Using bleach adds salt?


New member
Aug 17, 2007
Getting lots of very good info about pool management. New to pools...just bought the house with a 25K gal inground, PebbleTech that's about 3 years old. I've already spent a bunch of $$$ at Leslie's Pool Supplies here in So. Cal. to try to manage the chemistry but I feel like I'm getting in over my head. After reading the posts on this forum I'm convinced that simple 6% bleach is the best way to go to add Cl but the "expert" at Leslie's said that every gal of bleach added into the pool also adds about 2 lb of salt. Is that true?
They also said that my Total Dissolved Solids level is way too high and that's making it hard to maintain a good water balance and that I need to do a full water change. I had always heard that emptying an inground pool was potentially dangerous and should be avoided at all costs but I see alot of posts here dealing with draining and filling.
Do I need to go hire Albert the pool guy at $100.00 a month to take care of me of will I eventually get a handle on this?

I'm seriously considering installing a SWCG. Any recommendations of brands, install tips, and costs? Leslie's will install one at a cost of $1100.00 plus installation.

Thanks for all of your help. Youse guys are great.


TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
LifeTime Supporter
May 7, 2007
Silver Spring, MD
There is salt in bleach, almost 13 oz per gallon. Actually, in effect there is salt in all forms of chlorine. Once the chlorine reacts with something it turns into salt. Using bleach not quite half of the salt is in the bottle as salt to start with and the other half appears once the chlorine reacts. So other forms of chlorine would add a little more than half as much salt. But that isn't a problem. If would take years of using bleach and a very low water replacement rate to get you up to the salt level commonly used with a SWG and you would need to go well above that before anything really went wrong.

Total disolved solids is a totaly misleading measurement. It makes a major difference which particular solids are present and only matters a tiny bit what the total level is. In particular, you need to keep an eye on your CYA level, which makes a huge difference, but I wouldn't worry about TDS.

Why don't you post your full set of numbers? Then we could give you more specific advice.


LifeTime Supporter
Apr 5, 2007
Joliet, Il.
First off...I'd take the advice of JasonLion and others here over someone trying to use a bleach scare tactic. Chlorine is chlorine and bleach is a fine source of it with little ill effects on your pool.

But if a gallon of water weighs 8.346 lbs and a gallon of 5.25% bleach weighs 9 lbs (according to my scale -container) I just don't have the additional 2lbs on my jug of bleach, I mean chlorine.

A 2lbs increase in salt should get somewhere in the effect of a 24ppm increase. According to the pool calculator I get one gallon of 5.25% raising the salt by 10ppm. SO...perhaps if he was talking about the liquid chlorine that they sell at the pool store (which is 12.5%) that would get you your 20ppm raise in salinity.

Does he also recommend against using liquid pool chlorine sold in his stores?

But really...Fugetaboutit!