What Is Ph Down
pH Down is the commercial name for 2 chemical compounds that are used to lower pH in your pool .
The first is a dry acid compound, sodium bisulfate .
The second is a liquid compound, hydrochloric acid , commonly called muriatic acid in the recreational water world, and it has a wide range of uses in industry.
pH Down helps to maintain your pH balance in your pool by making your water more basic which in turn helps your chlorine be more effective.
As a side effect, it also lowers alkalinity.
Factors That Raise Ph In A Swimming Pool
So why does the pH tend to climb in swimming pools? You may notice pH almost never naturally drops over time…so there must be something going on. It turns out, while pH is controlled by the concentration of Hydrogen ions, practically speaking, pH is also determined by the amount of carbon dioxide in the water. And there are several factors that affect CO2 levels in pools, and cause a pool’s pH to lower or rise. So let’s talk about some of them.
Why Your Pool Ph Balance Is Important
Swimming pool water is treated with chemicals to disinfect and oxidize. An optimal pH balance is essential to maintain sanitary swimming conditions and the longevity of pool equipment. Although some other chemicals have been introduced into the market, the most common chemical used to treat swimming pools is chlorine.
Chlorine works in two ways:
- It disinfects the water by killing bacteria and algae that cause waterborne illnesses. Bacteria in pool water can cause swimmers to suffer from diarrhea, swimmers, ear infections, and skin infections.
- Chlorine also oxidizes dirt and debris particles that come into the water from swimmers and the environment.
Maintaining an optimal pH is important because it can impact the effectiveness of the chlorine and ultimately lead to unsanitary swimming conditions. In addition to health, it is also essential for the comfort of swimmers the optimal pH for swimming pools is the same pH as the human eye and mucous membranes. Unbalanced pH can lead to itchy and irritated skin and eyes for swimmers.
And if the health, safety, and comfort of swimmers are not enough, pH balance is essential for the longevity of the pool facilities and equipment. Overly acidic pool water is corrosive and will lead to the breakdown of equipment like pumps, ladders, and diving board structures. Unbalanced pH levels also wear down the pool liner and will create the need for more frequent replacements.
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Your Total Alkalinity Is High
Total alkalinity refers to the neutralization of acids and bases in the water. This is important as it works to stabilize the pH level, which in turn, affects the functionality of your pool.
The ideal range of alkalinity is between 80 to 120 ppm .
High total alkalinity is a common issue and there are steps you can take to reduce its level.
If left unchecked, it causes a chain reaction of events that will spike the pools pH level, leading to potential pool damage and skin irritation issues for those who swim in it.
When your waters alkalinity is too high, it needs to be lowered. This is usually done by adding muriatic acid.
How To Use Sodium Bisulfate To Lower Pool Ph
Sodium Bisulfate is a dry acid also used to lower pH and alkalinity in your pool. It comes in a powder or granule form and made by partially neutralizing sulfuric acid. Compared to muriatic acid, sodium bisulfate is a much safer chemical to handle. Its not as powerful though.
Sodium bisulfate is sold in pool stores under the name pH Down, pH Decreaser and pH Minus.
How to Use Sodium Bisulfate:
1. Measure the required quantity as directed on the package.
2. Dilute the product first rather than pouring it directly into your pool .
3. Pour the powder into the deep end of your pool near the jets. Turn on the pump to circulate the water.
4. Wait at least 5 hours, preferably overnight, before retesting your pool to determine if you need to add any more.
5. Once you achieve normal alkalinity , check the pH. If pH drops too low, you can simply aerate the pool or use pH increaser to get back to optimal ranges.
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A Swimming Pool Chemical Calculator
Adjust sliders to calculate pool pH.
Altering your pH will also alter your Total Alkalinity. Calculating pH requires knowledge of both Total Alkalinity and Borate. This calculator assumes a TA of 100 and a Borate of 0. Calculations are approximate, and for pH changes greater than 0.4, results can be off.
When adding chemicals, it is recommended to add half, wait for one full turnover, re-test/calculate and dose again as necessary.
