Shocking The Pool With Bleach
Follow these steps when shocking your pool using bleach.
What Is A Pool Shock What Types Are There
A pool shock is a project of inputting chlorine or non-chlorine chemicals to your swimming pool to raise your level of free chlorine. When your free chlorine levels are too low, bacteria, algae, and chloramines begin to crowd your swimming pool and make it unsanitary. By shocking your pool consistently, you can create the right amount of chlorine that keeps your pool and family safe.
The typical chlorine smell that you experience around the pool does not mean that it has been cleaned. This odor exists when the chlorine in the pool gets combined with the nitrogen in oils, sweat, urine, and other bodily fluids. A potent smell of chlorine usually means that the water has been improperly treated, but it does not necessarily give you the signal when it is time to clean the pool.
So, what are the different kinds of pool shock? There are many different products that you can utilize, but here are the most popular and effective ones. For recommendations on specific pool shock products, read my guide on the best pool shock.
Your Complete Guide: Home Pool Shock 101
To keep your pool clean, safe, and healthy for the best possible swimming experience there are specific tasks that must be completed before diving in. To ensure crisp, freshwater one of those tasks to check off the list is shocking your pool. Shocking your swimming pool or spa has always been good practice for recreational water management. Regardless of the type of sanitation system youve chosen, shocking will typically be required.
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You Can Smell Chlorine
Pools that reek of chlorine are trying to tell you something: they are lacking in chlorine. This may seem counterintuitive as theyre giving off a pungent chlorine pool smell.
But what youre actually smelling are chloramines. Chloramines are created when free chlorine reacts with ammonia in the water. This mixture is also known as combined chlorine, which gases off and floats on the surface of the water.
Chloramines are an irritant and hazardous to humans causing red eyes, itchy skin, nasal and lung irritation, and respiratory issues.
So if your pool is really stinky, its also really dirty. Shock it ASAP!
Black Green Pool Water
If you have black green pool water, you will be looking at doing the Light Green Pool Water dosage as outlined above x3. This may take some filtering, cleaning or backwashing of the filter, and more filtering to completely clean up over a period of 2 to 3 weeks.
Black green pool water will almost certainly leave stagnant debris sitting on the bottom of the pool which needs to be cleaned out before you dose it. Whether it be leaves or other debris, be sure that it is all scooped up using a leaf shovel, before being manually vacuumed out of the pool using a vacuum head, an appropriate length hose for your pool and a telepole.
Note: If you have a vinyl lined pool, diluting any chemicals that are being added to your pool in SEPARATE tubs of water is always a good idea to ensure no damage is done to the liner.
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The Best Time To Shock A Pool
The best time of day to shock a pool is in the evening after the sun is down. This allows the pool chlorine time to spread out in the water and clean it before day-time temperatures reduce the effectiveness of the shock. Ultraviolet light reduces the effectiveness of chlorine.
Shocking the pool in the evening also allows you the opportunity to run the pool pump overnight to help distribute the shock around the pool and also this means that the pool will probably be safe to swim after shocking again the following day.
You should ensure that the chlorine levels have reduced enough to allow swimmers to return to the pool. My article How long after shocking a pool can you swim explains this in more detail.
Should You Add Shock To A Salt Water Pool
Itâs absolutely okay to shock your salt water pool, and is actually pretty important!
Even though your pool system is probably equipped with an electrical function to super-chlorinate the water, it should not replace a weekly shock treatment for a couple of reasons:
- 1Running your pools super-chlorinate feature too often is hard on the motor and will cause it to wear out faster.
- 2The super-chlorinate feature will not always kill all the algae or clean up the pool water as effectively as pool shock.
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How To Use Shock Treatments Safely
All swimming pool chemicals must be treated with caution. However, given the concentrated nature of shock treatments, special care must be given. You should always follow the instructions provided with your specific product. However, there are some general rules to follow whenever using a shock treatment.
Your Water Temperature Soared
While pool heaters allow you to increase the water temperature to your preference, warm water eats up free chlorine like a fat kid inhales cupcakes. In addition, microorganisms and bacteria such as algae flourish in warm water.
A comfortable temperature is between 86 and 88°F. If under heavy usage, the pool temperature should be lowered to 78 to 84°F. Water temperature can also soar if your pool is in the sun all day, and you have a pool finish like stone, which naturally draws in heat.
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Hth 52016 Super Shock Treatment Swimming Pool Cleanser 1 Lb
- Make sure this fitsby entering your model number.
