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TXGlenn

Handling And Storing Muriatic Acid

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Hi everyone. I just got my first pool and have some questions about muriatic acid. I buy it from Lowes in the 2, 1-gallon plastic jugs.

1. As far as handling this stuff, am I ok to just walk around the pool pouring this in? Do I need to wear gloves or a long-sleeve shirt? A couple of times I've got my head in a "vapor cloud" and this stuff is nasty. Any kind of precations to take or just make sure I don't loiter in the cloud?

2. How should I open the bottles? I don't like using my finger to poke a hole in the lid so I've been using a stick or something non-metal laying around.

3. As far as storage, can I leave the plastic bottles in the cardboard box they come in or should I move them to a bigger plastic bucket with a lid (or no lid?)? A few years ago I had some stored just in the plastic bottles on a shelf and the corners of the shelf started rusting. I wasn't sure if leaving them in the cardboard boxes would have helped prevent this. And currently I just have this stuff on the cement floor in my garage. Is this ok?

Thanks for the help. I feel like I'm being overly paranoid about this stuff but want to make sure I don't make a foolish mistake with it.

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Hi everyone. I just got my first pool and have some questions about muriatic acid. I buy it from Lowes in the 2, 1-gallon plastic jugs.

1. As far as handling this stuff, am I ok to just walk around the pool pouring this in? Do I need to wear gloves or a long-sleeve shirt? A couple of times I've got my head in a "vapor cloud" and this stuff is nasty. Any kind of precations to take or just make sure I don't loiter in the cloud?

2. How should I open the bottles? I don't like using my finger to poke a hole in the lid so I've been using a stick or something non-metal laying around.

3. As far as storage, can I leave the plastic bottles in the cardboard box they come in or should I move them to a bigger plastic bucket with a lid (or no lid?)? A few years ago I had some stored just in the plastic bottles on a shelf and the corners of the shelf started rusting. I wasn't sure if leaving them in the cardboard boxes would have helped prevent this. And currently I just have this stuff on the cement floor in my garage. Is this ok?

Thanks for the help. I feel like I'm being overly paranoid about this stuff but want to make sure I don't make a foolish mistake with it.

There's no question this stuff is nasty -- probably the worst chemical in terms of fuming of anything you use in a pool. You can get half-strength Muriatic Acid which may fume less, but usually the stores charge the same amount for it so it's more expensive to use (but may be worth it).

I always make sure I'm up-wind from the bottle. It's very important to pour the acid very slowly over a return flow, preferably at the deep end of the pool, with the pump running. If you think you will spill it, then gloves and long-sleeve shirt will help, but quickly rinsing with lots of water if you spill will usually be enough to not cause problems. It's much more important to wear protective eyewear as getting it in the eyes can cause blindness -- far worse than just some skin irritation.

Yes, using a sharp object to open the top is better than using your finger.

Unless the top is very well sealed, the acid can cause serious corrosion near wherever it is stored. So it is best to store it in a well-venitilated place or even outside (in the shade) rather than in a garage or shed.

Richard

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Thanks for the reply Richard. I'll try to move this out of the garage. I have a plstic storage shed but it's not well ventilated plus it houses my lawn mower, weed eater, and other metal things so maybe I'll just leave it on the patio.

How often should I need to add this to the pool? I've been adding about a gallon a week. Is this normal? My pH keeps moving up to 8 or so. It has been raining alot here lately...I thought that might have something to do with it.

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Thanks for the reply Richard. I'll try to move this out of the garage. I have a plstic storage shed but it's not well ventilated plus it houses my lawn mower, weed eater, and other metal things so maybe I'll just leave it on the patio.

How often should I need to add this to the pool? I've been adding about a gallon a week. Is this normal? My pH keeps moving up to 8 or so. It has been raining alot here lately...I thought that might have something to do with it.

No, that is not normal unless your Total Alkalinity (TA) level is too high or you have lots of water aeration features (waterfalls, spillovers, fountains, aeration jets) or you have an saltwater chlorine generator (SWG) system since the latter produces lots of aeration with its hydrogen gas bubbles.

What is your TA level and what is your source of chlorine? Any aeration features?

If this problem only started happening since it's been raining, then the rain splashing on the surface of the water can be aerating it. You can also check the pH of the rain itself, though usually that's only a minor influence unless you've got an awful lot of rain and it's way away from the pH of the pool (the pool is buffered so it takes a lot of rain to affect the pH).

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I checked my TA yesterday and it was about 80 ppm. pH was about 7.8. Water is 63 degrees. I do have a salt water "chlorination" system and a waterfall, but no other areation features.

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Saltwater chlorine generators will bring the raise the PH( the reason why the high muriatic acid demand.) Also be careful because you are getting to the bottom of the scale when it comes to the ideal range for the Alkalinity. I also noticed that you said it was your first pool. Is it a new pool? If so is it a concrete pool? If it is, the PH will run on the high side until the finish cures.

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Saltwater chlorine generators will bring the raise the PH( the reason why the high muriatic acid demand.) Also be careful because you are getting to the bottom of the scale when it comes to the ideal range for the Alkalinity. I also noticed that you said it was your first pool. Is it a new pool? If so is it a concrete pool? If it is, the PH will run on the high side until the finish cures.

This is a new pool and it is concrete. How long can I expect the finish to cure? And do I need to just keep adding MA to keep my pH in check until it does?

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How can I dispose of muriatic acid? I have a  a fire in my shed today. I have a leak in one of those bottles. I have the bottle in a bucket. I know that chemical is toxic. Please someone tell me how to dispose of this. PLEASE.

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