Cyanuric Acid Reduces Kill Rates
A study performed by the Pinellas County, Fla Health Department found that when pools with 1-5 ppm of chlorine were treated with 100 ppm of cyanuric acid, nearly 80% of the pools would be deemed unfit for swimming by the sanitarian.
Experts on poolforum and TroubleFreePool such as Richard Falk and Ben Powell have led lengthy discussions on the topic of the supressive effect of cyanuric acid on the efficacy of free chlorine levels. Charts have been produced to help pool owners find the best chlorine level, based on their level of cyanuric acid.
In most cases, and with the exception of Crypto or Giardia contaminations, these higher chlorine levels will compensate for the effects of cyanuric acid on chlorine activity. For heavily used commercial pools, it has been suggested that double this amount be used. This would roughly equate to a maintaining chlorine levels at 20% of the cyanuric acid level.
Notice also in the chart below that its not only the daily chlorine residual that needs to be boosted to compensate for the CYA, but also when shocking the pool. CYA bonds almost instantly to chlorine in the water, and makes it difficult to reach breakpoint chlorination.
SO, Whats the Problem? When the chlorine isnt as powerful as you think it is, your pool is not as sanitary, and possibly not fully disinfected. The validity of the standard minimum 1.0 ppm Free Chlorine has come into question.
In short, the higher your level of cyanuric acid, the higher your chlorine level.
Cyanuric Acid Do You Even Lift
For a liquid or granule, cyanuric acid is surprisingly powerful, and can do the heavy lifting chlorine simply cannot achieve on its own. Because unstabilized chlorine is destroyed so quickly by UV rays, outdoor pools without cyanuric acid dont have a fair shot at being properly sanitized. In other words, any swimmers in your pool will be doing laps among microscopic swimmersbacteria that may have the ability to make you sick.;
Since cyanuric acid prevents chlorine from breaking down in your water, it allows it to destroy bacteria three to five times longer as it would without CYA. That means three to five times less of a charge on your chlorine bill, and three to five times less hours of chlorine upkeep required. The math is working out in our favor here.
Is Cyanuric Acid The Same As Muriatic Acid
Many of us do get confused with the name and think that both are the same, but the reality is that both are very different.
As weve discussed so far, cyanuric acid act as a shield for chlorine against sunlight, and prevents it from getting disintegrated.
On the other hand, the main function of muriatic acid is to lower a pools pH level.
Though both these chemicals are used to manage chlorine efficiency still they are used for very different reasons.
As a pool owner, you need to utilize both these chemicals efficiently in order to maintain a healthy pool ambiance.
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What Does A Pool Skimmer Do
Swimming pools are a fantastic backyard amenity that incorporates high initial and lifetime costs. Therefore, swimming pools usually need a lot of maintenance. Failure to maintain your pool skimmer leads to common problems like algae and stains. Therefore, it is essential to keep your pool water in good shape at all times. Constantly clean your pool and use the right chemicals to maintain accurate water chemistry.
Founder and COO of Americas Swimming Pool Company, Stewart Vernon, says that the company has tremendously grown over time. Now the pool experts in their company usually take care of more than 20000 swimming pools per week. So, they have extensive experience in pool maintenance. Also, they know how to help pool owners keep their pools in good shape.
What Levels Of Cyanuric Acid Are Optimal
Even a small amount of cyanuric acid is good for your pool, so if youre afraid of going overboard, you can opt for adding trace amounts.
But the optimum level is considered 30-50 ppm .
Any higher and it will keep the chlorine from being killed by the sun, but it will lose virtually all effectiveness in killing bacteria.
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Balancing Between Functionality And Aesthetics
You have to find the perfect balance between aesthetics and functionality when installing an automatic spa cover. Most clients prefer using concrete lids on their pool covers so that they can walk around the cover. Also, concrete lids are more popular because they provide more aesthetics. Meeting the customers requirements will require you to use a heavy-duty bracket. This way, it can handle the weight of the concrete lid. Even so, always tell your clients to minimize their movement on the cover. At times, the stone can move, and this can lead to serious accidents.
Shadoan says, Pool contractors should explain how these features work. They should inform their clients that lifting the stone from time to time is important. Also, let them know that walking, standing, or sitting on the lid can lead to serious accidents.
Lawmakers Seek Legislation To Mitigate Usage Of Cyanuric Acid
Cyanuric acid has gotten quite a bad wrap as lawmakers and scients alike take issue with the potential dangerous overuse in residential and commerical pools. They represent that Cyanuric acid may cause pool maintenance issues as well as public health problems. In contradiction, some public health inspectors mandate the use of cyanuric acid, while others ban it entirely from public pools. The industry cant seem to make up its mind if Cyanuric Acid is beneficial or not. Lets explore the issue further.
