What You Need To Know About Borax…

by T. Duff on February 22, 2008

What You Need To Know About Borax…

One of the biggest topics currently in the swimming pool industry is about borax.

What is it?

What does it do?

Should I be using it?

If so, why?

These are questions that a very large number of swimming pool owners around the country are asking themselves right now. It’s also been one of the most frequent topics from emails that I’ve received over the past several months.

This email is specifically designed to bring you up to speed on this exact topic.

There’s a lot to be said about incorporating borax into your swimming pool maintenance regiment, but it’s also important to proceed with caution here.

Borax is essentially nothing more than a buffering agent. I believe this is highly relevant especially under the realm of managing pH levels and the amount (or strength) of hydrogen levels in your pool water.

If you choose to introduce borax into your pool water consider following these basic guidelines:

1. Add slowly – don’t add a lot at the same time. If necessary, even do it over 3-4 days, testing your chlorine and pH before each addition.

2. Do not use laundry detergent that contains borax – be sure to look at the ingredients and make sure borax or sodium tetraborate is the only listed ingredient.

3. Be aware that when you first add borax to your water the pH will more than likely increase dramatically. Not to worry. This is expected to take place.

Once the pH returns to normal levels, because it stays in the water, it will do a much better job (compared to other buffing agents) at keeping your pH levels in check.

Borax is still a relatively new introduction (for this application) and pool suppliers/wholesalers are pushing this very hard to this service industry.

To the best of my knowledge, there have been no long term studies done in reference to the primary ingredients and how it reacts with other chemicals. I encourge you to do your own investigation and research as well.

We just began introducing this to some of our pool clients and have a handful that have allowed us to incorporate this into their chemical treatments. We’re testing and monitoring closely on all elements of their water (metals, TDS, conditioner reactions, combined/free chlorine, pH, etc).

I truly hope this information finds you well.


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