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How To Maintain Pool Chemicals

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Cyanuric Acid Or Stabilizer

Pool Chemical Treatment – How To Maintain Pool Water

Most chlorine products you add to the water will be stabilized chlorine. However, if you start with fresh water, you might want to add some cyanuric acid as a stabilizer base so that the chlorine doesnt get burned off by the suns UV rays so quickly. This chemical will protect your chlorine from the sun.

Our Recommendation On How To Store Pool Chemicals

You may be wondering now where to keep the pool chemicals. Depending on where you live and what you have access to, this answer can vary. The first factor is the type of chemicals.

Here are some common chemicals that will be used to maintain your pool:

  • Chlorine tablets/Liquid Chlorine
  • Shock
  • Calcium Hardiness Increaser
  • Chlorine Neutralizer

When storing pool chemicals, its important to know what you are handling. Pool experts recommend that you always read the warning and instruction labels when you buy the chemical so you know what the manufacturer recommends for storage and use.

Testing Your Pool Water

Testing your swimming pool water regularly is incredibly important to maintaining a clean and safe pool. Like I mentioned above, you can pick up a testing kit and test your pool water every week or so to see if you need to make any adjustments. If you dont have a good testing kit, head over to my recommendations for the best pool water testing kits. I also walk through how to test your pool water in a separate article as well.

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How Salt Chlorinators Work

Salt Chlorinators are comprised of two components the control box and salt cell. The control box is the brains of the operation while the salt cell does all the work. The salt cell received commands from the control box to make chlorine when and for how long. Also, salt chlorinator cells can shock, or super chlorinate, your pools water.

The more technical name for salt cells is electrolytic converters. Theyre plumbed into your swimming pools return line. The key is that the salt chlorine cell MUST be installed AFTER or BEHIND the other pool equipment. The salt cell should always be installed behind the pump, filter and heater.

When a swimming pools water enters a salt chlorinators salt cell, the control box generates a very safe electrical charge, which turns dissolved pool salt into Free Chlorine. The Free Chlorine is then distributed evenly, by the pool return jets, throughout the water. Once the Free Chlorine has chlorinated the swimming pools water, the control box tells the salt cell to convert the chlorine back to salt, and the process happens over and over forever. We say forever because the salt in a saltwater swimming pool doesnt break down or evaporate. It only needs to be replaced when new water is introduced to the swimming pool due to splash out or backwashing.

Pool Skimmers And Returns

Adding the right chemical to your pool

If your pools filter is its liver, then your skimmers and returns are its veins and arteries. Your skimmersnot to be confused with a net skimmer, the cleaning tool attached to a telescoping polepull water into the filter for cleaning, while the returns push the cleaned water back into your pool. And like your veins and arteries, they work best when theyre clean and clear of obstructions.

No two pools are alike, and youll no doubt encounter pool maintenance challenges specific to your pool as time goes on. But if youve got a firm grasp on these four pool components, youll be well equipped to face down most upkeep challenges.

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Clean Out Debris Weekly

Once you let debris, such as dirt and leaves, build up in the pool over time, you could be inviting bacteria and algae to take hold. Thats why it is essential to clean out your pool at least once a weekmore often if there is a lot of rain or wind that blows into the water.

There are many kinds of equipment you can use to clean out debris, including leaf nets, robotic cleaners, and vacuums. Dont forget to inspect the parts of the system that get dirty after each cleaning, like skimmer baskets and filters. This will ensure your pool is not only clean but also well-maintained throughout the season.

Shock The Pool Not The Monkey

No matter how well you keep your pool chemistry balanced, its a good ideano, its necessaryto shock your pool on a regular basis. Shocking is also sometimes referred to as superchlorinating the pool because all it means is youre adding a high dose of chlorine to the pool all at once.

This is a good method for keeping the water clean, but its also a remedy for things like pool algae, and certain bodily mishaps that may occur in the pool, especially when small children swim.

To get the best results, we recommend using calcium hypochlorite shock at least once a week. If youre maintaining a chlorine-free pool, youll also find chlorine-free shock available.

