Using chlorine in your vinyl swimming pool is necessary. But it can be tricky and risky because using the wrong type of chlorine in your vinyl pool may deteriorate the liner.
This article will help you determine the best chlorine product to use in your vinyl liner pool. Let’s get started!
What Chlorine Is Safe to Use for Vinyl Liner Pools?
Dichlor or liquid chlorine is the best and safest chlorine to use in a vinyl liner pool. Dichlor is fast dissolving and liquid chlorine (bleach aka sodium hyperchlorite) is fast to distribute throughout the water. Trichlor and calcium hypochlorite (cal-hypo) should be avoided as they can bleach and weaken liners.
Ideally the best and safest chlorines for vinyl liner pools:
- Dissolve quickly
- Do not bleach or weaken the liner
Using other chlorines can significantly shorten the life of a vinyl liner and or bleach it.
But if you choose your chlorine wisely, you will get the best results with your pool maintenance without any risk.
Can Chlorine Tablets Damage Pool Liner?
Chlorinating tablets offer you an economical way to chlorinate your pool. But can the tablets damage the pool liner?
Chlorine tablets such as dichlor and trichlor can damage vinyl liner pools if they come in contact with the liner. Chlorine tablets are often highly concentrated. As a result, they increase chlorine concentration which can bleach and weaken the liner’s vinyl material, greatly reducing its life.
The best way to use chlorine tablets in a vinyl liner pool is to add them to a chlorinator or chlorine feeder. That way they will not come in contact with the liner and the chlorine is released in a slow and controlled manner.
Furthermore, avoid throwing chlorine tablets directly into your pool. Why? The tabs will sit on the floor of your pool, resulting in a chemical burn. Bleaching and weakening of the liner is common, reducing its life by a few years.
Another thing to avoid is chlorine floaters. The problem with a floater is that they can get stuck in a corner of a pool. If this happens, the area of the pool will be subjected to a high concentration of chlorine, which as you’ve probably guessed by now, will damage the liner.
Can I Use Cal-Hypo Chlorine in Vinyl Liner Pool?
It’s not recommended to use calcium hypochlorite in a vinyl liner pool. Cal-Hypo is an extremely strong chlorine. On top of that, it doesn’t dissolve in water quickly.
The longer the chlorine sits on the bottom of the pool in contact with the liner, the more damage that will occur. A strong chlorine like this will bleach the liner and cause a “chemical” burn.
However, Cal-Hypo works best with gunite, concrete, or plaster pools.
If you have been using Cal-Hypo, don’t worry too much. Ensure you change chlorines next time. And if it’s still sitting on the bottom of your pool, brush the walls and floor to distribute it. This will ensure nothing clings or settles to the surfaces, reducing the risk of bleaching your vinyl liner.
Use DI-CHLOR or liquid chlorine in your vinyl liner pool next time.
Can I Use Sodium Hypochlorite (Liquid Chlorine) in Vinyl Liner Pool?
Liquid chlorine is a good choice to use in a vinyl liner pool. The chlorine itself isn’t as concentrated as others and it distributes very quickly throughout the water reducing the risk of having concentrated areas of chlorine.
You should pour liquid chlorine evenly into specific areas of your pool. Failure to do so will result in higher chlorine concentrations, which is more likely to bleach the liner.
Try using Champion Liquid Chlorine. You can get it here:
- Commercial-strength liquid chlorine (aka bleach or sodium hypochlorite)
- Rapidly eliminates algae, bacteria, and other contaminants, ensuring crystal-clear water
- Safe for pools & spas (saltwater & chlorine systems)
- Use as a shock or regular sanitizer
In addition, when you add liquid chlorine, keep the pool pump on to circulate the water and mix the chlorine.
Can I Use Liquid Bleach in a Vinyl Liner Pool?
Liquid bleach is very similar to liquid chlorine. The difference between the liquid chlorine you buy specifically for pools and household bleach is the strength. Household bleach is about 6% strength and pool chlorine is around 11%.
The same rules apply when using bleach. Make sure you distribute it evenly throughout your pool with the circulation system is operating.
If you’re considering using bleach, you may want to know if bleach is cheaper than pool chlorine. Check out this article: Can You Use Bleach or Clorox in a Pool? Is it Cheaper?
Can I Use Trichlor in a Vinyl Liner Pool?
