Pool Stabilizer: What is it & Why Does it Matter?

Sun Protection for Your Pool

The number one way to keep your pool water comfortable for swimmers, crystal clear and protected from the elements is to ensure the pool chemicals are working as intended. While all chemicals are important to maintaining proper water quality, one of the most commonly forgotten and overlooked chemicals is a pool stabilizer. 

What Is Pool Stabilizer?

When thinking about your pool stabilizer, we often like to compare it to “sunscreen” for your pool. Called by many different names, a pool stabilizer (pool conditioner, cyanuric acid, or CYA) is a chemical that acts as a buffer for your pool by protecting chlorine from the sun’s rays. The sun can consume up to 90% of your pool’s free, unstabilized chlorine in just a few short hours. A pool stabilizer protects the chlorine from being broken down by sunlight which in turn helps to reduce bacterial growth in your water. 

Why Does Pool Stabilizer Matter?

A pool stabilizer is one of the most important pool chemicals because it allows chlorine to work as intended. The fundamental job of a pool stabilizer is to maintain and keep chlorine in your pool water for a longer duration of time. As most pool owners know, chlorine helps to keep pool water clean by killing bacteria and germs. If the chlorine isn’t working or has been completely evaporated due to the sun, your pool water becomes a breeding ground for bacteria such as E. Coli. Ewww…Gross!

How Often Does Pool Stabilizer Need To Be Used?

Unlike real sunscreen that needs to be applied constantly and liberally, a pool stabilizer needs to be added only at the start of the pool season. Once the chemical is added, the levels stay consistent unless there is a big change in the water amount (a large rain or evaporation). 

When adding stabilizer to a pool, be careful to only add the necessary amount. If added correctly, a stabilizer will prolong the life of free chlorine three to five times longer than a pool without stabilizer. However, if you add too much pool stabilizer, the free chlorine will take longer to do its job and cause algae growth. 

Water Testing

At least once a week, make sure to test and balance your pool water. Chemical levels in a pool are arguably the most important part of pool maintenance. If your water is improperly balanced, it will start to look murky, irritate your skin/eyes, and create a breeding ground for bacteria. Testing your water is easy with the help of a testing kit. We also recommend having an expert water analysis performed monthly at either of our locations.

Let Parnell Pool and Spa Help

It is worth your while to take a water sample to a professional water testing location once a month. Professional water testing is about making sure you, your family, and your investment (aka — your swimming pool) are 100% safe, happy, and healthy. Make sure to properly collect a water sample to increase the accuracy of the test. Learn how a perfect score can help you win a YETI™ cooler!

At Parnell Pool and Spa, we know that pool maintenance and care can be a daunting task. If you have any questions about the proper running of your pool or maintenance concerns, stop by our Fayetteville or Lumberton location. Feel free to contact us and follow us on Facebook and Instagram as well.

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(910) 425-6138

4206 Cumberland Rd
Fayetteville, NC 28306

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Sunday: Closed


(910) 738-8110

1380 Linkhaw Rd
Lumberton, NC 28358

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Saturday: 9am to 3pm
Sunday: Closed

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