pHin App Compact Mode Enables Remote Client Management

With pHin data at their fingertips, service technicians can efficiently initiate proactive water care schedules.

pHin has added Compact Mode to the pHin app, enabling service technicians to remotely view customer water data with an easy filter view and alerts.

A pHin Smart Water Monitor deployed in a client’s pool, hot tub, or swim spa measures the water pH, oxidation reduction potential, and temperature, with charts showing seven day, 60-day, and 90-day views. The measurements are taken over 1,000 times per week, and the proprietary algorithm analyzes the results to provide a color-coded status indicating whether the water is balanced, needs an action, or is unsafe.

Client management is streamlined with Compact Mode. Technicians can monitor a vast number of pHins through the app, streamlined with a filter view to search clients by location, vessel name, water status, and cellphone number. Technicians can also assign a custom name to the connected pHins, such as client name, address, location, or even a client’s separate units in a hot tub and pool. When the water is unbalanced and needs attention, they’re alerted in real-time in the app or via email so they can proactively schedule maintenance be

fore the customer even notices an issue. The data provided in Compact Mode can also be used to manage service schedules and delegating teams.

Compact Mode can be activated in the pHin app with a simple on/off in account settings with the most-recent version of the app. Technicians can add client pHin Smart Monitors to their account by scanning the QR code on the box or entering the serial number during setup to add the pHin to their account.

The Ultimate Pool Care Routine for A Stress-Free Summer

School is wrapping up and the days are getting longer and warmer – which means summer is finally here!

If you’ve opened your pool (hot tub, or swim spa) for the season, it’s time to set a routine to keep it safe for swimming all summer long.

The pHin team put together these steps to stress-free pool care:

1.       Set a schedule

Your pool water needs regular care to stay balanced and safe throughout the summer. To stay on track, set up a schedule to use water test strips, adjust chemicals, and add shock (Learn more about shocking here.).

Plan a day to brush the pool weekly, it’s an important step towards preventing algae buildup, removing dirt particles, and smoothing the surface to ensure a long-lasting finish. And, remember to use the skimmer daily to remove leaves and debris that may collect overnight.

2.       Stock up on chemicals

You may already have chosen your favorite chemical brand, or are going with the recommendation from your pool builder or hot tub manufacturer. Stock up on a good supply of chemicals, shock, and test strips, so you don’t run out unexpectedly. You can even keep a chart nearby to note when items are getting low. Store them safely, secured and away from children and pets.

Your local pool technician can help keep you stocked too. Many are taking online orders and offering curbside pickup, so getting the supplies you need is even easier. You can even find a pool store near you and place an order if you’re a pHin user, right through the pHin app!

3.       Get Ready for Testing

Water testing can be challenging, even for experienced pool owners! Most pool owners check their temperature daily and test the water with strips weekly. A helper like the pHin Smart Water Monitor can boost the number of tests for accurate measurements available anytime through the app. It floats in the pool, measuring the pH, sanitizer, and temperature over 1,000 times per week.

The measurements are put through an algorithm that will give a clear status of whether the water is balanced, or needs action. If the water isn’t safe, the pHin user will get a push notification, with actionable instructions and exact chemical dosing.

4.       Plan for fun!

Once you know your pool is safe for swimming, accessorize and plan for fun! Schedule wine nights by the pool, plan your Fourth of July barbeque, and stock up on pool floaties, water games, and lots of sunblock.

Want to keep your pool in top swimming shape? Try out pHin! Learn more here.

Dads Love pHin! Hear Why From 4 Users

Summer is in full swing and many pool and hot tub owners have gotten their water care routine started, with the help of pHin. Dads who handle pool water care want to make sure it’s safe, and pHin is a great helper. With Father’s Day around the corner, we asked a few dads why they trust pHin to keep their water in safe swimming condition for their family:

“The pHin Smart Monitor was a breeze to install and instantly gives me all the feedback on the overall health of my pool right on my phone. I especially like that it can send notifications via the app so any chemical imbalances can be addressed immediately by me or sent to my pool maintenance company.” – — Joe Hageman, Narragansett, Rhode Island

“The pHin smart monitoring system is extremely accurate and reliable. The size is non-intrusive, not annoying like a large pool float. The product is sleek like a fin and floats 24/7 in the pool. It is pretty darn accurate when it comes to diagnostic readings of pH levels within the app. When used properly and following the recommended chemicals it automatically evaluates the water and let’s you know right away if the pH is balanced, the smart technology app capability really takes the guesswork out making this a good investment. I love this product I talk about it to all my coworkers and neighbors.  Living in sunny southern California all my neighbors have pools and have asked how they can get one.”

