Chlorine is much more than the 17th atomic number on the wall in your high school chemistry class. This is especially true if you have a pool. Chlorine is a common chemical that is used in swimming pools and spas. It cleanses the water by attacking lipids and cell walls of micro-organisms and other bacteria. However, no matter how useful and effective it is, several myths surround chlorine, ranging from odors, best practices, and its effects on swimmers. Here are four common misnomers regarding chlorine in your pool.
If you can smell it, there is too much chlorine in the pool
On the surface, this makes sense; however, it is quite the opposite of reality. The way that chlorine works is that it attaches itself to the bacteria in your pool, creating chloramines. When you shock your pool, these chloramines turn into oxygen and are released into the air. This is why you can smell it. When this happens, it means the chlorine is in the air, and not in the water where it belongs; meaning you need to add more.
Chlorine can burn your eyes
Returning from an afternoon swim with red, irritated eyes something we’re all likely familiar with; and chlorine takes most of the blame. However, the reason your eyes burn if you open them underwater is due to pool water with an unbalanced pH. To prevent eye irritation, test and treat your water to maintain a pH between 7.2 and 7.6.
Chlorine can turn your hair green
Now if your hair has a tinge of green to it, there is an element that begins with a ‘C’ to blame, just not chlorine. Copper is what causes your hair to turn green after a swim. If there are any algaecides in the water, many are copper-based, and the oxidized metals in the water can attach to the protein in your hair. However, a quick shampoo will remove this coloring, and conditioning your before a swim can prevent this altogether
There is no chlorine in a saltwater pool
A common assumption is that saltwater pools are chlorine-free. Saltwater pools are chlorinated, just through a different process. The saltwater is forced across a metal cell that has an electrical current. This process creates chlorine and is called electrolysis.
These are just a few common pool myths and speak to the importance of proper pool maintenance. Lucas Firmin Pools builds, services, and maintains custom pools in the Baton Rouge area.