CYA is technically an acid but is unlike muriatic acid, which is commonly used in pool service for adjusting pH levels in the pool chemistry.
Cyanuric acid is sold on its own or can be bought in combination as an additive to chlorine tablets. It quickly dissolves in water and doesnt have any adverse effects on water hardness, alkalinity or pH levels. Its often used as a conditioner or chlorine stablizer and basically protects the chlorine from the sun while it disinfects the pool.
A chlorinated swimming pool with CYA will stay chlorinated on the sunniest day, but the same pool without a stablizer in it will dissipate its chlorine in just a few hours.; Cyanruic acid builds up over time with each application.
When CYA levels become too high, it renders chlorine ineffective to killing dangerous microorganisms in the water such as cryptospordium parvum which causes gastrointestinal illnesses similar to Giardia.
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Why Too Much Cyanuric Acid Is A Bad Thing
When cyanuric acid levels get too high, it can cause something referred to as chlorine lock, which basically means your chlorine has been rendered useless.
Youll know it has happened when your chlorine test shows very or little chlorine even right after youve added it to the pool. ;
When your chlorine isnt working, bacteria and algae are not being treated!
What Is The Right Cya Level
40-50 ppm is the best cyanuric acid level for effective algae and bacterial defense.
Its important to keep your CYA in this range for two reasons:
- High CYA can lead to cloudy water, green pool algae, and expensive chemical costs
- Low CYA allows your chlorine to be burned away
So keep your CYA levels between 40 and 50 ppm for the best results.
So what happens when your cyanuric acid levels are too high and they prevent you from balancing your pool. Your best option is obviously to lower your CYA levels asap, but how?
The best way to lower CYA levels is to dilute your water. This means partially draining the pool and refilling it right after.
Heres what to do:
- Test your water to find your exact CYA levels
- Find the source of excess CYA by checking the chemicals youre currently using for these ingredients:
- Potassium dichloroisocyanurate
NOTE: Remember that CYA can also leak from the plaster within concrete pools at times.
Once you know where the extra CYA is coming from, its time to start diluting the water.
To lower your CYA levels:
- Empty out about a 1 ft of water from your pool
- Replace that water with fresh water from a garden hose
- Test your CYA levels
- Keep draining and replacing your water, testing each time, until normal CYA levels are restored
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Not Enough Cyanuric Acid
Outdoor pools without a residual of cyanuric acid in the water have trouble maintaining a chlorine residual during a sunny day. Even small levels of CYA in the water will have a pronounced protective effect.
Indoor pools can also benefit from a very low residual of CYA, as it helps to prevent off-gassing of chlorine and reduces chloramine formation.
If you need to raise your cyanuric acid level, you simply pour the granular white powder directly into the pool, at a rate of about 1 lb. per 10,000 gallons, to raise it about 10 ppm.
Metals In Pools And Hot Tub Water
There are 91 existing metals, but only 6 are problematic to hot tubs and pools. The 6 metals include magnesium, copper, cobalt, iron, manganese and calcium. Here we will only discuss 4 that are cobalt, copper, magnesium and iron.
Fill water, inclusive of almost all municipal and well water supplies that fill hot tubs and pools, contains a few metals. It is advisable to test for metal concentration in source water before filling the hot tubs and pools.
Tests for iron and copper are easily accessible, though the majority only measures the free form of the dissolved metals. They also do not test the sequestered and complexed forms of dissolved metals. A two-phase metal test containing adequate reducing and releasing agents give better results on free, complexed and some oxidized metals.
In addition, flagstone, marble and stone contain iron that leaches into the pool after every rainfall. Imbalanced water may cause the introduction of copper from heat exchangers found in gas-fired water heaters. Moreover, copper-based algaecides and mineral-based water treatment may be a source of pool metals. Plant fertilizers can also introduce metals when incorrectly applied or due to uncontrolled flooding. More sources of metal include irrigation methods with well water.
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Use A Cyanuric Acid Reducer
A product such as Bio-Active or Natural Chemistry is a CYA reducer that will help lower cyanuric acid in your pool.
In cases where the CYA level is extremely high, you can use CYA reducer to bring it down, and then use the dilution method to top it off. These products are also pretty simple when it comes adding to your pool water.