— Kevin Oswald, Murrieta, California

“Owning a pool should be fun, but it is frequently more a guessing game and source of irritation. Is there enough chlorine? Is there too much chlorine? Is algae going to start blooming? Is the pH level correct? Is the water healthy to swim in? How much of what chemical do I need to add and when? With pHin I can take a quick look at the app and know everything is the way it is supposed to be, and if something is off, see exactly how much of which chemical to add. Plus, I can check on the water temp and have visible proof for my girls that the water is definitely still too cold for dad to go swimming!” — John Sciacca, Myrtle Beach, North Carolina –

“Anyone tasked with taking care of a pool or spa will love having a pHin. It allows you to keep a regular eye on your pool, tells you which chemicals need to be added and when, and if your treatments are having the desired effect. So far, this pool season has been great thanks to pHin!”

— Kevin St. Lawrence, Richmond, Rhode Island 

Want to gift a pHin for Father’s Day this year?  Buy now on pHin.co.

New Pool? Tips for Getting Water Ready for Swimming

You wanted a pool, longing to jump into cool water after a hot day, splashing with your family on the weekends, or floating around with a cocktail after work. So, you researched. You planned and consulted. You purchased, you landscaped, and you waited.

Congratulations on your new pool! A pool full of new water isn’t safe to swim in right away. To get the most out of it (and protect your investment), you need to prepare it before welcoming swimmers. pHin team put together what you need to know to get your water safe and ready for swimming:

Assemble your tools.

Every pool owner should have a standard set of tools they use to test and treat their pool water. That includes:

  • A water test kit
  • Pool brushes and cleaning tools
  • Chemicals
    • Chlorine or salt, depending on your system
    • Baking soda
    • Muriatic acid: One of the chemicals used to lower pH and total alkalinity in pools. Follow the instructions on the label, and make sure it is compatible with your pool; some muriatic acid can’t be used in hot tubs or with fiberglass, vinyl, or painted pools.
    • Sequestering agent: Iron and copper can build up in your pool. Sequestering agents help prevent staining and scaling by suspending the metal particles in solution.

Test the pool water.

Take your first water measurements with test strips to get the pH, chlorine, and total alkalinity levels of the water. You can purchase a test kit at your local pool store, or online.

Safe water should have pH between 6.8 and 7.2, and total alkalinity between 70 and 80 ppm.

There is a range for an optimal pH, which should then be raised between 8 7.1 and 7.7 for chlorine pools and 7.0 and 7.5 for salt pools. Lower pH provides better sanitizing benefits. At the same time, this will raise the total alkalinity. For example, concrete pools should have total alkalinity between 80 and 120 ppm, where painted, vinyl, or fiberglass pools should be between 125 and 170 ppm.

Remember, whenever you’re adding chemicals to your pool, use extra caution to prevent them from touching your skin or eyes, by using gloves or goggles. Keep the chemicals secured and stored safely away from children and pets.

Grab your scrub brush.

To get the water balance right, you’ll need to keep your pool clean.

As a best practice, brush the pool often using a nylon brush. Particles, leaves, or dirt can get stuck in corners, steps, and other crevices, so make sure they get extra attention. You can also use a pool skimmer to catch leaves or bugs that accumulate on the surface overnight.

After the pool is balanced, you may want to add algaecide. Always check with your manufacturer to make sure it’s compatible with your pool, how much to add, and when it would be safe to swim.

Let the water settle.

Your pool water needs time to run through the system. Allow the pump to run for 1-2 days, and, as you add chemicals through the process, you may need to wait a few days in between to allow for stabilization.

You should also wait until the chemicals settle before using a heater or vacuum. If you don’t wait, it could interfere with the pool’s curing time, which can cause long-term damage. Some experts recommend letting your pool cure for 21 days, but it’s best to check with your manufacturer or local pool expert to determine the most suitable time-frame.

