Similar to a vehicle, regular cleaning, upkeep, care and maintenance is a vital part to owning a swimming pool. Sometimes it’s difficult to take time away from swimming, however, by following simple steps you’ll be enjoying your pool again in no time. Read on to determine how and when it’s best to use your pool after you’ve treated the water.
How Soon After Treating My Pool Can I Use It?
Caring for your swimming pool requires the addition of various chemicals periodically to keep the water clean and free of bacteria and other organisms. This includes substances that:
_ Balance alkalinity
_ Increase pH level
_ Decrease pH level
_ Balance calcium
_ Stabilize the water
_ Clarify the water
While these chemicals are not, of course, toxic at the appropriate levels, it is still a good idea to wait for a period of time after they are added before getting back into the pool. For those listed above, you should wait until the chemicals are dispersed and dissolved. This can happen in as little as 15-20 minutes, but waiting an hour will ensure that the water is safe.
Ideally you should treat your pool when it is not in use. If that’s not possible, finding a natural break in the action (lunchtime, for example), can prevent the temptation to get back into the pool before the chemicals have been diluted.
A Different Standard for Super-chlorination
Super-chlorinating or “shocking” your pool water is a process in which large amounts of chlorine are added to the water to give the existing chlorine load a boost. Chlorine can bind with ammonia (from sweat, saliva, windblown lawn fertilizer, etc.) to form chloramines, which are ineffective at killing bacteria, necessitating this type of treatment.
Shocking is best done in the evening to prevent extra chlorine from evaporating in the sun. At that point, swimmers should not be allowed into the pool until the next day — and only then if the pool’s chlorine has returned to the appropriate level.
Adult Supervision Recommended
One of the challenges in keeping children and teenagers out of the pool for the appropriate period is that once the chemicals have been added, they can’t be seen — even if they are not yet fully dissolved — so they appear to be “gone.” For that reason, it is best if an adult remains in the area and gives the green light when enough time has elapsed.
When your water chemistry is balanced and your swimming pool properly maintained it means more hours of enjoyment for the whole family. If you’re ever unsure about the status of your water, you can always stop by your local independent Latham Independent Builder and have it tested. Happy swimming!
Originally posted 10/2017. Updated for relevance.
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