Muriatic Acid, safety questions...

curlyfry22

Well-known member
May 16, 2012
54
0
NE OK
#1
I have been following the BBB method ever since having a severe algae problem earlier this year. I am the primary care taker of the pool and I asked my husband to get muriatic acid so I could lower the PH. He doesn't like the sound of this stuff and wasn't thrilled about me using it. The water is also sparkling clear right now and he doesn't see why I would mess with anything. I always thought my PH was borderline high but my husband read it in the 7.8 range so I never adjusted it. After 1-2 inches of rain the other night there is no question that it is definitely high.

My PH is at 8.2 and my TA 140 right now. I have looked for quite some time on the forum but can't find anywhere that says how long after muriatic acid is added do you need to wait to swim? Considering the amount I may need to add (72 oz.) I just don't see how it would be safe for my kids to be swimming and opening their eyes in the pool period. I am concerned about hot spots. Are there no other safer alternatives to lowering PH?
 
May 18, 2012
7
0
Illinois
#2
I just started using this website. Prior to that, I was dependent on my local pool store. I've used muratic acid for the past 5 years and the pool store recommended it, as does this site. The main issues I've encountered are to avoid breathing in the fumes and avoid splashing it on your skin as you pour it in. I slowly add (by a return jet) the amount recommended by the pool calculator, then let the water mix a while. It does a great job of keeping pH and TA in optimal ranges.
 

JohnT

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Mod Squad
TFP Expert
Apr 4, 2007
9,446
0
SW Indiana
#3
Muriatic acid does require care in handling, but once it is in the pool and mixed, there is no risk. It is heavier than water, so it will settle to the bottom if you don't leave the pump running after addition.
 

duraleigh

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In The Industry
Apr 1, 2007
31,266
4
Sebring, Florida
tftestkits.net
#4
Muriatic is almost instantly dispersed and harmless in a pool within minutes (pump running). There are no "hot spots". You can safely add it in virtually any reasonable dose and swim in 30 minutes.

The things we suggest here on the forum have been pretty well thought out for several years and thousands of people have been following the procedures suggested with no ill effects.

That said, it sounds like both of you don't like it so you can use a pool store product labeled "pH minus" or "pH down". I personally don't like it as well and it's more money but it does work.
 

RobbieH

LifeTime Supporter
TFP Expert
Aug 30, 2010
4,052
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52
Dallas, TX
#5
No matter what product you purchase, it WILL be acid if it's purpose is to lower pH. There's no way around it. Low pH products are "acidic", high pH products are "alkaline".

You could use vinegar, but you'd need a tanker truck of it. :)

I added almost a gallon of muriatic acid to my pool last night, and in 30 minutes I was in the pool. I'm still alive to talk about it today.
 

Shane1

LifeTime Supporter
Apr 29, 2010
621
0
48
Buckeye, AZ 85326
#6
The amount of MA you have to add is very small compared the the amount of water in the pool. As far as your kids opening their eyes under water, our son use to hate wearing goggles. We found a pair at Target made by Speedo that he loves. He even wants to wear them in the bath tub now. It makes a huge difference in the pool when he has them on. Here is a link to the type we bought.
http://www.target.com/p/speedo-junior-h ... tailbutton
 

JasonLion

LifeTime Supporter
Platinum Supporter
TFP Expert
May 7, 2007
37,879
5
Silver Spring, MD
#9
As long as you pour the muriatic acid slowly in front of a return jet while the pump is running, and then wait half an hour with the pump running, it will be completely mixed in an totally safe to swim. Muriatic acid mixes in especially quickly (as long as the pump is running) and as soon as it is mixed it is safe.
 

curlyfry22

Well-known member
May 16, 2012
54
0
NE OK
#10
Thanks everyone! I did go ahead and purchase the muriatic acid. I retested my TA and PH again just now. I would say that my PH now looks closer to 7.8 but my TA is still 140. Should I still add the acid to lower my PH?
 

HouTex

LifeTime Supporter
Mar 7, 2011
413
0
Houston, Texas
#12
Curlyfry, MA is totally safe if you use some common sense. I've probably added 25 gallons or so of MA to my pool since it was completed in December 2010. Follow the advice above and you'll be fine. I recommend you get the TA down a bit by following the instructions in Pool School and try to keep your pH around 7.6 or so.