Whatever you own an in-ground pool, or above ground pool, knowing how to maintain the water quality in swimming pool is very important. This job will is a key to keep your pool always clean, healthy, clear and sparkling.
However, this takes certainly time, effort and money. Let’s dig deeper into this maintaining process to know how each chemical used is important to keep balanced water and how often should the test for each of it should be done.
Understanding Water Chemistry in Swimming Pools
Before water in pool can be swimmable, it needs to be treated with some types of chemicals. These substances will prevent water from becoming green, and kill the bacteria in the water. So, it is healthy, and clean for swimmers to swim in.
The chemicals are usually used as following:
Chlorine – if there is no presentation of chlorine in the water, algae will grow quickly and leave the water green. Then, it is a good condition for bacteria to live in. That being said, Chlorine helps the water bacteria-free, healthy and clean. But, when it comes to using chlorine to treat water in pool, there are several types of chlorine. Each affects pH and total alkalinity differently.
pH – pH level will determine how effective chlorine in the water. Though low pH helps chlorine work better, too low level of pH will cause damage to pool liners and corrosion of metal. In addition, it reduces the total alkalinity in the pool. If the pH level is too high, it will cause metal stains, cloudy water. It also reduces the efficiency of chlorine in the water.
What else’s? Swimmers can experience skin and eye irritation if swimming in the pool. With that being said, managing proper level of pH in water becomes important. But which level of pH is ideal for pool? The pH level range is highly recommended between 7.4-7.6.
Total alkalinity – total alkalinity is measured the concentration of all alkaline substances dissolved in the water. The measurement is its concentration in parts-per-million (ppm). As the recommendation for ideal total alkalinity range in the water, it should be between 80-120ppm, depending on the type of chlorine you use.
Assessing Water Quality
Assessing your pool’s water quality will prevent algae growth, bacteria and allow it to be always swimmable. But how often we should check and what really needs to be checked in the pool?
About chlorine – Chlorine is commonly used for water treatment that helps disinfect water. To make it effective in its sanitizing task, Chlorine should be checked 2 – 3 a week.
About pH – Checking pH in the water is as important as checking chlorine. This should also be done 2 – 3 times a week as you do with chlorine.
About total alkalinity – proper level total alkalinity will allow the pH levels to stay stable, which means you also check it regularly to ensure everything is kept alright. And, total alkalinity should be checked at least once a week.
Calcium hardness – calcium hardness doesn’t tend to change easily over short periods of time. But, it also needs to check once a month to ensure the balanced water.
Skimming and Vacuuming
Along with sanitary problems, organic matter is another problem that a pool owner has to deal with. It means when your pool is kept open, there will be floating leaves, twigs and debris, dust particles scattered across the pool. These things will soon sink down to the bottom of the pool, then accumulate and start to decompose, which causes odor, cloudy and unsanitary water. This lead to necessity of skimming the pool before all sort of these things can sink down.
As a less expensive method, you can use manual tools to skim like skim net or leaf rake. The skim net comes with a flat mesh net attached to the tele pole. Meanwhile, the leaf rake is also designed with a mesh net, but is much deeper, so you can easily scoop the debris on the bottom of the pool. If you don’t have time to skim the pool by yourself, get an assistant done for you is also great to think of. Or, if you are not going to use your pool daily, just cover it.