Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 24

Thread: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    St Louis, Missouri
    Posts
    19

    Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    So i'd like to get my PH levels down from somewhere north of 8.2 to a nice 7.5

    Went to Lowes today and bought a jug of 31.45% 20' baume muriatic acid. But i must admit, i'm a bit intimidated by it. Actually terrified is probably more accurate.
    My username is no mere exaggeration. Literally the only thing i remember from chemistry is "Do what you otter, add acid to water." So i'm assuming that's important.
    But i really want to conquer this pool stuff, so i need help.

    Please feel free to respond as though you're talking to a 4 year old. Assume zero working knowledge.
    i'm nervous about this acid and don't want to overlook anything.

    Pool School says:
    "Muriatic acid should be added to the pool by pouring slowly in front of a return jet with the pump running. You should pour slowly enough that pouring an entire jug takes more than two minutes. Leave the pump running for at least 30 minutes after adding muriatic acid."

    1. So, is that straight out of the jug?
    Someone else here at some point wrote about diluting it in a bucket of water first. i'm curious which is best?

    Also, poolcaculator is very specific about me adding 22oz of muriatic acid.
    i bought a little plastic bucket at the hardware store with graduated markings on the side indicating ounces, so i could more easily measure out 22oz.
    2. Is plastic safe?
    Should i have looked for a specific type of plastic or something?

    3. I'm confused about the relationship between TA and PH.
    If TA buffers changes to PH, do i need to change the TA somehow before i try to change the PH?

    4. How about storage? Will muriatic acid be safe in my basement? How long will it last?

    This morning's test:

    FC 2
    CC .5
    TA 140
    CH 270
    CYA 80
    PH more than 8.2

    My FC is low, It just finished raining... i'll get to that after i get the PH right. Or should i add chlorine first?
    And i know my CYA is high. But i just got it down from 100 this week. (small victories)
    Size: 11,813 gallons
    Inground — Surface: Pebble/Gunite — Installed: 2009 (St. Louis, MO)
    Filter: Cartridge Sta-Rite S7M120, Flow Rate: 50-80 GPM
    Pump: 1hp Max-E-Pro
    Accessories: Polaris 380 cleaner, Sta-Rite Heater SR333k, Hayward CL220 Chlorinator

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    1. So, is that straight out of the jug? Yes. You could mix it, but that's one more pour and one more opportunity to splash and leave tiny holes in your favorite T-shirt. I tend to first dip the jug in the pool in case there's any dribbles on the bottom of it. I have a nice ring etched in the aged concrete from that once upon a time. Then I just kneel down and lean out and pour the acid into the measuring cup and then intop the pool in front of the return. The closer you are to the surface, the less time the acid has to get away and attack you!

    2. Is plastic safe? Yes. Much safer than glass, and metal will dissolve. I use an acrylic cup. It's lasted three years so far. If the cup is that flexible plastic like tupperware or the bleach jug, it's even better.

    FC is low, It just finished raining... i'll get to that after i get the PH right. Or should i add chlorine first?
    And i know my CYA is high. But i just got it down from 100 this week. (small victories)[/QUOTE]

    You can adjust either one first. Just allow half an hour or so with the pump running for it to mix before you add the next chemical.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

  3. Back To Top    #3

    In the Industry

    duraleigh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Sebring, Florida
    Posts
    30,077

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    Muriatic is just fine to deal with if you use some common sense. Keep it downwind away from your nose, the fumes are powerful. Set the jug down by the edge of the pool right above a running return. Remove the cap and seal.

    Lower the jug down into the water so the spout is only maybe 4-5 inches out of the water and the rest of the jug is submerged. This will make it lightweight and it won't splash.

    Pour in about 1/6 of the contents...that should be around 20 ounces...close enough. lift the jug out of the water, set it on the deck and put the cap back on.

    Done. Didn't even get your hands wet.

    Test pH about 30 minutes to an hour after you dose. Adjust if necessary.

