Adjusting Your Swimming Pool pH Level

Adjusting Your Swimming Pool pH Level

by Mark Zalewski

It’s very important that you are adjusting your swimming pool pH level properly. If your pool water contains too much acid or is too alkaline, your water quality will decline. Be sure you know the proper way to monitor and adjust your pH level. If your test results show your levels are outside the acceptable range of 7.0 to 7.6 then follow these tips.

Some pool owners will waste their time and money by adding more acid or alkali to the water then test again if they went too much in one direction then they’ll add some more of the other one. It’s best to use charts that will tell you how much to add. The charts will vary depending on the size of your pool. Once you have your results you use your chart and find out how much you need to add to get your water back in balance. See the following free pool chemical calculator for assistance.

Pool pH Level Chemical Safety

There’s a greater risk when adding the acid to water than the alkali but you should use caution with both. Wear gloves and eye protection and avoid getting it on your clothing. The acid comes in a solid and liquid form. Using the solid form will prevent accidental liquid spills.

pool chemical safety

Adding Acid

To avoid corrosion forming on your pool walls never add the acid directly into the water. It can also damage metal pipes and fittings which can result in a variety of complications down the road. The best way is to first mix it well in a metal bucket as the acid can eat right through a plastic bucket causing a severe injury.

After the bucket is filled ¾ of the way full with water, add the acid slowly so there’s no splash that gets on you. Do this in a well-ventilated area only and avoid smelling or swallowing the fumes when you mix it up. Before you add the acid make sure your pump is working correctly.

Adding Alkali

The process of adding alkali isn’t as dangerous as an acid, but you should still be careful with it. It will generally be sodium carbonate that you are adding to the water. Use the pool charts to determine how much to add based on your test results. You will add this to a bucket of water and mix well before pouring it into the pool.

You will want to allow your water to pump and circulate for at least four hours and then test it again. This should adjust your swimming pool pH correctly if you are using the correct pool chart. For further information on the importance of pH level testing see our previous blog, Why Test Your Swimming Pool pH Level? Take your time to get accurate test results and make your personal safety a priority during this process.