Set your pool care routine.

Once your pool is open and ready for swimming, you need to set a routine to keep it safe. Schedule weekly water test strips and chemical adjustments.

If you’re brand new to pools, testing, and chemicals, technology like the pHin Smart Water Monitor can remove the guesswork of water care. Instead of testing just once a week, pHin gives you a clear picture of your water quality in real-time. The device takes over 1,000 measurements a week (few pool owners can match that by hand!), and sends alerts, reminders, and chemical dose instructions in the app. See what users think of pHin.

Why and How Do We Shock Our Pools?

Seasoned pool owners know shocking is important to water care. When new pool owners research maintenance tips, they quickly find the advice: “Shock your pool. Shock your pool. Shock your pool.”

But, why do we shock?  

Regular pool shocks are critical to keeping the water safe, and to maintaining balanced water.

The main reason you need to shock is to get rid of the chloramines in the pool, which can be responsible for eye irritation and an ammonia smell. Shocking is an extra boost to burn off of bacteria so that the free chlorine can do its job.

Chlorine or bromine sanitizers can get overworked and need to be removed from the pool. This could be after a heavy rainstorm, lots of kids in the pool, or a pool party. Using a non-chlorine shock is the first step to eliminating bacteria, and doesn’t disrupt your chlorine or bromine levels, so your water can remain balanced.

How do you shock?

  • Check the label: If you have shock for a chlorine pool, carefully read the instructions to know how long the manufacturer recommends waiting before you can swim.
  • Set a schedule: Shocking your pool should be done each week – and it can be as simple as tossing a pod in the water. There are many brands that offer shock, so find what works best for your pool, or consult a local pool retailer or service technician.
  • Pick a time: Shock your pool when it’s not going to be occupied. These chemicals aren’t stabilized, so you may have to stay out of the water for at least a few hours to let the shock spread and start working, depending on the type of shock you’re using. Evenings or late afternoons work, or if you’re not a morning swimmer, maybe your shock can be in the morning.

In addition to pool shocking, make sure you check your pool water balance regularly. The right water balance keeps your pool safe to jump in anytime, and it can be simple. Pool experts created the pHin Smart Monitor, a system that measures your pool water chemistry, sends you alerts, and helps with chemical dosing. 

Need more pool know-how? Check out our Pool Chemicals 101 guide.

4 Reasons to Love Smart Water Care with pHin

The pHin Smart Monitor makes pool, hot tub, and swim spa water care easy.

pHin puts the power of technology, internet connectivity, and built-in analysis into the palm of your hands with the smartphone app and real-time alerts. Our pHin pool and hot tub owners have shared their success stories; here’s why they love pHin:

1.       Peace of Mind

Pools, swim spas, and hot tubs are a place for fun and relaxation. But the dangers of green water, hot tub rash, and bacteria build-up can make water care stressful. pHin takes the guesswork out of water care by simplifying the routine for bromine, chlorine, or saltwater hot tubs and pools with instant alerts and dosing instructions. With pHin floating, families can have peace of mind knowing whether their water is safe for swimming anytime.

2.       Instant alerts

pHin sends real-time information and notifications about your water balance through the app. When you’re heading home from work and want to jump in the hot tub, you can quickly check whether you need any chemicals, and what the temperature is.

3.       A chemist at your fingertips

New pool owner Aaron Richardson tried pHin when his pool needed daily scrubbing to keep from turning green. “I can read tables and do math, but the traditional pool care process is overcomplicated.” He bought pHin for help with chemical dosing, and right away the monitor changed his pool care routine: “When we started with pHin, it told us everything we needed to do, including shocking.” pHin calculates how much of each chemical to add to balance the water with no guesswork. Read more about Aaron’s experience with pHin here.

4.       Water data and “Kill Power”

pHin tests water chemistry differently. Instead of telling you how much chlorine is in the water, for example, it gives a “Kill Power” rating — an analysis of how the chemicals are working against bacteria. With the pHin Monitoring Subscription, you can also track your pool or hot tub over time, with water history charts and shareable data for in-person help from experts.

Have your own water care success story with pHin? Share with us on Twitter or Facebook.

