Sodium Bisulfate For Pools

Beginner Info, Pool

sodium bisulfate for pools
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Sodium Bisulfate: Well, in this post, I would be walking you through various aspects of sodium bisulfate to help you achieve optimum results effortlessly.

Whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned professional, this idiosyncratic and comprehensive guide will help you in making the correct decision.

I’m assuming that you’re doing some sort of online research in order to find out a feasible solution on how to lower the pH balance and total alkalinity in your pool with the help of sodium bisulfate.

Well, if that is the case, then all I can say is that you’ve landed on the correct post.

Like you and many other beginners out here, once upon a time, I also had the query of whether I should use sodium bisulfate in my pool or NOT.

Trust me, when I was starting out, I couldn’t find lots of information on the internet regarding sodium bisulfate.

But, now the time has changed and the world has become a global village, isn’t it?

Definitely, you can find tons of articles on sodium bisulfate.

Anyways, cutting a long story short, let’s have an in-depth discussion on sodium bisulfate.

While reading the article, at any point in time, if you’re NOT able to understand any concept then feel free to mail us your doubt and query.

Trust me, our team would be more than happy to assist you.

Sodium bisulfate is popularly known as dry acid.

Moreover, it is an acid salt popularly known as sodium hydrogen sulfate.

Sodium bisulfate is a multi-functional chemical and has a wide range of uses including food additives and cleaning.

But, if we talk in the context of a swimming pool, then it is mainly used to lower pH balance and total alkalinity when they surge in an epigrammatic span of time.

Many of you might not be aware of the fact that it is processed into a white grainy substance that can be easily and safely stored in a container and used henceforth as per the requirement.

What is sodium bisulfate?

In simple words, sodium bisulfate can be defined as the sodium salt of bisulfate anion and has a molecular formula of NaHSO4.

Well, when you partially neutralize sulfuric acid by a sodium base equivalent (NACL) the product formed is none other than sodium bisulfate.

NaCl + H2SO4 → HCl + NaHSO4

What are the common uses of sodium bisulfate?

  • Well, it is a popular preservative and has numerous uses
  • Also, it is used in food additives, meat processing, dietary supplements, and drugs
  • Moreover, it is also used in pH control, disinfecting, household cleaning products, metal cleaning, leather tanning, swimming pools, etc

Sodium Bisulfate Chemical Properties

Well, sodium bisulfate is highly reactive and thus gets easily dissolved in water.

It’s not a neutral salt but technically an acidic salt.

Moreover, aqueous solutions of sodium bisulfate are highly acidic.

Frankly speaking, it reacts violently with both strong bases and strong oxidizing agents.

Under normal conditions, sodium bisulfate is stable but it decomposes when gets exposed to water.

Danger Related to Sodium Bisulfate

Since sodium bisulfate is a strong acid so it tends to make your skin and eyes uncomfortable.

It may cause eye and skin irritation.

Moreover, if the sodium bisulfate concentration is very high then it may cause you some serious eye problems.

If consumed in large amounts it can cause severe problems including diarrhea and vomiting.

Sodium Bisulfate Vs. Muriatic Acid

In my last post, I talked about muriatic acid in detail, and like sodium bisulfate, you can also use it for lowering pH levels.

I know many of you would be inquisitive to know which of the two should I use, right?

Muriatic acid aka HCL is a strong acid and is a highly caustic substance as well, so it might burn your skin or damage your pool surface in case you’ve NOT taken proper precautions while adding it to the pool.

Definitely, other than the pool cleaning you can use muriatic acid for cleaning tiles and removing build-up with ease.

As compared to sodium bisulfate, muriatic acid will lower the pool pH faster.

What the muriatic acid can do in less than 6 hours, sodium bisulfate will take more than 24 hours to achieve.

So, if you want fast results then definitely opt for muriatic acid.

On the other hand, if you want to play safe then sodium bisulfate could be your best bet.

Does pH balance and alkalinity really matter?

Trust me, it matters more than you can even think of.

I’ve written quite a few blog posts on these two topics to especially help the newbies achieve an optimum result.

Does it make sense?

For the safe and healthy ambiance of your pool, pH and alkalinity need to be well in balance.

Moreover, for the proper functioning of free chlorine, pH and alkalinity need to be well balanced.

To be honest, unbalanced pool chemistry can cause lots of problems including cloudy pool water, green pool, skin, and eye irritation.

How can I lower the pH with sodium bisulfate?

Yes, you heard it RIGHT!

It is possible to lower pH with sodium bisulfate and in spite of you being a newbie, you can do it on your own without a need for professional help and guidance.

All you need to do is to follow the 6 simple steps that we would be discussing in a while.

Pool Chemistry Levels Testing

First and foremost, you need to test your pool water chemistry to find out what really needs to be done.

You can use a testing strip or a pool testing kit to find out whether all the pool ingredients are balanced or NOT.

Once you get the final reading, you would be able to figure out whether your pool water pH is right on track or needs to be lowered.

If the pH is very high then you either opt for sodium bisulfate or muriatic acid whichever makes you more comfortable and does the trick for you.

Make sure, the pH level falls in the range of 7.2 and 7.6.

