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What First-Time Pool Owners Should Know About Water Treatment

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Whether you've just moved into a new home with a pool or are planning to have one constructed in your backyard this spring or summer, you may be overwhelmed by the work you'll need to perform to keep your pool water clean, clear, and safe. While getting your pool's water adequately conditioned can sometimes be a challenge, you will get the hang of the process. Read on to learn more about treating and conditioning the water in your new pool.

Achieving the Right Balance

Any still body of water needs to be treated with pathogen-killing chemicals to prevent the growth of mold, mildew, and potentially harmful bacteria. Not only can this microbe growth leave your pool looking green or scummy, but it can also cause skin irritation or even illness to those who spend time swimming in your pool.

Most pool owners accomplish balance through the use of chlorine bleach--the same bleach used to purify well water or whiten dingy white clothes in the washer. But because measuring out the correct amount of bleach to use in a swimming pool that holds thousands of gallons of water can be all but impossible, most pool owners find it beneficial to use extended-release bleach tablets or other cleaning agents that can infuse your pool with a steady stream of germ-killing chemicals over time.

In addition to achieving the right balance of germ-killing chemicals, it's important to have your pool's water at a proper pH balance, too. Too-high pH means your pool water is acidic, which can irritate swimmers' skin. Too-low pH can mean your pool water is too "basic," which makes it more difficult to keep your water treatment chemicals at the right level. By purchasing a pH testing kit at your local pool supply store and testing your pool's pH level once or twice per week during the active season, you'll be able to ensure your pool water is perfectly in balance all season long.

Keeping Your Pool Clean

Keeping your pool water in balance is made much easier when your pool is clean and free from debris. By investing in a pool vacuum or heavy-duty skimmer, you'll be able to remove leaves, twigs, insects, grass clippings, and other debris that can draw germs and bacteria to your pool and make your chemicals work much harder. You may want to schedule a weekly "cleaning date" to ensure your pool remains clean all summer.

For more tips on pool water treatment, check out sites like