All the pool trades and social media have been buzzing with blogs and articles on the current chlorine shortage. Some of these articles make it look as if every pool in the U.S. is threatened to become an algae cesspool—and the service trade is due to dry up and blow away like a tumbleweed. I have news for the pool service trade to offset the gloom prophecies. The fact is that there IS NOT a shortage of chlorine. What!? Because the shortage is primarily just ONE type of chlorine and that is trichlor tablets. And here is some really good news: There is more than ONE way to chlorinate a pool and there are options besides trichlor tablets.
While there is good news, there is also some bad news. It is the ying and yang of life. The bad news is that while there may not be a short supply of the trichlor alternatives, there is going to be higher demand and more difficulty in delivery. We are seeing this in the pandemic world that we live in. We have to wait for everything—from our Amazon packages to getting a table at the restaurant. Everything is going to take more time due to social distancing and occupancy restrictions in warehouses. This will lead to increased costs as well.
One solution that pool pros are looking at is to switch accounts to salt generators (SWG) and be done with buying chlorine. That is a good notion; however, consider the following: The same supply and demand on materials applies to salt generators. There will be high demand on the units and on replacement parts—including even the salt. There is an upfront cost that may be prohibitive to customers. Some service companies are offering discounts or deferred payment options on SWG units. That could mean losing lots of money upfront. Salt is a cool technology, but not a good fit for every pool due to corrosion issues. Also, there are some cities that ban saltwater pools from being drained into the sewer system, such as Santa Clarita, California.
Calcium Hypochlorite (cal hypo) is another option. Based on some searching I did, it looks like cal hypo is still available and being promoted to replace trichlor. However, although the cal hypo may be available, the packaging to get it to you may not be—and that could hold up supply. If customers are switched over to cal hypo tabs, it is vitally important to communicate to them that these tabs cannot be put into the trichlor floater or feeder. (Unless they want to turn the floater or feeder into a mini-space shuttle.) The mixture of cal hypo and trichlor WILL cause an explosion and fire. Pay attention and play it safe. Cal hypo also adds calcium to the pool—8 ppm of calcium for every pound in 10,000 gallons.
One form of chlorine that there is plenty of is liquid. Sodium hypochlorite liquid is made locally from salt, water, and electricity. There is no reliance on necessary offshore ingredients that can cause delays. With liquid, you are getting the freshest, purest form of chlorine available. It is one of the original sanitizers that has been used for both swimming pools and drinking water since before the 1920s. There is no cyanuric acid (CYA) or calcium left from the use of liquid. It has the most efficient cost per use of all formulations. And, it is the safest to transport and store.
HASA has had a deposit program on its 4X1 Sani-Clor product since 1964. During the pandemic, we have been able to continue to deliver our high strength 12.5% liquid in returnable bottles. This system prevented back-ups from the shortage or delays of packing materials like plastic and cardboard. Also, this helps keep our environment free from un-necessary waste. This system keeps over 25,000,000 plastics bottles out of landfills and oceans per year. For more info on Sani-Clor® check out this link: https://bit.ly/3qtNdWS
And now you can get the power of Sani-Clor® introduced daily into the pool with the HASA Liquidator™: A cost-efficient unit that works without additional electricity. The Liquidator™ offers a simple way to ensure Safe, Clean and Clear water for your pools every day.
The next time you hear about the chlorine shortage remember…there is more than one way to chlorinate the pool and HASA is here to help.