Chemicals for swimming pool balance and sanitation include alkalinity, hardness, algae control, chlorine or salt and a few others that will keep your pool sparkling and ready for swimmers.
There are several reasons why it's important that your pool water is balanced:
1. Sanitized and Safe Water
Prevent bacteria and algae from growing
2. Reduce Skin and Eye Irritation
Unbalanced pool water can cause skin to dry out and eyes to burn
3. Protect Your Pool Liner and Pool Equipment
Unbalanced chemicals for swimming pools can lead to pool liner deterioration, an etched pool surface and water that is corrosive to your pool plumbing.
How you mix your chemicals matters to you and to your pool. To maximize their effectiveness follow the manufacturers directions on the product label.
Have your pool pump turned on so that the circulating water will help to distribute your chemicals. Usually it's recommended that dry chemicals be mixed into water so that the predissolved mixture will be evenly distrubted around the pool.
Wear protective clothing, goggles and gloves for maximum protection.
There are three types of pool algae - yellow mustard, green and black. It's not hard to identify - the green tint in your pool or the slimy feel on the vinyl are two clues that algae is growing in your pool.
The best way to fight algae in your pool is through prevention. That's not to say we've never had a green pool and in that case you may need some pool professional help. Keeping your pool free of algae also benefits your pool filter and swimming pool pump by allowing less plant material to enter the pool filtration system blocking it from working effectively and efficiently.
But for those who want to keep ahead of the game here are some tips for controlling algae:
1. Regularly brush your pool walls and steps.
Brushing can help disrupt algae blooms and keep your pool algae free. Algae likes to cling to the pool sides. Using a nylon swimming pool brush (for concrete pools use a steel brush), brush from the top down.
2. Keep your pool water circulating
If you are treating algae in your pool you may want to run your pool pump for 24 hours. Backwash your filter
3. Test Your Pool Water
According to SwimUniversity.com:
"Make sure your pH and alkalinity levels are correct. You want your pH to be 7.4 to 7.6 and the alkalinity to be between 120 to 150 ppm (parts per million).
3. Add Shock
Add shock after brushing your pool so that the shock can do a better job of eliminating the algae. The amount you add depends on the size of your pool and whether you are treating or preventing pool algae.
4. Add Algaecide
Algaecide is added after you put in the shock. To prevent algae add a good algaecide weekly.
InYoPools.com offers a step by step guide of How to Get Rid of Pool Algae.
We buy our algaecide on line in bulk at Amazon so that we always have it on hand to add every week.BioGuard Algae All 60 (1 qt) (3 Pack)
Instant Conditioner stabilizes your pool chlorine and prevents chlorine from dissipating and evaporating due to UV sunlight.
It is a salt not a dry acid. Because it dissolves right away, this pool chemical will go to work right away. You will find that your chlorine will last much longer when your pool water is properly conditioned.
Add one gallon per 10,000 gallons of pool water.
We prefer this liquid conditioner to a granular based stabilizer as it's much easier to dissolve, less monitoring and won't damage or harm your pool equipment.Natural Chemistry 7401 1 Gallon Liquid Swimming Pool Stabilizer and Conditioner
Keeping your calcium hardness at proper levels helps to protect your pool plumbing, pool equipment and your pool surface. Without it your pool water can become corrosive and can etch the side of the pool and/or corrode your pool plumbing.
It's a good practice to check the calcium hardness at least every month. Adding 1-1/4 pounds of hardness plus to 10,000 gallons of water will raise the calcium hardness by 10 ppm. **The minimum level of Calcium Hardness is 150 ppm. Dosage: 1.25 lbs per 10,000 gallons
Carefully premix this product with ample water in a pail before adding to the pool - wear protective goggles and gloves.
You can purchase 4#, 8# or 12# containers with the larger the size the bigger the savings.Leslies 14420 Hardness Plus for Calcium Hardness, 4 lbs.
Test the pH and total alkinility of your pool with a test kit. If both are low, your water should first be tested for copper and iron. You don't want to raise alkalinity or Ph when metals are present as it may cause staining.
Low alkalinity can cause corrosion of your pool equipment, etches plaster pools, and causes eye and skin irritation. Alkalinity also helps to stabilize pH levels. The lower the pH, the higher the acid level.
"When the alkalinity is within range, it will help prevent the pH from bouncing in and out of range. Alkalinity needs to be within 80-120 ppm. Low alkalinity can cause skin and eye irritation, green water, etched or stained pool walls and floor. High alkalinity can cause cloudy water and causes the chlorine to lose efficiency as a sanitizer."
Always add alkalinity to the water with the pump on and water circulating.
Precautions: avoid contact with eyes and skin. Wear rubber gloves and safety glasses. Do not inhale. Do not mix with other chemicals.
We use Leslie's Pool Supplies to buy most of our pool chemicals as it's local and the staff are knowledgeable and helpful. The ideal range is 80-120 ppm.
You can bring a sample of your pool water to your local pool store for testing or you can do it yourself with pool test strips.
These popular pool test strips analyze your pool water for free chlorine, bromine, alkalinity and pH. Just dip the strip into at least 6" of water for 2 seconds for an instant read.
Alkalinity and pH measure the amount of acidity in the pool and spa water. Maintaining a proper balance of Alkalinity and pH will help keep the water from developing scale or cause corrosion.
Chlorine and Bromine are sanitizers that help keep the pool and spa water free from germs and algae build up. Testing for these will indicate the active amount of these sanitizers in the water.Poolmaster Smart Test 4-Way Pool and Spa Test Strips - 50ct
"Rainwater is known to have acidic properties that can negatively affect your pool water chemistry balance. This can affect anything from the pH balance to alkalinity levels and more. The pH of rain across the US, which is all acid rain, is due to industrial gasses (i.e. NOx, SOx) which make nitric and sulfuric acid.
Aside from rainwater falling directly into your pool being a bad thing, something even worse can happen. When you have rainwater coming off your landscape or deck, you now have an added source of water to deal with. When rainwater and ‘run off’ enter the pool, they can change your water’s pH, calcium hardness, total dissolved solids (TDS), alkalinity and other chemical levels as well as bring contaminants (e.g. debris, dirt) into the pool. Because rainwater is generally acidic (see map showing pH of rainwater across U.S), then your pool water can become corrosive and cause damage to the plaster and metal parts of your pool."
Keep your pool sparkling and balanced with chemicals for your swimming pool that will protect your liner and equipment for years of fun.