ProTip: Pool shock is made with unstabilized chlorine or no chlorine at all. Itll get eaten up by the suns UV rays very quickly. So always shock your pool at night or dusk, and run the pump overnight to fully distribute it and allow it to dissipate.

Important: Products that contain calcium can raise your pools calcium hardness level over time. If you use those products, keep a closer eye on calcium hardness levels so you can correct them before they become a problem.

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How To Maintain A Salt Water Pool: A Complete Guide

Whats the best thing about a salt water pool?

If you ask homeowners who have them, theyll probably say they like that they dont have to buy chlorine anymore. Thats because salt water pools create their own chlorine through a process known as electrolysis.

Other benefits include no smelly chloramines, softer water, and less maintenance. Now, take note. Salt water pools arent zero maintenance.

You should still know how to maintain a salt water pool to keep it in tip-top shape. That being said, lets talk about some care and maintenance tips so you can enjoy your salt water pool for a long time.

Hiring Pool Guy Vs A Professional Swimming Pool Cleaner

POOL CHEMISTRY 101: How to Keep Your Water Balanced | Swim University

Pool guys charge about 1.7 times more than it costs to clean your pool yourself. However, be careful who you hirewhile a professional maintenance service might send out someone who barely knows how to clean a pool, you can pay more for someone with many years of experience and who can recognize small issues before they become expensive ones. When comparing pool cleaning services near you, be sure to look for positive customer reviews.

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Create A Maintenance Schedule

As you learn more about your pool and how to care for it, your to-do list might start to seem a little intimidating. Creating a pool maintenance schedule makes it easy to stay organized and make sure important tasks dont slip through the cracks.

Not only will you be able to stay on top of basic upkeep, but youll be able to plan ahead for more advanced pool maintenance tasks like closing your pool, caring for it during the off season, or getting your swimming pool ready to roll when pool season returns.

Check Filter And Backwash As Needed

The three most popular types of filters – sand, cartridge and vertical grid DE – screen out debris and particles from your pool water. You should clean and maintain your filter according to the manufacturer’s directions.

Check your pool filter weekly, removing any debris that has gathered within.

Backwash the pool filter as needed .

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Measure And Adjust Calcium Hardness

If you ever notice a while line or scaling around your pools water line, its probably calcium buildup. And how often you see it is directly related to your pools calcium hardness level.

Ideal Calcium Hardness level: 200 400 ppm

How to increase calcium hardness:

To increase your pool waters calcium hardness use calcium chloride. Follow the usage instructions printed on the packaging.

How to decrease calcium hardness

  • Partially drain your pool and refill it with fresh water.
  • Use a flocculant to collect and vacuum excess calcium.

Sanitizer is what keeps your pool free of germs and bacteria. Without it, every pool would quickly become a breeding ground for germs.

But luckily, we use sanitizers like chlorine to keep the water safe and healthy.

When it comes to measuring chlorine, there are a few numbers to keep track of:

  • Free Chlorine
  • Measures the amount of unused, or available chlorine in the water
  • Total Chlorine
  • Measures the total amount of chlorine present in the water
  • To find your pools combined chlorine : subtract Total Chlorine from Free Chlorine

    Ideal levels for chlorine: 3 ppm

    Chlorine comes in a few forms:

    • Chlorine tablets
    • Salt chlorine generator

    For this step, you can save time and shock your pool now. This gives you a jump start on refreshing the water and takes care of sanitizing your pool.

    A few other pool sanitizers:


    Healthy pool bromine levels range from 3 ppm to 5 ppm


    Proper levels for biguanide: 30 to 50 ppm

    Stabilizers And Balancing Chemicals

    What Chemicals Do I Need for My Pool?

    Other important swimming pool chemicals include Water Balancing Pool Chemicals. Chemical levels in your pool water are affected by many factors, including sunlight, rain, evaporation and the presence of oils. This means that the waters chemical levels are always changing, which affects the waters pH levels and total alkalinity.

