Is High pH in Pool Safe To Swim?

Is High pH in Pool Safe To Swim? Things to Know About Total Alkalinity

         

If your swimming pool water is murky or your facility’s filter seems to be clogged with calcium deposits, then you might be experiencing a high level of alkalinity. The alkalinity of a pool is measured at Total Alkalinity (TA) and is the amount of alkaline in the water.  

Today, I will teach you about TA, how it leads to high pH in water, and how to reduce it.

Is High pH in Pool Safe To Swim?

What Are the Effects of High Alkalinity?

As noted, TA measures the level of alkaline minerals present in the swimming pool. When these minerals are unbalanced, the water tries to adjust by depositing the excess minerals or getting minerals from other objects. 

The two conditions lead to problems in your swimming pool and make it hard to control the pH of the facility. TA should be between 100-150 ppm when your pool is in top condition.

A high TA of about 200 ppm or more will lead to the following things:

  • It can make your pool to appear cloudy and lead to scale deposits to settle on the walls of your pool, plumbing, and other equipment.
  • You will waste a lot of time when removing the scales and it will be expensive since you need chemicals to do that. 
  • High TA also results in high pH, eventually leading to a lock situation – it becomes harder to adjust the pH.

What Cause High Alkalinity?

One thing that can make the TA go high is if you add excess baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to your pool when trying to boast it. Yes, low alkalinity is also a problem as you will see later in this article.

Thus, to prevent that from happening, you need to add small amounts of chemical to your pool when adjusting the TA levels. After that, test the water every day until you get the desired result.

Your water source can also make the TA go high. All water companies should disclose their water testing outcomes to the users – you can call your water supplier to know how much chemical you can add.

What Are the Effects of Low Alkalinity?

The alkalinity of less than 100ppm makes it hard to increase the pH of the water and will make the pool acid. That water can corrode your pool and other equipment. 

Besides, if the alkalinity is low, the water will start to draw minerals from your pool liner, leading to stretch and wrinkle. That means you will need to replace the damaged liner, costing you money.

Can You Swim in Pool with High Alkalinity?

High alkalinity is safe for the swimmer. However, it can lead to some conditions that can make your pool unsafe, including:

  • Unstable pH levels 
  • Cloudy water
  • Decreased chlorine effectiveness

Therefore, use caution when swimming in such a facility. It is better to keep the water balanced than swimming in such a pool.

Final Words

High Total Alkalinity leads to an increase in the pH level of your swimming pool. There are methods you can use to reduce the TA level, such as adding muriatic acid or dry acid. 
Source: Pool cleaner

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how much borax to raise ph

Using Borax to Raise pH: How Much Borax to Raise pH

         

I want to raise my pool pH using borax. How do I go about that? How much borax will I need to increase the pH?

Here is an article that will help you to get a rough idea of what you should do and the amount you will need. 

how much borax to raise ph

Do I Need Borax in my Swimming Pool?

Note that the more chemicals you add to your facility, the more difficult it becomes to maintain. Thus, you should use them for specific purposes.

In our case, you will need borax to fight unstable PH that shifts up and down for one reason or the other. You can also use borax if you want to raise the pH without affecting the total alkalinity (TA) levels.

How Much Borax Should I Use?

Using borax in your pool is a cost-effective way to raise the pH level. However, you shouldn’t just go adding this product without knowing how much you should add.

You first need to figure out the precise amount you will require and whether you will need to use other products to reduce acidity levels. The amount to use can easily be found by calculating the amount of necessary ph and the pools TA. 

You also need to determine the size of your swimming pool. Once you get the two figures, use the online water-chemistry calculators to computer the amount of borax you will need.   

With that said, borax is mainly used in a concentration of 30 to 50 ppm. But before you add it, you will need to reduce the pH if it is higher than 7.8 using muriatic acid.

That is because borax increases the pH but is usually stable when the pH is between 7.2-7.8. 

As an example, if the TA level is 100, and you have a pool that holds 10,500 gallons, you would need 73.7 ounces of borax to raise the pH. That means adding about 20 Mule Team Borax in your pool since one box weighs 76 ounces. 

Note the following:

  • Make use of the water-chemistry calculator when computing the amount of borax to add to your pool. 
  • Add the borax to the skimmer when the pool’s filter and pump are running.
  • Wait for three days and test the water.

What Are the Benefit of Adding Borax?

Borax offers a lot of benefits to your pool, such as:

  • Stabilizing the pH – The chlorine in your facility will become ineffective if the pH drifts beyond the levels of 7.8. That means it won’t kill bacteria or act as a stabilizer. Besides, a higher pH leads to calcium scaling and can result in healthy problems. Using borax prevents all these issues.
  • Prevent algae – That is possible because it maintains the pH.
  • Minimize chlorine usage – Borax minimizes the number of times you will need to shock your pool. 
  • Provides soft and clean water – Borax also ensures that the water remains clear for long because chloramine does form quickly – Read more: robotic pool cleaner reviews

Final Verdict

The amount of borax you can add to your pool will depend on the TA level. Also, ensure that you determine the size of your pool before you add any product.

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How to Level an Above Ground Pool with Water in It

         

Nothing matches the refreshment of getting into a cool above ground pool during the hot days. However, this refreshment is only possible if your pool is installed correctly, level, and nice.

An above ground swimming pool needs to be placed on a level surface or it might end up having an unwanted shallow end. In addition to being unsightly, an uneven pool is shaky. 

Also, you will be risking the safety of both the bystanders and swimmers in case it collapses due to the uneven nature. This is why you need to take your time and level your above ground swimming pool.

What Makes a Pool to Be Uneven?

One thing that might make your pool to look uneven is the development of wrinkles in its liner. Another one is if the pool is misshapen or its uprights aren’t vertical. 

You pool might also be leaking or the skimmer or the return fitting might not be secure making the surface wet and sinking the pool. Lastly, DIYer can install the pool on an uneven surface without noticing it. 

All these reasons will make your pool to be uneven and should be corrected as soon as possible. However, the biggest sign of a poorly installed pool is if it is “off level”. 

How Level Should Your Pool Be?

Professionals go a lot to ensure that your above ground pool is as level as possible. But you should note that there is no precise level that you should install your pool, making it a tall order to get a 100% level pool.

Despite all the knowledge, quality equipment, and desire to level a pool, pool professionals are pretty satisfied with a pool that is an eighth of an inch off level. For oval shapes, a quarter of an inch off level is accepted.

If you are a DIY person, pool manuals often recommend you to level your facility within an inch off level. This won’t cause any structural problem but you can easily notice that your pool is “off level” when you view the waterline.

How to Level You Existing Pool

Usually completely “off level” swimming pools should be taken down, leveled, and then installed again. If you do that, you will need to buy a new liner as it is not advisable to reuse the old one.

If your pool is slightly off than it should be, you can easily change this without taking down, but it is hard. A majority of professional pool installers even cannot do this.

What do you do?

  • Drain your pool (but not all the water).
  • Remove the leveling blocks (those under the uprights on the low end of the uneven pool). 
  • Use a shovel to pry up every wall from the base connectors to the right level and return the blocks.
  •  Do these for all low end of your pool. 
  • Pack and add earth under all the places that you have raised the wall. 
  • Refill your swimming pool.

You shouldn’t try to lower the high part of your pool. 

Conclusion

Now you can easily level an above ground pool with water. Good luck!

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