    If you spill some on yourself, just dilute immediately by sticking you hand (or whatever) in the pool.....your skin may not even turn red unless you panic and run around with it on you.

    EDIT: This is almost identical to Richard320's post but I'll leave it anyway.

    Keep your questions coming slowly. Solve your pH problem and then go to the others but stay in this thread.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  4. Back To Top    #4

    TFP Guide

    AimeeH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Columbia SC
    Posts
    1,837

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    ^^^you're getting good advice. Don't be afraid. And when you've successfully learned to take care of your pool by testing and balancing your own water, I'd say that is a pass for chemistry........maybe?
    18*36*23 true "L" vinyl IG 29,000 gallons. SWG. TF-100 test kit.
    http://tftestkits.net/splash-page.html

  5. Back To Top    #5
    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Central Minnesota
    Posts
    5,079

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    Lower the jug down into the water so the spout is only maybe 4-5 inches out of the water and the rest of the jug is submerged. This will make it lightweight and it won't splash.
    Love this tip. Will do next time I have to add.
    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    St Louis, Missouri
    Posts
    19

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    That was fast!
    I was going to sit back and use my waiting for an answer as an excuse to delay opening that scary jug.
    It felt like a bomb waiting for me down there.

    Thank you so much for your help. And for going into so much detail!
    Your replies have boosted my confidence. I'm totally going to go do it right now.
    Size: 11,813 gallons
    Inground — Surface: Pebble/Gunite — Installed: 2009 (St. Louis, MO)
    Filter: Cartridge Sta-Rite S7M120, Flow Rate: 50-80 GPM
    Pump: 1hp Max-E-Pro
    Accessories: Polaris 380 cleaner, Sta-Rite Heater SR333k, Hayward CL220 Chlorinator

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Covina, CA (Los Angeles)
    Posts
    15

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    I usually take a 5 gallon bucket and fill it 3/4 with water then add my chemicals to the water in the bucket (I just pour them into the bucket slowly from my measuring cup) and walk the perimeter of the pool pouring the water/chemical mix into the pool slowly... I try to not add more that ~48oz of any particular chemical to 3/4 of a bucket so if you have to add a lot of bleach (EX: when shocking the pool) just make a couple passes...

    Muriatic Acid has a near indefinite shelf life, just keep it off the ground and stored upright and away from Bleach (I keep mine in the garage opposite the bleach for the pool). There are a few variants that you can buy at the hardware store or pool store... There is the pool specific stuff 15% MA which is overpriced and takes 2x the acid to achieve the same results as regular MA, the low fume/odor stuff (strength varies but usually 15% and may contain chemicals you don't want in your pool) and as my father always used to say "The fully leaded stuff" which is just plain 31% Muriatic Acid... Save money and buy the plain 31% which is usually from the paint section of the hardware store with the cleaning chemicals

    TA controls Ph Drift in your pool (Ex how fast your Ph rises or lowers over time naturally)... The higher your TA the faster your Ph can change... You shouldn't make any changes to your TA before adjusting the Ph as the calculations for how much Acid or Base to add to adjust the Ph rely on the alkalinity not changing...

    There are two things that are really important when adding any chemicals to the pool...

    1.) Always add chems to water and not the other way around (water to chems can lead to an exothermic reaction and cause stuff to flash boil and spray you in the face or worse...)
    2.) Be very careful mixing Bleach and Muriatic Acid... Rinse your bucket and measuring cups *every time* you switch chemicals... I usually just dunk the bucket in the pool 1-2 times followed by my measuring cups... Bleach + MA = Poison Gas...

    I use one of THESE from Lowes to measure chemicals... You can also use a glass measuring cup but I tend to avoid glass around the pool... (Again rinse everything between uses)

    Muriatic acid is not something you want to get in your eyes, you should probably avoid breathing the fumes and definitely don't drink the stuff but otherwise is fairly safe. Its definitely not like the acid you see in the movies.... You do want to treat it with respect as it will stain concrete and clothing and the fumes might catch you off guard the first time... Its a good idea to be a little extra cautious so pour slowly and stand back a bit... Having splashed myself directly in the eye with the stuff you should definitely wear some sort of eye protection...