    Balancing chemicals such as pH Increaser and pH Reducer allow you to keep pH and alkalinity levels in the right range and help maintain healthy and clean water. Water balancing pool chemicals also help enhance the performance of your sanitizer, reducing maintenance time and chemical use.

    While bromine cannot be stabilized, or protected from the sun, chlorines life can be extended by using stabilizer, aka conditioner. Stabilizing pool chemicals provide protection for chlorine molecules, preventing them from becoming quickly destroyed by UV radiation from the sun. This allows your chlorine-based chemicals to last longer, which saves money and prevents rapid depletion on warm summer days.

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    Some Recommended Pool Chemical Storage Options

    Some storage options can help you safely store your pool chemicals. A good choice for pool storage is a portable plastic cabinet or container which can be stored tightly in a dry, dark area and is childproof as well.

    Also, when using a portable storage container, it can be put inside or outside, depending on what the weather is like.

    Pool chemicals should be kept in a locked area or container that is inaccessible to children. This is something any pool owner should keep in mind for everyones safety.

    • DIMENSIONS: Exterior: 51 in. W x 27. 6 in. L x 24. 6 in. H / Interior: 45 in. W x 23. 4 in. L x 21. 3 in. H
    • IDEAL STORAGE: Generous and large 110 gallon storage capacity
    • RESIN CONSTRUCTION: It’s made out of all weather-resistant resin with an appealing rattan-look texture
    • DURABLE AND STRONG: Weather-resistant polypropylene construction prevents rusting, peeling and denting – unlike real rattan

    Component Four The Water

    For a beginner, finding the correct chemical balance for the water, and maintaining this, can seem like a daunting challenge. However, there are complete kits that can help to keep your water crystal-clear and safe to swim in. To keep your water clean and safe, you should focus on the following measurements :

    • pH level pH levels show how acidic or alkaline the water is. A neutral pH protects your pool equipment from corrosion while also stopping skin and eye irritation. We recommend keeping the pH range between 7.2 to 7.6 ppm.
    • Total Alkalinity This keeps your pH level in the pool balanced, and it should stay between 100ppm to 150ppm .
    • Chlorine Chlorine acts like a sanitiser that rids the pools water of bacteria and algae. Keep chlorine levels between 1.0ppm and 2.0ppm but up to 3.0ppm is acceptable.
    • Stabiliser If you have chlorine in your pool, this will shield it from sunlight. The ideal value is 50pppm, and cyanuric acid determines how much free chlorine you need in your water.
    • Salt Ideal level is between 3000 and 4000 ppm lower salt levels may be required by some types of chlorinators.
    • Calcium Hardness You want to prevent damage to your pools walls, and keeping your calcium hardness between 175ppm and 225ppm will help.
    • T.D.S. Ideal level = less than 1500 ppm.
    • Phosphates Ideal level = zero but less than 0.2 ppm.Water Balance Zero, or slightly negative on the Langlier Saturation Index .

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    Pool Chemicals: The Key To A Clean Pool

    You could fill your pool with fresh, clean water, and then skim and vacuum it every day, and the water would still get dirty. Leaves, twigs, and other debris fall into your pool. Bugs take their last swims in it. Birds fly overhead and bomb it.

    And every time someone swims, they leave behind body oils, hair, dead skin, shampoo, soap, everything we humans put on our bodies and slough off on a daily basis.

    The only thing keeping those contaminants from turning your pool into a black lagoon is sanitizer, probably the most important pool chemical youll ever use.

    And in order for the sanitizer to work, other water attributes must be balanced: pH, alkalinity, and calcium hardness.

    Finally, youll add pool chemicals to treat algae, to clear your pool, and to prevent staining, if you have hard water.

    All of these factors work together to create balanced pool chemistry so you can swim in peace, so knowing what to use and how is crucial.

