Category: Pool Tips

How Does Stabiliser Help My Pool?

What is pool stabiliser?

Stabiliser or sometimes commonly known as sunscreen is made up of Cyanuric Acid (CYA) and comes in granule or liquid form. Stabiliser can also be found as an additive in stabilised chlorine such as Trichlor and Dichlor.

Stabiliser creates a chemical bond with the pools chlorine to protect it from the suns UV rays, extending the life of the chlorine making it more effective in the summer months. Stabiliser is usually added at the beginning of the swimming season.

Does my pool really need stabiliser?

In short yes. Due to chlorine being one of the most important levels in the pool it’s imperative that the free chlorine levels have an adequate availability to kill bacteria in the pool. That’s where stabiliser comes in, it protects the chlorine from being burnt off by the harsh Australian summer sun. The sun can consume about 90% of your pools chlorine in a matter of a few hours if not protected.

What level should it be at?

Stabilise levels in the pool should be between 30-50ppm. As a rule of thumb it’s best to test for stabiliser (CYA) once a month to maintain a correct level.

Roughly add 2kg per 40,000L to raise the stabiliser level by 30ppm, but always read the guide on the packaging. When adding to the pool, first clean the filter then mix desired amount into a bucket of pool water and broadcast into the pool.

Effects of unbalanced stabiliser?

Low Stabiliser levels may cause:

  • Chlorine to be killed off with a few hours
  • Vulnerable to algae growth

High Stabiliser levels may cause:

  • Suppresses chlorine
  • Creates a chlorine lock
  • Chlorine becomes ineffective

So there you go, now you know what Stabiliser does and why you need it, but if you need some extra help, do not hesitate to give us a call on 1800 625 123 for advice on what products are best suited to your needs.

Maintaining Your Spa

Maintaining a spa is a lot like maintaining a pool, only easier because you can drain and refill it whenever needed. Looking after your spa just takes a little time every week and keeps it clean and hygienic for the whole family to enjoy.

Here are some common questions and answers to help simplify the way you think about spa maintenance.

How do you keep a spa’s water clean?

To keep a spa’s water clean and hygienic, there are 2 main things that make this possible: spa chemicals and filtration. Spa chemicals are used to keep the way algae free and balanced, whereas the filtration does most of the heavy lifting. Most spas will be equipped with a micro filter which traps all the smaller debris like dirt and oils, which eventually you will need to remove the filter from your spa to clean out with a hose.

When do I top up the water level?

Due to the nature of warm water, you will lose small amounts of water overtime – mainly due to evaporation. To have your filtration working at the optimum level, it is always best practice to maintain the water line 2/3 of the way up the skimmer. If the water level drops below where it needs to be, it will cause your pump to run dry which can be detrimental to your whole filtration system. Depending on how often you use the spa and if the spa has a cover, the water level may need to be topped up once a week.

Do I need to change the water?

Even if you add the right chemicals and are on top of your water testing, eventually the spa needs to be emptied and refilled. You should change your spa water when the TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) gets to a level of 2,000ppm or above. When the TDS in the pool is too high you will find the water becomes easily cloudy and have a hard feel to your skin. For most Spas, this means you will have to change the water every 3-4 months, this includes washing and scrubbing down the spas surface.

Do I need to cover my Spa?

Generally, it’s best practice to have a Spa cover, here are some reasons why:

  • Insulates the water, significantly increasing the efficiency of the spa by keeping in the heat and decreasing evaporation.
  • Keeps dirt and debris out, which keeps the water cleaner.
  • Use less chemicals

Caring For your Above Ground Pool

Above ground pools are a perfect choice for a number of reasons.

They are:
  • Inexpensive
  • Do not take too long to build
  • Can fit in small sized backyards
  • Fun for the whole family

But sometimes the pool maintenance can be a bit overwhelming for some.

At HY-CLOR we believe simplicity is key, so here are the top 4 actions to creating a swimming pool experience the whole family will enjoy.

