Salt water pools have a cell which is made of various metals. There are several factors that affect how much maintenance will be required to keep salt cells free of buildup. First, the calcium and minerals in the swimming pool affects the life of the cell dramatically. If a pool has high mineral content, minerals tend to build up on the cell. Second, the quality of the salt used in the salt system makes a big difference. Consumer grade salt purchased in stores can come with a lot of minerals. There minerals cause buildup. If you do purchase a salt system, it is a good idea to purchase a high grade salt, free of minerals.
We now offer salt water pools systems with an auto-cleaning feature. Basically, the salt controller reverses the polarity going to the cells, minimizing the amount of buildup. We still recommend that owners inspect the cells every 3-6 months and we recommend a thorough cleaning with hydrochloric acid every 6 months.