Understanding What Pool Chemicals do

Understanding What Pool Chemicals do
December 08/2015

Pool Chemicals or Water Treatment Products are essential to keep your pool properly balanced. The most important chemcials are ph balancers, alkalinity balancers, algaecides, sanitizers, clarifiers, metal controllers and pool shock. In order to properly apply these chemicals, you must use testing strips or take a water sample to your local pool professional. Once this is done it will not only give swimmers outstanding water quality, but it will also keep your valuable pool equipment and surfaces safe.

pH Balancers
pH balancers are critical to maintaining the proper pH range of 7.2 to 7.6, which determines the overall health of your pool. If too low, your pool plumbing and surfaces will start to severely corrode, while too high a level will cause scale deposits as well as cloudy water. An unbalanced pH will also cause swimmer eye and skin irritation as well as reduce chemical efficiency. pH balancers will, depending on the product chosen, raise or lower your pool pH in steady increments to get it into 7.2 to 7.6 range.

Alkalinity Balancers
Alkalinity balancers are another critical part of pool chemistry that help keep your pool in the optimal 80-160 ppm range of total alkalinity. If alkalinity is too low, pool plumbing and surfaces will start to corrode, while too high a level will cause scale deposits and cloudy water conditions. Also like unbalanced pH, an unbalanced alkalinity will also cause eye and swimmer irritation and chemical inefficiency. Balancing your alkalinity will not only result in a more comfortable pool for swimmers, but will eliminate the dreaded “pH bounce” that makes proper pool balancing almost impossible. Depending on the product selected, alkalinity balancers will raise or lower alkalinity levels in steady increments to the optimal 80-160 ppm range.

Hardness Balancers
Hardness increasers are another critical part of pool chemistry that help keep your pool in the optimal 200 – 300 ppm range of Calcium Hardness. If the calcium level is too low, the surrounding concrete will be stripped of its’ calcium in order to satisfy the water’s demand. Other effects can include staining of the pool, heater failure, and difficulty maintaining clear water. Calcium Hardness can be increased but not decreased other than by draining and adding fresh water. For this reason it is very important to test your water regularly and make only small adjustments as needed.

Sanitizers are the most important chemical additive you can add to your pool, removing bacteria and other harmful contaminants from pool water. The most common sanitizers are chlorine and bromine, although there are proprietary sanitizers available from several brands. They are available in several forms, including liquid, granular, tablets and sticks to fit your personal application needs.

Pool Shock
Pool Shocks are necessary to sanitize your pool after heavy swimmer loads, after heavy rains, or simply when your pool sanitizer is overwhelmed by the contaminants in your pool. Chlorine-based shocks eliminate any bacteria or other organics from your pool water, while Monopersulfate or Non-Chlorine Shocks give you similar results without disturbing your pools chlorine levels. When used as part of your weekly pool maintenance, your pool will stay clean and healthy throughout the pool season.

Algaecides are the easiest and most effective way to prevent and remove all types of algae growth from your pool, which can ruin water quality and clog pool filters. Algaecides are available in a wide variety of formulas to tackle green, blue-green, mustard and black algae types. The best value in algaecides are usually found in the strongest concentrations.

Clarifiers are another handy pool chemical that quickly eliminates cloudy water conditions in your pool, restoring it to its former beauty. Standard clarifiers attract together microscopic particles into larger ones, allowing your filter to remove them. Flocculent clarifiers also attract microscopic particles into larger ones, but its formula sinks them to the pool bottom for easy vacuum removal. Either type will help improve the efficiency of your filter so as to help speed up the time it takes to clarify your water.

Metal Controllers
Metal Controllers enable pool owners to remove copper, iron, manganese and other metals from their pool water, preventing staining and water discoloration. These chemicals are especially useful in areas with hard water, although metals can get into your pool through other means. Metal preventors stop metals from getting into your pool, while metal removers eliminate metals already present.

Foam Removers
Foam Removers are an easy and affordable way to remove annoying foam buildup on your pools surface caused by heavy swimmer loads. Products such as deodorant, soaps, lotions and other cosmetics from swimmers creates this foam, which foam remover can cut through in just seconds to restore your pool to its former beauty. It is a good quick fix, but should only be used to temporarily mask a problem that must still be fixed once your guests leave.

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