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Thread: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

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    svenpup's Avatar
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    Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    The first time I added muriatic acid I got a big whiff of the fumes. It definitely gave me a respect for the stuff.

    I quickly learned to keep the wind at my back. I must look like I am golfing at Augusta with my finger in the air checking for a breeze.

    I pour out of the jug and eyeball the measurements because I decided I didn't want the extra handling involved with measuring cups, etc. Sometimes a little dribbles down the side of the jug, and I have to deal with rinsing it off.

    Is there any advice on how to deal with the stuff?

    What do other BBB'ers do?

    Am I making a mountain out of a molehill?

    Is this why you don't call it BBBM...because you don't want to scare people off?
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    The way I measure mine is I picked up a measuring jug from walmart for about 2.00. It measures up to 64 ounces. I got one for bleach as well. I know what you are saying about the smell and I have gotten wiffs of it before.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    Respecting it is a great place to start! Gloves, eye protection and a gas mask are good precautions but you probably don't want to go through all that. The best advice I can offer is to make sure you remove the whole protective plastic/cardboard cap so it pours smoothly and doesn't splash too much. Close the lid tightly after use and dip the whole container in the pool to rinse it before setting it down anywhere. If you can use the whole bottle and dispose of the container, its much safer than storing a partially used container where children can gain access. Don't store it near chlorine containers or other chemicals.

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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    I know what you mean about being down wind.
    You can always wear heavy rubber gloves (used for working with chemicals) to protect your hands.
    Also, it don't measure but have learned that 1/2 gal will take the Ph from about 8 to 7.5 (no kid issues).

    I would also suggest taking out the cleaner before adding acid.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    Only advice I can give is (a) wear eye protection (splashproof goggles if you have them), and (b) try not to breathe the fumes. I do use a measuring cup, but to each their own.

    If the fumes get to be too much, you can always use dry acid.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    I rest the jug on the coping, tilt toward the pool, hold the measuring cup right up to the mouth of the jug. It never splashes, because with the jug resting on the coping it's really easy to control the flow. But if it did, or anything slipped, worst is some excess acid would fall into the pool. I typically need only a couple of cups at a time so I do need the measuring cup.

    I don't take the polaris out but if it's right by the return I usually use, I would use the other one.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    One can also get the half-strength Muriatic Acid (around 15% hydrochloric acid), hopefully at half the price, as it should fume a bit less.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    If you use a measuring cup, be carefull not to set it on any concrete you have around your pool (until you rinse it.)
    I did that... once. Some acid must have dribbled down the side of the measuring cup, and started eating through the concrete.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    I have learned I don't need to be too exact in my large pool. I take the gallon jug of muriatic, lid removed, and partially lower it into the pool water directly above a return. I can then pour a reasonably accurate (but not precise) amount from the jug and the spout of the jug is only an inch or two from the water's surface. There is no splashing and the outside of the jus is automatically rinsed in the pool.

    This may not work so well in a pool with less gallonage as the measurements need a little more accuracy. I used to use a measuring cup but didn't like the extra handling involved.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    I always make sure that I am upwind from the open jug when handling it. The worst days are when there is no wind and high humidity. In those cases, you have to be safe and quick since the fumes billow straight up and out.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    Quote Originally Posted by mynewpool
    The way I measure mine is I picked up a measuring jug from walmart for about 2.00. It measures up to 64 ounces. I got one for bleach as well. I know what you are saying about the smell and I have gotten wiffs of it before.
    I do this also - I use a 1 gallon rubbermaid pitcher and add water to it before my needed volume of acid. In other words, if I need 1 qt of acid, I'll first add 2 qts of water. That way, it is diluted in the pitcher before I carry it to the pool, and the pitcher isn't filled to the top as I walk to the pool.

    Quote Originally Posted by renovxpt
    The best advice I can offer is to make sure you remove the whole protective plastic/cardboard cap so it pours smoothly and doesn't splash too much.
    This is also a key. I bought the cheapest ceramic knife I could find on ebay to cut out the plastic lining out of the jug when I first open it. The knife is super sharp, and the acid fumes haven't (yet?) damaged it. I don't think I can sharpen it, so I only use it for this purpose. By cleanly removing the plastic lining, I get no drips when I pour the acid into the pitcher.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    I've been dosing with MA for 30 years. My pools were 40K and 30K, so I never measure. I just add 1/3 of a jug by eye when I'm low and retest the next day (or later the same day if I won't be around.) I keep a rusty utility knife in the locked chem/tool closet so I don't care if the acid ruins the blade--they're disposable. The key is to watch the wind. I split the jug between the two deep end returns, wind permitting. I work slow and careful and have never had a problem. I did have a jug leak in a car and I learned from that experience to transport the jug in a plastic bucket placed where it can't overturn and to make sure that cap is on tight. MA is not good for carpeting.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    'Best way' is putting a whole bunch in a 15 gallon container and have it auto-fed when it needs it. Ha. Hey, I spent all that money on an swg sytem, so I'll brag about it! lol

    My buddy told me about the time he took an accidental whiff of the stuff and it almost knocked him out. Not that i didn't believe him, but when it happened to me, I immediately thought of him. That stuff is nasty. I started out wearing gloves, but doing it slowly, I've found that it doesn't splash, so I just open and pour..... into the 15 gallon jug, once a season.

    Come to the dark side...


    Maybe because I have an AGP and the water is very close to me. I don't have to bend down and pour even lower. That may make it easier to not splash perhaps. That 50% stregth option is a good idea, if it is truly half the price. I doubt that would be the case though.
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    Re: Best way to handle muriatic acid?

    I dip a 3 gallon bucket in the pool and fill it 3/4 with water. I eyeball the MA as I pour it in the water. I just put in a cup or so per bucket, let it set for a minute to let any fumes dissipate, and gently "sling" it into the pool. Repeat until I have as much MA as I need in the pool.

    I keep the MA jug in the bucket when store so I have a leak, it will be contained.

    I get a plastic knife at Wendy's to use to remove the seal on the MA jugs.
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