Managing Hardness Levels for a Healthy Swimming Pool

Managing Hardness Levels for a Healthy Swimming Pool
4 min read

Maintaining a healthy swimming pool involves careful management of various water chemistry factors, including hardness levels. Properly balanced hardness is essential to ensure water quality, prevent equipment damage, and create a comfortable swimming environment. In this article, we will explore effective strategies for managing hardness levels in your gunite pool, enabling you to achieve balance and maintain a healthy swimming experience.

Understand Water Hardness

Water hardness refers to the concentration of minerals, primarily calcium and magnesium, in your pool water. It is typically measured in parts per million (ppm). Low hardness can lead to corrosive water, while high levels can result in scaling. The recommended range for gunite pools generally falls between 200 and 400 ppm.

Regular Water Testing

Regularly testing your pool water is crucial to monitor hardness levels accurately. Use a reliable water testing kit or seek assistance from a professional pool service to obtain precise results. Test your pool water at least once a month, and more frequently during periods of heavy pool usage or extreme weather conditions.

Adjusting Low Hardness Levels

If your pool's hardness falls below the recommended range, adjustments are necessary to increase hardness. Calcium hardness increasers, such as calcium chloride, can be added to raise the calcium concentration. Follow the manufacturer's instructions to determine the appropriate dosage based on your pool's volume and current hardness levels. Ensure thorough distribution by adding the increaser while the pool's circulation system is running.

Addressing High Hardness Levels

In cases of high hardness levels, reducing the concentration becomes crucial. Partially draining your pool and refilling it with fresh water is an effective method to dilute the minerals and lower the hardness level. Consult with a pool professional to determine the appropriate volume of water replacement based on your pool's specific conditions.

Water Source Considerations

Understanding the hardness of your water source is essential for managing hardness levels. If your tap water has high calcium content, it can contribute to increased hardness in your pool. Consider using alternative water sources or treating the incoming water to reduce hardness. Water softening systems or pre-treatment methods can be employed to achieve a more balanced water source for your pool.

Maintain Overall Water Balance

Balancing hardness levels goes hand in hand with maintaining overall water balance. Regularly test and adjust other crucial water chemistry factors, including pH, alkalinity, and sanitizer levels. These factors work together to create a harmonious swimming environment and support balanced hardness levels.

Regular Maintenance and Cleaning

Consistent maintenance and cleaning practices play a vital role in managing hardness levels. Maintain proper filtration, ensure the circulation system is functioning optimally, and keep the pool clean from debris and contaminants. Regularly inspect and clean pool surfaces to prevent scaling and mineral buildup.

Seek Professional Guidance

If you encounter persistent challenges in managing hardness levels or need expert advice, do not hesitate to consult a pool professional. They can assess your pool's specific conditions, provide tailored recommendations, and offer solutions for achieving optimal hardness balance in your gunite pool.


Managing hardness levels is crucial for a healthy swimming pool. By understanding water hardness, regularly testing the water, making appropriate adjustments, and maintaining overall water balance, you can achieve and maintain optimal hardness levels in your gunite pool. Consider your water source, perform regular maintenance and cleaning, and seek professional guidance when needed. With these strategies, you can enjoy a healthy and balanced swimming pool for years to come, providing a refreshing and enjoyable experience for all swimmers.


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Kevin Smith 2
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