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Bio-Lab has adopted a recommended range for total alkalinity (TA) which is reflected in the ALEX Water Analysis Software. Proper water balance will be achieved by maintaining 125-150 ppm total alkalinity for all pool surfaces with the exception of those based on concrete, where the range 80-125 ppm applies. These ranges are consistent with the broader range of 60-200 ppm recognised by the National Registration Authority in Canberra and various Health Departments throughout Australia, but have been refined to provide a higher level of satisfaction to our customers. There are pressing reasons for adopting these ranges.

Total alkalinity acts as a buffer to maintain the proper pH range despite the addition of chemicals, rain, swimmers and other pH altering contaminants. Total alkalinity is particularly important with acidic sanitisers such as trichloroisocyanuric acid (pH 2.9) and 1-bromo-3-chloro-5,5-dimethylhydantoin (BCDMH; pH 3.5). Without any buffer present, these sanitisers would quickly lower the pH of the pool or spa and make the water corrosive to pool surfaces and equipment. In the presence of a buffer, the proper pH range is maintained while the buffering capacity is slowly consumed. As long as the buffer is replenished or maintained routinely, proper water balance is assured. By increasing the recommended total alkalinity, the buffering capacity of the water is increased. In other words, you could add a greater quantity of acidic compounds to a pool with a total alkalinity of 125 ppm than you could a pool with 100 ppm total alkalinity and keep the pH the same. In summary, by refining the recommended total alkalinity range, consumers are receiving a greater margin for error and a greater level of protection against surface and equipment deterioration.

Other organisations, including the National Plasterers Council in the US, also recommend slightly higher total alkalinity ranges and promote the benefits of maintaining these ranges. Vinyl and plaster surfaces alike are subject to damage from improper pH control. Again, by providing additional buffering capacity more protection is offered to consumers against surface etching and deterioration. Our objective is to help pool owners protect the pool surface and equipment for years of trouble-free operation.

The above information is supplied by Bio-Lab and represents its best interpretation of available technical information at the time of preparation. The sole purpose is to supply factual information to Bio-Lab customers. It is not to be taken out of context nor used as support for any other claim not made herein.