Swimming pools are among the best fun places to cool off, but the water is very acidic when the pool’s pH level is low. Pools with a pH below 7 can present long-term acid problems, like grinding and cement mortar used in the construction of swimming pools, corrosion of pipe connections and other metal equipment, and rapid damage to the seal ring and pump seals. Acid pools also lose their chlorine content faster and increase operating costs. This article will teach you how to raise the pH and keep it in the standard range to keep your facility safe.
PH is the measurement of hydrogen ions in liquids. As pool water, pH is measured on a scale from zero to fourteen, with one end (zero) representing an acid solution and the other (fourteen) representing the basic solution.
An utterly neutral solution, like pure water, falls in the equilibrium center at pH seven. The pool water is mixed with chemicals, especially chlorine, to kill bacteria and maintain a hygienic swimming state. Because the pool water contains chemicals, it is not entirely neutral. The best way to keep water safe is to ensure it has a pH of 7.4.
Why is the pH balance in your pool important?
The pool water gets chemically treated to sterilize and oxygenate. Proper levels are essential to maintain hygienic swimming conditions and, overall, the life of the facility. Although many other chemicals are in the market for a similar purpose, the most common chemical in swimming pools is chlorine.
The two ways in which Chlorine works
Disinfection of water by killing bacteria and algae that cause waterborne diseases. Bacteria in the pool can cause diarrhea to swimmers, ear infections, and skin infections. Chlorine is oxygenated and helps neutralize dirt and debris that enter swimmers’ water and the surrounding area.
Maintaining the proper pH is essential, as it can affect chlorine’s effectiveness and eventually lead to unhygienic swimming conditions. Besides, it is also vital for the swimmer’s safety; the ideal pH for a pool matches the mucous membranes and the human eye pH.
Unbalanced pH can cause itching and irritation of the eyes and skin. Therefore, a pH balance is essential for the health, safety, and comfort of a swimmer. Besides, it’s also necessary for the longevity of the facility. Highly acidic water will corrode and lead to the formation of pumps, stairs, and trampolines. Lastly, an imbalance in the levels will also decrease the liner and will require frequent replacement.
What causes low pH levels?
Before we learn how to maintain correct pH levels in pools, it’s right, we know first the leading cause of the problem. Low pH levels cause many problems including, premature mortar erosion as well as eroding the pool facility. Low pH makes the pool floor brittle and cracking. It also causes discomfort to swimmers since they lead to the development of body sensations like, for instance, burning eyes and itchy skin.
In most cases, low pH levels Yare caused by natural factors, including storms, heavy rains, abuse, and chemicals’ improper use. Rainwater has a pH of 5 – 5.5; it is, therefore, acidic. Large amounts of rain can make the pool water’s pH more acidic; the pH level can drop after a big party.
Solved body fluids can reduce pH levels, so if you have had many swimmers in a pool lately, the facility’s excessive use can be the cause. All market additives that try to control the pH level can cause more harm than good; it’s even recommended you create a water solution to treat your pool’s imbalance pH.
Reading the pH of your swimming pool.[youtube_advanced url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7pATjtsNaLo” width=”600″ height=”400″ responsive=”yes” controls=”yes” autohide=”alt” autoplay=”no” mute=”no” loop=”no” rel=”yes” fs=”yes” modestbranding=”no” theme=”dark” playsinline=”no”]
The pHin provides an accurate recommendation.
It is tough to read the chemistry of a swimming pool correctly, and deciding what to do with this information is not a walk in the park. Therefore, it is good to rely on pHin readings. The smart water meter will test your water 144x a day to give the most accurate reading based on the results.
You can also add every chemical to your pool to restore its balance. The reference graph provides more accurate numbers for the soda ash content to adjust the pH accurately through the pain readings, but a general rule is to change.
How to increase the pH level in your pool
You might have noticed something in your pool water, or it’s time to test it. You do the test, and the pH is low; you come back to enquire about it, and again it’s low. What can you do to increase the pH level and balance it? The following are things you need to do to restore the safety of your pool water;
- Check all your reagents
- Add soda ash
- Add baking and Check for its alkalinity
- Add water
Check the reagents
You can try to solve problems and increase the pH level of your facility. Before you have trouble adding more products and testing, recheck your reagents. Replace test strips once in a year. If they are out of date, purchase a new test set and try again.
Adding soda ash (limestone)
Soda ash is an alkaline material that dissolves well and leaves little trace. Adding alkaline materials significantly increases the pH level of the water and reduces acidity. When the material is added to the water to balance the pH, it is easy to exaggerate it and change from a low pH problem to a high pH problem. Below are steps to take;
The first step – Calculate the required soda you should use. Do not exceed two pounds per 10,000 liters of water.
Step Two – Check that the pump is running to circulate the water.
Third Step – Spread the soda ash evenly over the water surface.
Step Four – Allow the pool circulate for at least an hour before trying again.
Check all alkalinity and make appropriate adjustments.
Total alkalinity is the sum of all basic water materials. Low overall alkalinity can cause significant and accidental fluctuations in pH levels. If you still have low pH reading problems after adding the right amount of soda ash, check its total alkalinity.
Baking soda (Sodium bicarbonate) is similar to sodium carbonate. They help to influence alkalinity in swimming pools to either raise or lower the pH. Add 1.4 pounds of sodium per 10,000 gallons of water and allow the pool to circulate before trying again. Use the Total Alkalinity Calculator to find exact numbers.
Add water to increase the pH.
When the alkaline level is ineffective, adding water should be an option to consider. The process takes more than an hour, sometimes even a day, but it works. Aeration can be done by activating the features, directing the jets to the water surface, or adding an aeration tube over the aids.
Test the water again to check the pH
Wait about an hour and test the pH and alkalinity again. The work gets completed once everything balances to the set levels. But if it still shuts down, you’ll need to repeat it, adding the amount of soda required to keep it within the normal range.
The water is slightly cloudy. But it should be clear in a few hours. If you still have trouble balancing your pH, you may have other problems with your pH balance. Try everything to determine where the problem lies. Have the right calcium hardness and levels of chlorine if necessary, and test the pH again. Also, ensure your facility is as clean as possible, as leaves and debris can imbalance the pool.
Also, check that the pump and filter are working.
If pH is the golden heart to a healthy pool, then pool pump can be referred to as the facility’s brain. However, if you discover that your pool’s pH level has remained cons low, you may need to check the swimming pool pump and filter despite your best efforts to increase it.
Your pool is flat; therefore, it is suitable for swimming without a well-operating functioning filter and pump. It should be checked for problems, as it is essential to ensure the healthy circulation of water and chemicals through the pool.
Raising the pH level of the pool is as easy as adding more alkaline material. Soda ash and sodium bicarbonate are two common alkaline products that can increase the swimming pool pH level. The ideal pH level for a pool is between 7.4 – 7.6; maintain them to have a safe facility for your family and friends.
The best way to save time and energy to keep your pool balanced and safe is through daily maintenance. Every day you need to remove leaves and debris. Test all the chemical levels and ensure everything is balanced weekly.
Sometimes your pool level will become unbalanced, even if you try hard to maintain it. However, regular maintenance will keep optimal levels to avoid spending all your time fixing avoidable problems. Maintain your swimming pool to serve you and your family for an extended period.