• Pool Pro

How can I tell if my salt water chlorinator is working properly?

Your chlorinator is a miniature liquid chlorine manufacturing plant. Firstly we must understand the process of salt water chlorination.


  1. The action of brine (salty water) passing through the salt cell causes electrosis which in layman’s terms creates liquid chlorine (Sodium Hypochlorite) that is then returned to the pool via the eyeball.

  2. The easiest way to ascertain if the chlorinator is working is to make sure the cell is clean by checking the needle or production lights.

  3. Ensure there is enough salt in the pool.

  4. On the chlorinator box there should be a light or dial that indicates it is working.

  5. Take your test kit and place your thumb over the test tube. Then place it right into the eyeball and take the water.

  6. Test the water that water has just left the chlorinator -  it should have a very high chlorine reading. (Remember that if it is extremely high it may bleach the test tablet so you may have to dilute the water you are testing). If there is no chlorine reading, the chlorinator will not be working.

  7. If you have been dosing with chlorine you won’t know. So, wait until you have a nil reading of chlorine and then perform the test.


The second way of checking is to look at your cell housing (if it is visible, as not all are). The action of the brine passing over the cell creates gaseous activity. If the water is clear, it’s not creating chlorine. The water passing over the cell should be cloudy. There has got to be an action – assuming there is enough salt in the pool. Remember less salt = less chlorine. So, check your salt level first.


There are other methods of checking which are more involved; however, we believe these two tests will give you a fairly good indication. If you believe your chlorinator is not working after performing these tests, either contact the manufacturer for help, or, call your Pool Pro Professional.


This information is given without prejudice and has been supplied to Pool Pro in good faith. As Pool Pro Products are unable to make site visits and cannot ascertain the actual problem visually, or by making their own assessments, or by calling in a specialist in this field, Pool Pro Products takes no responsibility for the accuracy of this information.

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