Water Chemistry - Bromine
Water Testing – there are 5 main aspects to water testing
- Chlorine – chlorine is the sanitizer in the pool or basically what kills off the bad stuff.
Chlorine is typically bought in three styles
Tablets – normally 3” round these are slow dissolving and have a low ph level, also they contain stabilizer, so be careful to control stabilizer levels and not let them get over 100 PPM.
Liquid — normally bought in 1 gallon or 2.5 gallon refill jugs, liquid is fast acting and have a high ph level.
Granular — normally sold in a 1 pound bag called shock it is fast acting, has low pH
- pH – determines whether the water is acidic or alkaline based. High ph will cause scaling on the pools surface and minimizes chlorine effects. Low ph causes corrosion of metals in the pool. Normal ph range is 7.2-7.8. 7.0 being neutral and normally our eyes are about 7.5 so we try to keep the water around 7.5 to keep our eyes from burning.
- Alkalinity – this is the controlling factor to keep the ph from changing. Ph and alkalinity work hand in hand raising or lowering one will affect the other but not equally. Typically when checking the water we will have a high ph and add acid to lower. Over time it also lowers alkalinity. If you check ph and it is low always check alkalinity and it will normally also be low. Fix the alkalinity and you fix the ph. To raise add Sodium Bicarbonate.
- Calcium Hardness – proper hardness levels will keep the pools finish healthy and balanced. 250-350 ppm levels are ideal but levels up to 500 can be ok if water is properly adjusted, see a pool professional. Low levels in pool water can create situations where the water gets aggressive and wants to remove calcium from the pools finish or from the grout around the tile. High levels over time can create calcium build up(scale) on tiles and the pools surface. Metal such as copper and iron can easily stain calcium build ups requiring a stain removal treatment.
- Cyanuric Acid also known as Stabilizer -- 60-90 ppm this is added to our pools water to protect it from UV rays which use up available chlorine, but too much stabilizer and it will lock up chlorine keeping it from sanitizing the pools water.
Chemical levels check weekly. Check at home pool store
Chlorine---3.0 to 5.0 ppm, weekly calcium 250-350 check every 2 months
PH ---7.2 – 7.8 Muriatic acid to lower
Alkalinity--- 80-140 ppm, Acid to lower, sodium bicarbonate to raise
Calcium Hardness levels--- 250-350 ppm levels are ideal, add calcium chloride to raise, mix with water to dilute before adding to pool
Cyanuric Acid also known as Stabilizer---60-90 ppm add UV stabilizer to pool or skimmer.