If the optimum chlorine level cannot be achieved and if your pool’s pH and salt level readings are correct, you need to clean the salt cell. The water you add to your swimming pool might contain a high amount of calcium and other minerals.
There are hundreds of ways you can follow to clean this cell, but one effective way is to clean it with vinegar. In fact, using vinegar to clean your salt cell is the easiest and the most effective method you can ever use.
There are three main steps that you should follow when cleaning your salt cell with vinegar. These steps are as follows:
Table of Contents
Step 1: Check the Salt Cell
The first step is to inspect the salt cell to find out whether there are calcium and other mineral deposits. Follow the following process:
- Switch off the Power
Ensure that the power is off before you start to mess with the cell to prevent any accident from occurring. You shouldn’t unscrew the system while it is running.
Swimming pool filtration systems often have a switch that you can access easily if you want to turn them off. Some models will have a button next to the “filter” that you can press to kill the power (on their control panel).
Here, you will need to turn the power off at the off/on switch or at the timer. Furthermore, you should flip the breaker or turn the control panel off.
- Remove the Salt Cell
Since the power is off, it is time to take the cell out of its housing to inspect it closely. You will be inspecting the metal plates inside the salt cell.
It is very easy to inspect the salt cell to determine if it needs a thorough cleaning. Also, it is very easy to remove the cell and all you need to do is to unscrew both sides.
You will see huge screw-in unions on either side of the salt cell. The unions are similar in size with the pipes. Be careful when unscrewing since some water might leak out.
- Inspect for Mineral Deposits
You should clean your salt cell if it contains minerals deposits. These deposits will appear flaky, dry, and white, like a shower head or tub faucet gets.
The deposits usually reduce the cell’s efficiency, so you should get rid of them. If there are not deposits, return the unit and check it after a few months.
Step 2: Clean the Cell Physically
The next step is to clean the salt cell using your hand or physical means.
- Use a Horse
If there is debris, take out all the large debris from your salt cell. You can use your hand to pull them out if they are reachable.
Now you can begin to clean your salt cell using your garden hose. Connect the hose to one end of the unit and allow the water to run through the cell.
This process will remove most random bits that are trapped in the cell and also some of the minerals. Ensure that you don’t wet the plug since it might not be waterproof.
- Scrape the Deposits
After that, try to scrap off the mineral deposits. You can use a wooden or plastic tool to remove these minerals off your salt cell.
Ensure that you scrap then gently to avoid damaging the unit. Of important, do not use metal since it can easily damage your salt cell.
Step 3: Use Vinegar to Clean the Salt Cell
Now that you have removed all the large debris and scrapped off some deposits, it is time to use vinegar to clean the cell.
- Prepare the Vinegar Solution
You can easily get a ready-made solution from the market if you don’t want to prepare one. However, it is very easy to prepare the ideal solution for cleaning the salt cell.
You only need to mix the right proportion of vinegar and water. Ensure that you don’t get a too dilute solution or a too concentrated one. As a rule of thumb; create a mild solution of vinegar and water.
- Soak the Salt Cell
Next, soak the cell in the solution that you have poured in a container and leave it there for the night. The solution will remove all manners of debris and minerals that might be remaining.
Make sure that you harness the wiring alongside the salt cell before you soak it. Immerse the unit to the top of that wire.
- Rinse the Salt Cell
You can use the garden hose to rinse the salt cell the following day. The horse should have sufficient power to clean all the loose material that might be handing on the unit.
If you still find some deposits, repeat the process again and again until the cell is completely cleansed.
Inspect the Salt Cell Regularly
Salt cells should be cleaned at least every 6 months to ensure that they perform effectively. Some might require cleaning every two months, depending on the condition of the water.
For instance, if you use hard water, you might need to clean your salt cell with vinegar every 8 weeks to ensure that it serves its purpose. Hence, ensure that you inspect it once per month.
- Some newer salt system might not need cleaning as they are well-designed to ensure that they get rid of the buildup automatically.
- You should also keep a keen eye on the signal. Some salt cells have monitors that notify you when the cells need cleaning.
It is very easy to clean your salt cell, thanks to the dozens of cleaning solutions offered on the market today. However, a vinegar solution is always the cheapest and the easiest to use for salt cells.
All you need is to invest your time to prepare the solution and have patience when cleaning it. Just stick to the steps we have outlined above and you will have a clean salt cell within days that will work effectively.