1. Cleanse your pool weekly
  • Use the skimmer and pool vacuum to vacuum out any fine dirt and debris
  • By doing this weekly you ensure that you will not have a buildup of bacteria and algae, which causes even more time cleaning
2. Vinyl wall care
  • When your pools pH is too high, your pool will start to develop scum deposits on the vinyl/walls of the pool.
  • To eliminate this from happening, having a pH level of 7.2 will help to breakdown the formation of scum lines.
  • Weekly scrubbing of the walls will also reduce the amount of scum build-up.
3. Test your water
  • Depending on how much you use the pool, a rule of thumb is to test your pool once a week.
  • By checking your pool chemical levels regularly, you will ensure that your pool is properly balanced.
  • Testing the pool is easy, simply take a water sample to your local Bunnings and test with the HY-CLOR Kiosk. An accurate reading of your water chemistry helps you understand exactly how much and which chemical to put in your pool.
4. Check all equipment
  • Make sure once a month you check all pool equipment (Pump, Filter, Chlorinator etc.) to ensure there are no leaks or damage that has occurred.
  • Empty your pump basket and clean out any residue
  • Backwash or hose down filter
  • Clean your chlorinator cell where applicable

Everything Chlorine

What is chlorine?

Chlorine is used to routinely kill harmful bacteria and algae from your pool and prevent health related infections for its swimmers. Chlorine is one of the most important things to think about when it comes to balancing a pool.

Chlorine’s sole responsibility is to sanitise the pool water and create a fantastic experience for swimmers. Chlorine comes in many different forms such as liquid, granular and tablet form. Chlorine can also be produced by a saltwater chlorinator which uses electrolysis to turn salt into chlorine gas or Sodium Hypochlorite.

Total vs Free Chlorine?

When it comes to testing chlorine levels in the pool, there are 2 main levels we look at – free chlorine and total chlorine. There is also combined chlorine which is free chlorine (minus) total chlorine.

Free Chlorine (FAC)

This is the chlorine that is free to sanitise and kill bacteria, basically chlorine that has not been used yet. This level should be between 1-3ppm.

Total Chlorine (TAC)

This is basically the amount of ‘free’ and ‘dead’ chlorine. When free chlorine does its job it becomes dead chlorine or sometimes known as chloramines. Chloramines are what gives off that strong chlorine smell. This level should be between 1-5ppm.

Shock Treatment

Shock treatment is the process of adding large amounts of oxidising chemicals like Super-Shock to destroy chloramines. This treatment is also good for controlling algae and bacteria. It’s always best to do a shock treatment after dark.

Quick Tips:
  • Make sure chlorine is unreachable for children
  • Always read and follow the label’s instructions
  • Store chlorine in a cool, dry place
  • Never mix chlorines together
  • Avoid contact to skin

So there you go, now you know what chlorine does and why you need it. If you need some extra help, do not hesitate to give us a call on 1800 625 123 for advice on what products are best suited to your pool needs.

How To Correctly Backwash A Pool Filter

Did you know that the most important part of a swimming pool care is filtration? For your pool’s water to be reliably clear, clean and healthy, a well-maintained filter is a must. To maintain a sand filter, backwashing every 2-3 weeks is the best way to ensure that your pool filter is free to filter out as much debris as possible.

Here is a simple but in-depth guide to backwashing a filter:

1. Firstly, make sure you have enough water in the pool to carry out a back wash, ¾ way up the skimmer box should be fine

2. Turn the pump off

3. Disconnect suction cleaner from skimmer box including Vacuum plate

4. Empty skimmer basket

Your sand filter will most likely have a multi-port with six different settings (filter, rinse, closed, backwash, recirculate, waste)

5. Make sure all the valves in the backwash discharge lines are open

6. Turn the multi-port handle to ‘backwash position’ and switch on the pump. You will see water flow through the backwash line

7. Continue running this until the water in the sight glass runs clear, (typically, a couple of minutes) then switch the pump off

8. Turn the multi-port handle to ‘rinse position’ and turn the pump on for 30 seconds

9. Turn the pump off

10. Switch the pump back off and move the multi-port back to ‘filter position’

11. Finally, turn the pump back on and water should flow back through the jets. Make sure the backwash line is not leaking when back on filter position

12. Reconnect vac plate and suction cleaner

13. Refill the pool to correct level and then test and rebalance the pool with the appropriate pool chemicals

Now you know how to backwash a filter. If you have any other questions, give our customer service team a call on 1800 625 123 for advice on anything pools!

