Know Your Pool and Spa
Know your pool size
Knowing the size of your swimming pool so you can accurately use Blue Whale’s Shock Chlorinator to shock your pool, and Blue Whale’s Muriatic Acid to reduce the pH levels in your pool is important.
Test your pool
It is important to test your pool with a chlorine test kit and a pH text kit to determine the chlorine and pH levels in your pool.
Balancing your pool
It is important to ensure the chlorine and pH levels are properly balanced in your pool. A properly balanced pool has a pH level between 7.2 and 7.6. pH is a measure of the acidity or basicity of water and directly affects the chemical reactions that occur in pool water. pH is measured numerically on a scale from 0 to 14. Chlorine loses its effectiveness when the pH is above 8.0. Water may also appear cloudy when the water’s pH levels are too high as well. Use Blue Whale’s Muriatic Acid to reduce the pH in your pool.
Opening and Closing Your Pool
Opening Your Pool
Congratulations on becoming a pool owner. We know that you and your family will love having a pool, especially during those hotter summer months! If this isn’t your first time opening your pool, and you just need a bit of a refresher, you have come to the right place. We are excited that you have selected Blue Whale pool products to maintain your pool. Follow these easy steps to ensure your pool is perfectly balanced and ready for you and your family to enjoy all summer long. First, you need to prepare the equipment.
Preparing the Equipment
- Remove any water and/or debris that have accumulated on your pool cover during the winter.
- Remove the pool cover and ensure you clean the cover to prevent mildew or premature deterioration.
- Reconnect all plumbing and electrical connections for the pump, filter, and circulation system.
- Make sure the skimmer, filter, pump, drain and other equipment are clean and free of debris.
- Use a scoop to remove any surface and submerged debris from the pool.
- Clean the pool floor and walls with a brush or pool cleaner.
- Add water to the pool to bring it up to the proper level.
- Make sure all hoses and electrical hookups are in working order.
- Turn on the filter pump and check the skimmer, drain and filter to make sure they are functioning properly.
- Run the filter for 12 hours.
Closing Your Pool
- Test and adjust the water balance using a test kit or strips.
- While water is still clean and clear, add Blue Whale’s Shock Chlorinator to your pool. See the label for more detailed directions and the amount of product to use.
- Clean the pool thoroughly by vacuuming and removing any floating debris.
- Follow equipment manufacturer’s directions to winterize the pump, filter and any other pool equipment.
- Decrease the pump/filter cycle to half of its swimming season setting, but not less than 4 hours a day.
- Test the water balance weekly using a test kit or strips. Adjust as needed.
- Adjust free available chlorine to 1-4 ppm.
- Maintain pool equipment following manufacturers’ instructions when the pool is closed.
- Clean the skimmer baskets and pump strainer weekly or as needed.
- Vacuum the pool as needed.
- If the pool will be covered shock treat the water a few hours before applying the cover with Blue Whale’s Shock Chlorinator.
Pool Care Safety
Blue Whale is committed to the safety of you and your family. Pool chemicals can be harmful if the proper care is not taken. Please read the label carefully being using any pool chemical product. Follow the guidelines below to ensure you and your families pool care safety.
- Wear safety equipment when handling chemicals including gloves, goggles, long sleeves and pants.
- Store your chemicals in a cool, dry, well-ventilated place.
- Keep your chemicals tightly covered when not in use.
- Store liquids upright.
- Read product labels and follow directions when adding chemicals to your pool.
- Add pool chemicals directly to your pool.
- Isolate spilled chemicals and read and follow directions for cleanup and disposal.
- Completely use up the product before disposing of the container.
- Thoroughly clean and dry product containers prior to disposal.
- Wash your hands thoroughly after handling chemicals.
- Allow pool chemicals to come into contact with your skin, eyes or mouth.
- Store chemicals in a place where they can be accessed by children or pets.
- Store chemicals in a place where they can be contaminated by any other material.
- Inhale or ingest pool chemicals.
- Pool chemicals can react with other materials, including other pool chemicals, to cause a fire, explosion, or release of toxic gases.
- Add water to pool chemicals or expose them to small amounts of water. They can react violently to product heat and toxic gases.
- Mix different chemicals to allow pool chemicals to move into contact with other pool chemicals or any other materials.
- Pre-mix or pre-dissolve pool chemicals before adding them to your pool.
- Smoke, grill or allow any open flame near stored chemicals.
- Put spilled product back into container, doing so will contaminate the rest of the product.
- Dispose of product container without reading product label for directions.
- Dispose of spilled product by pouring into trash or drain.
