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Why Swimming Pool pH Levels are Important

Pool maintenance is the least attractive aspect of owning a swimming pool, but it is also a vital one in terms of health and hygiene. Not only is dirty water unpleasant to swim in, but it can also make you sick and give you horrible skin irritations and eye infections.

For this reason it is important to test all pool water regularly to ensure that the swimming pool pH levels, the total alkalinity (TA) levels, and the residual chlorine levels are all correct.

Swimming pool pH levels determine how acid or alkaline the water in your pool is at any one time. And we do this by using the universal pH scale which is a logarithmic number scale (from 0 to 14) that shows the strength of an acid or alkali. The closer to zero you get on the scale, the more acidic a substance will be.

The letters pH is an abbreviation of ‘potential of hydrogen’ (H), which is of course the first and lightest element there is. Hydrogen is present in water (H20) and in all organic compounds. So you will see that pH isn’t something that you can see or feel. It is simply a measure of acidity and alkalinity.

Assessing swimming pool pH levels

Ideally swimming pool pH levels should be neutral, and when any substance is neutral it will measure exactly 7 on the pH scale. But pool water isn’t pure, which is why we need to add chemicals to pool water to balance it. If yours is a gunite or concrete pool that has a plaster finish, it is accepted that if pH levels are between 7.4 and 7.6 (which is fractionally alkaline) there will be no ill effects. If pH levels are too low (below 7.0) the acidity can make your eyes sting. The acidity will also affect the pool shell over time. If swimming pool pH levels are too high, the alkalinity can also irritate your eyes. It can also lead to scale and mineral deposits settling on the walls and floor of your pool which can stain it. If your pool is made of fiberglass or has a vinyl liner, the pH can be a little bit lower, ideally between 6.8 and 7.2.

Elements that can affect swimming pool pH levels

It is important to realize that swimming pool pH levels are affected by the many impurities that find their way into the pool water including leaves, dust, cosmetics, perspiration, and unfortunately all too often, urine. All these substances have their own pH levels, which is why they affect the swimming pool pH levels.

Most swimming pool owners use chlorine as a swimming pool cleaner to control the growth of bacteria and algae in the water. But for chlorine to work effectively, and to ensure that the water feels good, we need to continually adjust the pH to the recommended levels.

We offer a range of pool maintenance services and can help you ensure the pH level of the water in your swimming pool is always correct.

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Complete Maintenance Service
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$85 / VISIT
Partial Maintenance Service
Chemical Balance
$65 / VISIT
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Includes: Partial Maintenance Service.