A Guide to Picking the Right Pool System

So, you've decided to take the plunge and get yourself a pool. You've already mentally handpicked the design and you’ve got the vision board full of dreamy poolside scenarios. But as you skim through the details of pool ownership, you quickly realise it's not all sunshine and rainbows. Turns out, there's more to buying a pool than just picking out the perfect tile colour!

In this article, we’ll dive into the less glamorous (but equally important) aspects of pool ownership—specifically, the systems that make it all work. There's a variety of pool systems out there, each with its own set of characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages. Whether you're leaning towards the classic chlorine pool systems or exploring more contemporary options like mineral pools, there's a lot to consider. Keep reading as we break it down for you!

Types of Pool Filtration Systems

Behind the scenes, your pool relies on various components to keep the water crystal clear and the atmosphere just right. From filtration systems that do the heavy lifting to the pumps that keep the water circulating smoothly, each element plays a crucial role. While some of these components may be optional based on personal preferences and climate, filtration remains a non-negotiable element for any pool. There are several types of pool filtration systems and understanding each option can help you choose the system that best suits your needs. Here’s the lowdown on the ten most common types of filtration systems:

1. Chlorine Pool Systems

A chlorine-based system is the most common type of filtration system and comes in three forms: tablets, liquid, and granular. Chlorine can be introduced directly into the pool or generated on-site through a chlorine generator. Through a chemical reaction, chlorine efficiently oxidises contaminants in the water, effectively eliminating bacteria and ensuring a clean swimming environment for users.


  • Chlorine is widely used and is easily accessible.

  • Chlorine is relatively inexpensive compared to alternative pool systems.

  • Chlorine pool systems are easier to operate and maintain.


  • Chlorine can cause skin and eye irritation in some individuals, especially those with sensitive skin or allergies.

  • Chlorine byproducts, like chloramines, can cause respiratory problems in swimmers.

  • Disposal and production of chlorine can harm the environment.

2. Saltwater Pool Systems

Saltwater pools employ a salt chlorinator, a device that transforms ordinary salt into chlorine through a process known as electrolysis. This system offers a consistent and milder form of water treatment compared to traditional chlorine pools. The result is a gentler experience for swimmers while still ensuring effective sanitation.


  • Saltwater pool systems are generally gentler on the skin and eyes, reducing irritation.

  • Saltwater systems require less maintenance compared to traditional chlorine systems.

  • Saltwater pools provide a more natural swimming experience, without the chemical smell associated with chlorine.


  • Saltwater pool systems have a higher initial cost for equipment and installation.

  • Saltwater can accelerate metal corrosion in pool equipment and surrounding structures.

  • Requires additional cleaning efforts to prevent the accumulation of salt deposits on pool surfaces.

3. Mineral Pool Systems

Mineral pool systems utilise natural minerals such as potassium chloride, sodium chloride, and particularly magnesium chloride to enhance water quality. Magnesium chloride, a naturally occurring compound, plays a pivotal role in this process, efficiently capturing and removing microscopic impurities, thereby maintaining the pool water's clarity and contributing to a healthier and more balanced swimming environment.


  • Mineral pool systems provide a softer and smoother water feel, reducing skin and eye irritation.

  • Dipping in a magnesium pool has been proven to heal the body from various chronic skin diseases such as dermatitis, eczema, and psoriasis.

  • Mineral pool systems are time tested and have been used by ancient civilisations for their perceived health benefits.


  • The upfront cost of installing a mineral pool system can be high.

  • Mineral pool systems require more intricate and specific maintenance procedures compared to traditional chlorine systems.

  • Mineral pool systems still rely on chlorine molecules for sanitation.

4. Ozone Pool Systems

Ozone pool systems leverage ozone, a potent oxidising agent, to sanitise the water. Ozone is generated using specialised equipment that exposes either air or oxygen to a corona discharge or ultraviolet light. This process effectively neutralises bacteria and contaminants, contributing to high water quality.


  • Ozone is 3,500 times faster at killing bacteria than chlorine, making it one of the most powerful and effective sanitation systems on the market.

  • Ozone pool systems eliminate pool odours common to traditional pools.

  • Ozone breaks down into oxygen, leaving no harmful byproducts or residues in the pool water.


  • Setup cost for ozone systems can be relatively high compared to traditional pool filtration methods.

  • Ozone pool systems require regular maintenance to ensure optimal performance, adding to the overall operational cost.

  • Unlike chlorine, ozone doesn't leave a residual effect, so continuous ozone production is necessary to maintain water quality.

5. Bromine Pool Systems

These pool systems sanitise water by utilising bromine, a disinfectant similar to chlorine. Bromine is added directly to the pool or dispensed through a feeder system, releasing hypobromous acid for disinfection. It is particularly suitable for hot tubs and spas due to its stability in higher temperatures.


  • Bromine is less irritating to the skin and eyes compared to chlorine.

  • Bromine typically lasts longer in pool water than chlorine, requiring less frequent application.

  • Bromine remains effective at higher temperatures, making it suitable for hot tubs and warm water pools.


  • Bromine pool systems may have a higher initial cost for setup and installation.

  • Bromine can have a slower kill rate for certain pathogens compared to chlorine.

  • Bromine products may be less widely available than chlorine, potentially leading to difficulties in sourcing.