    I will say that my experience with MA reaches far beyond taking care of my pool. When I was younger I used to use MA to clean holds at a rock climbing gym... The concentrations we used varied from 5-1 to straight up 31% MA. The stuff is strong and the fumes suck but not so strong that its going to cause severe burns or anything like that. It will definitely wake you up in the morning if you have any cuts on your hands or get any in your eyes...

    If you do get some on you don't panic. Just rinse off and you'll be fine...
    15,500 gallon outdoor in-ground 17'x35' quartz pool w/ attached spa; Pentair WhisperFlo WFE-3 pump (3/4hp); Pentair SMBW4060 DE Filter (58sf, 160Gpm), Pentair MasterTemp Heater (400k BTU/hr) Taylor K-2006 test kit

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    37,389

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    I agree with Dave. Pour it directly in so there is less handing. No need to be exact.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

  9. Back To Top    #9
    Mod Squad JVTrain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Central Minnesota
    Posts
    5,079

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    I agree with Dave. Pour it directly in so there is less handing. No need to be exact.
    Yep. Using that great suggestion of putting the bottle itself slightly in the water while adding means it's light to hold and almost zero splashing. I'm doing it with my bleach now too.

    Joel - TFP Moderator - Minnesota - **Become a TFP Supporter!** Helpful Links: ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry - SLAM Procedure - Chlorine/CYA Chart
    40x20 Pool: 32K Gallons * Vinyl * Bleach Chlorination * Hayward S270T Sand Filter * Pentair SuperFlo 1 HP * Teledyne/Laars Heater * AquaVac Tigershark * TF-100 w/ SpeedStir
    Isolated Spa - 345 Gallons

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Casey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    SW PA
    Posts
    10,157

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    I added 4 gallons a few weeks ago! Every once in awhile it would hit me in the nose. Pour slow and you'll be fine! Once you do it once you'll be confidant enough to do it again when needed.
    I'd bet you my bikini you'll never get TFP water from a pool store!

    24' Sharkline Venture De Filter

  11. Back To Top    #11
    wjr75's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    IL
    Posts
    816

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    Not sure if this was mentioned yet but I always wear glasses...being sun glasses or safety glasses. I like my eye balls .
    Inground 22k gallon gunite 15x31 main pool, 15x7 wading pool/sunning deck, hot tub/with overflow (9' octagon with limestone top) & slide NSWG, Aqua Blue Pebble Sheen
    Filter dual cartridge Sta-rite 450sq/ft, TF-100 Test Kit
    Heater Raypak 2100 400k btu cupro-nickel exchanger
    Auto pool cover, Polaris 280 auto pool cleaner, Jandy AqualinkRS8 Remote Control System

  12. Back To Top    #12
    Patrick_B's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Midland TX
    Posts
    15,001

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    Quote Originally Posted by JVTrain View Post
    Love this tip. Will do next time I have to add.
    Just make certain you don't let the mouth of the jug dip below the water surface, or let water splash back in the jug.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ghost68 View Post
    I usually take a 5 gallon bucket and fill it 3/4 with water then add my chemicals to the water in the bucket (I just pour them into the bucket slowly from my measuring cup) and walk the perimeter of the pool pouring the water/chemical mix into the pool slowly... I try to not add more that ~48oz of any particular chemical to 3/4 of a bucket so if you have to add a lot of bleach (EX: when shocking the pool) just make a couple passes...