Preparing Your Pool For A Party

Pool Parties are a staple of Summer, not only do you want your swimming pool to be sparkling clear, it also needs to be safe and healthy for your family. Incorrect chemical balancing can cause skin & eye irritations, algae outbreaks, and pool surface staining/scaling.

Before you invite everyone you know, or at least the people you want enjoying your pool, you need to do a little bit of maintenance to prepare for all these swimmers. Your guests don’t want to swim in a pool that isn’t clean. Follow these steps to clean up your pool before the big day.

Brush your pool

Attach a pool brush to your telescopic pole and brush the floor, walls, and other hard-to-reach places in your pool, including behind ladders and pool steps. Brushing the pool will help get the dirt and debris out in the open so that your filter or cleaner can get rid of it.

Vacuum your pool

You want your pool to look its best, so you’ll need to vacuum your pool thoroughly to ensure there is no dirt and debris hanging around before your guests arrive. You can use your manual vacuum or automatic pool cleaner to get the job done.

Shock your pool

Be sure to shock your pool after you brush. Pool parties can cause an increased level of debris and more swimmer waste than usual. By adding the shock ahead of time, you are preparing your waters chemical levels to handle the strain of an onslaught of swimmers, divers and cannonballs.

You can use HY-CLOR Spa Shock, which is a non-chlorine based oxidiser that will kill any chloramines (used up chlorine) ensuring chlorine is free to kill any bacteria entering the pool via body fats, oils etc. HY-CLOR Spa Shock can be used 30 minutes before swimming.

Clarify and Algae Prevention

Be sure to add water clarifier and algae eliminator as well. This will ensure when guests enter your backyard, they will be greeted by crystal clear water.

Use HY-CLOR CloudOut Clarifier which is a high-strength clarifying agent that binds small particulate matter together, ensuring the pool water is crystal clear and inviting for the upcoming party

Use HY-CLOR Super Algaecide, which is a wide-spectrum algae killer which will provide another layer of protection against pools turning green during high bather load, ensuring your pool remains clear

That’s it, you are good to go. Let the party commence and the fun begin. Using these easy steps before every party will ensure a relaxing time by the water. For any more information on pool and spa care, do not hesitate to contact HY-CLOR on 1800 625 123.

Prepare For Summer

Our summer is fast approaching and now is the time to pull out the ol’ brush and vacuum and get your pool in running order for a fun and exciting summer. It is important to take sensible steps while preparing a pool for summer use – having the right pool accessories and pool chemicals is the key to a crystal-clear pool and spa.

Following these easy but effective pool maintenance tips can prevent costly damage to your pool while ensuring the maximum enjoyment for the summer season.

  • Remove your pool cover and inspect for debris – leaves, sticks and other large debris needs to be scooped out and removed.
  • Algae and other smaller debris need to be scrubbed and vacuumed to waste where possible.
  • Check your filtration system – the filter, pump and plumbing should be regularly maintained and checked for any leaks or corrosion.
  • Make sure your pump and filter are fully primed to ensure there is no air locked in the system. Air locked in your system will create issues like – lack of suction and ineffective debris capture.

After your filtration system has been running and all the leaves and other debris have been removed it’s time for the fun, or not so fun part: Water Chemistry.

Typically, the most important levels to take into consideration are – Free Chlorine, pH, Alkalinity and Stabiliser levels. Getting these levels correct is crucial to creating a stress-free swimming pool experience.

  • Free Chlorine: Your pool chlorine level should be between 1-3ppm but never fall below 1ppm, pool chlorine is an integral part of your pool, a correct free chlorine level ensures that there is available chlorine to kill any active bacteria or algae spores at any given time.
  • pH: The perfect pH level of your pool water is between 7.4 – 7.6, the pH level is just as important as pool chlorine levels, chlorine only works effectively if the pH is correct.
  • Alkalinity: The alkalinity level of your pool acts as a buffer, which helps to withstand the rapid ups and downs in pH when adding additional chemicals to the water.
  • Stabiliser: The stabiliser or “Sunscreen” level is another important part of pool care, to put it simply, stabiliser supports your chlorine stay in the water longer by binding with your pools Free Chlorine.

