Chlorine-free Pools

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 07, 2007 3:22 AM GMT
    I'm wondering if anyone is familiar with chlorine-free pools (specifically, pools that use plants to naturally clean the water). If so, what are your thoughts?

    Search google for "natural swimming pools" if you're not familiar but wish to contribute.

    Any of you european RealJocks™ feel free to chime in. They're far more popular there than in the states.
  • UStriathlete

    Posts: 320

    Aug 07, 2007 5:32 AM GMT
    salt water pool are awesome. seattle has a few, one in west seattle and in redmon Golds. super nice! i think they are faster, more bouyance.
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    Aug 07, 2007 4:36 PM GMT
    I've thought of trying to build one, but it's several projects down the fantasy highway, still. There two directions to go to avoid chlorine (or bromine) irritation.
    One is alternate chemistries, like various salt-water schemes, metal ionization, or UV irradiation. They tend to be quite expensive, or difficult for a typical consumer to use properly.
    Another, and the type of thing that I think you are talking about, is to use an artificial wetland as a huge pool filter. (Plants in these cases, don't actually clean the water - they just help to aerate the sediment blanket, which is where the real action takes place.) I think that it would be very pleasant to swim in one of these, but it would also be very difficult for an average person to operate it effectively. One problem is that they're very limited in capacity (the number of humans x hours in the pool) and require cool temperatures, so they're climate-dependent. Running the pump can be very expensive (if you're affluent enough to build one, I suppose it doesn't matter) and if the pump ever stops, the purification effect stops immediately. To be safe, it would require almost daily testing for pathogenic bacteria, and you'd have to be prepared to stay out of the pool for weeks at a time, when things go wrong. There are no quick fixes for such systems.
    But I'm going to try it anyway, one of these days, because I like fiddling with that sort of thing. In my area, I think that a windmill-driven pump could save a lot of expense, during the summer. It would still probably need an electric pump as back-up.
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    Aug 07, 2007 4:55 PM GMT
    maybe im a bit naive,

    but isnt a chlorine free pool nothing different than a man-made lake or pond

    besides wuts so bad about chlorine- thats how come the joker got to look so cool so its alright in my book
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    Aug 07, 2007 5:57 PM GMT
    Well, yeah I was going to say that taking a dip in the stock tank has always been pretty popular in the summer time.

    The problem is controlling microorganisms. With repeated immersion of human bodies, the water gets loaded with bacteria and viruses that are potentially pathogenic. Also, a still pond will end up choked with potentially toxic algae, by the end of the summer. It doesn't take too long for a small pool to get dangerously contaminated. You can end up with anything from a nasty rash to cholera or hepatitis.

    Microbes aren't the only thing that build up in a pool either. I used to swim at 0600, back in college, when they turned off the pumps for the weekends. Monday mornings, the pool was covered with disgusting film of body oils, lotions, and who knows what kind of scum. The coach told us to stop whining and dive in.

    So anyway, the point of all these artificial systems is to keep the water quality safe for bathing.
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    Aug 07, 2007 6:01 PM GMT
    We used to have a winter residence with a pool down in Naples, FL, and we used Baquacil instead of chlorine. I liked it a better than chlorine, but it was tricky to keep the water a nice shade of blue. Those few years of owning a pool was enough to make me never want to own one again.

    Here in Iowa, we have a 25' deep pond, a little over an acre in size, and the only routine maintenance is keeping trees from growing on the dam (tree roots cause leaks). A dozen grass carp keep the pond free of water weeds. No pumps. No chemicals.
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    Aug 08, 2007 4:21 AM GMT

    Actually a friend of mine just built one in the S of France last year. (Ridiculous - They have a villa on the Med, but his wife was scared to have the kids swim in it and thought a pool was safer)

    They seem very happy with it. I swam in it a couple times and it seemed very nice.

    Theirs is actually a series of pools with waterfalls dropping into one another. Lots of plants, fish, was very atttractive. The pool at the base was ohhhh - about the size of an olympic pool I think, though not regularly shaped it was plenty large enough to do standard laps.

    Can't imagine what it must have cost.

    R
  • zakariahzol

    Posts: 2241

    Aug 08, 2007 2:04 PM GMT
    Paradox,

    Me and my brother built a small roof top swimming pool in my house. It was fun for the first month (my ex and I use to swim naked and make out there) but I find out it difficult to maintain and get dirty real easy , with birds feather and dropping.

    Nobody seem to be interested to swim there except for me. Nowaday I have drain the pool away and it kinda left empty. I prefer to swim in the community sport centre which is much larger, they do the cleaning for me and I have opportunity to socialize with good looking guys. Just like you, I dont think I ever want to own a swimming pool again
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 12, 2007 6:22 PM GMT
    I'm at USMS long course nationals right now at The Woodlands, TX. They've converted the pool from chlorine to salt water, and it's great. No chlorine to try to get out of suits, hair and skin. I don't need to put lotion on because the water isn't drying out my skin. Obviously it is a little salty tasting, but like US triathlete wrote it should make for faster swims, although you wouldn't know it from MY results so far. :( But a number of national and world records have been broken.

