The use of chlorine is an effective and proven means of disinfecting pool water and keeping it clear. Chlorine stabilizers are tools that slow down the process of the rapid decomposition of chlorine and enable continuous disinfection. The chlorine content should always be between 0.3 and 0.6 milligrams per liter and should be checked at least once or twice a week. Chlorine is the most tried and tested means of disinfecting bathing water. The effectiveness of the chlorine depends heavily on a number of factors: The correctly set pH value must be between 7.0 and 7.4. If this value deviates too much up or down, the effectiveness of chlorine - as well as other chemical water care products - is greatly reduced. On hot days and in direct sunlight, chlorine breaks down many times faster than on milder days.
Why do you need chlorine in pool water?
Microorganisms cannot be completely removed by the mechanical pool cleaning, the filter system. The vicious circle of microscopic contaminants can be illustrated as follows: On hot days, the high temperatures provide the perfect conditions for microorganisms and pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, fungi or parasites to multiply. These are food for algae, which grow in succession and are responsible for green, slippery walls. Algae in turn are the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, viruses and fungi. The use of disinfectant is therefore extremely important in order to inhibit the growth of micro-organisms, counteract water turbidity and keep the bath water clean. The more people that swim or bathe in the same pool and the warmer the temperature of the bath water, the more likely it is that larger quantities of organic contaminants - such as hair - will be brought into the pool and bacteria and germs will have the perfect conditions to multiply.
The amount of chlorine and other chemical water care products needed to treat the water depends greatly on the season, the outside temperature, the temperature of the bathing water, the frequency of bathing and the number of bathers.
Before using chemical water care products, it is absolutely necessary to ensure the correct pool technology, i.e. mechanical water treatment, is used. The pool technology filters the pool water regularly with a filter system that is appropriate to the water content - sand filter system or cartridge filter. The right pool accessories - pool robots or self-propelled bottom vacuum cleaners - remove coarse dirt. The regular supply of fresh water is crucial for the correct water cycle.
For information on filter systems, please read on at Pool technique.
Which water is used as pool water provides initial information about the properties of the filling water, such as hardness or iron or copper content. Here you can already read off which and how many water care products have to be used for optimal pool water. Ask your waterworks for more information about the properties of your water.
Chlorine tablets, chlorine granules or liquid chlorine
The use of chlorine is the best known and most proven means of pool disinfection. Set the pH value to 7.0 to 7.4. Aqua correct products from Steinbach are produced in Austria, tested according to strict quality standards and are ideally suited for optimal water treatment. A distinction is made between slow-soluble and fast-soluble chlorine, which are used either for shock chlorination or for continuous dosing. Slow-soluble chlorine disinfects continuously over a longer period of time and is therefore suitable for continuous dosing.
The slow-soluble chlorine tablets from Steinbach are pH-neutral, can be used for all water hardnesses, dissolve without leaving residues and do not lead to deposits or clogged filters. Chlorine in liquid form is suitable for all common automatic dosing systems.
Fast-dissolving chlorine - in tablet form at Steinbach - is used for immediate action against bacteria, viruses, fungi and other microorganisms and breaks down organic turbidity substances. Rapidly soluble chlorine is used primarily for initial chlorination and for shock chlorination. Once or twice a month a so-called shock chlorination should be carried out to remove the enriched residuals in the water such as salts. Here, the chlorine content should be between 3 mg and 5 mg per litre for a short time - instead of the recommended maximum dose of 0.3 to 0.6 mg/l. Do not bathe during shock chlorination, as the increased chlorine content is too aggressive for the skin, eyes and mucous membranes. The chlorine should be added in the evening so that it can take effect overnight and the chlorine content is significantly reduced and broken down again the next day. As chlorine decomposes relatively quickly, bathing the next day is generally harmless. However, please measure the chlorine content again before bathing, about 8 to 10 hours after the shock chlorination, to make sure that the values are not harmful to health.
Effect of chlorine stabilisers
Chlorine decomposes relatively quickly, especially on hot days, which considerably reduces the disinfecting effect. The use of chlorine stabilisers is extremely advisable here - and even a small dosage has a great effect here - because the chlorine stabiliser granulate delays the decomposition of the chlorine and thus the water is disinfected better and for longer. Chlorine stabilisers also reduce the chlorine odour and can be stored for an unlimited period of time
The chlorine content should be measured at least 1 to 2 times per week and corrected if necessary. If the chlorine content is too low, the growth of bacteria, viruses and the like increases and the water gradually becomes turbid. A chlorine content that is too high has an irritating effect on the eyes, skin and mucous membranes.
Note: You usually need less chlorine than you would initially think. The ideal chlorine level is in a range between 0.3 mg and a maximum of 0.6 mg per litre. For regular disinfection, disinfectants should only be added when the chlorine level is in the lower part of the recommended range.
Tip: An outdoor shower is a useful pool accessory, as showering washes coarse impurities such as grass, but also bacteria from the skin. This simple measure reduces the unwanted entrainment of impurities and thus also reduces chemical pool care.
Advice for strong chlorine odour
A certain chlorine odour cannot be avoided when using chlorine. However, if the pool has a strong smell of chlorine and it starts to burn in the eyes or on the skin, there is usually too little chlorine in the water and not, as you might think, too much. First set the pH to 7.2 and then carry out shock chlorination. With this measure, the smell of chlorine disappears after a short time.
Advice for skin and eye irritation
Irritation of the mucous membranes, eyes and skin may occur due to either too high or too low a chlorine content. The reasons for this can be non-biodegradable organic substances, a too high pH value or a low chlorine dosage. Adjust the pH value to 7.2 by adding a pH regulator. If there is too little chlorine in the water, increase the chlorine content. If the chlorine content is too high, reduce the addition.
Note when adding fresh water
Please note that the pH value and chlorine content will change after the addition of fresh water. Then, by adding a pH reducer or pH booster, set the value back to 7.0 to 7.4 and the chlorine content to 0.3 mg/l to 0.6 mg/l. Keep to these values and check them at least once or twice a week to prevent damage to people and the pool.
Alternative to chlorine
Chlorine has many advantages and has proven itself over many years, but the smell of chlorine is still perceived by some as very annoying. Some people cannot tolerate chlorine on their skin, eyes or mucous membranes.
Active oxygen can be used to disinfect water as an alternative to chlorine. As with all chemical aids, please always follow the warnings.