Testing Your Pool

Testing your pool 2-3 times a week is important for maintaining adequate water balance and sanitizer levels as well as ensuring swimmer comfort. Test strips are a quick means (only 30 seconds) to test the pool for adequate sanitizer levels as well as pH and total alkalinity.

Proper testing also ensures that calcium levels are maintained and that there are no metals present in the pool water.

In order to prevent scaling or corrosive action and to achieve maximum swimmer comfort, the pool water should be balanced to the following levels.

Test Range
pH 7.2 - 7.6
Total Alkalinity 120 - 150 ppm
Calcium Hardness 200 - 250 ppm (Concrete Pools)
Calcium Hardness 175 - 225 ppm (Vinyl Pools, Above Ground Pools, Fiberglass Pools, Swim Spas)
Free Chlorine 1 - 3 ppm
Free Bromine 3 -5 ppm
Metals: Copper 0 ppm
Metals: Iron 0 ppm

How Often Should You Test Your Water?

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Should You Test Your Fill Water?

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Balancing pH

pH is the measure of acid and base in the pool water. The pH of your pool should remain below 7.2, and pool water should be tested and adjusted 2-3 times weekly (if necessary).

If the pH of the pool water drifts to the acid side of the scale, corrosion of pool surfaces and equipment can occur. If the pH of the pool water drifts above 7.6 to the base side, scaling, deposits, and cloudy water can occur.

Use Regal® pH Plus to increase the pH of the pool. To lower the pH of the pool, use Regal® pH Minus. Follow the label directions for the proper amount of the products to add based upon test results and pool size.

Take a sample of water to your Regal® dealer every 2-3 weeks for complete test and analysis.

NOTE: Always follow label directions when adding any pool maintenance product to the pool. Never mix products together. If unsure how products are to be used, contact your Regal® Dealer.

Why is pH Important?

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Calcium Hardness

Calcium Hardness is the amount of dissolved calcium in the pool water. Low calcium hardness levels can cause plaster finish etching and can shorten the life of vinyl liners. High calcium levels can result in calcium deposits on the pool surfaces as well as the pool equipment.

The proper range for calcium hardness in pool water is 200-250 ppm for concrete pools and 175-225 ppm for vinyl pools, above ground pools, fiberglass pools, and swim spas. Your Regal® dealer can test for calcium hardness on a regular basis when you take a sample of your pool water in for analysis.

To increase calcium hardness, use Regal® Calcium Increaser. Follow the label directions for dosage rates based upon pool volume and test results. If calcium hardness levels are high, Regal® Metal Out should be used to prevent deposits or scaling on the pool surface or on pool equipment as well as to prevent metal stains.

If the calcium levels are exceedingly high (in excess of 450 ppm), partial drainage of the pool may be required. Your Regal® dealer can advise you of the best method for treating your pool if you encounter high calcium hardness.

If tests indicate that you have extremely high calcium levels in your pool, take a sample of your fill water to your Regal® dealer for analysis.

What is Calcium Hardness?

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Total Alkalinity

To prevent the pH from “drifting” or “bouncing” up and down, the proper amount of acid buffers, or total alkalinity, must be maintained in the pool. The pool should be tested weekly with a total alkalinity of 120-150 ppm.

Low total alkalinity can not only result in pH bounce and fluctuations, but it can also lead to corrosiveness and the possibility of increased staining. High total alkalinity can also cause the pH to fluctuate, the pool to become cloudy, and can possibly cause scaling.

To lower total alkalinity, follow the directions from your Regal® dealer. To raise total alkalinity, follow the label directions on Regal® Alkalinity Plus.

What is Alkalinity?

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There should not be any metals present in the pool water. Metals can cause staining in the pool and can cause the pool to turn colors. The most common types of metals that appear in pool water are copper, iron, and manganese. Your Regal® dealer can test your pool water for the presence of any type of metals.

If tests indicate that metals are present in the pool, Regal® Metal Out should be used on a regular basis to prevent staining. You should determine the source of the metals and remove if possible.