Chlorine Vs Bromine Article Cover

Swimming Pool Chemicals: Chlorine vs. Bromine

In Cleaning and Organization, Maintenance and Repair by Ryan MartinLeave a Comment

Whether you are choosing a chemical type for your new pool or looking to switch over your current system, there are a few things to know about each. The two available chemical treatments to keep your pool sparkling clean are chlorine and bromine. Chlorine has been the tried and true treatment option for many years, however bromine’s popularity has seen quite an increase over the past decade.

Chlorine

Chlorine chemical treatments have been around for so long that they are guaranteed to keep your pool in tip-top shape. The way that chlorine works is, when added to the pool water, the chemical combines with the bacteria and junk in the water and neutralizes the chlorine chemical.

This chemical is then broken up by a weekly shock treatment and is collected as it passes through the pool’s filtering system. As with most components to your new pool, there are many different “types” of chlorine to choose from.

In reality, the main difference between all these types and brands is the levels of concentration of the main active ingredients.

If you are unsure of what brand would be best for your pool and its needs, consult with your local pool professional; they can help determine what level of concentration you need to maintain optimal pH levels in your water.

What Type of Chlorine Should I Use?

Another question some people tend to ask their pool professionals is what form of chlorine would be best suited to your needs and/or preferences. Chlorine comes in different sized tablets, sticks, and in granular form. Whichever one you choose depends on how much time you wish to devote to pool water maintenance.

The granular form of chlorine is best for those who want to keep daily, precise control of their pool chemical levels.

However, if you want a form that allows for less involvement, you will probably want to go with the larger tablet or stick form of chlorine.

Bromine

If you have an aversion to using chlorine for whatever reason, there is an alternative to keeping your pool clean.

Bromine is a chemical very similar to chlorine. A lot of people with sensitive skin tend to use bromine, as it can be less irritating than chlorine. However, because it is still technically chlorine based, it can’t be used as a complete replacement if you have an allergy to chlorine.

It is extremely popular for use in spas and hot tubs due to its high stability in warmer temperatures, making it ideal for pool owners in warmer climates.

It also does need to be added to the water in tablet form via a feeder, much like the tablet form of chlorine, however, it does require less upkeep than chlorine.

The main difference between the two chemicals is the way in which they are neutralized. Chlorine is burned off along with the bacteria when the two react. Bromine is different in that it is not completely burned off after neutralizing with the bacteria.

A weekly shock treatment of a bromine pool gets rid of the bacteria and used up chemicals, but leaves behind the remainder of the bromine to continue maintaining water cleanliness.
The result? You buy chemicals less often because a few pounds of bromine will get you further than the same amount of chlorine.

There are benefits and downfalls to each chemical. Chlorine is obviously a proven method and can require very little upkeep. Because it has been in use for so long, it is widely available and prices are usually significantly lower. Bromine does tend to be more expensive than chlorine, thus causing fewer pool owners to use it. But because a pool does require less bromine to maintain than it does chlorine, the pricing can even out in the end. Your best bet in making this decision is to consult your local pool professional.

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