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It is essential for pool owners to consider the basic parameters of pool and water care.

In addition to regular physical cleaning, the use of chemical agents to influence the properties of the pool water plays a significant role, including chlorine as a disinfectant.

An essential factor, which in many cases is mistakenly equated with the pH value, is the so-called alkalinity, which helps to prevent fluctuations of the same and thus ensure a generally good functioning of the chemicals used for water maintenance.

However, in the event that the alkalinity is too low, you should increase it promptly. If the Ta value is too high, you must lower the alkalinity.

The following sections not only explain the necessary steps to take, but also, among other things, why a low TA value should be raised urgently.

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Reasons why you need to raise the pool alkalinity level

Once the pool alkalinity is below the 80 ppm (parts per million or milligrams per liter) range, it is considered too low and can result in very rapid changes in pH, for example, if the pool has been put into service, or you have added other additional pool maintenance chemicals.

However, an ideally set pH is the basis for balanced pool chemistry, so without it, the adequate functioning of other chemicals cannot necessarily be assumed. In order to avoid both health risks and damage to the components of the pool, it is therefore essential to increase the TA value as quickly as possible if it is too low.

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Why is the alkalinity in the pool too low?

Too low alkalinity of the water of the pool in your own backyard can have a variety of reasons, moreover, they always depend a little on the external circumstances.

Due to the fact that the pH value and the TA value are often, but not necessarily, connected with each other, a lowering of the pH value due to, for example, the frequent use of pH-Minus, the occurrence of heavy rainfall as well as acid rain and too many human bodily fluids, including urine and sweat, usually also results in an alkalinity that is too low.

Furthermore, the increased use of chlorine in tablet form, other than a shock or shock chlorination with an appropriate pool shocker, is also not conducive to the TA value of the pool water.

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Effects of a too low Ta value

The optimal TA value cannot be seen independently of the individual conditions on site, so that local factors always play a decisive role, but it should be in a range of at least 80 ppm and at most 160 ppm (parts per million or milligrams per liter) in order to ensure that the chemical properties of the water are or remain stable.

A value of less than 80 ppm is therefore generally considered to be too low, and in many cases it can lead to unpleasant side effects, such as constant fluctuations in the pH value, followed by an infestation of algae, which settle in the pool as a greenish area, and increased corrosion of the materials and pool accessories used.

In addition, it is quite conceivable that this so-called condition of over-acidification of the pool water can also result in irritation of the skin or eyes, or even burns of the surfaces that come into contact with the water.

Step-by-step increase of the pool Ta-value (instruction)

In order to prevent the sometimes very lengthy, costly and labor-intensive effects of too low alkalinity from occurring in the first place in a serious manner, it is recommended to increase the TA value accordingly.

Apart from some peculiarities with regard to the situation on site, the individual specifications of the manufacturers as well as possible deviating properties of the installed material of the pool, there are, however, some working steps that should be carried out in most cases, which is why they are described in more detail in the following text sections.

Step 1: Measure pool alkalinity

There are a few different methods of determining the TA value of the water in question, and these depend on personal preference on the one hand, and on the desired financial outlay for the purchase on the other.

In order to measure the pool alkalinity as accurately as possible, for example, simple test strips can be used as well as specially compiled kits or digital measuring devices that display the result on a screen.

If the TA value is below 80 ppm (parts per million or milligrams per liter), it is necessary to increase it immediately.

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Step 2: Decide on a product

In order to increase the alkalinity of the water in a pool, various aids are available, whereby so-called siphons for alkalinity are particularly popular.

A usually cheaper variant is the use of pure sodium bicarbonate in the form of baking soda, however, this is not a professional means, but it is in any case preferable to sodium carbonate, for example, which is known under the name soda.

This often serves to increase the pH value and sometimes also causes turbidity in the pool water.

Step 3: Calculate the required amount

Although you should always refer to the product’s instruction manual for individual dosage information, it is often necessary to calculate the volume of the pool to determine the amount of chemicals needed.

Typically, approximately 180 to 300 grams of the respective products per 10 cubic meters of pool volume will increase the alkalinity or TA value by approximately 10 to 20 ppm (parts per million or milligrams per liter).

If there are special circumstances such as unusual weather conditions or the like, it is advisable to exchange information with other pool owners or a specialist.

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Step 4: Prepare the product

In most cases, a bucket cleaned of foreign objects is sufficient to dissolve the selected granules, the favored powder or the corresponding liquid concentrate in it before adding it to the water of the pool.

It is also possible that some products can be added to the pool water in their pure form, but this is usually not recommended, which is why you should always consult the manufacturer’s instructions before carrying out this step, in order to avoid damage to the components of the pool.

Step 5: Adding the product to the water

The addition of the appropriate agent should always be accompanied by the start-up of the respective filter pump, which must then also run for several hours, so that the chemical agent is sufficiently distributed in the individual pool.

It is additionally advisable to add the chosen product slowly as well as in different places of the pool into the water of the pool, in order to continue to support the greatest possible efficiency.

Conclusion

The handling of chemical pool care products requires some practice or routine and is nevertheless a sensible investment of time for a future hygienically as well as optically flawless bathing pleasure.

In order to keep the properties of the pool water at a stable level, so that there are no undesirable side effects such as algae in the pool, it is important to increase a too low TA value as quickly as possible by using an appropriate agent, taking into account the above steps.

Nothing stands in the way of carefree summer fun in your own pool.

Larry has been a true water rat since childhood. Pure pleasure turned into a passion. That's why he is the first point of contact for friends and acquaintances when it comes to pool-related problems. He is an integral part of the PoolHandbook editorial team.