    Muriatic Acid has a near indefinite shelf life, just keep it off the ground and stored upright and away from Bleach (I keep mine in the garage opposite the bleach for the pool). There are a few variants that you can buy at the hardware store or pool store... There is the pool specific stuff 15% MA which is overpriced and takes 2x the acid to achieve the same results as regular MA, the low fume/odor stuff (strength varies but usually 15% and may contain chemicals you don't want in your pool) and as my father always used to say "The fully leaded stuff" which is just plain 31% Muriatic Acid... Save money and buy the plain 31% which is usually from the paint section of the hardware store with the cleaning chemicals

    TA controls Ph Drift in your pool (Ex how fast your Ph rises or lowers over time naturally)... The higher your TA the faster your Ph can change... You shouldn't make any changes to your TA before adjusting the Ph as the calculations for how much Acid or Base to add to adjust the Ph rely on the alkalinity not changing...

    There are two things that are really important when adding any chemicals to the pool...

    1.) Always add chems to water and not the other way around (water to chems can lead to an exothermic reaction and cause stuff to flash boil and spray you in the face or worse...)
    2.) Be very careful mixing Bleach and Muriatic Acid... Rinse your bucket and measuring cups *every time* you switch chemicals... I usually just dunk the bucket in the pool 1-2 times followed by my measuring cups... Bleach + MA = Poison Gas...

    I use one of THESE from Lowes to measure chemicals... You can also use a glass measuring cup but I tend to avoid glass around the pool... (Again rinse everything between uses)

    Muriatic acid is not something you want to get in your eyes, you should probably avoid breathing the fumes and definitely don't drink the stuff but otherwise is fairly safe. Its definitely not like the acid you see in the movies.... You do want to treat it with respect as it will stain concrete and clothing and the fumes might catch you off guard the first time... Its a good idea to be a little extra cautious so pour slowly and stand back a bit... Having splashed myself directly in the eye with the stuff you should definitely wear some sort of eye protection...

    I will say that my experience with MA reaches far beyond taking care of my pool. When I was younger I used to use MA to clean holds at a rock climbing gym... The concentrations we used varied from 5-1 to straight up 31% MA. The stuff is strong and the fumes suck but not so strong that its going to cause severe burns or anything like that. It will definitely wake you up in the morning if you have any cuts on your hands or get any in your eyes...

    If you do get some on you don't panic. Just rinse off and you'll be fine...
    I too pre-dilute my acid into a mostly full bucket. It might not be best for beginners since it is another handling step, but I am used to handling chemicals on a regular basis.

    TO the OP, just use care, and add acid very, very slowly, and you'll have no worries.
    TFP Moderator
    Essential Links:
    ABC's Of Pool Chemistry, Test Kits, SLAM Your Pool
    28K Gal IG FreeForm, CLI Quartz, Pentair 36"SF & VS Pump, Dolphin M5, Rheem

  13. Back To Top    #13
    ronipooh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Kissimmee, Florida
    Posts
    64

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    If you have tools in your garage I WOULD NOT store MA in the garage. I had a jug of MA in the garage at our old house, before I had a pool. I used it in my cleaning business for cleaning severely neglected bathrooms. I don't know how or why but it exploded, now all of my husbands tools are corroded and he is MAD.
    13,700 gal, outdoor IG Plaster, (deteriorating)Sta rite Posi Flo II ptm 70 Cartridge, Paramount PCC 2000 in floor pop up sweeper, RedLeopard Orbit automatic pool cleaner, FLOLight return eyeballs, 1 HP Pentair Superflo single speed pump, built in 1992
    370 Gal 2005 stand alone Marquis Destiny spa w/Ozonator, chlorinated

  14. Back To Top    #14

    In the Industry

    duraleigh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Sebring, Florida
    Posts
    30,077

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    Muriatic acid is caustic and the fumes can corrode metals over a period of time but it is not explosive. It will not burn nor is it a fire hazard.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

  15. Back To Top    #15
    wpbucher's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    South-Central Pennsylvania
    Posts
    132

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    I hate handling MA, but I like what it does for my pool. To make it easier to handle I did the following. Got a half high roughneck tote and drank 14 bottles of PowerAide. Rinse bottles and put Some Mr Yuk stickers on them and wrote acid on sides and cap with sharpy. I wait for a day with a slight breeze, put on protective equipment and transfer MA from gallon jugs into PowerAid bottles. 32oz of MA lowers PH in my 25k pool by .2. Rinse bottle and cap in pool and put in tote. When 2 bottles left, I buy 3 more gallons of MA and refill. Yes, an extra step...but it works for me.