- BENEFITS: Increases the chlorine level in swimming pools to kill bacteria and algae to keep your pool water clear and ready for fun all season long
- USE: Apply directly to pool water as needed Test pool water and shock weekly to keep free available chlorine levels between 1 and 4ppm
- COMPATIBILITY: Effective for all swimming pool types including pools with liners and Gunite pools, and saltwater pool systems
- FEATURES: Increases chlorine levels Kills and prevents bacteria and algae Keeps water clear See results in 24 hours 1 bag treats 13, 500 gallons Wonât fade vinyl pool liners
- INCLUDES: Twelve 1-lb bags of shock treatment for your swimming pool
All Pool Shock Is Not Created Equal
There are two main types of chlorine pool shock that are used in both the residential and commercial pool environment. Note that some have cyanuric acid and some do not. There is also a non-chlorine shock available.
1. Calcium Hypochlorite: Also common known as cal hypo, this shock is the most powerful and fastest acting shock available. Both an oxidizer and sanitizer, cal hypo is quick dissolving and is the most frequently used in the pool industry. It will slightly raise your pH, so make sure you adjust pH while using it.
As the name implies, it will also raise your calcium hardness levels in your pool slightly. It is sold in granular or in pucks/tablets. A close relative of calcium hypochlorite is sodium hypochlorite, commonly known as bleach.
2. Dichloroisocyanuric Acid: Also known as dichlor, this is another type of chlorine shock. Dichlor contains both chlorine and cyanuric acid and will, over time, raise your cyanuric acid levels. For more information on cyanuric acid, please see our blog post Cyanuric Acid: Friend or Foe. Like cal hypo is it both a sanitizer and an oxidizer, can be purchased in granular or puck form and will slightly lower pool pH.
3. Sodium Monopersulfate: Also known in the pool industry as MPS shock, this shock is an alternative to chlorine shock. MPS is an oxidizer but not a sanitizer. It will remove organic material from the water and will eliminate waste in the water without the unpleasant side effects of chlorine.
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Can You Put Baking Soda In A Pool
Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate is naturally alkaline, with a pH of 8. When you add baking soda to your pool water, you will raise both the pH and the alkalinity, improving stability and clarity. Many commercial pool products for raising alkalinity utilize baking soda as their main active ingredient.
Dark Green Pool Water
If you have dark green pool water, you should look to follow the above steps, but with a slightly higher dose of acid and chlorine. Adding, for example, 2 to 3 litres of acid over a space of 48 hours and adding 2 to 3 cups of granulated chlorine. Also, darker green water may also be a cause of stagnant debris sitting on the bottom of the pool which needs to be cleaned out before you dose it. Be sure that this has all been scooped up using a leaf shovel, followed by being manually vacuumed out of the pool using a vacuum head, an appropriate length hose for your pool and a telepole.
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Quick Dip: How To Shock Your Swimming Pool Using Liquid Chlorine
Shocking your pool water is one of the keys to keeping your pool sparkling and ready to swim in. Failing to shock your pool water can lead to algae and bacteria build-up. This creates a swimming pool that is not only uninviting, but hazardous to pool patrons as well. Just because your water is clear, does not mean it is safe to swim in! This is why a high-quality pool testing set from LaMotte or Taylor is an essential part of every pool operators kit!
Shocking a pool with liquid chlorine or a granular pool shock kills or inactivates pathogens and algae. Shocking will also oxidize other unwanted materials inhabiting the pool water. By raising the chlorine level in the pool to the correct level, and holding it there for the prescribed amount of time, this effectively disinfects the water. This article covers shocking your pool with two of the most popular shock products on the market today sodium hypochlorite and calcium hypochlorite .
Preparing to Shock Your Pool
The Basic Method Shocking by Following the Label Instructions
How to Superchlorinate your Pool with Liquid and Granular Chlorine
When Should I Shock My Swimming Pool
Swimming pool shock treatments should be used whenever there is a build-up of algae in your water. Shocking, therefore, commonly plays a part in commissioning your pool after a significant period of closure.
However, shocking can also be an effective cleaning method during periods of high activity. During these periods, you should look to shock treat your pool once every week, while it can also be used sporadically after big events such as a party or rainfall.
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Shocked Your Pool And Its Still Green
Sadly, theres no magic wand to wave to make your pool crystal clear overnight.
If your pool water has turned into a lovely shade of green, chemically shockingyour pool is your best bet to get it back into shape.
To ensure your pool returns to normal, there are three things youll need to get your pool back into shape: the correct chemicals, a filtration system, and of course, plenty of patience.
After completing the entire process outlined below, you should start to see your pool crystal clear, sparkling new and ready for a splash.
If you find your pool still murky green after you do chemically shocking your pool, dont panic.
This can be easily fixed!
Get The Care Your Pool Needs From A Trusted Latham Dealer
In order to enjoy your pool for years to come, proper and attentive maintenance is important. If you have questions about maintaining your pool, contact your local Latham dealer.
