pH – What is it?

pH is a measure of the relative acidity or alkalinity of water. pH is short for “power of Hydrogen”. Essentially it is a measure of the amount of dissolved hydrogen.

It is measured on a scale from 0 – 14 with 7 meaning the water is neutral. Below 7 is acidic and above 7 is alkaline (also called basic).

pH is also a logarithmic scale, meaning each whole # is 10 times greater or lesser the whole # next to it. In other words, water with a pH of 4 is 10x more acidic than water with a pH of 5.

Keeping pH in the proper range of 7.2 – 7.6 is particularly important in spa water for at least 3 reasons. Note that this means your spa water is just slightly alkaline.

  1. Your skin has a pH, usually around 5.5. pH below this can cause skin redness & irritation. Other the other hand, pH above 8.0 can cause dryness or tight feeling skin and worse.
  2. When using chlorine as a sanitizer keeping pH in the proper range is critical as chlorine looses its ability to kill bacteria and other pathogens rapidly as pH rises.
  3. Low pH can result is corrosion of the metal elements in your spa. High pH will result in scaling – calcium deposits everywhere below the water line.
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