Copper and silver ion problems

Pool water problem - ions of copper and silver

Ion generators or ionizers use D.C. electricity to "erode" electrodes composed of copper, silver and sometimes zinc. The result is free ions of these metals in the swimming pool water. At low concentrations they are effective in combatting a range of algae, bacteria and viruses in conjunction with a low oxidizer level (such as chlorine).

At high concentrations, these ions are oxidised by the chlorine (or other sanitizer) resulting in clear but colored water.

Solving colored water problems

To solve problems of colored pool water there are two main options:

  1. Shock treat the pool to oxidize the ions, which then settle out of solution as "rust". The "rust" can then be vacuumed off the bottom of the pool.
  2. Add a chelating or sequestering agent which bonds with the ions and prevents them from reacting with the chlorine.

In both these cases the ions are lost and need to be replaced for the ionizer to be effective.

Preventing high ion levels in pool water

Regular monitoring of the ions in the water is essential when using any ion generator or ionizer. Refer to the product's maintenance manual for testing procedures, electrode maintenance and replacement, and operating procedures.

Problem-free minerals

There are a few products on the market which allow the pool to have low levels of copper, silver and zinc without the risks of over-ionizing. They either release the minerals slowly over a period of time, or the minerals are in a complexed state which prevent them from being oxidized by the chlorine.

The Pool Wizard falls into the latter group, having its copper, silver and zinc in complexes that ensure its long term stability in swimming pool water.

Other popular products include Nature2 and the Frog and are sometimes (incorrectly) called "alternative sanitizers". Before deciding which one is right for you compare the following:

  • Installation - Will you need to call a pro to install it?
  • Lifespan - How long will it last?
  • Cost - How much will you pay over a period of 2-3 years?
  • Maintenance - Will you have to perform maintenance or adjustments?



Tried and trusted since 1983


Pool Wizard can solve most common water problems