You have decided to take on pool chemical maintenance all on your own. How do you choose the right tools? Pool cleaning chemicals are extremely hazardous, so for your safety it is vital that you research the right chemicals and know how to properly handle them.
These are the pool cleaning chemicals that you use to keep water sanitized and disinfected. It is important to know that there should be a constant level of chlorine or bromine in the water at all times. There are several different options available to you in order to fulfill that need. Below is a list of some common sanitizers that are regularly used in swimming pool maintenance.
Trichlor: 3″ tabs, or 1″ sticks. With cyanuric acid. Add them to a chlorine floater or an installed chlorinator.
Dichlor: granular. With cyanuric acid. Powdered form acts quickly to chlorinate pools, fountains or spas.
Bromine: 1″ tabs. Great for spas; works better in hot water, and can be regenerated by shocking. More pH stable as well.
Cyanuric Acid: Liquid or dry chlorine stabilizer. Protects chlorine from damage by UV rays. Small amounts are added to dichlor and trichlor (more if the pool was drained) to maintain 30-50 ppm. Drain some water and refill if cyanuric acid levels get much higher than 50 ppm.
Oxidizers are used in conjunction with other pool cleaning chemicals. Oxidizers are known as the secondary sanitizers. They should be used every one to two weeks to kill algae and other harmful bacteria. For example, chlorine or non-chlorine shocks are in a powdered form. This means all you have to do is just open the bag and pour it into the pool.
Calcium Hypochlorite: Cal hypo pool shock is used to quickly sanitize pool water, boost chlorine levels and kill algae. Works best with a low pH level of around 7.2.
Chlorine Free Shock: Granular potassium monopersulfate which is non-chlorine. A fast-acting oxygen based sanitizer that burns clean with no residue. As a plus, you can swim right after treatment!
Lithium Shock: Lithium hypochlorite. This one is great for pools with liners because it won’t bleach the liner, and also dissolves right away so is safe to swim right after treatment.
Balancing your swimming pool water is one of the most important steps in maintaining your pool. It is relatively simple, and aids in understanding your pool water health. In order to keep your water in balance, you should test the pool several times per week for chlorine and pH levels. You will need to test total alkalinity, and test calcium hardness and cyanuric acid levels. Once you do this you will have a better idea of what your pool needs and you can add pool cleaning chemicals as needed.