Heres how to do it:
What Causes High Cyanuric Acid Amounts
High cyanuric acid amounts in your pool are likely caused simply by applying too much of the chemical into the pool itself.
Often, miscalculations in measurement, misunderstandings of proper amounts needed, or simple human errors are the factors that can influence increased amounts.
If you have any hesitations when it comes to adding chlorine and cyanuric acid to your pool, I would best recommend that you consult with a pool technician before you begin.
When it comes to chemicals and the safety of your water and your loved ones, you can never be too safe.
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Use Pure Cyanuric Acid
Adding pure cyanuric acid is another option.
This method allows you to add it separately from chlorine, and will only need to be done once or twice a year at most.
Heres how to do it:
What Causes High Cyanuric Acid In Pools
What causes high cyanuric acid in pools? Maybe you already know, but pools contain lots of chemicals to keep them healthy.
Pools are more than just bodies of pristine water to be enjoyed in the warmth of the summer months; they are made of chemical solutions designed to keep you and your loved ones safe when basking in their embrace.
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A Quick Chemistry Refresher
Cyanuric acid is a chemical compound in the triazine family, which basically means that its chemical makeup includes three nitrogens and three carbon atoms. It forms a weak and temporary bond with chlorine, which affects the chlorine more than the cyanuric acid itself. Well discuss that in a bit.
Chemically speaking, sodium dichlor is made up of one cyanuric acid molecule with two chlorine atoms and one sodium atom. This combination forms stable chlorine, which comes as a colorless solid.
Why Low Cyanuric Acid Is Bad News
Yes, cyanuric really is that important. Heres what low CYA in the water will do to your pool water:
- Increased chlorine consumption. Chlorine is naturally destroyed by sunlight, and an entire pools worth can be decimated in a matter of hours. Low CYA levels wont adequately protect it, which means youll be constantly feeding the pool more chlorine to keep it sanitized.
- With chlorine becoming less present in the pool due to sunlight consuming it, sanitation suffers. This allows pollutants, viruses, and bacterias in the water to take up space and even replicate.
- Green pool problems.A green pool is caused by a lack of clean water, which leads to algae growth. Depending on your situation, you can also develop pink slime or black algae, both of which leave your pool a nasty shade of ugh!
- Water chemistry imbalance. With low CYA not protecting chlorine, the chlorine level drops. This drop makes it inadequate for keeping the water clean, causing a chain reaction that affects other areas of the water chemistry such as the pools pH level and total alkalinity.
- Nasty pool smell. When free chlorine binds to ammonia pollutants such as sunblock, sweat, and urine in the water, it becomes combined chlorine . Not only is this form of chlorine a much less effective sanitizer, it also kicks up a pungent chlorine smell.
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Ways To Raise Cyanuric Acid In A Pool
- |March 8, 2021
Cyanuric acidalso called CYA, pool stabilizer, or pool conditioneris a weak acid that protects your chlorine from the suns ultraviolet rays, allowing it to work for much longer periods without constant top-ups.
The ideal range for cyanuric acid in your pool is between 30 and 50 ppm . Anything lower and you will likely see some undesirable side effects when it comes to your water chemistry.
Lets talk about why this happens, why it matters, and how to raise cyanuric acid in your swimming pool.
Cya’s Negative Impact On The Lsi
As if CYA’s impact on chlorine were not enough of a reason to keep its levels to a minimum, there is more. Another relatively misunderstood consequence of CYA is its impact on your waters overall balance. According to theLangelier Saturation Index , CYA matters because it leads pool operators to believe they have more carbonate alkalinity than they really do. This is because the LSI formula requires a CYA correction againsttotal alkalinity to find the carbonate alkalinity. Its complicated .
All you need to know is the higher your CYA, the lower your LSI. And you might be surprised at just how impactful CYA is when using the Orenda App LSI calculator.
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Will Adding Too Much Cyanuric Acid Would Do Harm To My Pool
As we all know too much of anything is bad, and I hope youll agree with it, right?
Adding CYA in excess would give birth to a phenomenon known as chlorine lock which simply means that the chlorine in your pool water has been rendered useless.
So, you might be wondering, how would I come to know that chlorine has been rendered useless, right?
I was also inquisitive about the aforementioned query when I heard about the chlorine lock phenomenon for the first time.
Well, if youre testing chlorine levels in your pool water just after adding a certain amount of it and the test results show only traces of chlorine present in the pool water, then it might be the case of chlorine lock.
Remember, if the chlorine isnt present in a balanced amount in your pool water then it would be really difficult for you to keep a check on algae and bacteria growth.