Now that you know the basics of pool chemicals, get out there and have some fun. But if you need some extra help, don’t hesitate to give us a call on AU 1800 625 123  or NZ (09) 973 2477 for advice on what products are best suited to your needs.

Easy But Effective Pool Maintenance Tips

I know what you are thinking – pool maintenance is far from easy. Well we’re here to help!

You do not need a degree in chemistry to efficiently maintain your pool, but we understand it can be overly complicated and sometimes become a bit of a chore. However, you can adopt the challenge by informing yourself about pool maintenance, planning a time for pool care and making the effort to keep your pool in crystal-clear condition.

Follow these 3 steps and you will have it covered.

1. Weekly test and balance

Depending on how much you use the pool, a rule of thumb is to test your pool once a week. By checking your pool chemical levels regularly, you will ensure that your pool is properly balanced. Testing the pool is easy, simply take a water sample to your local Bunnings and test with the HY-CLOR Kiosk. An accurate reading of your water chemistry helps you understand exactly how much and which chemical to put in your pool. You can even test at home with the HY-CLOR app.

Product: AquaChek 4 in 1

2. Vac ‘n’ Brush

Regularly brushing and vacuuming is another key step in having a sparkling pool. Small bits of debris can collect on the walls and steps of your pool, use a brush to remove dirt and dust that is stuck to the surface of your pool and let it settle to the bottom of the pool. Once all sediment has dropped to the bottom of the pool, now is the time to manually vacuum through the skimmer. Remember to always backwash or clean your filter after a vacuum.

Product: Big Easy Brush

3. Algaecides

Algae spores will always be present, no matter how well maintained your pool chemicals are. Unfortunately, algae continuously find its way into your pool due to many factors such as leaves, twigs, rain and wind. Treatment involves making sure that the spores are not able to bloom. Pool chlorine is used to kill the algae bloom but the best way to combat blooms is PREVENTION. Using a high strength preventative like HY-CLOR Super Algaecide is an effective solution to algae growth.

Product: Super Algaecide

Pool Algae – The 3 Types

With our summer creeping up on us – pool algae is usually the first thing we need to look out for as algae can bloom very quickly.

What is Algae?

Algae starts from just spores, however, can multiply enough to toss a pool totally green in a matter of days if the circumstances are right. Algae typically develops on the surface of your pool but can also grow inside the pool plumbing and equipment. Algae will grow if there is a lack of pool sanitiser or unbalanced pool chemicals, that is why it is very important to be on top of your pool maintenance during the hotter seasons.

3 Types of Algae:
1. Green Algae

Green algae is the most common type of algae found in pools – The first sign of green algae is when your pool surface becomes slimy, visible algae can be removed with a pool brush. Your pool water needs to be then sanitised with a strong chlorine to kill off remaining algae and also to prevent it from coming back.

2. Mustard Algae

Mustard or Yellow Algae has a considerably slow growth rate, but it is tough to eradicate. The best way to wipe out mustard algae is to perform a Super-Shock. Same as green algae, you can brush off the surface layer of the patches to expose the under-layer of the algae. This will then let the pool chlorine attack and kill the algae spores.

3. Black Algae

Black Algae is the worst of the lot. The first signs of black algae are the emergence of black dots at the bottom or walls of the pool. It starts with these black dots and then develops rapidly, when left untreated, black algae can essentially cause structural harm to your pool, due to it being able to grow deep into concrete and other pool surfaces. Blackspot remover is used to quickly kill and remover stubborn black algae.

Prevention

So, there you have it, the 3 types of algae and how to combat them. To avoid all this hassle and create a stress-free swimming pool experience, make sure to regularly add a high strength algaecide to prevent algae from blooming.

For more information on any pool or chemical enquiries, do not hesitate to contact HY-CLOR on 1800 625 123.

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