Do you have a pool that costs and arm and a leg to keep it crystal clear? This article will give you tips on how to save money on your pool chemicals and have perfect crystal clear water.
When we first got our pool we bought all our chemicals from the pool store and spent way too much money. The pool store will tell you that you can only use pool chlorine (calcium hypochlorite)to keep your pool clean. We did that for years but now use regular plain cheap as we can get chlorine bleach from the discount store. When ever I have our water tested it is perfect for chlorine. We use 5-6 jugs when we first open the pool or enough to get the chlorine level high enough to kill everything and then use a bottle a week to keep it sparkling.
The second thing we learned was how to stabilize the alkalinity with baking soda. Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate which is the same thing that the pool store sell under its ALKA-UP type chemicals. The sodium bicarbonate that we buy as baking soda is ground finer than the pool chemical grade but that isn't a problem for the pool. One pound of baking soda is the same as one pound of pool chemical Alka-Up.
To Lower the PH there is no direct substitution. PH down is Sodium Bisulfate aka dry acid. Muriatic Acid is generally too hard to handle for the spa (though it does work)
To raise the PH level you can use 20 Mule Team Borax. This can be used in place of PH-UP.
Pool Chlorine Stabilizer is Cyanuric Acid. The Stabilizer level of swimming pool water must be maintained at 30-50 ppm. The Stabilizer in swimming pool water is there to prevent the chlorine from being quickly burned off and used up by the sun. The recommended ideal range for Cyanuric Acid is between 30-80 ppm but 40 ppm is sufficient to prevent the sun from destroying the chlorine's effectiveness.
I use an algaeside that I pick up from our local Menards store for $4 a gallon when its on sale and only usually use it in the spring when I'm opening the pool.