2500 plate as showcased above. If you have a different vacuum plate, you can see our entire range of Vacuum Plates through the button below.

This takes a lot of work but another way to clean a pool without the use of chemicals is to manually clean the pool every day! What does this mean? This means that you should scoop out any debris that falls on the pool on a daily basis. Take them out as soon as they fall into your pool before they break down and release phosphates (algae food) into their pool. Yes, this sounds time consuming, but it will minimize the need for phosphate removers and algaecide.

Another manual cleaning task that you have to do is to manually scrub your pool surfaces religiously. And by religiously, we mean at least twice a week! This loosens up any kind of growth and debris on your pool surface so that they can be filtered out by your filtration system. By preventing them from taking root, you’re reducing the need to use chemicals to remove them in the long run.

Using a robotic pool cleaner

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If you have a robotic pool cleaner, you can have it run every other day so that it will do all of the scrubbing for you. The idea here is the same, the less debris and the cleaner your pool surfaces are, the less chemicals you’ll need to keep your pool clean. Our recommendation for this? Hands down it goes to the Tornax robotic pool cleaner. It cleans all of your pool surfaces including the walls, steps, waterlines, and everything else! If it’s a surface in your pool then it can reach it! And the best thing is, it doesn’t rely on your filtration system to clean the water because it has its own mini filter built in it!

Using a pool cover to keep your pool clean

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The logic behind this one is quite simple. If dirt and debris can’t enter your pool then the less effort it takes for you to clean the pool. Not only does a good pool cover keep dirt and debris away from your pool, but it also helps preserve whatever chemicals you already have in your pool, minimizing the need for you to handle and add more

Use a mineral sanitizer

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As an alternative to pool chlorine, you can use a mineral sanitizer like the Zodiac Nature 2 to destroy bacteria and control algae growth without the use of chlorine or any other traditional chemicals. I guess it is a bit of an exaggeration when we say alternative, but it does cut down the chemical use by up to 50% and that’s nothing to scoff at! If it doesn’t use chemicals then how does it work?

The Nature 2 has a blend of minerals in it which include silver and copper that are released in trace amounts that help destroy algae and bacteria. For centuries, silver and copper have been used to destroy bacteria and pathogens, so why shouldn’t it be used in our pools right? Not only does it help sanitise the pool, but it lasts quite long as well with a single cartridge lasting anywhere from 4 to 6 months depending on the size of the pool and the use it sees.

Use PHMB or -guanides

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While technically a chemical in itself, it’s still a viable option if you’re looking for a chlorine or bromine-free pool. PHMB is a lot more stable than chlorine, requiring less doses and doesn’t require the use of stabilisers like cyanuric acid. Does it sound exotic? Don’t worry! You don’t have to memorize Polyhexamethylene Biguanide when looking for chlorine-free alternatives, all you need to remember is Lo-Chlor AquaFresh! This 100% replaces the need for chlorine to sanitise your swimming pool water. No chemical fumes to worry about, it’s gentle on the skin, and it is safe for people with sensitivity to chlorine and bromine.

Other ways of sanitising your pool without the use of chemicals

There are other specialized ways of cleaning your swimming pool without the use of any chemicals, of course they may be a little bit expensive but if you’re keen on having a 100% chemical-free sanitation of your pool then this is the way to go.

  • Swimming pool ozone generators - These are probably the most effective ways to sanitise your swimming pool without the use of chemicals. Ozone generators produce no harmful by-products and it purifies your pool water up to 3000 times faster than traditional chlorine-based systems. These are best when used with the Nature 2 or with the Lo-Chlor Aquafresh to provide 100% percent coverage. The only downside? Ozone generators are prohibitively expensive in a residential setting! The reason why commercial pools utilize this is the speed it sanitises the pool water to deal with the volume of people using the pool! Because they generate ozone, which is highly corrosive, you will need PVC pipes or stainless steel pipes in your pool and you should ensure that all of your fittings are corrosion-resistant or else you’ll have another problem (rust and corrosion!) to deal with.
  • Swimming pool ionizers - These clean the pool by releasing positively charged copper and silver ions into the water (much like the Nature 2) but on a more active basis. While these gained popularity some time ago, it slowly declined in popularity because of the side effects like visible staining from the copper ions (they can even turn blonde hair green!) and its limited capability in oxidising organic materials like body oils, skin lotion, pollen, and urine! We don’t recommend ionizers so this is an easy skip in our book.

Conclusion

Whatever route you choose to take, the best way to minimize the use of chemicals is to be really thorough in your cleaning routine. Don’t miss out on any treatment and task and you should be able to minimize handling and usage of chemicals! As for 100% natural pools, we don’t really recommend going that route. That takes a lot of times and it requires a huge investment when it comes to balancing and maintaining an actual ecosystem in your pool! If you miss out on anything then you could be creating a swamp right there in your backyard!

Do you have any questions about this topic or the featured products? No worries, we're here to help! Drop us a question down below and we'll get back to you ASAP.

Happy swimming :)

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Written By

Timothy Te

Pool Guru at Mr Pool Man

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