Why is a pool’s water chemistry so important?
First and foremost, you want to sure your pool is safe to swim in. That means keeping the chlorine or bromine level high enough to kill any bacteria in your pool water. You also want to be sure the water is balanced correctly, to protect your equipment and pool surfaces.
Are chlorine and bromine the only sanitizers that you can use in your pool?
Yes. Health Canada only recognizes these two sanitizers as being effective for killing bacteria. There are many other products on the market that help chlorine and bromine do their job, but you must have one of these two sanitizers present at the correct level based on various factors (i.e., pH, stabilizer level, etc).
What are the correct levels for my pool water?
|Total Alkalinity||100-120 ppm|
|Calcium Hardness||200-250 ppm (Concrete)|
|Calcium Hardness||175-225 ppm (Vinyl)|
|Free Chlorine||1-3 ppm|
|Free Bromine||3-5 ppm|
|Stabilizer||Less than 100 ppm|
How often should I test my pool water?
The most important thing you can do with a pool is to take a look at it every day. If something doesn’t look quite right – say the water is a bit dull – act then, don’t leave it! As for testing, the more often the better, but at least a couple of times a week. This can either be done with test strips, or drops. You always want to be you’re your chlorine or bromine level is safe for swimming. And bring a sample to the pool store every so often, just to be sure you’re on the right track.
What does it mean if the chlorine or bromine have a strong odour?
When they are added to your pool, either chlorine or bromine have a slight odour, that could best be described as “fresh”. When the odour is strong, it means the chlorine or bromine have combined with swimmer waste to produce chloramines, or bromamines. To get rid of this, you need to shock your pool.
When do I need to shock my pool?
Swimmer waste is added to your pool every time someone goes swimming. Such things as perspiration, oil from your skin, suntan lotion, cosmetics, etc. all contribute to the organic material in your pool. Enzyme-based products can help greatly in reducing these organic materials, which lessen your chlorine or bromine demand. But your pool also needs to be shocked periodically. There is a formula to calculate when your pool needs to be shocked, but we typically recommend you shock once a week, and that it be done when people are done swimming for at least 12 hours.
How long do I have to wait to use my swimming pool after chemical treatment?
After adding chemicals – particularly muriatic acid, or chlorine / bromine – we recommend you allow your pool to run for at least one hour before swimming. If shocking your pool, leave it running for at least 12 hours, or until your chlorine / bromine level has returned to the recommended range.