RESULTS SHOWN HERE
More About Pool pH
Pool water pH is one of the best measures of balanced water. The pH of a human tear is 7.5, so the ideal range for best swimmer comfort is between 7.4 – 7.6. But 7.2 – 7.8 is also considered an acceptable pool water range. Maintaining proper pH levels is essential for swimmer comfort, protection of pool equipment and effectiveness of the chlorine.
LOW pH EFFECTS < 7.2:
Can cause etching of the pool or spa surface, corrosion of metals, chlorine loss, staining of stairs and walls, wrinkles in vinyl liners, and swimmer skin and eye irritation.
HOW TO RAISE pH IN POOL
To raise pH in pool use washing soda, dosa ash or Borax. Aerating the water will also raise pH in pool water. If the pool has a fountain or water feature, it can be run to raise the pool water pH. Use chemical reagents or test strips to find the current pH
CHLORINE NOT WORKING BECAUSE OF HIGH pH IN THE POOL?:
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What Causes Low Ph
Because pH is such an unstable factor, many things can affect it.
But when its low, it is usually caused by things like rainwater or debris getting into your pool.
Total alkalinity is sort of the stabilizing factor for pH, so its important to test this level every time you test your pH levels.
When it is off, pH is almost always off in the same direction as well.
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What Is Ph And What Should It Be
pH simply means the waters total acid-alkalinity balance.
If the balance is off, problems can and probably will occur in your pool or spa.
Any element added to the water, be it sweat, sunscreen or leaves or bugs will cause the pH to change.
If the water becomes too alkaline , the water can become cloudy or it can cause scaling on the plumbing equipment and on the pool lining something that can be costly to fix.
If the water is too acidic , it can cause etching or corrode the metallic equipment. In the worst-case scenario, highly-acidic water can give you and your guests skin rashes or irritations.
For these reasons, its important to monitor pH levels closely.
Its also important to note that the water will need to be tested more frequently during periods of high usage due to an increase in by-products from swimmers or simply from dirt that gets tracked into the pool.
First Things First What Causes A High Ph In A Swimming Pool
A spike in your pools pH can be caused by several different things. First off, it could be as a result of the chemicals or products used to disinfect the pool. Speaking of which, the addition of chlorine stabilizer or HTH Granular to your pools water can cause its pH to climb well above 7. Its however important to note that these chlorine products are your best bet when it comes to keeping your pools chlorine in good shape. So yes, its great to use them. But, of course, too much can make your water overly soft and also cloudy.
Besides these products, an increase in the pH level can be triggered by a sudden spike in the temperature of the water. For instance, if your pool water is always exposed to direct sunlight, an unexpected heatwave could cause the pH to go higher than normal.
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What Is Ph In The Pool And Why Is It Important
pH is used to describe a scale of acidity or basicity of a solution. Ranging from 0-14, a pH of 7 is neutral, anything less than 7 represents an acidic or low pH solution, and anything more than 7 represents a basic or high pH .
The pH, as well as alkalinity, is probably the most important value to stay on top of in your pool. Its best to maintain a slightly neutral pH between 7.4-7.6 with an alkalinity level between 80-120 ppm.
Factors that cause pH to change in your pool:
- airborne debris
- swimmer wastes
When the pH shifts out of balance, it can wreak havoc on your pools chemistry and balance as it directly affects some of the chemical reactions that take place.
How To Lower Ph In Your Pool
- |October 29, 2020
Owning a swimming pool comes with plenty of perks, but it also requires a maintenance schedule that can be frustrating if not followed regularly.
Youll have to learn how to lower pH in your pool, in order to maintain the waters proper pH level at all times.
If it becomes unbalanced , it can create a host of problems for your pool and anyone who enters it.
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Why Should You Lower Your Pool’s Ph Balance
If your pool has a pH balance that constantly gets a little too high, you could start to notice some pretty significant problems.
It can even be dangerous for swimmers, killing the chlorine benefits and posing some serious health concerns.
Here are some things you might see:
- Skin and eye irritation
- High chlorine demand
- Cloudy water
Clogged filters and scaling may not sound like a big deal, but when you consider that it can affect circulation and put a strain on your pool equipment, you might start seeing dollar signs.
Imagine, for example, that you get some severe scaling in a pipe, which causes your water not to be able to move through it at the same speed.
In this case, your pump is still pushing water through your pipes just as fast as it was before, but now your system cant quite handle it.
