Verde Guatemala Series
What is Alkalinity?
The ability of water to neutralize acid is called "Alkalinity". In other words, it refers to the condition that occurs as a result of water resisting acidification. The total value of bicarbonate, hydroxide, and carbonates dissolved in water gives the Alkalinity value.
Alkalinity is a resistance that measures the acid buffering capacity of water in quantity and directly affects the pH value in pool water. The pH value affected by the alkalinity ratio also indirectly affects the oxidation, chlorine level, and disinfection applications in the pool water.
Alkalinity balances the ideal pH value for swimming in healthy and hygienic pool water and ensures the functionality of other pool chemicals. This prevents microorganisms, algae, and similar contaminants from harboring in the pool. Another importance of alkalinity is that it ensures that the floor and wall tiles of the pools maintain their form and keep them like the first day. With the correct alkalinity ratio, the pH value is kept constant and the substances in the pool water are adjusted so as not to damage the pool tiles.
The degree of alkalinity is composed of hydroxyl ions, bicarbonate ions, and carbonate ions in the water, creating a chemical balance, and the pH value of the water is affected by decreasing or increasing. The degree of alkalinity varies depending on the quality of the water. Another form of change is due to the chemicals in the water. The degree of alkalinity can be measured using the alkalinity formulation in the pool water to be measured.
Alkalinity test kits are used in pool waters whose alkalinity degree is to be determined. Since the pH value of each pool is not equal, it is observed that the alkalinity degrees also give different results. The formula for the total alkalinity degree is as follows:
T= P + M (mg/L CaCO3) = A.N.50000 / mL sample
The symbol A in the given equation represents the total amount of H2SO4 consumed until the end of the 2nd turning point. The symbol N represents the solution normality of sulfuric acid in water.
The alkalinity test kit is an equipment used to measure the alkalinity in drinking water and pool water. Alkalinity test kits include an MR indicator, titration solution, and test tube. Before using alkalinity test kits, make sure that the pool water is hygienic. After adding pool water to the test kit and shaking, the test tube should be filled with the pool water to be tested up to the designated line (usually 5 ml). Add 3 drops of MR indicator and shake the test tube until the water turns green. The titration solution is added dropwise into the water until the green color turns slightly red. After the procedures, the number of drops is multiplied by 50 to determine the total alkalinity ratio. The amount of drops varies according to the pH of the water used in each alkalinity test.
Conditions that increase the degree of alkalinity:
High alkalinity is very harmful to human health, both from drinking water and pool water. The high alkalinity rate taken into the body by consuming drinking water can cause various disorders by affecting the body's natural pH balance. Similarly, in pools, it can cause many skin conditions that threaten human health due to insufficient cleaning of water with high alkalinity value. In addition, the service life of the pools may be shortened as a result of situations such as calcification and loss of joints.
Conditions that reduce the degree of alkalinity:
The average alkalinity value in pool water is between 80 and 120 ppm. If there is an alkalinity ratio below the mentioned values, the acidic properties in the water are more dominant, and the basic properties of the water are more dominant in the alkalinity ratio above the mentioned value. Generally, pp values between 80-120 are valid for pool types such as outdoor, indoor, Olympic, and semi-Olympic. The alkalinity value can be kept lower in pools where swimming is not practiced, such as ornamental pools and foot pools.
If the alkalinity value in the pool water is high, more acid must be added to regulate the pH level. Although the pH value resists to a certain point in pool waters with a high alkalinity ratio, it comes back to its old value after a while. High pH value also negatively affects the disinfection and chlorine rates used in pool water. Very high alkalinity values damage pool coatings and cause calcification. Another effect of high alkalinity in pool water is that it clogs filter systems. Especially in pools where sand filters are used, the filtration system is damaged and cannot give the desired performance and the pool water cannot be cleaned sufficiently.
The degree of alkalinity is very important in terms of both human health and the protection of pool floors in pools. Periodic pool maintenance and cleaning ensures that the chemicals used in connection with the pH value of the pool water can easily dissolve and clean the pool water. If the alkalinity ratio is in ideal numbers, the pH value is not affected and it becomes possible to easily clean the pool with disinfectant materials. If the alkalinity ratio is less or more than it should be, this situation also changes the pH balance and makes the chemicals used lose their functionality. Thus, pools cannot be fully cleaned and dirty substances such as bacteria, microorganisms, and algae begin to form.