What is Total Alkalinity and Total Hardness?

Maintaining balanced pool and hot tub water requires a lot of attention and education about the different chemicals and their importance in keeping water safe for swimming. pool or hot tub owners (or future owners) will hear a lot about “total alkalinity” and “total hardness”, two key factors that affect water chemistry

But why are they important? The pHin experts break it down:

What is Total Alkalinity?

Total Alkalinity is the total concentration of dissolved carbonates, bicarbonates, hydroxides and cyanurates present in the water.

Alkalinity acts as a pH buffer in pools and hot tubs, adding a layer of armor that absorbs fluctuations and keeps your pool chemistry stable. Water with a high alkalinity level can decrease the water’s acidity causing cloudiness, lime precipitation, calcium deposits, and make adjusting pH more difficult.

How to Manage Total Alkalinity

Test the total alkalinity of your pool once per week. If the alkalinity is high, read the instructions on your chemical of choice (sodium bisulphate or muriatic acid) and carefully and measure it out. If alkalinity is low, there are two ways to increase the level: sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) or any type of alkalinity increaser product — be sure to purchase a product made from sodium bicarbonate. When distributing chemicals, add the increaser or decreaser in either the deep end of your pool or where the water return distributes.

These chemicals can cause irritation, so don’t touch the water for at least six hours. Then, retest the pool’s total alkalinity; if it’s still too high or low, re-treat the water again as needed and continue that process every six hours.

What is Total Hardness?

Total hardness refers to how much calcium is dissolved in the water. The level of hardness should be maintained between 200 and 400 ppm.

Water hardness varies based on region, so, if your water is regularly hard then you’ll have to drain your pool once or twice a year. Fresh water can then be added to get the water back in balance. A hardness reducer can also be used to soften water levels.

How to Manage Total Hardness

If your calcium hardness is above 400 ppm, you’ll need to drain a portion of your pool or hot tub and add fresh water. This helps to lower levels because calcium-rich water is pumped out and replaced with tap water during the refill. If your calcium hardness is too low, it can be increased by adding calcium chloride from your local pool retailer. If you want to take the hassle out of pool and hot tub care, consider pHin. It floats in the water and keeps an eye on pH, sanitizer, and temperature (more than 1000x/week!) as well as total hardness, total alkalinity, and cyanuric acid. With the app, it sends alerts whenever your water needs balancing so you’re always ready for safe swimming.

6 Hot Tub Mistakes to Avoid

Hot tubs can have many benefits – they can help with a post-workout recovery, de-stressing, and even be a place to host parties. If not properly cared for and safe for soaking, hot tub water can pose health risks, like coughs and rashes. Yikes!

The warm water in a hot tub needs special care to remain a safe place for whatever benefits you seek, whether it’s fun, relaxation, or recovery. The certified pHin pool care experts put together a list of 6 Don’ts of hot tub care:

1.       Don’t cut the power on a full tub

Whether you use your hot tub regularly, a few times a month, or a few times a week, it’s necessary to maintain the same water level and a steady temperature. For both cold and warm seasons, this is ideal to maintain the chemical balance vs.  letting your hot tub cool down and then reheating it for each use.

2.       If you see green, don’t get in

If you’re ready for a soak and your hot tub water looks a little off, has a weird foam, green tinge, or flowing foam – don’t get in. These are signs that your hot tub water is unbalanced, unsanitary, or unsafe, and can have health risks. It will need chemical attention to be re-balanced, or you may have to drain and refill the tub to resolve the issue.

3.       Say “no” to plastic covers

Maintaining hot tub water is a delicate balance. A greenhouse setup or a plastic cover can magnify sun rays and trap heat in the tub. This extra heat can make it challenging to maintain a healthy water balance, and can even melt the plastic cover. It’s best to use the hot tub cover recommended by the manufacturer.

4.       Some like it hot – but don’t go over 104° F

The heat of the hot tub can be soothing for tired muscles, or even help with common headache symptoms. But be careful – a hot tub’s max temperature should be 104° F. Heating your hot tub above this level can be unhealthy and dangerous for swimmers, and could also damage your hot tub.

