Pool | 10/29/14

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Crystal clear pools are only possible if the chemistry of a pool is nice and balanced. Allow the balance to get “out of whack” and you’ll undoubtedly end up with a cloudy pool. As daunting as maintaining proper pool chemistry may seem to new or inexperienced pool owners, it isn’t nearly as difficult as it may sound.

The Magic Beyond Crystal Clear Pools: A Balanced pH

The biggest secret behind preventing a cloudy pool is to maintain a balanced pH. When kept at optimal levels, the pH enables the chlorine to do its job at cleaning and sanitizing the pool.

  • Your pH should be between 7.2 and 7.6, with a lower pH being optimal
  • High pH levels can be reduced with muriatic acid or granular acid

Chlorine to Keep Pools Clean

The next most important part of keeping your pool chemistry balanced: chlorine. This should test as being anywhere between 1 to 3ppm. Pool owners have their choice between 3-inch and 1-inch tablets, or sticks, with 3-inch being the most common and the most suitable for standard to large sized inground pools (1-inch tablets are better suited to above ground pools or smaller inground pools).

Other Important Factors

Crystal clear pools rely heavily on pH and chlorine, but there are other factors that require testing. Total alkalinity, or “TA”, will help you determine the effectiveness of the chlorine.

  • Gunite and concrete pools should have a TA of 80 to 120ppm
  • Vinyl, fiberglass and painted pools should have a TA of 125 to 170ppm

Calcium hardness is another important consideration when trying to maintain crystal clear pools. A pool with an imbalanced calcium hardness will corrode the surface of your pool. Aim for a calcium hardness in the range of 200 to 400ppm and you won’t have to worry about scaling and cloudy pools.


Shasta Pools is a Phoenix pool builder who provides a variety of services including swimming pool remodeling, commercial pool building, and pool service and repair. Since its establishment in 1967, Shasta has helped over 80,000 families realize their dream of pool ownership. By providing exceptional value, quality craftsmanship and superior customer service, the Shasta team continues to fulfill the corporate mission of astonishing and delighting their customers and exceeding expectations. You can learn more about Shasta Pools & Spas by visiting them online, or by connecting with them on Facebook or Twitter.