Stay Safe and Store Pool Chemicals Properly
Pool owners know that maintaining a pool and keeping it clean is important in order to keep the pool pleasant and safe for everyone.
While people may complain of the smell of disinfectants, they are necessary in order to prevent the pool from spreading infections, either from person to person or from any other objects that find themselves in the water.
However, the strong chemical nature of most of these disinfectants means that if they are not properly stored or mixed, they can potentially be very dangerous. Members of the household, especially children, can become very ill and have serious reactions to the fumes that improperly stored chemicals may produce. This is why it is extremely important to know how to properly store your pool chemicals.
The Dangers of Chlorine
Chlorine-based chemicals are by far the most widely used pool disinfectants. On their own, they are not more dangerous than any other caustic chemical, though they should, of course, still be kept out of reach of children and handled with care according to their labels.
However, the Center for Disease Control mentions that one of the most common accidents involving pool chemicals is for chlorine gas to be released when the chlorine-based disinfectant mixes with another chemical, either accidentally or on purpose by owners who did not know about the potential effects. Chlorine gas is highly toxic, so much so that it has been used in wars in the past.
While accidental mixing usually only creates small amounts of the gas, it is still enough to make anyone who inhales it seriously ill.
Chlorine-based chemicals are extremely effective at keeping pools clean, and their usefulness outweighs any danger as long as they are treated with care. Do not attempt to mix cleaning chemicals unless you have previous knowledge of what reaction they will have to each other. Chemical reactions are a complex science, and amateurs should not risk creating unpleasant or toxic side effects.
Proper Storage Protocol
What exactly is the way to store pool chemicals properly?
The CDC has several tips on how to make sure that your chemicals are stored safely. These tips will help avoid chemical mixing, fire hazards, and contamination.
First, in order to avoid solutions mixing and causing harmful chemical reactions, they should be stored separately and all containers should be checked regularly for leaks.
Try not to store different chemicals directly above or below each other, so that even if a container develops a leak, it will not easily spread into the containers of other chemicals.
Secondly, containers should be stored above ground level to avoid the contact of flooding or flowing water, which might pick up traces of the chemical and spread it elsewhere, even into the groundwater.
They should also be stored neatly, with any rags, tools, or trash cleaned away regularly, to avoid any objects with trace amounts of the chemical from lingering and mixing or contaminating other things stored nearby.
Removing rags and garbage from the area will also help reduce the risk of a chemical fire. You should always keep pool chemicals and any other strong chemicals well away from any potential ignition sources or from oil or tools or rags that have oil on them.
Storing pool chemicals properly isn’t difficult; as you can see above, it mostly consists of ensuring that everything is separated and in its proper place. However, many pool owners fail to realize how dangerous it can be to be careless with these chemicals. Illness and injury from these chemicals is completely avoidable with proper care, so review these tips and keep your pool safe and fun.