help! Accidently added Sodium Carbonate instead of Sodium Bicarbonate


New member
Feb 21, 2020
I ordered a 50 lb bucket of Sodium Bicarbonate but was shipped a bucket of sodium carbonate instead. This was not the first time I had ordered from this company and had the correct product shipped a couple of times previously so I was not concerned about it being the wrong chemical and did not bother reading the label.

I had been to Leslie's for a water test and they said to add 25 lb of sodium bicarbonate and instead I added the sodium carbonate by mistake. A huge white Plume developed and overnight a a layer of white crystals (I'm guessing calcium carbonate) precipitated all of the bottom of I pool. The alkalinity before the addition was 60 and increased to 80 afterwards (I was aimng for 100). PH increased to 7.9 which was slightly higher than when I added the sodium carbonate at 7.8.

I have added some muriatic acid ( a gallon) and brushed the powder off the floor of the pool. There is still some precipitate left over. My question is: what has this mistake done to my total dissolve salts? and how can I get rid of the precipitate.

The Calcium hardness was not changed much - is now at 180.
Last edited:


LifeTime Supporter
Aug 19, 2014
Pacific NW
If it's settled on the floor, vac to waste.
That's what I would do. Other than that, much worse has been done before. Just work on getting it back inline, seems you're not far off.


LifeTime Supporter
Aug 19, 2014
Pacific NW
I think that would work just keep an eye on the pressure gauge while you do it, so it doesn't get too high.


TFP Expert
Mar 2, 2011
25 lbs of sodium carbonate in 25,000 gallons of water will raise the pH by about 2.9 and the TA by 94 ppm.

Since you only had a 20 ppm increase, only about 21% of the sodium carbonate must have dissolved.

If you can vacuum to waste, it would reduce the problem your going to have if all of the sodium carbonate dissolves by filtering it.

What is your pool size?

If all of the sodium carbonate dissolves, it will take about 5.9 gallons of acid to get the TA back down.
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