5.       Skip the soaps and suds

Aromatherapy can enhance hot tub relaxation, but it’s best to keep soaps, scents, and suds out of the water. Adding these products is not recommended by most hot tub manufacturers, as they can be detrimental to your system, requiring a drain and refill or  an expensive repair. It’s also a best practice to rinse off in the shower before getting into the hot tub. If you’d like some extra soothing scents, you can try an essential oil diffuser or candles in your hot tub space.

6.       Don’t forget your filters

For best results, hot tub filters need to be cleaned every two to three months and completely replaced every two years. Even if you don’t regularly use the hot tub, changing filters is important, because buildup can be a cause of unbalanced water and affect the lifespan of your hot tub. For a more efficient hot tub, the silver ion cartridge needs to be changed every four months.

Bonus tip #7: Use technology to monitor your hot tub water

Whether you have a service tech who manages your hot tub or you’re taking on the task yourself, the best way to know exactly what’s going on in your hot tub water is to have a smart monitor that analyzes it for you. The pHin has built-in analytics, a mobile app, and Bluetooth connectivity that keeps you informed about your hot tub water and guides you with chemical instructions.

Learn about the three simple steps for pool care with pHin.

3 Steps to Stress-free Pool Care with pHin

 There are many perks to having a pool– relaxation and pool parties, or a nice après-ski soak. New pool owners might not realize the challenges of ongoing maintenance required to keep the water clean, healthy, and ready for a good time, so we’ve rounded up some essential pieces of pool maintenance advice to help you manage your water.

Pool-care professionals recommend measuring your water chemistry at least once a week. If neglected, getting your pool or hot tub water balanced again can be a frustrating task that costs both time and money.

 A smart water care system like pHin helps take care of this task while taking the stress out of managing your pool or hot tub, with three easy steps:

1. Constant Water Monitoring

Most people check their water levels once a week or just before they hop in the pool but water chemistry is easily affected by how much you use your pool or hot tub, how many people are using it, the weather (especially rain and heat), water temperature, sunlight, and several other factors. The lag between water checkups can create an unhealthy water situation. Since weather and water temperature are always changing, it’s best to test your pool water as often as possible to make sure you have an accurate picture of its overall water quality. Between raising a family, working, and other tasks, it’s difficult for most people to consistently test their pool water more than once per week, which is why a smart water monitor like pHin is the best alternative.

Once you drop pHin in the water, it automatically starts measuring pH, sanitizer, and temperature levels — over 1,000 times every week! The daily measurements are collected and analyzed with the monitor’s built-in intelligence to show you the status of your water health at any time, along with an easy-to-understand guide that will notify you whether your water is safe for swimming, needs chemicals to be balanced, or is unsafe.

2. Automatic Alerts

With smart technology in the pool, you’ll always know the status of your pool water. The pHin app gives you information about the water balance and temperature while sending you app alerts letting you know when you need to adjust your chemicals. Knowing the status of your water at any time can help you ensure that your pool or hot tub is always jump-in ready. It also helps you with easy steps to set unbalanced water right – continue to step three to read how!

3. Chemical Instructions

pHin is your personal pool and hot tub water expert. Instead of having to learn the charts, tables, and measurements for proper water chemistry yourself, pHin analyzes your water quality and provides easy instructions to get balanced water. It works with most major retail chemicals and uses its built-in analytics to give you precise dosing instructions for balanced water based on the chemical brand you use, your pool system, and your pool size.  All you have to do is follow the instructions and check in to see your water status on the app. Whether you’re a new pool owner or you’re looking to manage your existing hot tub or pool water, you can get the full benefits with smart monitoring from pHin.

Pool Chemicals 101: What You Need To Know

When you first decide to get a pool, you’re thinking about the fun you’ll have: pool parties, kids frolicking, swimming laps in the morning. Unfortunately, once you fill your pool up with water you can’t just “set it and forget it.”

Pools tend to grow algae and get dirty from the chemicals and skin cells from all those swimmers, plus debris and other natural contaminants can also cloud the water and create an unswimmable, bacteria-infested environment. The last thing you want is to go for a pleasant dip and find that the water is too dirty and might even make you and your friends or family ill.

