Your walking down the isle at Leslie's swimming pool store, shopping for something to put in your pool that will stop the Algae currently growing. You know you need chlorine, but as you walk around you start wondering "why are there so many different kinds, and which one should I buy?" You look left and see Leslie's Power Powder and read the small print. Its a bunch of science words that mean nothing to you. "Sodium Dichloro - s - Tri - Phosphate....." You walk a little further and find there Chlor Bright, and reading the small print see "Calcium Hypo Chlorite".
I'm going to give you all the answers, and from here on out its going to be a breeze!
I'm going to write the rules that Poolgala uses to take care of all of our swimming pools and as long as you follow these rules, you should be fine.
1. Buy liquid shock
It's the only type of chlorine that really doesn't have any adverse side effects when put into the pool, other than raising your PH and Alkalinity. If you see algae in your pool and need to shock it, add liquid shock until all the algae is dead. For regular weekly chlorination, use liquid shock when the water temperature drops below 90 degrees. Liquid shock is great. It doesn't raise your calcium or cyanuric acid levels slowly over time, so we try to use it as much as we can.
2. Buy 3" tablets
3" tablets go inside of whats called an inline chlorinator. Check out the pictures below and if you don't see anything like them on your pool, I highly recommend investing in one.
Chlorinators are absolutely essential. In the mean time if your really needing to use tabs, you can put the tablets inside of your skimmer but doing this over long periods of time exposes your motor to overly acidic water, shortening its life span. We use tablets to chlorinate the pool weekly as soon as the water gets above 90 degrees. Tablets are made out of a more stable chlorine called Trichlor that works much better in higher temperatures, plus they are extremely cheap. The only downside is they add cyanuric acid to your pool and using them over a long enough time could cause you real problems. That's why we switch back and forth between tabs and liquid to minimize cyanuric acid levels in your pool.
Lastly, if your trying to shock your pool with liquid, don't just add one gallon, dump about four into the pool. Over shock and keep shocking! You can add two gallons of liquid a day until all the algae turns grey and the water is blue. Most problems I find is that people under shock their pool water, so the algae doesn't die and continues to grows back.
By following the rules above and you should be able to maintaine your swimming pool this summer!