Saltwater pools are beautiful, but they can be a real pain to maintain. Like all pools, there are some precautions you should take to make sure your pool stays clean and healthy.
Unfortunately, there’s no easy way to make your pool water completely white.
Bleach can be added to a pool, but not with typical household cleaners. Bleach is an oxidizer and will kill any organisms in the water and remove any stain on the bottom of your pool.
However, it’s essential to follow the guidelines given by your pool store or manufacturer to prevent damage to your swimming pool.
What Is a Saltwater Pool?
A saltwater pool is a fancy way of saying that you have an above-ground swimming pool filled with seawater, which has a higher concentration of salts than the water in your regular residential or commercial swimming pools.
The critical difference between both types of pools is the chemicals and substances used to keep your water clean. Saltwater pools are designed to trap extra minerals in the pool and airlift them to the top of your pool so that they can be flushed down with every command given by a pump.
This simple design aims to remove more waste from the surface waters, providing an isolated environment for colonies of bacteria, algae, and other unwanted life forms held within their metal frame cells.
What Is Bleach?
Bleach is an oxidizer derived from sodium peroxide (NaOCl). Sodium peroxide is often used to treat water that has been chlorinated or disinfected.
When mixed with an alkaline solution, such as sodium carbonate, the chemical decomposes into chlorine and oxygen, deadly for all organisms.
If a bleach mixture were added directly to your pool, it would turn the water a poisonous blue-green color.
To get the effect of a bleach solution in your pool, you must first add sodium carbonate to make an alkaline saltwater (or “hypo” or bicarbonate) solution.
Can You Use Bleach in a Saltwater Pool?
Many pools have been treated with bleach and then reopened without any ill effects.
The results depend upon the pool acidity, water temperature, the total number of organisms in the pool, and its overall health when taken out of service.
If possible, it’s a good idea to soak your swimming pool overnight after closing up so that chlorine levels begin to decrease over an extended period by several days or more.
During this point, you should know how long it will take before you can use the pool – longer than usual after such treatment.
However, for immediate needs, especially if you have a saltwater pool with an existing bacterial bloom, it is essential to close your pool immediately and never use it until the condition has been addressed.
How does bleach work?
Bleach and other oxidizers like hydrogen peroxide can kill almost all organisms in swimming pools by creating an environment hostile to them.
Oxygen is created through this reaction as well for the same reason. The decomposition of bleach occurs very quickly in the presence of water, and all organisms that live in it are suffocated due to lack of oxygen, which causes them to die out.
Each pool is treated with a different solution, and sometimes several other solutions may be used on your swimming pool at one time depending upon their characteristics, such as pH, chlorine content, or salt concentration.
When you first use bleach to clean your pool, make it part of a treatment program that will not close for several weeks or even months.
The best ratio of mixing bleach water in a saltwater pool
The most critical factor in controlling the spread of disease is maintaining good sanitary practices while swimming. Bleach should never be used as a final step to cleaning your pool after regular treatments with chlorine or other chemicals have been completed.
To properly disinfect and clean your saltwater pool, use one part bleach per fifty parts water when degassing. It is not recommended to use more than one cup of bleach in a fifty-pound bag.
If you must return soon, then once most waste has been removed from your system. It would be ideal if this could occur through evaporation or refilling water with clean saltwater without adding any additional chemicals (such as chlorine) during treatment.
Later again, at regular intervals, all organisms begin to die off naturally, but following good sanitary practices during treatment is always the best policy. This really shouldn’t be necessary more than once every month or so – though such cases are still rare.
The bleach can also be added to your pool’s skimmer basket, but not all simultaneously, as mixing it with multiple water types in one bucket could harm the performance of either liquid type.
Benefits Of Mixing Bleach In the Saltwater Pool
Mixing bleach in the saltwater pool can be beneficial for several reasons. It helps control bacteria and algae levels, making swimming more enjoyable.
It can help clean away debris and pollutants that might have accumulated on the pool deck or walls over time.
Mixing in the bleach can also help clear your pool’s skimmer basket and for that reason alone, mixing it with salt water is preferable. It is recommended, however, not required by any means to mix equal amounts of chlorine into your pool water either before or after adding bleach.
So while saving money on chemicals may be beneficial, it isn’t necessary if you keep a proper level of high-quality 93%+ recycled combined chlorine available at all times, as well as the salt for backup.
This is because it can be very good at maintaining chlorine levels and can even lengthen the life of your pool’s skimmer basket itself by reducing gunk that has built up in line over time.
It is always recommended to use good sanitary practices when treating your pool, though this should only be necessary occasionally.
It is also beneficial to mix the bleach in the saltwater pool as it can help control bacteria and algae levels, clear debris from around the pool, and even lengthen the life of your skimmer basket!