CMP believes sanitizing systems should no longer be singled-pronged
By Michelle L. Cramer
Unless you’re really into vehicle mechanics, most people just want their car to run well and get good gas mileage. They’re not interested in the valve opening time, the internal compression — just reliability. And that is the approach that Georgia-based CMP — manufacturer of pool, spa and bath products — is taking with the swimming pool industry. Most pool owners, says product design and marketing manager Victor Walker, just want a reliable sanitizing system.
For CMP, a reliable sanitizing system has a residual (chlorine) system and a secondary system, namely its DEL AOP 25 (for 25,000-gallon pools) and DEL AOP 50 (for 50,000 gallons).
“Everybody’s starting to realize that chlorine is just not enough because it takes too long for chlorine to kill items like cryptosporidium and giardia,” Walker says. He says a secondary system should be added to the pool, presenting a good-better-best scenario. Good is chlorine with ultraviolet. Better is adding ozone to oxidize it. And best, Walker says, is adding the advanced oxidation process, or AOP.
The DEL AOP system utilizes Advanced Plasma Gap (APG) ozone cells created through corona discharge ozone production (as compared to ultraviolet ozone production). “What’s unique about the advanced plasma gap — which is patented — is the way that the electrodes are aligned inside of the product,” Walker says. “When corona discharge first came out, it was prone to creating nitric acid in environments with high humidity. That’s not the case anymore — the way the APG cell is designed, the electrodes that are creating the ozone are not susceptible to moisture and corrosion from the external environment. So the cells last longer and produce more ozone over their life.”
Combining ozone and ultraviolet produces hydroxyl radicals, highly reactive oxidizers that destroy chlorine-resistant pathogens. The kill voltage — the level of energy molecule needs to attack and kill these pathogens — is higher than anything the pool industry is using, Walker says, adding that the electronic voltage of AOP is the highest.
In fact, the DEL AOP system paired with an effective residual sanitizer has a 99.9 percent kill rate, which is backed by a NSF certification on the AOP 50. “We had to buy cryptosporidium and pay extra to do that test,” Walker says. “It’s drastically more extensive and takes longer as they validate that your product kills at a certain percentage rate in a single pass.” From there, they scaled the system down to the AOP 25 as a more popular residential choice, and Walker says it’s selling like hotcakes: “This is a premier functioning product at a price point and a size that fits the majority of the pools being built today.”
A byproduct of that higher voltage and effectiveness of AOP is that homeowners will be able to reduce the amount chlorine necessary to keep the water sanitized. By how much, Walker could not say, since it’s dependent upon a lot of usage factors. His neighbor, for example, has three children, friends and four dogs that swim in their pool on any given summer Saturday afternoon, which Walker says is like having more than 200 people in the pool. Even though the neighbor’s builder put a DEL AOP 25 on the pool, it still has to be shocked after an active summer swim.
“If I said this product will reduce chlorine consumption by 30 percent, you should immediately know I’m blowing smoke,” Walker says. “Of course you’re still going to have to [shock the pool] when it’s been impacted by a heavy bather load. You have to help it recover. The bottom line is that these systems reduce the amount of chlorine needed to keep the water at one to three parts per million. What that reduction rate is depends upon the usage.”
Walker believes the industry loves to make water chemistry complicated. But a pool builder, servicer and the homeowner only care about clean, healthy water, and CMP is looking to demystify that process.
“When you’re shopping for a car, you want a five-star crash test rating,” Walker says. “Why don’t you want a five-star pool? To me, if you’re building a five-star pool, you’re putting a good salt system on it and then a good secondary — a product like the DEL AOP 25. We think that’s just the way you should be building a pool these days.”