above ground pool



Chemicals For Your Pool Water

Water is not complex. Over the winter, outdoor swimming pool water becomes contaminated because of environmental factors where most pool owners will turn to chemicals to maintain their pool water. These must be corrected in order to restore your water to its natural state. Water that appears clean and clear is naturally more appealing to swim in. The fewer chemicals are the better. The more natural the better. And safer for the whole family. That’s why I recommend a simplistic and proven combination of liquid chlorine and CLEAN & CLEAR from C*Pool and Spa. Not only is it the cheapest (by far), but it is the safest way to open pools. Yes, you could use a wheelbarrow full of chemicals, but they would not produce a better result and would cost a lot more.

If CLEAN & CLEAR by C-Pool & Spa is unavailable in your region, I recommend the following chemicals and process when opening an outdoor pool.

  • Water clarifier contains a solution of positively charged particles that interact with the negatively charged particles present in the pool causing cloudy water. They clump together and are filtered out.
  • Liquid flocculants are ideal for severely cloudy water. They coagulate the cloudy water particles into masses that settle quickly to the pool floor. Alum is used as a mineral floc and works great as long as the pH doesn’t wander.
  • Chlorine is the most widely used sanitizer and algae control chemical in use today. Free chlorine is the objective to maximize the sanitation activity of the water. It is critical to note that the pH of the water is the vital determinant of the effectiveness of the HOCL (hypochlorous acid). Keep the pH under 7.5 to maximize sanitation effectiveness.
  • Algaecide is necessary to kill green, yellow, and black algae. It is necessary to add at the opening to help the chlorine clear the water.

The target levels of chemicals as determined by testing:

pH – 7.0 to 7.7

Total Alkalinity – 80 – 120 ppm

Calcium (hardness) – 100 – 400 ppm

Chlorine – 1 – 4 ppm

To increase:

pH – add (caustic) soda

Alkalinity – add sodium bicarbonate 

Calcium – hardness add calcium chloride

To decrease:

pH – add muriatic acid

Alkalinity – add liquid or dry acid

Calcium hardness – add Flocculant keep pH and alkalinity in the proper range

Chlorine, time and sunlight will deplete CL levels

How much does it cost to open a swimming pool?

Above ground, pools should cost no more than $40 if it is DIY.

 Inground pools should cost between $60 to $70 if it is DIY. If professionals are involved the cost will clearly escalate. Also, if CLEAN & CLEAR is used at the beginning of the season, that is enough to last the entire year. It just needs to be topped off periodically. So it is a bit misleading. The initial cost is really the cost of the year. That cost is $50 for above ground pools and $100 for in-ground pools. But that replaces all the chemicals, except some chlorine, for the entire year.

What month should I open my pool?

I recommend opening pools no later than the end of May. Otherwise, the algae will have set in and will be difficult to control over the summer. Also, if the average daytime temperature is 70 degrees F, it is time to open the pool.

What chemicals do I need to open my pool for the first time?

 If the pool is new, and the water fresh, use only a minimum of chlorine and condition the water with CLEAN & CLEAR. It will last all season and you will not have to worry about water balance or algae because it automatically prevents algae growth. Use just enough chlorine to sanitize the water.

Freshwater from a municipality is already carefully balanced and potable (drinkable). There is no need to disrupt this balance by adding chemicals other than chlorine and CLEAN & CLEAR as a (pre) stabilized mineral treatment. These additives merely continue the sanitation and balance levels already existing. 

How long after filling a pool Can you swim?

Immediately. But it will be COLD. Freshwater from a municipality is already carefully balanced and potable (drinkable).