Chlorine 101Posted: February 25, 2022
Chlorine is the main chemical that pool owners use as a sanitizer or disinfectant. Chlorine is widely used by pool owners to destroy bacteria and algae to be sure their pools remain clean, clear and safe for swimming.
Chlorine is produced by the electrolysis of saltwater and is very good at breaking the cell walls of microorganisms such as bacteria and algae and then oxidizing them. Chlorine is unstable, however, and will continue to break down until it is no longer effective. That is why you must keep adding chlorine to your pool on a regular basis.
There are two forms of Chlorine: liquid and powder. The powder form comes in three types: Dichlor, Lithium Hypochlorite, and Calcium Hypochlorite.
Liquid chlorine is made by bubbling the gas form of chlorine through caustic soda. For smaller, residential pools, its cost may outweigh its efficiency. Liquid chlorine needs much more acid to be added to the water to counteract the high pH and it is highly corrosive which could lead to damage of your pool walls or bottom if great care isn’t taken when using it.
Liquid chlorine is great for use in pools that need a problem fixed quickly as the effects are strong, but does not last long.
- Dichlor has a low pH so you won’t have to use as much acid to balance your water and it dissolves rapidly to immediately begin its job. This product is not as strong so it is a good weekly shock treatment for maintaining your pool
- Lithium Hypochlorite has a higher pH so you may need more acid to balance the water compared to using Dichlor. It’s main advantage is it dissolves very fast reducing the chance of your pool vinyl getting bleached.
- Calcium Hypochlorite is one of the more popular chlorine treatments as it is the most cost effective, however, it does require the most acid for proper balance.
In the end, all of these products will do their job and keep your pool clean and clear. Just be mindful of your budget needs and the needs of your equipment before choosing liquid or powder chlorine for your pool. If you are unsure, don’t hesitate to stop in to one of our locations with a water sample and our experts will help you choose the best products for your needs.