Pool Care >> Maintaining Your Pool: Pool Water Testing

Maintaining Your Pool: Pool Water Testing

Now that the water is prepared, your pool is ready for a season of enjoyment. All that's left is to follow the Sustain® System Program and utilize a simple, ongoing maintenance routine to keep your pool looking great all summer long.

In addition to taking water samples to your dealer a minimum of every six weeks, test your pool water for FAC and pH at home at least once a week. Use 3-Way Test Strips or a DPD Test Kit. Maintain the FAC level between 1-3 ppm to ensure healthy water. Your pH level should be between 7.2 and 7.4 to maintain water balance and chlorine effectiveness. Always test your water and adjust before adding routine doses of Sustain Shield Energizer Tablets. [ More info...]

The DPD Two-Way Test Kit, which measures pH and FAC, is a simple way to test your water. Follow these steps:

  1. Rinse the test cell with the pool water.
  2. Fill to the indicated line.
  3. Add 5 drops of pH reagent.
  4. Compare the color to the pH color blocks.
  5. Empty test cell, rinse with pool water and refill with pool water to the indicated line.
  6. To check FAC, use 5 drops each of #1 DPD and #2 DPD reagents (or a DPD #1 tablet) and compare to the "CL" color blocks.
  7. Store the Kit out of direct sunlight in a cool place between uses.

    Start each season with a fresh kit.

Three-Way Test Strips
Alternatively, use Three-Way Test Strips to routinely monitor pH, TA and FAC. Although extremely convenient, these strips are not as precise as a DPD Two-Way Test Kit. The Three-Way Strips indicate a range, instead of an exact reading. The pH level will read low if TA is 80 ppm or below. Also, the indicator for FAC is different than DPD (its purple, rather than pink), so the readings may differ slightly. When testing with the Three-Way Test Strips, handle the strips with clean, dry hands, keeping the bottle tightly capped between uses. Store in a cool place.

  1. Dip the entire test strip into the pool water for one second, remove, and allow 30 seconds for the pad colors to fully change.
  2. Match the colors on the pH and TA pads to those of the color standards on the bottle.
  3. Re-dip the test strip to a 12-inch depth in the pool water for 30 seconds.
  4. Remove and match the color of the free chlorine pad to the color standard.