Common Pool Problems
Algae can be caused by low to no chlorine, heavy rain, high heat and dirty surfaces. The most common form of algae is green algae. It is also the easiest to prevent. It is usually free floating and may tint the water green. Other types of algae include, mustard algae and black algae. Blue Whale’s Shock Chlorinator will help to keep these insightful and harmful bacteria and algae at bay.
It is much easier to prevent the growth of algae than get rid of it. Follow these simple steps to prevent algae growth in your pool.
- Test and adjust pH and chlorine levels frequently to keep your pool balanced
- Brush pool surfaces weekly to remove any algae
- Shock your pool with Blue Whale’s Shock Chlorinator regularly to maintain chlorine levels and get rid of any foreign bacteria or contaminants
Dull, murky or cloudy water is not only unsightly but usually indicates a problem. It can be the result of improper balance, poor filtration or an influx of contaminants. High pH or low chlorine levels are among the most common reasons pool water may cloud. Poor filtration and an influx of containments can also cause cloudy water. To prevent cloudy water,
- Run the pool pump for at least 8 hours a day
- Always maintain a balanced pH level in the pool of between 7.2 and 7.6 and free chlorine of 1-4 ppm.
- Shock water weekly and after high pool use or traffic, rainstorms and high temperatures
- Chemically clean the filter at pool opening and mid-season
- Ensure jets are pointed down so water is circulating properly
Eye and Skin Irritations
When there is an elevated amount of chlorine in the pool the water takes on a chlorine like smell and can be irritating to the eyes. Shocking the pool is the best treatment to reduce the chloramines in the pool which cause the strong odor and irritation.
- Check pH and alkalinity levels and adjust as necessary.
- Shock the pool with Blue Whale Shock Chlorinator. Once you have done this, remember to recheck the pH and total alkalinity levels and readjust if necessary. Remember to always keep the chlorine levels between 1 – 4 ppm
What is shocking the pool mean?
The term shocking means to add enough chlorine to the pool or spa water to destroy all combined chlorine present in the water. This usually requires adding 10 times the amount of combined chlorine present in (ppm). The common term for this is called breakpoint chlorination. The other reason for shocking the pool is to remove algae or bacteria, by oxidizing all contaminants in the pool. All of the shock treatments mentioned above can be used for both purposes – for removing combined chlorine and for killing algae and bacteria. No matter what type of pool shock you use it is very important that you follow the instructions on the label very carefully, make sure the chemicals are stored in a cool dry place and always apply chemicals directly to the pool or spa water and not add water to the chemicals.
How often should I shock my pool?
Every seven days or as necessary.
What are the benefits of using liquid shock over granular shock?
There are many different forms of chlorine you can use to shock your swimming pool in either liquid or granular form. When using liquid shock, it dissolves very quickly and you don’t have to pre-dissolve in a bucket and then add water like you do with granular chlorine. Another advantage of using liquid chlorine is that you have no residue so you don’t have to brush or vacuum the leftover shock off the bottom of the pool. Another advantage of the liquid type shock is that you can just pour it directly into your swimming pool and in will instantly start to raise the chlorine level in the pool water.
How often do I need to test my pool water?
It is recommended that you test you pool weekly.
I still have pool chemicals left over from last season. Are they OK to use?
Check the expiration date on your chemicals and replace expired products. Be mindful to dispose of pool chemicals properly.
What causes chlorine odor, red eyes and itchy skin?
The chlorine smell and irritation is due to compounds in the water that form when the pool is improperly treated. When the newly added chlorine reacts with germs and oils in the water it forms chloramine compounds. When there is an abundance of these chloramine compounds in the pool the water takes on a chlorine like smell and can be irritating to the eyes.
What does it mean if I smell a strong chlorine odor in my pool or hot tub or it burns my eyes?
A strong chlorine smell and irritating feel means your pool or hot tub has too many chloramine compounds or CAC’s, and that you need to increase the level of free chlorine. To minimize the smell and irritating feel, it is recommended to test your pool for levels for both free chlorine and combined chloramine. To effectively destroy the chloramine compounds through a shock treatment, the chlorine concentration should be about 10 times that of the chloramine concentration.
Why is it important to be sure that my pool water’s chemistry is correct?
Having the correct chemical balance is key to keeping the pool clean and safe to use. Regular maintenance and upkeep will also save trouble down the road.
When do I need to shock my pool?
As a general guide, you should shock your pool when:
- Algae begins to grow in your pool
- The free chlorine level of your pool measures zero.
- The combined chlorine level rises above 0.5 ppm.