    2013 HotSpring Grandee with Ace Sanitizing System
    25K IG vinyl pool with Alps spillover spa and waterfall. Build Date: June 2013
    Triton II TR100 Sand Filter, Pentair Master Temp 400 natural gas pool heater, Intellichlor SWG, Rainbow Chlorine Feeder
    Pentair VF filter pump, WhisperFlo 2 hp WFE-8 waterfall pump, WhisperFloFX 2 hp spillover spa pump
    Intellibrite 5G (2 pool and 1 in spa) lights :: TFT-100 test kit, Taylor K-1776 test kit

  16. Back To Top    #16
    wpbucher's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    South-Central Pennsylvania
    Posts
    132

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    The Mr Yuk stickers were old. They were from Penn State extension. I guess the new ones have a picture of Sandusky?


    2013 HotSpring Grandee with Ace Sanitizing System
    25K IG vinyl pool with Alps spillover spa and waterfall. Build Date: June 2013
    Triton II TR100 Sand Filter, Pentair Master Temp 400 natural gas pool heater, Intellichlor SWG, Rainbow Chlorine Feeder
    Pentair VF filter pump, WhisperFlo 2 hp WFE-8 waterfall pump, WhisperFloFX 2 hp spillover spa pump
    Intellibrite 5G (2 pool and 1 in spa) lights :: TFT-100 test kit, Taylor K-1776 test kit

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Las Vegas
    Posts
    288

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    I am doing the same thing except for the Yuck stickers. No yard apes in the house.
    12000 Gallon IG Plaster built 2/15/2014. Jandy 340 sg ft 127 gpm filter, Jandy 1 HP stealth pump. Circupool RJ-45 SWG (overkill). TF-100 with Speed Stir.

  18. Back To Top    #18
    ronipooh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Kissimmee, Florida
    Posts
    64

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    I didn't mean exploded like a gas tank and caught fire. Somehow the jug burst open on the bottom and leaked all over the floor beside his tool chest.
    13,700 gal, outdoor IG Plaster, (deteriorating)Sta rite Posi Flo II ptm 70 Cartridge, Paramount PCC 2000 in floor pop up sweeper, RedLeopard Orbit automatic pool cleaner, FLOLight return eyeballs, 1 HP Pentair Superflo single speed pump, built in 1992
    370 Gal 2005 stand alone Marquis Destiny spa w/Ozonator, chlorinated

  19. Back To Top    #19

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    "Failed Chemistry" asked a question that's on my mind about shelf life of MA. My gallon bottle of Transchem muriatic acid says to dispose of it after 6 months. Mine is about a year old. I didn't think it expired, but now that I've read the label... I have added 6 oz to my 6000 gal pool twice in 4 days and after a day or two the pH is at 8, either still or again, not sure because I didn't test it for a day or so. Never had to add the acid more than occasionally during a season before, so I'm wondering if it has used up its potency to do the job, or, as I saw in other threads, sometimes that's just the way it is. Also, might the age of the acid (and deterioration of the plastic jug) be the cause of the basement "explosion" someone wrote about? At any rate, I will take what's left of mine to the toxic waste drop off and get a new bottle. Thanks for any comments.
    6K gal., cartridge filter, AG
    Dallas, TX

  20. Back To Top    #20
    Richard320's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    San Dimas, CA (LA County)
    Posts
    18,768

    Re: Need some advice for using Muriatic Acid

    Acid lasts a long long time. It's bleach that loses potency. That acid is probably still fine.
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
    Troublefree does not mean Maintenancefree. It's like brushing your teeth: You can spend a couple minutes a day and pennies a week or go to the dentist once a year and spend several thousand dollars.
    A pool is like a pet - you have to feed it every day, even the days you don't want to play with it!

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •