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Understanding Cyanuric Acid

When water contains more than 50 ppm of CYA, the chlorine is 1/3 as effective as when the CYA is 20 ppm.

When cyanuric acid levels get too high, it can cause something referred to as chlorine lock, which basically means your chlorine has been rendered useless.

High CYA levels reduce the killing power of your chlorine, risking illness from bacteria, viruses and many other pathogens. It may take hours or even days for chlorine to kill pathogens when CYA is at high levels. Elevated levels also create an environment that allows for biofilm formation, which can harbor pathogens and make them even harder to kill.

High levels of CYA can affect the look of pool water, surfaces and equipment. Visual indications of high CYA levels can be outbreaks of green algae, cloudy water that will not clear and plaster degradation. High CYA plus elevated copper levels can create a purple hue and staining. Pools with 3-4 ppm of chlorine that still have algae is a result of high CYA levels. This is why we stress to not fill your chlorinator to the top with your traditional chlorine tabs.

High-use pools that experience noticeable water loss due to “splash out”, will see lower CYA levels. However, the only other alternative to remedy high levels is to drain and refill your pool.

Traditional chlorine tablets contain more than half cyanuric acid. The traditional stabilized chlorine will cause CYA to accumulate quickly, creating unsafe water alarmingly fast. We offer alternatives to the traditional chlorine tablets with the Poolife NST tablets.

We are here 7 days a week Monday- Friday 9 to 6 and Saturday and Sunday 10 to 3. Bring us a water sample for a free water analysis. We can discuss all the options that are best for your pool and help make your pool time more fun and not a chore.

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Adam Dooley
Adam Dooley
04 Μαΐ 2021

Great article. Perfect reason to test your water regularly. CYA is probably the reason I have fought algae in the past even though chlorine levels are good.

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