How Does Traditional Shock Differ From Chlorine-Free Pool Shock?

by | Sep 10, 2014 | Home and Garden

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Most pool owners understand that an integral component of maintenance is shocking your pool every so often. Depending on how much use your water gets, the general rule of thumb is to do it about once a week. The most common method used is to pour a large amount of chlorine into the water to ensure it remains safe to swim in. However, there are newer methods of chlorine-free pool shock that serve the same purpose.


What Shock Does


As people hop in the water, they bring with them all sorts of organic materials. Sunblock, lotion, perfume, sweat and even urine can remain suspended in the water. Additionally, the wind can blow in pollen dust and other things that a filter can’t remove because the particles are too small. Over time, this leads to murky water and makes the pool’s sanitizer (usually chlorine) less effective, because it’s continually working to break the matter down. Shocking a pool refers to managing that organic material so it doesn’t pose a health risk to swimmers.


Chlorine Shock


When massive amounts of chlorine are added to manage the build-up of organic material, it will essentially kill everything off at once. This means that the sanitizing agent regularly used is more efficient because it isn’t working to deal with the build-up. There are a few drawbacks to this method. First off, the chemicals used are extremely dangerous and safety precautions must be taken. Secondly, the water will be unsafe to swim in for an extended period of time while it stabilizes. It’s also worth noting that these chemicals aren’t safe for the environment either. Finally, there’s the expense to consider, as the chemicals will have to be purchased and added on a regular basis.


Chlorine-Free Pool Shock


There are other methods for dealing with organic build-up. One of them is potassium monopersulfate, which can be added to water on the same schedule as traditional shock. The benefit to using it is that it’s less harsh and the water will be safe for swimming much sooner. The downside is that it won’t manage an algae problem. A second option is to use ozone, as with the OzoneMAX, to bind together the particles, so they can be picked up by the filter. Main benefits to this type of system include its ability to manage algae and that it’s chemical-free, so it’s safe to swim right away.


The alternate methods serve the same purpose, but go about it differently. They all help manage organic build-up to ensure the water is safe for swimming and that the water sanitizer used regularly works at its best. Although the result is the same, each variant requires different levels of chemicals to do the job.

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