Pool Water Questions
Issues with water questions
- My pool water is cloudy, and I can’t clear it up, how do I clear it up?
- I added algaecide to my pool, but the algae didn't go away. What did I do wrong?
- Help my pool is green! What do I do?
- Why is my pool water cloudy?
- Check to make sure the sanitizer (chlorine) in the pool is in proper range 3-5ppm. If it is not, raise the level by shocking the pool.
- Run your filter 24/7 and only clean your filter when the pressure is high or when the flow from the return is low.
- If this is not working bring a water test into Swim Rite Pools that way, we know if it is a chemical imbalance or other things hindering the sanitizer (chlorine) from working.
Algaecide is a preventive it does not kill algae. The only way to kill algae is to shock the pool. Keeping the chlorine 4ppm or higher will kill the algae.
In addition to properly dosing your water, it is also recommended that the algaecide be added in the morning on a bright sunny day for best results.
- Shock the pool! Shock the pool based on your gallonage, 1 bag of powered shock per 10,000 gallons. Or 1 gallon of liquid chlorine shock per 5,000 gallons. (based on our powered &liquid chlorine shock)
- Check and maintain a chlorine level, after shocking check the next day to make sure you are holding a chlorine level. If you are not holding a chlorine level take in a water test to Swim Rite to make sure it is not a chemical imbalance.
- Add algaecide we recommend using the Swimtrine Plus algaecide it is concentrated so you only use a few ounces based on the gallonage of your pool. (The algaecide will not kill algae it is a preventive).
Cloudy water is the first sign of live algae. To prevent your water from going green, shock the pool. The next step is making sure your filter system is running 24/7, that way as the algae is dying it is getting filtered out of the pool water.
If your water was green and then it goes to a cloudy blue, check your chlorine level to make sure you are still killing any live algae. Then make sure you are running your filter 24/7 that way it is filtering out the dead algae. If you have a sand filter you may want to look into getting a filter aid to assist your filter in cleaning up the dead algae.
Chlorine based questions
- Why do I need to shock my pool?
- My pool has a strong chlorine odor. Is there too much chlorine in my pool?
- When I shock my pool, should I use chlorine or non-chlorine shock?
- Do I need to add a sanitizer regularly?
- I have an outdoor pool and I am told that I need stabilizer, what is stabilizer?
- I am not holding a chlorine level what should I do?
Pool water composition always includes some undesirable elements that contaminate the water and reduce the efficiency of the disinfectant or sanitizer. Material such as hair spray, suntan oil, cosmetics, perspiration, and other organic material react to combine with the chlorine in the water to form “combined chlorine”.
Once “combined chlorine” forms, it acts as a very poor disinfectant, contributing to eye and skin irritations and the forming of unpleasant chlorine odor. Pools with this problem are often inaccurately accused of having too much chlorine.
Routine shock treatment is necessary to destroy combined chlorine compounds and restore the chlorine sanitizer to “free chlorine” efficiency. A pool can be shock treated by adding large doses of chlorine, commonly referred to as superchlorination, or by adding a non-chlorine shock such as GLB OXY-BRITE or Applied Biochemists SHOCKTRINE.
No, you do not have enough “free chlorine” in your pool. Most pools contain both good chlorine and bad chlorine. The good chlorine is called free chlorine and is capable of killing germs. Bad chlorine, on the other hand, is called “combined chlorine” and is a poor germ killer.
Too much combined chlorine in your pool causes the strong chlorine odor. When the combined chlorine level reaches 0.2 ppm or more, it is time to shock your water. Shocking will eliminate the odor.
It depends on if you have chlorine in the water, both treatments accomplish the goal of destroying and removing bather waste and preventing the formation of combined chlorine.
Superchlorination, the addition of large amounts of chlorine, should be used when the free chlorine and combined chlorine are both low.
Non-chlorine shock should be used when you have a high total chlorine and a low free chlorine. The free chlorine and total chlorine can separate. This leads to you shocking the pool but without raising the total chlorine level any higher.
Yes, an E.P.A. registered sanitizer should always be added and maintained at proper levels. Your chlorine level should be 1-4 ppm.
The chlorine in a pool can be broken down by ultraviolet light from the sun. If stabilizer, is not present, the chlorine level will dissipate very rapidly over the course of the day.
It is recommended that you add stabilizer to the pool to prevent this chlorine break down. The stabilizer level should be between 30-50 ppm to properly stabilize the pool. The use of a stabilizer will reduce your overall chlorine consumption and save you money. Most chlorine products contain stabilizer.
- Shock it and check the next day.
- If you are not holding a chlorine level the next day plan on shocking it again.
- Bring in a water test to Swim Rite we can check to see if something is eating your chlorine like Phosphates or Nitrates, and we can show you how to treat it from there.
Water balance questions
- Following a chemical treatment, how long do I wait before I can use my pool?
- What is stabilizer and what do I do if I have too much?
- How often should I check my pool water?
- Why is pool chemistry important?
- What causes eye irritation in pool water?
- Should I use a water clarifier in my pool?
Adding powered chemical to the pool such as, calcium hardness, pH up and down, alkalinity increaser, you should wait about 4 hours before swimming. For liquid chemicals such as liquid chlorine, powered chlorine shock and muratic acid you should wait 8 hours or overnight.