Trichlor should be avoided for vinyl liner pools. In a study conducted on vinyl-lined pools, it was found in almost all test cases, the sample was bleached when using trichlor.
- 3" chlorinating trichlor tablets
- Contains stabilizer to protect against sunlight
- Prevents algae and kills harmful bacteria
Trichlor is a very strong type of chlorine, up to 90%, and also contains cyanuric acid (stabilizers). Whilst it’s great for some pools, it doesn’t make a good choice for a vinyl liner pool.
Instead, opt for liquid chlorine, dichlor, or household bleach.
Can I Use Dichlor in a Vinyl Liner Pool?
Di-Chlor or Sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione is the most suitable and recommendable chlorines for a vinyl liner pool. It sometimes comes in tablet form but usually, it is sold in buckets as granules.
It’s not as strong as trichlor, about 60% strength and it’s fairly fast to dissolve. It’s these properties that make it good for vinyl liner pools.
However, it is quite high in stabilizers (cyanuric acid). Most pools should have stabilizer levels of 30-50 ppm. Exceeding this means you need a higher level of chlorine to do the same job.
And high levels of chlorine bleach and damage vinyl liner pools. Therefore it’s advisable to use a combination of dichlor and liquid chlorine.
Can I Use Lithium Hypochlorite (Lithium-Hypo) in a Vinyl Liner Pool?
Lithium Hypo is granular powdered chlorine and is a good choice for vinyl liner pools. It is however expensive and not used as much these days.
This chlorine doesn’t leave any residues that may burn fiberglass or vinyl materials when dissolved in water.
Another advantage of lithium hypo is that it lacks calcium. So, you’ll not worry about your pool having higher calcium hardness levels, which can lead to problems associated with hard water.
High Chlorine Levels Damage Vinyl Liner Pools
In the study mentioned earlier in this article, another common factor that shortens the life of vinyl liners is a high chlorine level.
Most pool advice is to keep chlorine levels between 1 and 5 ppm. These levels are good to keep away bacterial growth and algae. But for vinyl liner pools, some pool techs recommend keeping this on the low end.
Which Pool Shock to Use for Vinyl Liner Pool?
A swimming pool with sparkling and clean water is undeniably more enjoyable. And for you to make your pool clean, shock treatment is the most effective method.
There are many pool shocks around but you need to be careful to get one suitable for vinyl liner pools. As such, it can be tricky to tell which one is best. This section will provide a list of the top-rated pool shocks to use for vinyl liner pools.
The safest shocks to use for vinyl liner pools are:
- Liquid chlorine (Sodium hypochlorite)
- Household bleach (like Clorox)
- Chlorine free shock (non chlorine shock)
Liquid Chlorine Shock
Liquid chlorine is a safe choice to use for shocking a vinyl liner pool. It distributes very quickly and is unlikely to bleach or damage your pool liner like cal-hypo or trichlor will.
Plus it doesn’t contain stabilizers. Using a pool shock with stabilizers is not recommended as it is likely to increase the stabilizer level above 50 or 60 ppm. This is the maximum recommended level.
For algae, liquid chlorine is the best shock. Try using Champion Liquid Chlorine.
Doheny’s Chlorine Free – Oxidizing Shock
Another popular choice for shocking a vinyl liner pool is using a non-chlorine or chlorine-free pool shock. These shocks are normally oxidizers and work a little differently from chlorine.
This particular shock uses potassium monopersulfate as the active ingredient. The big advantage of a shock like this is you can usually swim within 15-30 mins of applying it. Unlike chlorine pool shocks for which you’ll need to wait 1-5 days.
The disadvantage of this type of shock is it’s not effective for algae. But it’s still worth it to try this product. You can get it here:
- Clears pools within 15 minutes
- Keeps water clear while controlling contaminants
- Safe for all pool surfaces
Bioguard Oxysheen Non Chlorine Shock
Another oxidizing shock that is safe for vinyl liner pools is BioGuard Oxysheen. It’s a chlorine-free pool shock and has Potassium Peroxymonopersulfate as the active ingredient.
Like Doheny’s Chlorine Free shock, it also uses oxidization as a way to clean your liner pool. Again, you can swim in 15-30 mins of using. You can get it here:
- Has Potassium Peroxymonopersulfate as the active ingredient
- You can swim in 15-30 mins of using
Related Reading: Muriatic Acid Vs Sodium Bisulfate (Dry Acid) For Pools