Muriatic acid, a useful household tool, is used for cleaning masonry, etching concrete and adjusting the pH of pools. It is essentially diluted hydrochloric acid, one of the most acidic substances in the world, so take all possible safety precautions. Dilute muriatic acid for cleaning, pH adjustment or other purposes.

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Step 1

Be sure you use safety and environmental precautions before starting. Muriatic acid is not recommended for indoor use because it gives off corrosive vapors. If you are in a small outdoor space, set up a fan to blow fumes away from you. Always have garden lime and running water on hand to neutralize any spills.

Step 2

Cover yourself in case of splashes or spills. A full-length rubber apron or coverall is recommended, as well as long gloves, rubber boots and goggles. Wear a respirator if you will be working with muriatic acid for a long period of time since vapors can damage your respiratory system.

Step 3

Fill a plastic bucket with water for a standard dilution of 1 part acid to 10 parts water. This solution is good for masonry cleaning and adjusting pool pH.

Step 4

Add acid to water, not water to acid. Adding water to acid creates a potentially explosive reaction. Instead, pour the one part of acid slowly into the plastic bucket of water. Don't rush so splashes are avoided.

Step 5

When done with the muriatic acid dilution, store in a plastic jug with a safety seal to prevent leaks. Don't expect to store muriatic acid long-term, however. Find a safe method of disposal.