The Essential Guide to Maintaining Total Alkalinity in Your Pool or Spa

The Essential Guide to Maintaining Total Alkalinity in Your Pool or Spa

At Pool Day, we understand that your pool or spa is more than just a luxury; it's an oasis of relaxation and fun. However, to ensure that your oasis remains pristine and safe, it's crucial to keep an eye on a key aspect of pool chemistry: the total alkalinity level. But why is this so important? Let’s dive in.

What is Total Alkalinity?

Total Alkalinity (TA) refers to the concentration of alkaline substances in your pool or spa water. These substances act as a buffer, helping to stabilize the pH levels. This is critical because pH levels that fluctuate can lead to various issues, both for the health of swimmers and the condition of your pool or spa.


Why Maintaining Total Alkalinity is Crucial

1.Protects Pool Equipment and Surfaces:
- Low TA can lead to acidic water, causing corrosion to pool equipment, heaters, and even damage to pool liners and surfaces.
- High TA, on the other hand, can lead to calcium buildup and scaling, affecting the efficiency and longevity of your pool systems.

2.Ensures Comfortable Swimming Experience:
- Proper TA levels prevent eye and skin irritation for swimmers. Acidic or basic water can be harsh on the skin and eyes, leading to discomfort.

3.Enhances the Effectiveness of Chlorine:
- Chlorine, a common pool sanitizer, works best in water with balanced pH. Since TA helps in stabilizing pH levels, it indirectly ensures that chlorine remains effective in keeping your pool clean and free from harmful bacteria.

4.Prevents Algae Growth:
- Fluctuating pH levels can encourage algae growth. Maintaining the TA level keeps the pH balance in check, thus inhibiting algae proliferation.


How to Maintain Total Alkalinity


1. Regular Testing:
- Regularly test your pool or spa water to monitor the TA levels. At Pool Day, we recommend you test each week or if something might have thrown off your balance, like a lot of rain. Ideal levels are typically between 80-120 ppm (parts per million).

2. Use of Alkalinity Increasers or Decreasers:
- If your TA levels are off, use alkalinity increasers (such as sodium bicarbonate) to raise it, or muriatic acid or sodium bisulfate to lower it.

That's about it! It's not too complicated, you just need to stay on top of it. Check out our Pool Chemicals guide for a tool to calculate exactly how much of each chemical you will need based on your pool!


Maintaining the total alkalinity of your pool or spa is a fundamental aspect of pool care. It ensures the longevity of your pool equipment, the effectiveness of your sanitizers, and most importantly, the safety and comfort of your swimmers.

One easy way to keep your pool more balanced is to use Simple Scoop, which is a preventative all-in-one solution that helps prevent imbalances before they even happen. 

Remember, a well-maintained pool or spa is the cornerstone of countless happy and healthy pool days!