    I swam at the same pool in high school when it was chlorine. One practice there was so much of it everyone's suit turned white and our hair turned green!

    I'll take salt water over chlorine any day.
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    Aug 12, 2007 8:07 PM GMT
    I don't know anything technical about it, but... I just went swimming in a salt-water pool (no chlorine) this past weekend, and it was AWESOME. It was extremely clean, I didn't need to shower the awful chlorine smell off me after wards. It was great.
  • manpit209

    Posts: 213

    Jan 13, 2008 9:13 PM GMT
    I heard a lot about the salt water pools and really want to try it out. Does anyone is So Cal (specifically in the OC) know of a gym that has salt water pools? I belong to 24 Hour Fitness so I'm assuming its more wishful thinking on my part on whether they will have salt water pools. Thanks!
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    Apr 01, 2008 3:50 AM GMT
    Deep Eddy and Barton Springs are both spring feed and chlorine free in Austin. 24 hours in South Austin has a salt water pool, or so I have been told.
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    Apr 01, 2008 3:54 AM GMT
    Do any of you trust a pool where the water simply circulates through a small marsh-like planted pond and then returns to the pool clean and chemical free? I think some feel it's too much of a leap of faith in nature.
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    Apr 01, 2008 4:04 AM GMT
    Trust it? lol..well, I imagine you'd test the water once in awhile for parasites...other than that, it's basically just a lake. I'm converting my pool to salt water...but I like the idea of using a marsh system to keep the water clean.
  • Bunjamon

    Posts: 3161

    Apr 01, 2008 4:06 AM GMT
    Not in a public pool, too much sweat/spit/urine (yes, urine) in my opinion to not have chlorine.

    If it were a home pool I think it's a swell idea.
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    Apr 01, 2008 4:08 AM GMT
    In Europe there are many public pools that run on this system. Perhaps it is a myth that those things are only cleaned out with chlorine? Don't quote me on that I need to do my mythbusting research as well.
  • TexanMan82

    Posts: 893

    Apr 03, 2008 11:50 PM GMT
    Yeah, but Europeans are smelly.

    Coincidence?









    icon_wink.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 08, 2008 3:15 AM GMT
    Hmm, I seem to have developed a really nasty allergy to chlorination in my current pool here in Boston. My nose runs like crazy and airways shut down.

    Anyone else have a similar problem? I'm going to see an alergist next month, but I'm not too optimistic from what I've heard.

    As a result, I've been considering switching to water polo permanently. It would be nice to do lap swimming for strength and endurance though, so these pools would be awesome if they catch on in the north east. I doubt that will happen anytime soon, but if anyone knows of a "natural pool" in Boston, let me know.


  • lifeat84

    Posts: 54

    Jul 24, 2008 4:58 PM GMT
    it doesnt really matter what kind of method is used to clean a pool. What matters is that it is balanced to keep the ph levels tolerable to the human body (this is what makes your eyes burn, not the chlorine level although chlorine plays a part in the ph balance equation) The chlorine/bromine is there to eliminate the biological crap that is in a pool (urine, sweat, hair, skin, insects, feces) while usually some sort of acid is used to control the mineral deposits. If you dont want itchy skin and bleached clothes or hair...if there is a strong chemical smell then dont swim in it...if it has a green tint to it its still ok (think of the Caribbean)...if it is cloudy (difficult to see the true colours of the bottom or sides) its dirty and needs vaccumed, you can swim in it, probably still cleaner than any lake you might swim in.

    There are other systems available too, plant pools are just as clean, and of course you will float better (black sea anyone?)

    So it all comes down to... why wouldnt you rinse off after swimming in a saline pool? do you want to taste like salt when your man sucks on your nipples next time? plus, it takes time for the water to circulate, so you may still be swimming in other people's by-products...who wants to take that chance?


    Just please always remember to rinse off BEFORE you get in any pool you are getting into, it helps keep things clean!!!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 08, 2008 6:29 AM GMT
    We have a no chlorine salt filtration system in my pool. The salinity level of the water in the pool is low enough that it is indiscernible from regular water. No red eyes or anything. A little more expensive, but worth the easier maintenance.
  • UStriathlete

    Posts: 320

    Aug 10, 2008 3:05 PM GMT
    manpit209 saidI heard a lot about the salt water pools and really want to try it out. Does anyone is So Cal (specifically in the OC) know of a gym that has salt water pools? I belong to 24 Hour Fitness so I'm assuming its more wishful thinking on my part on whether they will have salt water pools. Thanks!



    I think the community college has one...golden west maybe..?