Stabilizer or Cyanuric acid is basically sunscreen for chlorine. Stabilizer helps chlorine stay in the pool. Stabilizers ideal levels are 20-50 ppm. Once you get over 50ppm chlorine starts to become more ineffective. It takes more chlorine to sanitize the pool leading to the chlorine becoming infective at disinfecting the pool. The only way to bring the stabilizer level down is by partially draining the pool.
There are ways to avoid your stabilizer getting to high like: switching to a non-stabilized tablet and testing water at swim rite frequently to make sure it is staying in an ideal range.
You should check your pool water on your own minimum once a week or preferably every other day with either test strips or the test drops. You should have Swim Rite Pools test your water once a month to make sure everything is staying in order. Or if you do not feel comfortable testing and adjusting on your own you can bring a water test into Swim Rite once a week.
Pool chemistry is important to the life span of the pool and the equipment. Improper water balance can lead to the premature death for the pool liner, pump, filter, heater, and the pool itself. So balanced chemistry is especially important to your pool. Take a pool sample into Swim Rite for a water test, its free!
Improper water balance can lead to eye irritation usually involving the imbalance of the pH and alkalinity.
You should use a pool clarifier when you have cloudy water, it makes the small particles in your water increase in sizes that way the filter can filter the particles out.
- I do not want to use chlorine is there any chlorine alternatives?
- Is salt chlorine free?
- Why is filtration important to the quality of swimming pool water?
- What causes the "ring" around my pool's liner.
- What are the benefits of Baquacil (chlorine alternative)?
- How do I switch from chlorine to Baquacil?
- What is the Baquacil System Routine?
Yes, there are other alternatives, there is a completely chlorine free system called Baquacil. The Baquacil Sanitizer they use is an ingredient they use in contact solution. Baquacil is derived from the same basic chemistry found in a several pharmaceutical and cosmetic products. The Baquacil Oxidizer contains 27% hydrogen peroxide. Baquacil eliminates some of the problems associated with chlorine, such as bleaching of hair, fabrics, or vinyl liners. And you will be far less likely to experience skin or eye irritation. For more information on Baquacil and how to switch a chlorine pool to Baquacil, stop into Swim Rite Pools.
No, the salt you put into the pool changes form and becomes chlorine. Salt itself is not a sanitizer, and contrary to popular belief a salt pool is NOT a chlorine free pool. The salt generator uses electrolysis to break down the salt in the water. Then, the resulting chemical reaction produces hypochlorous acid and sodium hypochlorite, aka chlorine, which acts as a sanitizer for the pool.
Filtration is the mechanical system for removing visible matter from the water. The filter medium is designed to remove hair, dirt, skin flakes, metal or calcium precipitates and other visible debris that would otherwise cause the water to be hazy and cloudy.
The accumulation of oils and dirt from bathers is the biggest cause. To get rid of the ring use a surface cleaner we recommend Baquacil surface cleaner.
- It is not as harsh as chlorine. It is softer on the skin.
- It is more stable in the sunlight than chlorine. Baquacil is not affected by sunlight, the change in temperature and pH levels.
- It will not turn your hair green.
- It contains no stabilizer.
- Take out the chlorine or bromine source and do not add anymore chlorine or bromine. If you have an automatic chlorinator let the tablets run out and then continue. DO NOT remove wet chlorine tablets from the chlorinator.
- Bring in a water test to Swim Rite Pools (we will also help you switch from chlorine to Baquacil).
- If the water contains metals add 1 bottle per 10,000 gallons for every 2ppm present of Baquacil Metal Control. Allow the water to circulate for eight hours.
- Test for chlorine and bromine levels, if it reads over 1.0ppm wait until it drops below that by itself. When the chlorine test below 1.0ppm you can continue.
- Add 1 gallon per 10,000 gallons of Baquacil Oxidizer in front of the skimmer with the filter running. The oxidizer will eliminate small amounts of chlorine along with establish an oxidizer reading.
- Immediately after adding the Oxidizer, add 4 pints per 10,000 gallons of Baquacil CDX; directly into the skimmer with the filter running. If you have more than 1 skimmer, equally divide the amount you are supposed to pour.
- Optional: Add 5¼ ounces per 10,000 gallons of Baquacil Algicide. Allow pool to filter continuously for 24-48 hours.
- 24- 48 hours after adding the first Oxidizer, add 4 pints per 10,000 gallons of Baquacil Sanitizer and Algistat directly into the water to get a concentration of 50ppm. Because of the amount of Sanitizer this may make the pool a little hazy. It should clear 24-48 hours later with filtration. Congrats you have a chlorine free pool!
Baquacil Sanitizer and Algistat:
- Check weekly and top-off, as necessary.
- Add directly into the pool.
- Keep sanitizer levels between 40 and 50 ppm not below 30 ppm.
- Add weekly in front of skimmer.
- 1 quart per 10,000 gallons of water.
- Add weekly directly into skimmer with pump running.
- 1 pint per 10,000 gallons of water.
Aboveground Pool Questions
Have questions on how to set up an aboveground pool and what is an aboveground pool? Check out our Aboveground Pool Questions page.
Not finding the right answer? Check under our other pages or give us a call or send us an email and our knowledgeable staff will be able to help.
Pool Equipment Questions
Have questions about your pool equipment and how to backwash? Check out our Pool Equipment Questions page.