6. Natural Pool Systems

Natural pools, also referred to as swimming ponds, embrace a holistic approach to water purification. Biological processes and aquatic plants, including beneficial bacteria, work in harmony to filter the water naturally.


  • Natural pool systems reduce the need for chemicals and promote environmental sustainability.

  • Natural pools often have a more organic and visually appealing design, blending harmoniously with the surrounding landscape.

  • These systems contribute to pool water that is gentler on the skin and eyes.


  • Designing a natural pool can be more complex and may require specialised expertise, increasing initial costs.

  • Natural pool systems may be less efficient at maintaining warmer water temperatures, especially in colder climates.

  • Proper maintenance of plants and algae is crucial, as overgrowth can affect water quality.

7.Smart Pool Systems

Smart pool systems leverage technology for automated maintenance and monitoring. Features may include remote control capabilities, smartphone apps for real-time monitoring, and automated chemical dosing.


  • Smart pool systems allow users to remotely control pool functions, enhancing convenience and precision in maintaining water quality.

  • Smart systems optimise equipment, cutting down on overall energy use.

  • Tasks like adjusting chemicals and regulating filtration are streamlined for easier upkeep.


  • The installation of smart pool systems comes with a relatively high upfront expense.

  • Connectivity issues or glitches in the system can impact its functionality.

  • Users need technological proficiency to fully utilise and troubleshoot the system.

8. UV (Ultraviolet) Pool Systems

UV pool systems utilise ultraviolet light to disinfect water by disrupting the DNA of microorganisms. UV exposure prevents the reproduction of bacteria and other harmful agents. This technology acts as an additional layer of protection, enhancing the overall cleanliness of the pool water.


  • UV systems contribute to lower chemical content, eliminating chlorine byproducts.

  • Most UV pool systems are affordable (depending on the brand).

  • UV pool systems generally require less maintenance compared to other pool filtration systems.


  • UV systems are not as effective in controlling algae growth as other methods.

  • UV systems' effectiveness can be hindered if the water is not clear.

  • Sanitation only happens while the water is under the UV light.

9. Ionisation Pool Systems

Ionisation pool systems operate by releasing small amounts of copper and silver ions into the pool water, serving as natural sanitisers. Copper ions control algae growth, while silver ions exhibit antibacterial properties, collectively disrupting cellular processes and preventing the reproduction of harmful microorganisms.


  • Ionisation pool systems are more effective at algae control compared to other filtration systems.

  • Ions don’t form byproducts like chloramines and are not corrosive.

  • Contributes to silkier and smoother pool water.


  • Pool ionisers can cause stains on the surface of the pool.

  • Ionisation systems require careful monitoring and maintenance to ensure the proper balance of ions in the pool water.

  • High copper concentration can cause discoloration on clothes.

10. Hybrid Pool Systems

Hybrid pool systems combine multiple methods of water treatment to enhance overall water quality. This could involve a combination of UV light and traditional chlorine, creating a synergistic approach that maximises effectiveness while minimising potential drawbacks associated with individual systems.


  • Combining multiple technologies provides enhanced pool water sanitation.

  • Hybrid pool systems offer flexibility in choosing and adjusting the combination of sanitisation methods based on specific needs and conditions.

  • The integration of different technologies can result in lower overall chemical usage.


  • The initial cost may be higher due to the incorporation of various technologies and components.

  • Hybrid pool systems may require more intensive and specialised maintenance.

  • The integration of multiple systems can lead to increased complexity in installation and operation.

To Wrap It Up

Choosing a filtration system for your pool can be a daunting task, but it is a critical decision that directly impacts the health, clarity, and overall enjoyment of your swimming pool. Whether you prioritise simplicity, sustainability, or convenience, the key is finding the right balance that aligns with your vision for a perfect pool experience. Now, we get it, the choices can be a bit overwhelming. If you're finding yourself caught in a whirlpool of options, take a breather and dive into our FAQ section below!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

How does a pool system work?

A pool system operates by combining various components and technologies to maintain and ensure the optimal functioning of a swimming pool. These components include a filtration system for impurity removal, skimmers and drains to capture debris, chemical feeders for water balance, and pumps to facilitate water circulation. While optional, heating and cooling systems enhance year-round enjoyment.

How do I choose the right pool system?

To choose the right pool filtration system, consider your pool size and usage frequency—larger or frequently used pools may benefit from advanced systems. Secondly, evaluate your maintenance preferences, weighing the level of hands-on attention each system requires. Additionally, compare the initial cost with long-term savings, factoring in water usage, energy efficiency, and maintenance expenses. This will ensure a well-informed decision aligned with your pool's needs and your preferences.

What is the healthiest pool system?

If you're looking for a healthier option for pool sanitation, mineral pools are a great choice. Unlike traditional chlorinated pools, mineral pool systems use naturally occurring minerals such as magnesium, which is a mineral that has been scientifically proven to offer various health benefits such as skin nourishment, stress reduction and muscle relaxation. Additionally, mineral pools have been recognised by ancient civilisations such as the Greeks, Romans and Egyptians who believed that bathing in mineral-rich waters could purify the body and promote physical well-being.

Today, mineral pools are still viewed as one of the healthiest pool systems on the market and thanks to brands like Maytronics’ Mineral Swim™ you get to enjoy their remarkable benefits right in your backyard!