This can cause pipes to burst or your motor to burn out, both of which can result in some pretty expensive repair bills.
Best Ways To Maintain The Ph Level In My Pool
The best possible thing any pool owner can do to maintain the pH levels in their pool is to check the pH twice per week. Some people continually think that testing chlorine is enough to maintain a pool it is not. Get a pool test kit that checks a variety of levels in your pool, but more importantly, pH and chlorine.
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What Happens In A High Ph Swimming Pool
A swimming pool with a high pH is considered alkaline, which can cause issues with the pool and swimmers. There can be several answers to what causes high pH in pool, such as a sudden rise in water temperature, but more importantly that the causes are its effects. If the pH level is above 7.8, you can expect the water to become cloudy and to see scaling along the pool sides.
Further, a pH that is above normal prevents the chlorine and other disinfecting chemicals to do their job. This means bacteria and other microorganisms may thrive in your pool. While you cannot see with your naked eye, bacteria in your pool water can be harmful when they enter your body. Read on to learn how to lower pH in pool naturally.
Test Your Chemistry Levels
If you think your pH levels are off, chances are youve already checked the pool chemistry to make sure. If not, go ahead and check them now to see exactly how far off the pH is.
Ideal pH levels are between 7.2 and 7.6, with 7.4 being optimum.
So if your pH measures anything below 7.2, you need to take the steps to raise it.
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You Recently Shocked Your Pool
Shocking your swimming pool refers to the process of adding chemicals usually chlorine to stabilize the pH level.
Shocking breaks up combined chlorine killing algae, bacteria, and other pathogens and it rapidly increases your chlorine level.
Combined chlorine is essentially chlorine thats bound to ammonia and nitrogen. Translation: its an ineffective sanitizer when in this state.
Adding shock breaks up the combined chlorine and creates an increase in free chlorine. This increase can spike your pools pH level.
Pool shock is available in both chlorinated or non-chlorinated versions. If your pool already has a high pH level, using chlorinated shock will only make things worse.
How Much Acid Should I Add To My Pool
This depends on how high your pool’s pH is and the size of the pool. If you are using test strips, it’s usually hard to determine exactly how high the pH level is you just know it’s high. A better test kit, or a DPD drop test kit, will use phenol red to give you a better idea of your true pH reading. Some better test kits include an “acid demand” test to help calculate a more precise dosage.
If you have a pH reading of 7.8 or higher, and an average size in-ground pool, you should add 1/4 gallon of muriatic acid, and re-test after the water has circulated for an hour. If you have a smaller pool, or an above-ground pool, you would start with one cup of acid, and then re-test and add more if needed. If you have a spa, we are talking only capfuls at a time. Very little acid is needed to adjust pH in a spa.
For a more exact idea of how much acid to add, see the table below or use a pool calculator, which can be found online, that will give you an amount based on estimated pool volume and chemistry.
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Lowering Your Pool Ph With Sodium Bisulfate :
Keep Your Pool Safe And Healthy With A Balanced Ph
Now that you know why and how to lower pH in pools, make sure you practice and master it! This way, you dont have to worry about that investment youve most likely spent $22,000 on!
More importantly, though, maintaining proper pH balance prevents you from getting dry skin, red eyes, or a burning nose after taking a dip in your pool.
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Reducers To The Rescue
To bring down pH, use a made-for-pools chemical additive called pH reducer . The main active ingredients in pH reducers are either muriatic acid or sodium bisulfate . Reducers are readily available at pool supply stores, home improvement centers and online.
Muriatic acid is powerful its used to etch concrete and you need to be careful when adding the chemical to your pool. It comes in liquid form, so you need to protect yourself from accidental spills and splashes. Always read and follow the manufacturers directions for safe handling, applying and storing of muriatic acid. A 1-gallon bottle is about $45.
Sodium bisulfate comes as dry granules and is considered easier to add and safer to handle than muriatic acid. Nevertheless, it should be handled carefully. Protect eyes and skin, and wear a dust mask to avoid inhaling any dust from the granules. A 25-pound bucket costs about $50.
The correct amount of a pH reducer depends on the water volume of your pool and its current pH level. Reducers usually come with a guide that takes into account the variables and calculates the proper amounts of pH reducer to add to your pool.