    How To Maintain A Pool Without Chemicals

    Pool Chemicals and Do It Yourself Support

    Maintaining a chemical free pool is not an easy task as there are several ways available and you need to make sure that the way which you have chosen is effective for your pool. Whatever be the type of chemical free pool you are working with, the results will be almost the same. Chemical free cleaning of pools offer many benefits which are far beyond than the chemical methods applied for cleaning the systems. The maintenance of chemical free pool is far less and the total input costs involved is comparatively less.

    Chlorination of pool water requires more costs and moreover, you may also have to bear the brunt of chlorinated pool. The affordability of chemical free pool cleaning methods as well as easier pool maintenance methods have made many people opt for chemical free pool maintenance. There is new technology of using the non-chemical pool treatments which make use of natural oxygen and this new technology requires no maintenance at all.

    Another important aspect of pool cleaning using this technology is that it makes use of copper for cleaning the pool water and kill bacteria. Copper is considered safe for the swimmers and even if you drink water with copper content inside it, there are no possibilities that it will cause you any harm.

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    Pool Chemical Training For Staff

    • Train all staff in pool chemical safety basics and provide additional training for those working directly with chemicals.
    • Include at least the following topics in operator training/certification to decrease the likelihood of pool chemical injuries:
    • Impact of each pool chemical on the waters chemistry and the monitoring systems
    • If the test kits limit is exceeded, how to measure higher chlorine levels
  • Layout of a safe chemical storage area and pump room
  • Calculation of venue volume and the appropriate amount of chemicals needed for the volume
  • Safe chemical storage and handling practices
  • Check out Occupational Safety and Health Administration resources:
    • Communication plan for alerting patrons, staff, and emergency responders
  • Train the aquatics staff on the procedures in the emergency response plan.
  • Keep a copy of the emergency response plan near the chemical storage area, pump room, and venue area and ensure that another copy is also available at a remote location in case of an evacuation.
  • Ensure up-to-date SDSs are easily accessible to first responders in case of evacuation.
  • Have a phone with updated emergency numbers near the chemical storage area, pump room, and venue area and ensure that a phone is also available at a remote location in case of an evacuation.
  • Practice emergency response with first responders.
  • During an incident

    After an incident

    Use Shock To Maintain A Pool

    Shock is the method for adding a large amount of chlorine to a pool. The usual amount of chlorine protects the pool by combining with contaminants. After a period, the chlorine is used up by combining with contaminants. The water may look clouded or give off a strong odor of chlorine. Shock raises the level of chlorine by 10 ppm over the existing combined chlorine reading. The powerful blast of fresh chlorine eats the used chlorine by breaking up the bonds and letting it burn up.

    Shock at Night

    The shock chemical will burn up quickly in the UV rays of the sun. Owners should apply shock at dusk or night time. The darkness helps the shock work and leave the water safe and clean. Owners can apply shock about once per week.

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    Adjusting The Alkalinity And Ph

  • 1Ensure the alkalinity is between 80 and 120 ppm. Alkalinity buffers the pH and can prevent large increases or decreases in the acidity and basicity of the water. Test and adjust the alkalinity before adjusting the pH. If the alkalinity is too low, mix baking soda with water and pour the mixture into the pool to increase it. If the alkalinity is too high, adjust it along with the pH using muriatic acid.XResearch source

    Tip: Add 1.5 pounds of baking soda to a 10,000 US gal to raise the alkalinity 10 ppm.

  • 2Maintain a pH level between 7.2 and 7.8. The term pH refers to how acidic or basic your pool water is. Typically, the tap water you use to fill your pool has a neutral pH of 7, but additives or contaminants can change the pH. A pH of 7.2-7.8 is the ideal range for pool water, so if your reading is above or below these levels, it’s important to adjust it. Having the right pH ensures the water won’t irritate your skin or eyes and will also keep the water clear.XTrustworthy SourceCenters for Disease Control and PreventionMain public health institute for the US, run by the Dept. of Health and Human ServicesGo to source
  • If swimmers are having a problem with burning eyes, the pH is probably to blame, not the chlorine.
  • Pool owners with zero CYA will notice that the chlorine is more effective at a low pH while owners who have CYA in their water will see similar kill times even at a high pH.
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