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Swimming Pool Maintenance Tip: Testing Your Pool Water

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water-chemistry-testThe best way to make the most of your swimming pool is by testing your pool water diligently and regularly. It is a basic step to guaranteeing that you extend your pool’s lifespan to its maximum.

This may sound like a bummer but testing your pool water is easy. You don’t even need more than 10 minutes each time you do it. There are tests you should do weekly and monthly so let’s get to it!

Testing Your Pool Water Weekly
There are two things to check on a weekly basis. These are your water’s pH and chlorine levels.

pH level is a measure of the acidity and alkalinity of your pool water. The magic number is 7. Anything below that is acidic; above that, water is alkaline. Our eyes has a pH level of 7.2 so for pools, this is the ideal number. For testing purposes, results that range from 7 to 7.6 is good. Anything outside this range should be corrected.

When it comes to testing your pool water for its chlorine level, you want to test for the free available chlorine. This measures the chlorine in your water that can actively sanitize it. A good level will keep your pool clean. If it’s too low, your pool becomes prone to algae and bacterial growth. Test your water and see if it’s within 1.0 to 3.0 ppm. 2.0 ppm is the best; and anything outside the range should be corrected.

Testing Your Pool Water Monthly
There are four main tests that you should do for your pool monthly. These are: total alkalinity, stabilizers, calcium hardness, and total dissolved solids.

In total alkalinity, we are testing for the alkaline substances in your pool water. The bicarbonate alkalinity should be from 80 to 120 ppm. If your pool water falls within this range, your pool’s pH level is stable. If it falls below the ideal range, the make of your pool is compromised. Your plaster walls and metal railing will deteriorate. At the same time, your pool users will experience irritated eyes. You’ll see your water turn green in no time. If it’s above the ideal range, the water will turn cloudy. Your pool’s chlorine will also lose its effectiveness as a disinfectant.

Stabilizers, on the other hand, measures the cyanuric acid in your pool. Cyanuric acid is used to stabilize chlorine, considered an unstable but necessary pool disinfectant. Chlorine is unstable because sunlight and temperature changes can render it ineffective. You want to have a good level of stabilizers in your pool to keep chlorine effective. The ideal range is 40 to 80 ppm.

When testing your pool water for calcium hardness, you are actually testing for several mineral content. This includes calcium, iron, manganese, and magnesium, among others. The range that you should target is between 250 to 350 ppm.

Your pool can’t be too low on calcium hardness. Otherwise, you compromise the make of your pool. If it’s too high, you’ll have scale formation on your pool, as well as irritated pool users.

Finally, testing your pool water for total dissolved solids takes into consideration the amount of dissolved materials that have accumulated in your pool water because of use and maintenance activities. The materials come from a variety of sources, including chemicals, human waste, and debris.

At maximum, it should be at 1,500 ppm. Anything beyond that is water unfit for swimming in.

Need help with testing your pool water, talk to Premier Pools and Spas Las Vegas today!

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