The complete guide to Calcium Hardness Increaser
Calcium hardness may not be something that has ever occurred to you. Understandable. There are a lot of different things to keep in mind, and the potential value of a calcium hardness increaser may not be first and foremost what you are thinking about. From alkalinity, to how to balance pH levels, you can be forgiven for not immediately appreciate the value of calcium hardness. Nonetheless, we are talking about an aspect of swimming pool care that must be kept in mind. It is every bit as important as maintaining other aspects of your swimming pool’s overall balance. A calcium hardness increaser is not something you may actually need. At the same time, you will want to know that for certain.
This is where the twin subjects of calcium hardness and calcium softness become worthy of a closer look. By better understanding these concepts, you will be in a better position to understand whether or not you need to increase your calcium in the first place. With a little research, you may discover that the opposite is true!
The science of calcium hardness is quite frankly fascinating. This is one aspect of your swimming pool that can play a crucial role in whether or not you can fully enjoy your swimming pool.
Let’s start with a closer look at calcium content in swimming pools. This, in turn, will help to explain what we’re talking about with calcium hardness increasers in the first place.
What Is A Calcium Hardness Increaser?
Learning how to manage your calcium levels isn’t difficult at all. In fact, it is not only straightforward but easy to deal with. You will find that there are affordable products for any situation you may be experiencing. Just remember that this is still an issue you will want to get on top of as quickly as possible. A calcium imbalance can become rather problematic very quickly.
If you don’t know a thing about calcium hardness or softness, that might be due to knowing it by an entirely different name. Hard water is another way to describe an abundance of calcium in your water, although it can refer to other worrisome minerals, as well. Hardness can come from well water, but it can just as easily come from a municipal source. This can vary from one area to the next. You have almost certainly tasted hard water in some form or fashion recently. There is nothing wrong with ingesting it, although there are impurities that you may want to eliminate. Some find the taste to be singular, but there is no serious proof that this is inherently true.
However, it is absolutely true that too much calcium can be damaging to your pool. It can be particularly destructive with the equipment you require to keep your pool at healthy levels across the board. The damage can become substantial over time. That also means it can become quite expensive over time. Monitoring calcium levels, in addition to essentials like pH and alkalinity, ensures your equipment and pool will be just fine.
Testing calcium hardness is naturally your next step. Thankfully, there are plenty of testing kits on the market to help you figure out whether you have too much calcium in your water, or perhaps, even too little calcium in the water. Like everything else concerning your pool, you are looking to achieve a balance.
What Does A Calcium Hardness Increaser Do?
As the name implies, a calcium hardness increaser works by increasing the amount of dissolved calcium in your water. Trace amounts of minerals such as calcium and magnesium can, in fact, be important to the overall health of your pool. If the levels are too low, then you will need to start researching the different calcium hardness increasers that are available to you.
When your levels are not as they should be, you have what is known as soft water. If the calcium hardness drops beneath levels significantly below 150ppm (Parts Per Million), then your soft water is in danger of developing corrosive characteristics. This can cause considerable havoc with the conditions of your pool for swimming. If left unchecked for long enough, it can bring about an abrupt end to your swimming pool season. A calcium hardness increaser will overstep this potential headache.
What happens if nothing is done? As it turns out, a lot. Your tile grout will begin to erode. Your plaster services may begin to delaminate. It gets worse. Metal parts can begin to suffer from corrosion, as your stone and/or concrete surfaces become weakened. The same can even be said for the flooring and/or walls of concrete swimming pools. To reiterate an earlier point, calcium levels are just as important to balance like anything else. A calcium hardness increaser can ensure none of this ever happens.
At the same time, a testing kit may reveal that your levels are too high. This brings us back to the hard water concept we mentioned before. Too much saturation of these particles in your water can lead to water scaling in and around the equipment that defines your pool. You will know your pool equipment is likely to be damaged or otherwise compromised by the presence of visible cloudiness to your swimming pool’s water. Hard water is definitely more frustrating to deal with than soft water. Whereas there are products to increase the calcium content of your swimming pool, bringing your water down from hard levels will mean partially or even completely draining the pool. There is no saving of the water at that point.
Pros Of Calcium Hardness Increaser
Having come to understand the benefits of balancing your calcium levels, we can take a closer look at the benefits of a calcium hardness increaser. Obviously, these benefits are only going to hold true if your calcium levels are too low. A hardness increaser can be a saving grace, but you will naturally want to take great care in what you’re doing. It is easy enough to accidentally increase your levels to a problematic degree. Bringing hardness to an appropriate level is considerably easier than dealing with water that has become too hard.
Again, hard water is not particularly harmful to ingest (except, obviously, in a swimming pool). Your pool equipment, as well as potentially its very foundation, is another matter altogether.
By carefully following the instructions offered by whichever product you purchase, you should be able to get your levels to the desired amount. This would be around 150ppm. Higher levels run the risk of creating hard water. By maintaining the 150ppm threshold as closely as possible, you will never have to worry about your calcium levels. In many situations, a calcium hardness increaser is absolutely vital. This is perhaps its biggest and most invaluable benefit.
Cons Of Calcium Hardness Increaser
Are there any downsides to a calcium hardness increaser that you need to be aware of? Not really. As long as you carefully follow the directions associated with the hardness increaser you purchase, you shouldn’t have to worry about a thing. By testing and using your increaser carefully, you will be able to create a balance of 150ppm that we have been talking about.
Of course, failing to adhere to directions and strict testing, or using a hardness increaser without even testing the water in the first place, can create its own kinds of problems. If your levels are fine, an increaser will indeed still perform as advertised. Only in this scenario, it creates levels that are too high to be useful. Gradual damage to your equipment is not too terribly far behind. After following the directions carefully, you will want to test your levels again. You may need to make some additional adjustments.
Again, such downsides are easy enough to avoid by simply being careful in dealing with water softness from start to finish.
The 150ppm is a very loose guideline. This is the last thing we want to cover in greater detail. 150ppm is the measuring stick for a great many different swimming pools. However, it may turn out to not be the case with your own pool. The specific type of swimming pool you own will ultimately point you in the direction of an ideal level. Nonetheless, we will try to give you a rough idea of what you want to be working towards.
To begin with, vinyl liner swimming pools and fiberglass swimming pools can have unique needs. The ideal level might be around 150ppm, but 175ppm may, in fact, be a better fit for your specific example. In fact, in some situations, the ideal level is going to be as high as 225ppm. This is a fairly significant jump from the 150ppm that we have been discussing so far. You will want to take a look at the instructions and all other pertinent information related to your pool. It may turn out that 225ppm is indeed your sweet spot.
Regardless of your pool type, you may still need to purchase a calcium hardness increaser. This can be determined through accurate testing.