One of the most important facets of pool maintenance is the chemical levels. Improperly balanced water is murky, irritating to eyes and skin and can turn your investment into a bacteria breeding ground.

When all the pool chemicals are properly balanced the water should look crystal clear, have no scent and leave very little residue on your skin.

Before you can even begin manipulating pool chemicals, you will need to understand your pool water’s chemistry and needs.

Testing the Water

Ideally, you should test the water once a week. Testing is easy if you have a few testing kits on hand – these can be purchased from your local swimming pool shop.

Fill the tester with a sample of your pool’s water. Add the provided solution to the testing kit and close the vials. After a few seconds, your sample water should change colour. Compare this to the colours on the testing kit to determine the current chemical levels.

Adjusting the pool chemical levels will help you to achieve the perfect balance. Here are a few chemical guidelines to help you out.

Five Essential Pool Chemicals

There are five essential pool chemical levels that need to be considered when maintaining your pool’s optimum health.

  • Cyanuric Acid. This protects chlorine from sunlight and determines the Free Chlorine level. The ideal reading for outdoor pools is 30 – 50
  • Free Chlorine. This is a sanitiser which keeps the pool water free of germs and makes it safe.
  • Acidity / Alkalinity. Better known as the PH level. Acidity should be kept between 7.5 and 7.8 to prevent skin and eye irritation and also to protect the pool and any pool equipment from eroding.
  • Total Alkalinity. This helps to keep the PH in balance. Levels should be within a range of 60 – 120
  • Calcium Hardness. An appropriate level of calcium hardness will help prevent plaster damage. Aim for 220 – 350. Pools with vinyl siding should be lower.

Bonus Tip for Summer

Tennis balls are not just for playing catch in the pool, they can do you a double duty. After the suntan cream soaked swimmers exit the pool, let the tennis balls linger – even add a few more. The fibres on the balls will act as mini oil barons and help soak up and absorb many of the oils left behind, thus clearing up that unwanted slick sheen that can form on top of the water.
Pool Spa knows their stuff. Chat to one of the friendly experts today for advice on how to keep your swimming pool looking its best. Visit us at