liquid chlorine 20-22% - is this possible?

ITri72

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2007
16
Huntsville, TX
I live in an area without a pool store. I've been looking for a more concentrated bleach than the 6% at Walmart so I called around & found a pool supply store about 40 mins away who said the percentage of sodium hypochlorite is 20-22% - is that even possible (I've never heard such a high percentage). I asked him a couple of times just to make sure we were understanding each other & he assures me it's correct. With gas prices the way they are right now I don't want to make a wasted trip. He quoted me $12.98 for a 4 gallon case which is way cheaper than anything else I've found. Am I right to be skeptical or did I stumble upon a liquid chlorine gold mine!?
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
32,853
Sebring, Florida
I've not heard of a percentage that high and my guess is, like most things like that, it's too good to be true. I pay 15.00 for 5 gallons of 12.5% so yours is obviously a deal if the percentage is correct.
 

JohnT

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Apr 4, 2007
9,591
SW Indiana
Never heard of that concentration, but you are close to many chemical manufacturing plants. It's conceivable that the higher concentration may be feasible when close to the manufacturing point, but that's just a guess.
 

JasonLion

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
37,879
Silver Spring, MD
Possible, yes. Likely, no. The highest concentration I have seen is 15%. Keep in mind that the self life falls very quickly at higher concentrations. For example 15% at room temperature will turn into 12.5% in about two weeks. 22% would need to be refrigerated or used in the first few days, or it wouldn't be worth it.
 

chem geek

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 28, 2007
12,083
San Rafael, CA USA
[EDIT] Whoops, I wrote this the same time as Jason. [END-EDIT]

It is possible, but the shelf life of concentrated chlorine declines rapidly with higher concentration -- roughly by the square of the concentration. The table at the end of this link shows how the half-life (the time it takes to lose half of its concentration) of 20% chlorine even at 75F is 70 days. The fastest loss occurs during the earlier part of that time period. A loss of 10% of the concentration, going from 20% to 18%, happens after just 10 days and that's assuming 75F temperature.

Probably the best thing to do is to get some of this chlorine and try it in your pool assuming the 20% concentration is correct (so use half the dose of what would be done with 10%). Measure your FC level in the pool before you make the addition and around 20-30 minutes after you've made the addition, assuming your pump is running and you have decent circulation (you can measure in two spots -- near where you added it and at the other end of the pool). That will tell you the true concentration assuming your pool volume measurement is accurate.

Even if $12.98 for 4 gallons were for 12.5% chlorinating liquid, this would be equivalent to $1.20 for a 96-ounce jug of 6% bleach so is a pretty good deal unless you can get bleach on sale for $1.

Richard
 

kirbinster

Well-known member
Apr 30, 2007
293
NJ
High concentration bleach degrades quickly due to trace metal concentrations that are left it during manufacturing.

If you are going to keep a supply of it around it is best to just stick with the 6% or 5.25% -- it will likely be your cheapest form when you factor in the loss due to just sitting around.
 

ITri72

LifeTime Supporter
May 13, 2007
16
Huntsville, TX
Thanks for all the replies. I called the pool store back again & spoke to someone else. I was told that the liquid chlorine would be between 10-12%. That sounds more like it. Don't know what that guy was talking about before.

The cheapest I could find more concentrated bleach for was $3.14 for a gallon of 10%. After doing some math and using the bleach calculator it seems like I'm better off sticking with the 6% at Walmart for $1.29 for 96 ozs. Other than convenience of not having so many bottles, is there any benefit to using the higher concentrated stuff?

Does anyone have any resources for where to find liquid chlorine through somewhere else than a pool store. I've called feed stores, industrial cleaning supply stores and hardware stores.

Thanks,
Susie
 

duraleigh

Admin
Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
32,853
Sebring, Florida
the pressure washing business uses a lot of 12% if you're near a town big enough to have a pressure washing supply store.
 

chem geek

TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Mar 28, 2007
12,083
San Rafael, CA USA
The $3.14 per gallon for 10% chlorinating liquid is equivalent to $1.45 for 96 ounces of 6% bleach so not that much more than the $1.29 at Walmart. If your pool store will reuse the bottles by having you take the old ones back and you take a previously refilled one, then that saves on plastic recycling. That's why I do with my pool store and don't mind even if it's a little more expensive, but that's a personal choice.

Other than carrying less weight, there's not much advantage to using the higher concentration chlorine.

Richard
 

Aquaman95

Well-known member
Feb 20, 2008
249
I saw this one too late, but it seems you discovered the truth. You won't find 20-22% anywhere near Houston. Bleach is highly regional. The highest made around here is 15% and it is only available sporadically and has a very short shelf life as others have stated.

$3.00+ per gallon is very high but that's for a packaged product, so it costs a bit more than bulk.

If you're willing to drive to Houston, PM me and I'll get you taken care of cheap.
 

IkeRay

Well-known member
May 20, 2007
154
Houston, Tx
aquaman....you have something for us houstonians?

and OP, if you want, my brother is always coming and going from SHSU to Houston to teach, I can always load up his jeep with some 12% pool store bleach if you want...