What Chlorine Level Is Too High To Swim?

When the chlorine level is high in your pool, there are some signs you can use to tell. Some of them include burning skin, itchy eyes, difficulty breathing, etc.

So, it is important to know the safe level for you to swim at. The safe range for chlorine levels is between 1 ppm and 4 ppm. But we recommend 1 ppm to 3 ppm, which is the ideal range.

Once the chlorine level of your pool gets to 5 ppm or beyond, it is no longer safe for anyone to swim. Swimming in a pool with high chlorine is not safe for your health.

If you start noticing a burning sensation on any part of your body, skin redness, or you start nauseating anytime you enter the pool, you may need to test the pool for chlorine level.

Can you swim in a pool with too much chlorine?

As we stated above, it is not safe to swim in a pool that contains too much chlorine. It can be detrimental to your health, especially for those with asthma or other respiratory tract infections.

If you don’t want to experience chlorine poisoning, you have to avoid swallowing the pool water. That’s why it’s very risky for you or your kids to enter a pool with high chlorine levels.

I was discussing it with my doctor the other day. He said long exposure to super-chlorinated water can cause dry skin and irritate the lungs.

If the water can cause itchy skin, burning eyes and throat, vomiting, and coughing, then it’s not good for your health.

Can I swim 15 ppm chlorine?

Have you seen this figure somewhere before? A lot of people have asked us this same question several times. They said they saw it somewhere and wanted confirmation from us.

I understand that every expert has their own safety level. Some will tell you 1-3 ppm, while others will recommend 1-4 ppm, 1-5 ppm, 2-5 ppm, etc. Whichever range was given to you, make sure it doesn’t exceed 5 ppm.

The 15 ppm you saw somewhere could be an error. The person probably wanted to write 1–5 ppm. 15 ppm is way too much for anyone to bear.

If it’s not an error message, as we explain, run away anytime you see or hear 15 ppm. It can kill or cause serious health problems. Always endeavor to keep the level below 5 ppm.

How can I lower the chlorine level in my pool fast?

There are many ways to lower the chlorine level in your pool. You can lower it naturally by exposing it to sunlight or by draining and refilling it with fresh water.

To make the process faster, use chlorine neutralizers to reduce the amount of chlorine. The neutralizers can be found in the stores.

Can high chlorine hurt you?

Yes, high chlorine is not good for your health. Long exposure to super-chlorinated water can affect your respiratory system.

What do you do if chlorine is high?

If the chlorine level in your pool becomes too high, the best thing to do first is to stop using the pool. Then think of ways you can use to reduce the amount of chlorine in the pool.

There are several ways to lower the level of chlorine in a pool. Some of them include:

  • Swimming

Though we don’t recommend swimming in a pool with high chlorine content, using the pool heavily usually makes the chlorine deplete faster.

  • Sunlight

The UV rays from sunlight deplete chlorine fast. So if you can leave the pool open for a while, it will help lower the chlorine faster.

  • Heating

From our high school chemistry, we learned that high temperatures can accelerate some reactions. So, heating the pool water helps to energize the chlorine molecules to react with other compounds.

  • Dilution

Draining and refilling the pool is another way to lower the chlorine in your hot tub. But this method can be tedious. Moreover, you still need to balance the water chemistry after refilling.

  • Hydrogen peroxide

You can use hydrogen peroxide formulated for pools to reduce the level of chlorine in your pool. It is a strong oxidizing agent that will easily oxidize chlorine. It is more effective at pH levels higher than 7.0.

  • Chlorine neutralizers

Using sodium thiosulfate and other chlorine neutralizers can help lower the chlorine level. You can get these products from the pool store.

What to do if total chlorine is higher than free chlorine?

Shock your pool if total chlorine is higher than free chlorine. Though total chlorine is usually higher than free chlorine, it shouldn’t be 0.2 ppm higher.

If the margin is over 0.2 ppm, it means that combined chlorine is high in the pool. You can learn how to shock a pool here.

However, if the total chlorine is higher than free chlorine with a margin of less than 0.2, you don’t need to do anything.

Is it safe to swim if chlorine is 5 ppm?

As we mentioned earlier, some experts will recommend a chlorine level of 5 ppm. But that level might be extreme for some people.

For that reason, we usually recommend 4 ppm or lower. So if your pool chlorine is up to 5 ppm, do your best to lower it.

How do you know if there is too much chlorine in a pool?

There are various signs one can use to detect high levels of chlorine in a pool. If you enter your pool and start having burning eyes, itchy skin, coughing, shortness of breath, etc.,

Anytime you notice anything like that, then know that there might be high chlorine in the pool.

Why is my total chlorine so much higher than free chlorine?

If the total chlorine in your pool is higher than the free chlorine it means that the combined chlorine is high.

Total chlorine is the total sum of all the chlorine present in a pool while free chlorine is the chlorine that has not reacted. If the chlorine reacts and bonds with other compounds, it turns to combined chlorine.

What kills bacteria and algae in your pool is the free chlorine. Combined chlorine is not active to kill bacteria effectively. So, if combined chlorine becomes too much (above 0.2 ppm) in your pool, it means that the free chlorine has depleted a lot.

The free chlorine can change in value and it attacks bacteria and reacts with other compounds. But the value of total chlorine remains the same.

Total chlorine = free chlorine + combined chlorine.

How long does it take for chlorine levels to drop in the pool?

It can take up to 2-5 days for high chlorine levels to drop. But if the chlorine level is over 10 ppm, it can take over 5 ppm for it to drop.

Nonetheless, you can make it drop faster by applying some techniques such as exposure to sunlight, the heat of the pool water, the addition of hydrogen peroxide or chlorine neutralizers.

What does it mean when total chlorine is high?

As we mentioned earlier, the acceptable chlorine range for your pool is between 1 ppm and 4 ppm. If the total chlorine present in your pool is higher than 5 ppm, it is high and not safe for you to swim.

So, if the level goes beyond 5 ppm you would need to allow the chlorine level to drop by:

  • Exposing the pool to sunlight
  • Heat the pool
  • Adding hydrogen peroxide
  • Add chlorine neutralizer

Which is more important: total chlorine or free chlorine?

Both total chlorine and free chlorine are important in your pool. If total chlorine is low, it means that free chlorine is low. So, the two are almost the same thing.

The only difference between the two is that total chlorine is a combination of both free chlorine and combined chlorine.

Nevertheless, free chlorine is what kills bacteria and algae in the pool. But it’s still part of total chlorine.

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