Sometimes it seems like you need a degree in chemistry to make sure your pool chemicals are perfectly balanced. Not true. It doesn’t have to be hard to make sure your pool is always clean, safe and ready for a good time. Once you understand the basics of pool chemicals and maintenance, it becomes easier and less time-consuming to make sure your pool is balanced and swimmable, especially if you have a smart water monitoring system to help.

It’s important to check your chemicals often and to perform regular maintenance. Why? One: You won’t have the long-term issues like algae blooms or bacterial infections that might create health issues for you and your swimmers. Two: You’ll avoid issues that might require draining and refilling your pool, or even more serious repairs that are expensive and will have your pool out of commission for a long time. Three: Your pool will always be ready and waiting for you to dive in and enjoy.

This overview of pool chemical basics will help any new pool owner as well as those with years of experience owning and maintaining their pools. The basic chemicals you need to monitor and adjust are:

●       Pool Sanitizers: Chlorine and Bromine

●       Algaecides

●       pH Balancers

●       Alkalinity Balancers

●       Hardness Balancers

●       Pool Shock

Don’t worry! It may seem like a lot to manage but we make keeping track of your pool’s chemical balance simple and easy.

What are pool sanitizers and why do you need them?

What do pool sanitizers do?

Pool sanitizers combine with bacteria, viruses, algae and other natural contaminants in your pool to neutralize (destroy) them. The two most popular pool sanitizers are chlorine and bromine. Sanitizers are the most important pool chemical, but it’s important to know that they work best when all of the other levels in your pool — alkaline, pH and calcium hardness — are balanced as well.

What is the difference between chlorine and bromine?

Chlorine neutralizes bacteria and viruses by attaching to them and changing their chemical profile. Once this happens, the chlorine is no longer effective, but the contaminants are gone.

Chlorine comes in a granule form which you can drop right in the pool. Granular chlorine has to be added to your pool  and tested  almost daily so it’s a little more time-intensive to manage.

Chlorine also comes in 1-inch or 3-inch tablets which can be administered using a floating chlorine dispenser, through the pool skimmer, or through an automatic chlorinator. These methods guarantee a more consistent distribution of the pool sanitizer and are also less labor intensive, especially if you have a smart pool monitor that will send you alerts about your current chemical levels if and when they get out of balance.

Chlorine 101:

●       The ideal target balance for chlorine is 3ppm (parts per million). If you are under 3ppm, your pool is probably starting to become a petri dish. Anything more than 3ppm, and you probably need to dilute the chemicals in your water.

●       Most brands of chlorine are pretty similar. If you’re looking for a reason to buy one over another, check the “active ingredients” list which is what actually works to destroy the bacteria. 

●       Weekly pool shocks are required with chlorine to clear the pool.

Bromine is similar to chlorine, but it tends to work better in pools, spas and hot tubs that run at warmer temperatures. Bromine is a great option for people whose skin is sensitive to chlorine, although it is actually chlorine-based, in case you have anyone who is allergic to chlorine.

Bromine can be more expensive than chlorine; however, bromine actually ionizes the bacteria and viruses and then continues to work, unlike chlorine, so it does last longer. Bromine comes in tablets and must be administered using a chemical dispenser.

Bromine 101:

●       The ideal target balance for bromine is between 3ppm (parts per million) and 5ppm.

●       Weekly pool shocks are required with bromine to clear the pool.

●       Bromine does not add cyanuric acid or chlorine to the water.

●       Bromine is less stable than chlorine when exposed to the sun, so you need to make sure you are constantly checking your pool chemical levels.

What are algaecides and why do you need them?

What do algaecides do?

If, or when, you see your pool looking a little cloudy and green (green pool water is a warning sign, but it can also be  yellow, blue, or black) it’s time to worry about algae. Sometimes you can spot an algae outbreak before it shows in the pool water by checking the water line, the corners of the pool and stairs for discoloration. It’s important to keep an eye out for algae in your pool as it can cause bacterial skin infections or even injuries due to slips and scrapes from a slimy surface. You want to jump into a crystal clear pool, right?!

There are several types of algae that can infest your pool; green algae is the most common and black algae is the hardest to remove. Algaecides stop algae from growing in your pool and prevent outbreaks from happening. It’s much easier and more efficient  to use the right pool chemicals during regular maintenance to prevent an outbreak rather than to try to use algaecides to cure an algae outbreak in your pool. Most algaecides are based on copper sulfates or copper chelates which stop the algae from growing. Copper-based algae treatments may stain your pool — so make sure to check before you purchase.

