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How to Lower Alkalinity in Pool? — Proven and Guaranteed Methods for Clean and Safe Swimming

Lowering the total alkalinity of your swimming pool is very easy. You can do it yourself!

Today, we’ll teach you how to lower total alkalinity in pools without spending so much time and fortune! With the quick and easy steps we have in store for you, you’ll see results in time.

How to Lower Alkalinity in Pool?

Identifying Alkalinity of Your Pool Water

Before treating the Total Alkalinity (TA) of your swimming pool, ask yourself "Do you need to treat it in the first place?"

With the help of a pool water test kit or alkalinity test strips, you'll be able to find out the water chemistry of your pool.

Taking a water sample from yours is easy, all you have to do is collect enough pool water below the surface and test it out on your kit.

legs floating on pool

The ideal range is around 70 to 170 parts per million, and the safest reading for pools should be in the 120 ppm range.

Anything lower or higher than the range means you've got yourself a pool to treat. So always eye for that 120 ppm reading.

Importance of Lowering Pool Alkalinity

Unknown to many, high pH and high water alkalinity level can cause harm to you and your swimming pool surfaces.

Elevated alkalinity can be costly when it comes to maintenance. It makes your pool equipment more susceptible to damage, and lower useful life.

In terms of how it affects your body, you may experience skin irritation, burning eyes sensation, among others.

But, low alkalinity isn't always a good thing either which is why you need to know what the right balance is and when you need to increase pH, or if you need a water alkalinity increaser, among others.

Root Causes of High Pool Alkalinity

There are several reasons why swimming pools have high total alkalinity.

It could be the water source of where your pool water is coming from. In some areas, waters innately have a high alkaline water level.

Another reason for high alkalinity is you might be using too many chemicals like sodium bicarbonate (or baking soda), in an attempt to increase the alkalinity range of your pools.

Methods of Lowering Alkalinity

Learning how to lower alkalinity in pool requires the use of some chemicals like carbonic acid, sulfuric acid, hydrochloric acid, muriatic acid, and dry acid.

We'll go through some of the easiest methods you can try to lower both pH and alkalinity levels in your pool.

Muriatic Acid

Handling muriatic acid requires the observance of safety precautions. Used properly and cautiously, it's an acid that can get the job done.

Here's how you can use muriatic acid to lower your swimming pool's total alkalinity.

Step 1: Turn off your swimming pool pump and wait for an hour before you start the treatment.

Step 2: Pour enough amount of muriatic acid into a container. The measurement must be based on the volume of your pool and its total alkalinity.

Step 3: Add the muriatic acid directly to your water. Do this by pouring it into several areas and make sure that it flows directly to the bottom of the pool. Let it rest for an hour before turning on the pump.

Step 4: After 24 hours of the treatment, test the alkalinity level once more until you get the right pH levels.

Sodium Bisulfate

Lowering alkaline [1] levels using this substance is also safe and effective, and the process is almost similar to when you use muriatic acid.

Step 1: Turn off your swimming pool pump and wait for an hour, or at least when the water is still before you start the treatment.

Step 2: Pour enough Sodium Bisulfate (or dry acid) on a container. Add only enough based on the volume of your pool and its alkaline level.

Step 3: Dilute the dry acid with water until it is dissolved.

Step 4: Add the substance to the deep end portion of your pool. Doing this ensures that it reaches the upper part of your pool and maintains its pH level. Let it rest for an hour before turning on the pump.

Step 5: After 24 hours of the treatment, test the total alkalinity level once more until you get the right pH levels.

Reminders in Lowering Alkalinity

After going through the steps above, if you find that the proper alkalinity and pH levels haven't been achieved, you may repeat the process. You can keep doing so to lower or raise the pH and TA of your pool.

The trick is to be patient, and pay close attention to how much you need to add.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you lower alkalinity without lowering pH?

Lowering swimming pool alkalinity levels without lowering pH may be challenging.

A crucial part of understanding this pool chemistry is you need to pay close attention to the Total Alkalinity levels of your pool instead of lowering the pH. Doing so helps you keep the pH in the desired state.

Adding too many chemicals to your pool can lower TA, but it will also lower the pH of your pool.

In this sense, lowering TA is equal to low pH which we do not want. You can't raise or lower one without affecting the other.

To avoid this problem, turn on the air features of your pool and your jets.

Make sure it pumps water pressure and doing this allows you to lower TA levels on your pool without compromising pH levels.

You can also use Sodium Bicarbonate and Soda Ash to raise pH in the water when the levels suddenly drop.

Does chlorine lower alkalinity?

Yes. However, do note that adding too much chlorine to lower TA isn't always a good thing.

Too much chlorine can lower TA, and in effect lowering pH levels as well. And in the long run, continuing with this process will make it harder for you to manage the pH level of your pool.

Will pool alkalinity lower on its own?

High alkalinity lowers through time but takes quite some time.

If you've got time to treat your pool's TA, we highly recommend you do so. It will do a great deal with keeping your pool and equipment problem-free in the long run.


Finding the right pH level and lowering total alkalinity is a crucial step that pool owners need to learn how to do on their own. It can help them manage their pool, without spending a fortune.

Don't forget to share this article with your fellow pool owners, to learn more about how to maintain their pools TA.

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