While these resources can help guide you, enlisting the help of a pool professional can ensure that one of your largest backyard investments gets the care and protection it deserves.
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When Do I Need To Shock My Pool
On average it is recommended that a pool owner shock their pool at least once a week during peak swimming season. However, it should be noted that the need to shock your pool should really be dictated by how often and how many bathers use your pool in direct correlation to weather conditions such as long periods of sun or rain.
As a general guide, you should shock your pool when:
- Algae begins to grow in your pool
- The free chlorine level of your pool measures zero
- The combined chlorine level rises above 0.5
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How Long Do You Have To Wait To Swim After You Shock A Pool
Before you can swim in the pool, wait for the amount of time recommended on the packageusually at least eight hours for chlorine-based shock treatments. You only have to wait as little as 15 minutes if you use non-chlorinated shock treatments.
To be safe, it’s best to measure the amount of free chlorine in your pool to make sure it is 3 ppm or slightly less before swimming. It is dangerous to swim in a pool with high chlorine concentration. If necessary, you can use chlorine reduction reagents.
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Is It Safe To Swim In A Pool That Is Green
Short answer it depends. Lakes contain a full ecosystem, complete with aquatic life that feeds on bacteria and toxins. This makes swimming in green water in nature safe. Fortunately, assuming there are no allergies to the pollen, it is safe to swim in a pool with that as the cause for green water.
What Are The Triggers To Shock A Pool
For regular maintenance, pools should often be shocked once every one to two weeks but this does depend on the waters clarity and how much use the pool gets.
However, there are other times when its a good idea to shock your pool outside of scheduled maintenance. Here are a few other scenarios where you might find it a good idea to shock your pool:
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A Step By Step Guide For Pool Owners
Regular shocking is something that every pool owner needs to be doing in order to maintain healthy swimming pool water, but shocking the pool isnt always a one-step solution. Sometimes you run into a few problems with your pool after the initial shock for the season, causing confusion as to exactly how much chlorine or any other product you are using to add. For this reason, it is important to know not only how to shock your pool for basic maintenance, but also what to do in cases where you have breakpoint chlorination occurring, or if you need a round of corrective chlorine-demand shocking.
Gather The Proper Safety Gear Products And Tools
Since you are working with concentrated chemicals, you will need to wear protective gloves and glasses to avoid accidental contact with eyes and skin. You should also wear clothes you dont care about, as any contact may either bleach them or burn holes in them. Other than safety gear, you will also need to get a 5 gallon plastic bucket, your pool shock packets , and a stirring stick.
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Why Do You Need To Shock A Pool
Dont you want to swim in a crystal clear pool? The answer will be affirmative undoubtedly. Therefore, to remove contaminants from the pool, its the necessary step to shock a pool. You need to shock a pool to break apart combined chlorines. Combined chlorine is also known as chloramines.
It is harmful to pool water & so, it should be broken. If you shock a pool, additional chlorine will deal with combined chlorine. As a result, the situation of swimming in crystal clear water will be recreated.
How Does Chlorine Shock Work
Chlorine is your pools number one cleaner, working tirelessly to keep algae and other substances out of the water. If chlorine levels are not correctly maintained, various dirt and debris can begin to form in the pool, most commonly resulting in green walls. If your pool gets to this stage, the most effective way of getting it clean is by using a shock treatment.
When a lot of algae develops in the pool, youll need more chlorine than usual to combat the unwelcome visitors. Shock treatments work quickly to dramatically raise the waters chlorine level, allowing it to clean the pool effectively. Once youre back on top of your pools cleanliness, you can enable chlorine levels to return to their normal level.
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Benefits Of Pool Shock
Pool shocking often produces several crucial benefits including:
Numerous contaminants enter pool water, such as microbes like viruses and bacteria, allergens, bird droppings, food and beverage particles, and even fertilizer. Any of these products could cause illness if theyre allowed to accumulate.
Shock products often neutralize these chemicals and prevent pool users from getting sick.
Over time, the chlorine used in pools combines with microbes and particles from contaminants to form byproducts called chloramines. Chloramines are notorious for giving off the heavy, offensive chlorine odor sometimes encountered when one steps poolside.
Shock often contains powerful chemicals like chlorine. These substances are not only strong germ killers but provide an additional sense of cleanliness. A cleaner pool offers a more inviting look to your pools water.
How often should I shock my pool?
Pool pros recommend shocking as necessary. The more often the pool is used, the more often the pool should be shocked. In general, a weekly schedule that alternates the application of chlorine and non-chlorine shock products will usually keep your pools water in good shape.
Sticking to this plan could prove beneficial on two fronts. First, potentially harmful contaminants are safely eliminated and gradually oxidized out of the water. Second, this strategy helps homeowners reduce chlorine use, which leads to lower long term pool expenses.