The chlorine tablet is perhaps my best invention – actually, I didn’t invent tablet chlorine, only our particular formulation, but we are proud that it’s America’s favorite chlorine tablet!
However, it’s an incomplete product, due to the need for additional equipment, to dissolve the tablets and introduce the chlorine to the pool water.
We are actually working on some self contained delivery systems, microchip controlled release…more on that later.
Today’s class is on best practices for using chlorine tablets in pools.
HOW NOT TO USE Chlorine Tablets
Never throw chlorine pucks directly into the pool, it will stain plaster and damage vinyl and fiberglass pools. Chlorine tablets should never be in contact with pool surfaces, or your swimmers!
Don’t put chlorine tabs in the skimmer basket either, because when the pump shuts off for ‘x’ hours per day, the tabs continue to dissolve, filling the skimmer with high concentrations of chlorine. When the pump turns on again, 2-3 gallons of corrosive chlorine is drawn through the pump, filter and heater before being dispersed in the pool. It also damages pipes beneath the skimmer.
Don’t place chlorine tablets on the shelf or throat of the skimmer either. Over time this will discolor plaster and fiberglass, and may pucker vinyl beneath the skimmer. Same as above, this happens while the pump is off, and the chlorine tabs continue to leach hypochlorous acid.
HOW TO USE Chlorine Tablets
The best method for aboveground or inground pools is to use an automatic chlorinator, also called a chlorine feeder, installed into the plumbing of your pool return line. If there is not enough room (8-12 inches) of clear pipe to plumb in the inline chlorinator, an off-line unit can be installed. Off-line units sit on the ground and two small black hoses bring water into the unit, and carry chlorine out of the unit, injecting it directly into the return pipe.
Another benefit of using an installed chlorinator is that you have more control over the amount of chlorine being dispensed. The dial on the side controls the flow of water into the unit, and the number of tablets in the feeder helps control the flow of chlorine out of the unit.
The second best method is to use a chlorine floater. This is a less than desirable method however, because 1). the floater could become stuck on a step or ladder, or 2). the floater could tip over and spill it’s contents.
If you do use a chlorine floater, remove it carefully while swimming, to prevent it from capsizing, or being used as a pool toy. Tying off a floater in the deep end, using a length of string will help keep it from ‘floating’ around too much.
The Future of Chlorinated Isocyanurates
We are working many late nights here in the lab, to produce the world’s first self-dispensing chlorine tablets. I can’t divulge much more than that, other than it will be programmable to your pool size, with a delivery system contained within biodegradable packaging… Oops, I’ve said too much already!
Back to the Lab!