NSF/ANSI 50: Equipment for Pools, Spas, Hot Tubs and Other Recreational Water Facilities covers a wide range of equipment and components. Operational, safety and performance requirements are outlined in product-specific sections for each type. Previous articles in NSF’s Aquatics International special supplement, including “Managing Innovation,” have walked through the process of adding new product types and requirements into NSF/ANSI 50.
A new product classification in the standard addressing water conditioning devices is currently in review by a task group. Water conditioning device manufacturers are seeking certification to NSF/ANSI 50 as a way to show regulators, inspectors and facility operators that the product is safe and that any claims being made have been third-party verified.
The task group has defined these products as “a water conditioner intended to assist in improving swimming pool or spa water quality by optimizing an existing chemical regimen.” The definition is broad, covering many technologies that offer a wide range of performance claims regarding water-quality improvements.
The task group is currently developing the operational, safety and performance requirements, as well as the test methods for validating any claims. Potential requirements include:
• Maximum head loss testing
• Chemical or UV resistance
• 1.5xWP hydrostatic pressure testing
• Operational protection
• Performance claim validation
One or more performance claims can be made on a single device. The verified performance claims are product-specific, as some devices may have multiple characteristics.
There are many products available in the market that are claimed to answer a facility’s water quality issues while also reducing operating costs. The standards development process is the first step toward being able to verify and validate these claims. As manufacturers showcase the capability of their products with NSF/ANSI 50 certification, facility operators can reap the benefits of lower chemical costs, lower heating costs, improved water quality or improved bather comfort.