Pool cleaning chemicals can be a bit complicated for those new to keeping a pool clean.
Between all of the different mixtures on offer, it can be difficult to know what to use.
Chemistry isn’t rocket science, but you do need to know what you’re doing. Keeping your pools chemical balance just right isn’t an easy task. To be successful, you need to understand the chemicals that are at work.
If you want to keep a pool clean on your own, you’re going to need to use quite a few different chemicals.
For any problem with your pool, there is a chemical to treat the water and fix the problem.
However, for every fixed problem there is typically another chemical thrown out of balance because of the new one added! This can lead some pool owners to continually add chemicals to their pool, chasing a perfect state.
While keeping a chemical balance just right is important for keeping pool maintenance costs low, you can overdo it.
If you’re properly prepared and know what pool cleaning chemicals you actually need to use, you should be able to cut down the amount that you need.
How Many Pool Cleaning Chemicals Do You Need?
While you do need quite a few chemicals for normal cleaning, a lot of pool substances are going to be for specific problems. Pool cleaning chemicals can be divided into a couple of categories.
The first is sanitizer chemicals. These are the chemicals that keep your pool water clean.
No one wants to swim around a dirty pool, these chemicals help to ensure that you never have to. The difficulty in using these chemicals is keeping them at the right level.
These chemicals need to be a constant presence in your pool, rather than an occasional addition. These are what give your water a clean and clear look.
The other main category is additional chemicals. These are the chemicals that you add to the pool to deal with specific problems or clean a particular thing. Unlike sanitizers, these aren’t always part of the composition of your pool.
You add these chemicals to your pool to deal with chemical spikes, algae, or shock treatment sanitizers. You also add these to deal with problems with your pol’s pH level.
Even if you’re using all the right pool cleaning chemicals, you’ll occasionally have to add something extra.
Which Chlorine Pool Cleaning Chemicals To Use
Chlorine is one of the most important pool cleaning chemicals. It is necessary for keeping your pool clean and sanitized.
It is the most widely used chemical to keep a pool cleaning and for good reason. When used correctly it should be easy to control and keep your pool healthy without it harming those swimming.
This is the most basic pool cleaning chemical you will need to use. You should aim to maintain a chlorine level of between 1 part per million and 3 parts.
While this doesn’t sound like a lot, going under or over this amount can make your water unsuitable for swimming.
If you want to keep your pool in this perfectly swimmable balance for the whole summer, you’ve got to maintain this level. You do this by using different chlorine-based treatments for your pool.
If you end up with too much chlorine, you have a few options. The first is to let the chlorine naturally disparate until it returns to the normal level.
The other is to use another treatment to even the levels back out. You need to add Thiosulfate to your pool to lower the chlorine content chemically.
What Other Pool Cleaning Chemicals Should You Use?
While chlorine is really important, it isn’t the beginning and end of pool cleaning chemicals. There are quite a few other treatments you will have to use regularly.
After performing a pH reading, you should be aware of the problems with your pool’s balance. You then need to add something to your pool to deal with this.
pH Increaser and Reducer
These chemicals work well to reduce or raise your pH level without affecting your other pool cleaning chemicals. pH Increaser needs to be added when the level falls below 7.2 ppm (parts per million).
The pH reducer needs to be added to your pool when the pH level goes above 7.6 ppm. This chemical will lower the alkalinity of your pool.
The exact amount you use of each of these chemicals is going to vary. It is best to consult the specific chemical you’re using since different brands have different potency.
You can also use a straight forward alkalinity increaser to deal with a low alkalinity level. This needs to be done in balance with pH reducers and increases though.
These pool cleaning chemicals won’t be used every single week, but they are necessary fairly often.
Other Pool Cleaning Chemicals
If playing around balancing pH levels and chlorine levels wasn’t quite enough chemical fun for you, there is plenty more to manage.
While these chemicals should deal with the most common pool problems, other chemicals are going to be necessary too.
Pool Algae and Stain Cleaning Chemicals
Algaecides are chemicals that deal with algae in your pool. These work by killing off algae, which can save you a lot of hassle in repairing your pool.
Shock treatment for algae needs to be administered regularly to a pool. This prevents it from even forming.
Algaecide should be a part of your regular cleaning routine. However, if you develop an algae problem then you will need to use a harsher treatment.
Phosphate removers are also a useful tool in fighting Algea. They remove phosphate from your water. This is the substance that algae feeds on. Without it in your water, it will struggle to grow.
Stain removers and tile cleaning chemicals are also going to be used when cleaning your pool. These chemicals are pretty self-explanatory, you use then when physically cleaning the surroundings of your pool.
Like any other surface cleaning chemical, it is best to follow the manufacture’s instructions. However, you should be sure to test your pools chemicals after use.
Pool Filter Cleaning Chemicals
Clarifiers are chemicals that bind together junk in your pool to help with cleaning. Administering it can help to bind together substances that may become trapped in a pool filter.
Once they are bound together, you should be able to vacuum them from the base of your pool relatively easily. These chemicals aren’t used constantly, but they can increase the lifespan of your filter.
Filter cleaners are chemicals that you add and cycle around your filter. These take care of substances that may have become clogged in there.
Administering filter cleaners can help you get rid of oil or metals that may have become clogged.
Metal magnets work similarly to clarifiers. However, these are specifically formulated to work with metals that may end up in your pool.
It binds them together, making them easier to remove. This will help keep your pool filter in good health.
Start-Up and Close Down
Starting a pool up and closing it down are two of the biggest times for pool maintenance. You can simplify your work with chemicals by using start-up and close down kits.
While many people opt to have a professional to do this, you can do it yourself. While these chemical packs make things easier, they aren’t exact.
Be sure to keep an eye on your chemical levels and pH after using one of these. While they are convenient, they lack the focused approach that testing your own chemical levels brings.
Keeping a pool clean involves quite a lot of chemicals. If you’re inexperienced then this can be a bit dangerous. You should make sure that you’re taking safety precautions when using them.
A lot of this comes down to common sense about using chemicals. However, these are some specific measures you should take when using pool cleaning chemicals.
Safety Tips for Pool Cleaning Chemicals
- Read the Instructions – No matter how much experience you have with pool cleaning chemicals, always consult the instructions. This particular brand may have a different formula. You can save yourself a lot of guesswork by doing your research.
- Don’t Leave Chemicals Unattended with Children or Pets – When using chemicals in a pool, don’t leave them unattended with those who could end up injuring themselves.
- Don’t Mix Concentrated Chemicals – Chemicals that need diluting before use should be diluted before they’re mixed with anything. You can’t be sure of the reaction in a concentrated form.
- Wash Hands – Wash your hands after administering chemicals, even if you don’t think there was any contact.
- Clean Up Spills Quickly – Clean up spills as quickly as possible. Make sure to wash the area with water after cleaning to ensure it is entirely clean.
There are a lot of pool cleaning chemicals that you need to use in your cleaning routine. This can become a little confusing.
It is also quite a lot of substances to have on hand. To avoid accidents or all of this hassle, many people use a pool cleaning service.
These cleaning services are trained professionals who know exactly how to handle all of these different chemicals. While you can do it yourself, it does require quite a bit of chemical manipulation.