Chlorine is basically a sanitizer. Its role in the swimming pool chemistry focuses on the oxidation of contaminants, such as bather waste.
Unfortunately, there are many bather wastes as well as other oxidants, which rapidly reduce chlorine and interfere with its sanitization mission.
One way to combat this is to use pool enzymes to devour bather waste and even supplement your chlorine.
What Pool Enzymes Are
Enzymes naturally exist in all organisms and have been around for a long time now. They break down organic matter by increasing biological processes. Enzymes are important, from helping with the digestion process to turning leaves into mulch.
Apart from doing their work properly in nature, they are also used in some water treatment products to keep your swimming pool healthy and clean. Enzymes, as a pool alternative to chlorine, are effective as well in destroying:
- Insect matter
How They Work in SPAs and Pools
Pool enzymes are a catalyst to speed the process of breaking down gunk and grime, which collects in the spa or pool from rain, wind, human wastes, dirt, and leaves.
These enzymes are not alive, but they eat organic materials by reacting with and turning them into byproducts, such as water or CO2, without changing their molecular structure.
Pool enzymes thrive as foam preventers, stain removers, and outstanding clarifiers. Although they don’t get rid of living algae, they can break down dead ones after treatment.
Other Chemicals and Pool Enzymes Reaction
The catalytic capability of pool enzymes gets affected by different conditions. Ionic strength, water activity, pH changes, and temperature are all factors affecting the capability of proteins to work as enzymes.
For example, enzymes that are effective in a particular environment can be infective when introduced to another environment, like swimming pools with oxidants.
This makes it important to choose pool enzymes designed specifically for use in your spa or pool.
Enzyme Breakdown vs. Oxidation
Bromine and chlorine are key oxidizers and sanitizers for pools. Oxidation refers to the chemical process of stealing electrons from oxidants, such as metals or bather waste.
In pools, oxidation involves burning contamination out of your water. Though at the expense of chlorine since along with the oxidation process comes reduction.
Without enzymes, it becomes difficult to get rid of oils and non-living organics from your swimming pool. And although chlorine is a great sanitizer, it is a lousy oxidizer.
As with specialty chemicals, pool enzymes are usually added to chlorine so as to make your pool maintenance easier and fix specific problems.
Among the specific benefits of using enzymes is that it results in increased filter run cycles. By getting rid of non-living organics, you won’t overwork your filters and, at the same, keep your water clean.
The Bottom Line!
Apart from households, most commercial pools find it helpful to treat their swimming pools with enzymes in the early spring, fall, and winter so as to minimize the growth of algae. This makes the cleanup for summer easier. So when investing in pool enzyme products, ensure you choose the right fit for its environment and pool.