Every pool owner typically learns the basics of testing the water for chlorine and pH levels. If you want to maintain remarkably pristine water that won’t wear away at components of your pool, there are other elements you can test for and give the water additional treatment. Your pool water can truly be in top condition if you routinely test for calcium, copper, iron, phosphates, and, if you have a salt water pool, salt.
The amount of calcium and magnesium in water is what determines whether it is hard or soft. If the water where you live is hard, calcium buildup can cause damage to your pump and filter and result in cloudy water, an inefficient heater, and rough surfaces in your pool. Low calcium levels create problems, too, such as dissolved grout and concrete and pitted concrete pool services. You can cut costs of pool care by maintaining proper calcium levels. Test kits are available, and it’s recommended you conduct a calcium level test a minimum of once per month.
If there are black or greenish stains on your pool liner or your water is cloudy, it’s possible that there is too much copper in your pool. The two primary ways copper gets into pool water are:
• The tap water used to fill the pool contains copper in trace amounts and
• Copper is left behind when water evaporates and when there is less water, copper levels are elevated.
Copper can cause plumbing and components of your pool filter to corrode. It’s best to test for copper weekly, to keep potentially costly problems from occurring.
Unsightly rust-colored or brownish water is the result of high levels of iron in your water. This occurs because the tap water used to fill the pool is high in iron. The iron level increases each time more water is added. Weekly testing for iron is recommended, to help ensure that your pool water stays sparkling clear.
Phosphates are harmless in themselves, and they are used in many everyday products, including pharmaceuticals. Phosphates get into your pool through twigs, dirt, landscape runoff, and water added to your pool. If the phosphate level is high, algae are attracted to your pool. Controlling algae growth is an ongoing and necessary battle. It’s recommended that you test phosphate levels weekly.
If you have a salt water pool, your routine schedule of pool maintenance includes testing for salt levels. A variety of problems can occur because of low or excess levels of salt, such as causing your salt water chlorinator to switch to overdrive. With too little salt, your pool won’t have enough chlorine to keep the pool water in good condition. Although salt levels are important, monthly testing is usually sufficient. Following a rainstorm or an excess number of swimmers, extra testing is a good idea.
Maintaining a proper pool water balance can be effortless, if you rely on the trained experts at Pool Works. We specialize in pool cleaning, and this includes testing water for pH, chlorine, and all of the above.