Chlorine Tablets for Swimming Pools
Buying pool chemicals can be a little confusing. There is almost no way to read the labels and actually know what each ingredient is and what it will do to the water chemistry. As far as pool chemicals go you get what you pay for. If you have a backyard kiddie pool then by all means get the generic stuff, but if you plan on keeping your in-ground pool in tip-top shape then consider the ingredients, and the percent of ingredients that are in your chemicals.
If you don't believe me go to Walmart and check the percent of chlorine per gallon of chlorine, then go to a local pool store and check the percent of chlorine one of their gallons has. Although the pool store chlorine will probably be twice the price, if it is reasonably priced then the percent of chlorine will also be twice as much. By buying from a pool store not only are you supporting a local business, but you will also only have to buy half as much chlorine than from other stores. If your pool is cloudy many times you can take a water sample into pool stores and have them test it. Some pool stores may charge for this, but it doesn't hurt to ask. If you ask one of the people that works there they will also gladly give you advice to help you out.
Perhaps the biggest problem with many pool owners today is buying generic pool tablets made from Calcium Hypochlorite. Calcium Hypolchlorite is an unstable form of chlorine. By unstable I mean it is more easily combustible than other forms of chlorine, and it does not last long in the water. Unstable chlorine dissolves easily in water, so it is okay for a quick fix, but not worth it in the long run. The Calcium in the tablets increases the water hardness, and after prolonged use the calcium build-up in the pool water, along with other factors, can turn the pool cloudy, or make the water more sensitive to going cloudy. It may be possible to reduce the hardness of the water through regular evaporation, and adding soft water i.e. rainwater. Other than that the only alternative to get rid of hard water is to drain/partially drain the pool then add fresh water. This should be done by a professional, and vinyl liner pools should never be fully drained or the liner may float. Usually before the calcium builds up that much in your pool water it will build up in your chlorinator. The calcium can ruin chlorinators; however it may be preventable with regularly cleaning the build up. I have talked to many people who are thrilled about the price they bought calcium hypochlorite chlorine tablets for and they think that they saved a quick buck. In the end though it will cost them more money than they saved buying cheap chlorine tablets.