Algaecides 101:

●       Monitor your pool’s chemical levels constantly. A smart pool water management system, like pHin, can help you make sure that your chemical levels are balanced to help avoid an algae outbreak.

●       Make sure that your pool circulation is functioning correctly: Stagnant water is a breeding ground for algae.

●       Brush the waterline of your pool regularly to make sure that algae isn’t breeding at the surface of your pool.

●       Shock your pool. Shock your pool. Shock your pool. This should be a weekly ritual if you want to ensure healthy, swimmable water for you, your family and friends.

●       Mustard and black algae are not impacted by chlorine so you will need an algaecide to treat those conditions.

What are pH balancers and why do you need them?

What do pH balancers do?

pH balancers maintain a healthy pH range in your pool, critical to its overall health and functionality. If your pH gets too high or too low, swimmers will experience eye irritation or other skin discomforts. It can also corrode your pool tiles and damage your pumps and other expensive pool systems. Plus, if your pH is not within the correct range, your pool sanitizer and other chemical levels will be less effective.

A pool’s pH level is extremely sensitive. Anything that comes in contact with your pool — leaves, bugs,  popsicles, sunscreen, beer, kids — will affect it. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to maintain your pH levels with consistent monitoring. Keep a pH increaser and a pH decreaser in your stockpile of pool chemical management tools.

pH balancers 101:

●       To keep your pool at the best, most effective pH level, readings  should be between 7.2 to 7.6. Use a smart pool monitoring device that checks these levels constantly every day and sends an alert to your mobile device letting you know if you need to make any adjustments.

●                   Alkalinity and pH are yin and yang. You need to make sure they’re both in the right zone in order to maintain your overall pool chemistry.

●                   7 is a neutral zone for your pool’s pH. Anything below 7 will be acidic. Anything over 7 indicates that it is too alkaline. If your pool is over or under, you’ll need to add acid or alkaline to get back in balance.

What are alkalinity balancers and why do you need them?

What do alkalinity balancers do?

Alkalinity balancers are used to maintain a safe total alkalinity range for a comfortable swimming experience. Alkalinity acts as a buffer or a shield for pH levels so if your levels are off, you need to adjust for the alkalinity first and sometimes the pH will correct itself.

Alkalinity 101:

●       The recommended level for alkalinity is 125 ppm, but anywhere in the 100 – 150ppm range should be acceptable.

●       Make sure you have an alkalinity increaser in your chemical kit just in case. There is no such thing as a chemical decreaser but a pH decreaser will lower both pH and alkalinity.

What are calcium hardness balancers and why do you need them?

What do calcium hardness balancers do?

You’ve heard of hard and soft water, right? The “hardness” of your water is based on how much calcium is in the water. This is totally dependent on where you live and what source you use to fill your pool. If your calcium level is too low, it can corrode your pool systems, equipment and plumbing. If the calcium level is too high and you have a plaster or tile/mason pool, it will damage the interior of the pool. Either way, nobody wants to replace expensive pool infrastructure because they didn’t monitor the calcium hardness level of their pool so it’s an important chemical level to check regularly.

Calcium Hardness 101:

●       The ideal targets for calcium are 80-150ppm in a vinyl pool and 150-200ppm in a concrete, plaster or tile pool.

●       If your calcium levels are off, check your alkalinity first, then address your pH levels. If those adjustments don’t fix the issue, there are some more advanced tools and chemicals you can use to correct the calcium hardness.

●       Check your calcium levels regularly. This is one of the easiest, yet most overlooked, steps to extending the longevity of your pool.

What is a pool shock and why is it so important?

What does a pool shock do?

Pool shocks clean your pool when its sanitizer (chlorine or bromine) is overworked and needs to have the remnants removed from the pool, which is why regular pool shocks are so critical. You may want to shock or superchlorinate your pool after specific events as well like a heavy rain storm, a big pool party, or a few small children who may or may not have accidents! Shocking your pool on a weekly basis with non-chlorine shock eliminates bacteria without shifting your chlorine levels and goes a long way towards keeping it balanced.

