While pool chemicals are necessary to destroy pathogens and maintain a clean swimming environment, mishandled chlorine and other pool chemicals are the cause of thousands of injuries and emergency room visits each year. Learn how to avoid toxic disasters and keep your swimming pool and spa area clean, safe and the refreshing source of fitness and relaxation it's supposed to be.
After reading this list, check out the list of Pool Chemical Safety Don'ts.
DO Read the Product LabelDon't rely on the shape of the bottle or brand name before applying or mixing chemicals into your pool or spa. Know what you're working with and double-check by reading the label.
DO Wear Protective Clothing When Handling Pool Chemicals
That would mean a lab coat or old shirt, preferably with long sleeves. The same goes for long pants. The reason: if any of the chemicals spill or get splashed on your arms or legs -- bare skin -- it can be dangerous. A less traumatic but still important reason to wear the old lab coat or smock is to protect your regular clothing from getting chemical stains on them. Don't wear your newest and favorite pair of jeans to do this task. Don't go barefoot or wear sandals -- an old pair of shoes is a wise "fashion" choice here.
On the subject of protective gear, go ahead and wear a pair of safety glasses (not your Oakleys)and gloves.
DO Use Caution When Opening Containers to Avoid SplashingThe same rule applies to opening containers of dry chemicals, to minimize the amount of dust generated when handling powdered or granulated chemicals.
Do Maintain Chemical Treatments at the Proper Levels
Not sure what those proper levels should be? Get a pool test kit
to check levels and follow the manufacturer's instructions.
DO Store Chemicals in a Cool, Dry PlaceMake that a cool, dry, well-ventilated place. Don't leave pool chemicals lying near the pool, with the hot summer sun blazing on them.
DO Store Pool Chemicals Out of the Reach of Children & PetsIf pool chemicals are accessible, they obviously pose a risk to curious children and pets. Store high and dry.
DO Keep the Pool Chemical Storage Area Well-MaintainedMake sure you tighten lids on chemical containers, and don't toss the bottles into your storage area with the thought that you'll clean thing up "later."
Do Use All of the Chemical Before DisposalContainers of partially filled pool chemicals can perforate or spill, creating a toxic hazard and adding to overloaded landfills and waste. Simply put: it's a very ungreen thing to do.
DO Wash Hands After Working with Pool ChemicalsAnother good reason to wash your hands.
Do Maintain Chemical Treatments at the Proper LevelsNot sure what those proper levels should be? Get a pool test kit to check levels and follow the manufacturer's instructions.