Many of you wouldn’t be aware of the fact that quite a few pH reducer products are made from a high concentration of sodium bisulfate.

Usually, the pH reducer made from sodium bisulfate comprises at least 90 percent and above of the chemical.

Lastly, each product comes with its own set of instructions so it is highly important that you read them thoroughly.

Sodium Bisulfate Amount Determination

Once you’ve figured out that the pH is on the higher side and needs to be reduced at the earliest.

Then, comes the step wherein you need to figure out the amount of sodium bisulfate that needs to be added to lower the pH level.

As per my knowledge and experience, you can add about ¾ of what the instructions call for to begin.

It’s always advisable, to begin with, a small amount and then add more amount of sodium bisulfate as per the requirement.

Dilution Process

Well, you need to be thorough with the product instruction to know whether dilution is needed or NOT.

If dilution is needed then you can use a five-gallon bucket wherein you can mix acid and water to get optimum results.

Sodium Bisulfate Adding Process

Now, comes the role of sodium bisulfate.

Make sure that you’re adding sodium bisulfate in the correct quantity to prevent any last-hour misadventure.

For an inground pool, this is close to the return jets; for an above-ground pool, this is along the pool wall.

Furthermore, make sure that the product is homogeneously distributed across the pool within a time span of 15 minutes or less.

Product Performance

Once the product is fully dissolved and homogenously distributed, allow the product to perform.

All you need to do is to follow the wait-and-watch policy and don’t interfere with the pool water by any means for the next 6 hours or so.

Pool Water Re-Testing

Once the product has done its work for at least 6 hours, you need to test the pH level using an effective pool water testing kit to find the final outcome.

If the test outcome isn’t favorable then you need to add more acid and again expedite the testing process after 6 hours.

In simple words, repeat the process until and unless you’ve achieved the result.

Can I lower alkalinity with the help of sodium bisulfate?

The short and precise answer is YES, YOU CAN.

But, before that, you need to be well aware of the standard range for alkalinity, right?

It should fall in the range of 80 and 120 ppm.

In case, you’re hearing the word alkalinity for the first time then please allow me to explain it to you.

Does it make sense?

Alkalinity plays a crucial role in stabilizing the pH level of your pool water.

And, a lower range of alkalinity leads to a drastic increase in pH levels.

So, my advice to all my readers would be to test both the levels, that is, pH and alkalinity at one go as it would help you to come to an inference.

Moreover, if your test shows the alkalinity level to be too low then refrain from entering your pool as lower alkalinity is found to cause a series of problems including itching, staining, and burning eyes, and skin.

Another side effect of low alkalinity is that the pH level would be very unstable, that is, bouncing up and down.

And, as a result, the sanitizer might lose its effectiveness.

The good thing about sodium bisulfate is that it reduces both pH levels and alkalinity.

Remember, lowering the pH and alkalinity would take some time so you need to be patient and keep adding products and doing testing to achieve the optimum result.

Never ignore the set of instructions that comes with the product.

For the best result, you need to read it thoroughly and apply it to your pool water without skipping a single step.

In case, it’s your first time wherein you’re using a sodium bisulfate product then definitely the below-mentioned steps would be of great help.

  • First and foremost, you need to find out the capacity of your pool and how many gallons of water it can hold
  • Now, you need to figure out the quantity of sodium bisulfate that is required
  • If needed mix dry acid with water
  • Turn the jets off and wait about an hour before adding about ¾ of what the instructions call for the deep end of the pool
  • Always pour the product slowly in a small stream which will help you in minimizing the disruption of the pH balance
  • Allow the product at least 6 to 8 hours to do its job
  • Afterward, test for both Ph levels and alkalinity
  • If you fail to achieve optimum result then repeat the process and the re-testing after every six hours until and unless you find the readings as per the industry standards

Tips For Using Sodium Bisulfate In Pool

I totally agree with you that sodium bisulfate is safer to use and store as compared to muriatic acid still you need to keep an eye on it to prevent any last-hour misadventure.

However, by taking certain safety measures, you can easily mitigate the risk associated with it.

Let’s have a quick look at each of them.

  • Refrain from entering the pool for at least 6 hours after adding sodium bisulfate into the pool water
  • Try not to add more than the recommended amount of sodium bisulfate to your pool water
  • Moreover, adding sodium bisulfate to your pool should be a slow and steady process

It’s A Wrap

It is a well-known fact that proper and regular maintenance of the pool keeps the problems at bay.

Definitely, you’ll not have too many problems with pH and alkalinity if the pool water chemistry tests are done on a regular basis.

It’s always a good idea to catch the problem in a nascent stage.

In case, you’ve ignored a change in the levels of both pH and alkalinity then the probability is very high that it will give birth to a series of problems.

So, it’s really important that you keep track of the levels of pH and alkalinity in order to keep your pool clean, safe, and free from algae and other bacteria.

I hope you would’ve thoroughly enjoyed this comprehensive guide on sodium bisulfate, and if that is the case, then please do rate us on a scale of 1 to 5 with the latter being the best.

Last but not least, share this piece of information with the ones who are in need of it.

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