Pentair vs. Hayward Salt Chlorinator

Salt chlorinators, also known as salt water chlorinator generators, are becoming increasingly popular because of how environmentally friendly they are. When you use salt chlorinators, you no longer need to use as many chemicals to keep your pool clean; and the best part is that they are not harsh on your skin and eyes. So what does a salt chlorinator do? And how does it work?

Salt chlorinator works by dissolving high-quality pool salt (anywhere from 2,500-6,000 ppm) in your swimming pool, after which the salt chlorinator will create chlorine out of the salt water. The salt chlorinator uses electrolysis to separate sodium and chlorine, producing chlorine, hypochlorite ion, and hypochlorous acid, but the resulting water has less salinity than a teardrop. The best part is that the salt chlorinator does not consume the salt; it will remain in the pool water unless you drain your pool or backwash it.

What salt chlorinator should you get for your pool? If you have a salt chlorinator, you do not have to add chlorine to your pool physically, but you can still keep your swimming pool clean and free of algae, bacteria, and other microbes. Pentair and Hayward produce two of the best and more popular salt chlorinators in the market: Pentair produces IntelliChlor, and Hayward makes AquaRite. Pentair has more stake in the market than Hayward, but Hayward also has excellent products.

Pentair vs Hayward Salt Chlorinator

Related Articles

How to Install Above Ground Pool Chlorinator
Pool Sanitizer vs Shock
How Many Chlorine Tablets for 10ft Pool

 Pentair Salt ChlorinatorHayward Salt Chlorinator
PricePentair’s salt chlorinator, IntelliChlor, is generally more expensive than Hayward’s AquaRite. Pentair’s IntelliChlor comes in different models, and their prices range from $1,399 to $1,799. The cost of a replacement cell is also dependent on the IntelliChlor model, but it generally ranges from $699 to $1,399.Like IntelliChlor, Hayward’s AquaRite is available in different models, and each model has different pricing. The general cost of AquaRite ranges from $1,099 to $1,699.
Power CenterIf you perform a standalone installation of the Pentair’s IntelliChlor, you will need to purchase and install Pentair’s Power Center no less than 8 feet (2.44 mm) from the pool’s edge and no more than 15 feet from the cell controller. The Power Center converts AC electrical current to a DC that enables IntelliChlor’s electrolytic cell to create chlorine only when the pool pump is on and perform other functions.AquaRite does not require a separate Power Center or other additional parts or plumbing to function as a salt chlorinator. AquaRite comes with a control box and its TurboCell, the electrolytic cell that installs itself on your pool’s filter, heater, and return line.
High Salt LevelsIntelliChlor will produce chlorine even when the salt levels are higher than they should be. The IntelliChlor does not warn you that the salt levels are too high until salt levels are at 4,500 ppm – even at and above 4,500 ppm, the IntelliChlor will continue making chlorine.Unlike Pentair’s salt chlorinator, IntelliChlor, Haywards’s AquaRite is not very forgiving of high salt levels in the pool water. AquaRite does not work well with high salt levels and cannot produce chlorine if the salt levels are too high, so you will need to drain your pool to dilute salt partially.

Differences Between Pentair and Hayward Salt Chlorinator


Pentair’s salt chlorinator comes in different models; these models are essentially the same, except that they are made to work with varying sizes of pools and capacities, e.g., the IntelliChlor IC20 is manufactured to work with pools that have up to 20,000-gallon (75,000 liters) capacity. The IntelliChlor IC20 can be used for in-ground pools and above-ground pools, and it produces up to 0.70 pounds of chlorine every 24 hours.

Another IntelliChlor model is the IC40 which is engineered for in-ground pools with up to 40,000 gallons (150,000 liters) capacity and produces up to 1.4 pounds of chlorine every 24 hours. The IC60, for in-ground pools with a capacity of 60,000 gallons, produces up to 2 pounds of chlorine every 24 hours. The IC15 is manufactured for above-ground swimming pools with less than a 15,000-gallon capacity.

Hayward’s AquaRite also comes in different models: Hayward AQR15 (this model works with pools with a 40,000-gallon capacity), Hayward AQR9 (this model works with swimming pools with a 25,000-gallon capacity), and Hayward AQR3 (the AQR3 works with swimming pools that have a capacity of 15,000 gallons).

Similarities Between Pentair and Hayward Salt Chlorinator

Built-in Advanced Diagnostics

Pentair’s IntelliChlor salt chlorinator and Hayward’s AquaRite have advanced diagnostic capabilities that improve the general experience for pool owners who use the different models of salt chlorinators. Pentair’s IntelliChlor includes the ability to track your salt chlorinator’s cell life and communicate the remaining hours of cell life in real-time. IntelliChlor uses easy-to-grasp controls and displays that enable quick and easy checking of the water flow, sanitizer output, cell cleanliness, water temperature, and salt levels.

Hayward’s AquaRite also has built-in diagnostics, such as a feature that lets you know that you need to clean out the T-cell and a digital salt display that tells you the level of salt in your pool water if you need to add more salt. But AquaRite has a microprocessor that can automate all the diagnostics even though it will alert you to know anything wrong with your salt chlorinator.


Now that you have looked at Pentair’s and Hayward’s salt chlorinators, you may wonder which you should choose. For many pool owners, both manufacturers produce high-quality salt chlorinators that can easily replace each other because their differences are minute. These differences are not so much that they would affect your general experience and usage of the salt chlorinators.

However, there are some things you should consider if you are switching from using physical chlorine to salt chlorinators. If you have an automation system, you should use the same brand of salt chlorinator because they would be compatible; the same goes for the brand of pump you use. Also, choose a salt chlorinator model that is at least 1.5 times your pool’s capacity; for example, if your swimming pool has a 15,000-gallon capacity, ensure that you choose a 30,000-gallon system.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.