 Pool Shock 101:

●       Shock your pool every week. EVERY WEEK. A smart water monitoring system will remind you to shock your pool so it’s always ready and waiting for you to have fun.

●       Pool shock chemicals aren’t stabilized, so it’s best to shock your pool in the late afternoon or evening. Make sure to run the pump for several hours to make sure the chemicals are spread evenly and working.

●       If you use a chlorine-based pool shock, make sure you know how long the manufacturer recommends to wait before allowing swimmers into the pool.

Pool chemical testing and why is it so important?

So, you’re not a chemist — although you might be starting to feel like one! But you are a pool owner. Now that you know the basics of pool chemicals, balance and the importance of keeping your pool at the right chemical levels, you know that measuring chemical levels is the first and most important step. If you don’t know the status of your pool’s chemical levels, you won’t know how to correct and get back in balance.

You can use test strips at home, or take a water sample to your local pool store to determine what you need to adjust at any given time but that can be time-consuming, annoying and frustrating. There are now digital pool test kits like pHin that will automatically check your pool water 24/7 and send you alerts if anything needs to be adjusted so all you have to do is fix what’s broken… and enjoy your pool!

pHin Doubles Scannable Chemical Database

Pools, hot tubs, and swim spas are meant to be enjoyed, but it also  can take a lot of work to keep their water clean and safe. Water chemistry can be confusing but the pHin Smart Monitor provides an easy way to make pool and hot tub care more fun, with less work.

pHin has helped thousands of families by taking the guesswork out of water care so they can just have fun enjoy their pools and hot tubs. pHin floats in the water, measuring temperature, pH, and sanitizer levels over 1,000 times per week. With pHin’s monitoring subscription, alerts and our three-color notification system makes pool and hot tub care easy to understand. A blue disc indicates balanced water, orange advises that the water is safe for swimming but needs attention, and red cautions that the water is not safe and needs chemicals.

When the water needs to be balanced, the pHin gives specific dosing recommendations. Users get detailed instructions on the chemicals they need to add to their water, whether it’s bromine, saltwater, or chlorine. The system also works with hundreds of chemical brands so families can choose what’s right for their pool or hot tub.

The pHin team is always working hard to improve the experience, and we’ve just doubled the number of scannable chemicals in our database! pHin users can check out the new chemical brands added including Poolife, hth, and Leisure Time directly from their app. It’s easy to select which chemicals to use by simply scanning the chemical’s barcode or from a drop-down list. See the full list of supported chemicals here.

pHin is the proven path to easier water care.

How to Clean Up Your Pool or Hot Tub After Hurricane Season

Weather-related disasters can damage pool and hot tubs with heavy wind and rain. As hurricane season comes to a close along the coast, here are some steps you can take to get your backyard back to a beautiful and safe oasis:

1. Clean up debris and check water levels

Start restoring your pool to its pre-season glory by cleaning debris from the pool water. If your pool doesn’t drain excess water on its own, remove the necessary amount of water to get your pool back to its normal water level. Check that the pump and skimmer aren’t clogged with debris to ensure they’ll work properly. A pool vacuum may be helpful for catching any debris or dirt that has fallen to the bottom of the pool.

2. Restore power to your pool

Flood waters caused by hurricanes may have damaged your pool or hot tub’s electrical equipment. Before restoring power, double check that no equipment is water damaged. If you are unsure, it’s safer to have an electrician double check the area. Once the power is restored, the pool will begin to filter properly again, getting rid of the small debris and particles that were not picked up during the cleaning process.

3. Check water quality

Hurricane flooding and rainfall could have contaminated your pool or spa area, making it unsafe for swimming. Before you re-balance the water, don’t let anybody (including pets!) swim until it’s back to normal chemistry levels. Pools should be at a 7 pH level, which can be affected by the hurricane; it’s also important to check the chlorine, hardness, and cyanuric acid levels in the water. Once you’ve gotten your pool or hot tub back in balance, use the pHin Smart Monitor to easily maintain your water health. pHin monitors your pH, and sanitizer and temperature levels over 1,000 times per week and notifies you when your chemicals need adjusting.

Learn more about pHin here: www.phin.co