Household Pool Chemicals

Most people have household pool chemicals. Purchased for other than swimming pool use, These household chemicals may be used for pool care.

Sodium Hypochlorite, Better Known as Bleach

Bottles of bleach will substitute for liquid pool shock. The main ingredient, sodium hypochlorite, is identical whether the bleach was bought for laundry or to shock the pool. Bleach has 6% available sanitizer compared to 35% sanitizer for Lithium Hypochlorite Shock or 12-15% for liquid pool shock. Household bleach is not as concentrated as liquid pool shock.

A bottle of bleach will substitute for 1/2 pound of granular chlorine shock. Add directly to the water. Bleach will increase the pools PH, only use it when the swimming pool PH is less than 7.8

At 6%, bleach is not an economical replacement for pool shock However, here on Long Island a store called Island Recreation sells 5.33% "liquid shock" at liquid shock prices. Don't be ripped off, check the label for the percent concentration. Genuine Liquid shock is 12% or more sodium hypochlorite

Sodium Tetraborate Penthydrate, Better Known as 20 Mule Team Borax.

Borax makes an excellent and economical replacement for PH increaser. Borax is the main ingredient in many packaged PH increasers. It has good buffering ability and increases PH quickly.

Be certain tetraborate Penthydrate is the only ingredient. If it is a laundry product, check for detergent.

Target stores, Walmart and some supermarkets sell 20 Mule Team Borax.

One 4 pound box of Borax will raise the pH in my 18 X 36 pool about .4 points. For example, from pH 6.8 to pH 7.2.

Sodium Bicarbonate, Better Known as Baking Soda

Baking soda is the exact same chemical as alkalinity increaser sold in stores as alkalinity up. Use pound for pound. Huge bags may be purchased at COSTCO.

Muriatic Acid

Muriatic acid is often recommended for reducing swimming pool PH. This acid is normally used to etch cement or clean masonry, for example: cleaning excess mortar from bricks or stains from cement. Many building supply stores such as Home Depot sell muriatic acid. It is used to lower the PH and alkalinity.

It is acid so be careful when handling. Wear gloves.

Air, The Unseen Household Pool Chemical


To solve a low pH high alkalinity problem aerate the water. I do it by turning the return nozzles straight up for a plume of water. Aerating converts the alkalinity to higher pH. Aerating can take a day or two and you must monitor the alkalinity level as it will drop.

Vitamin C known as Ascorbic Acid

An excellent stain remover. Crunch it and put on a small stain to remove it.

Those are the household pool chemicals that may be used to sanitize your pool. Never mix chemicals

Practice Proper Storage and Use of your Chemicals.

Muriatic Acid and Bleach fumes are hazardous and dangerous to children and adults. These chemicals are highly corrosive. Please be sensible. Household Chemicals and Children

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