Can You Use Pool Chlorine for Laundry? (And in the Toilet?)

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Many people depend on chlorine for regular laundry activities both at home and for industrial purposes. You can use it to remove stains, whiten clothes, disinfect laundry, and in pools to keep away bacteria. However, there is still some confusion as to how chlorine should be used.

This post will walk you through different safe uses of chlorine. And hopefully, you’ll know whether or not you can use pool chlorine for laundry as well as in other areas. 

Can You Use Pool Chlorine to Wash Clothes?

NO, pool chlorine is not recommended for washing clothes, even though it might not damage your clothes immediately. However, your clothes can get damaged over time if you don’t rinse the cloth in clean water. 

Will Pool Chlorine Ruin Clothes?

It depends. Pool chlorine may not damage your clothes instantly, but can over time if not properly rinsed in clean water. Therefore, it would help to rinse your clothes in clean water when you happen to have used pool chlorine. 

Many people don’t want to risk going into the pool water with their clothes, fearing that they can be damaged. But as I said, pool chlorine is in very low amounts, and its effect cannot be felt unless you often use it. 

The amount of chlorine added in pools is measured in parts per million. Usually, the standard measure of a pool would be approximately 1:10 parts of chlorine per million parts. For any clothing to get bleached, at least 80 parts or more per million of chlorine was used. In other words, the levels of chlorine in pool water are just too low to damage clothes instantly. 

In other words, chlorine might not affect your clothes instantly, but it definitely will over time. So the best bet to take is never to use pool chlorine to wash clothes unless it is an accident. And if it is an accident, make sure to rinse with clean water as fast as possible. 

Is Laundry Bleach the Same as Pool Chlorine?

Yes, to some extent, bleach and pool chlorine are the same, except in their strength. Household bleach would always have a concentration of about 6 percent, though you can find some that are 3 percent (cheaper.) Pool chlorine’s concentration is between 10 and 12, but most of it contains sodium hypochlorite. 

Do Pool Water Bleach Clothes?

Yes, pool water can bleach clothes, but you may not see the impact instantly. However, if you don’t rinse your clothes as fast as possible after using pool chlorine or regularly use pool chlorine to wash your clothes, pool chlorine will bleach your clothes. Nylon clothes tend to do quite well with chlorine and may stand the chlorine concentration for quite some time. 

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Can You Use Bleach in a Pool Instead of Chlorine?

YES, you can use bleach to disinfect or sanitize your pool. However, household bleach is not recommended for the sanitization of pools. Instead, it would help if you used the pool-graded chlorine, which has a higher chlorine concentration than the household ones. 

Can I Make Bleach From Pool Chlorine?

YES, you can make bleach from pool chlorine. To start the bleach preparation, you will need fifteen cups of water and 68 percent pool shock. Mix these until it dissolves, then wait for about three minutes for the ingredients to settle. 

Can You Wear Normal Clothes in a Swimming Pool?

NO, it’s not advisable to wear normal clothes in a swimming pool because some of these clothes, especially those made of cotton, absorb the chemicals meant to sanitize pool water, causing it to be less effective. Additionally, pool chlorine could damage your clothes if used regularly. 

Can You Pool Chlorine Regularly to Wash Clothes?

NO, it’s not recommended to use pool chlorine regularly because it will start to affect your clothes over time. Sure, the amount of chlorine added to pools is low, which means that it will take time for pool water to affect your clothes. However, regular use of pool chlorine can damage your clothes. 

Can You Use Pool Chlorine for Household Cleaning?

YES, you can use pool chlorine for household cleaning because it has sodium hypochlorite, which is excellent for sanitizing and keeping away bacteria. Besides, it has a higher concentration of chlorine than the household bleach – 6% and 10-12% respectively. 

Can You Use Pool Chlorine to Disinfect?

Yes, you can use pool chlorine to disinfect. One of the main reasons why chlorine is added in pools is to disinfect and keep bacteria away from the pools. It is recommended that you test your pool every day to see if it has the required amount of chlorine. Chlorine helps do away with microorganisms that can cause health problems, such as Legionnaires disease, gastroenteritis, athlete’s foot, among others. 

Therefore, you must know how to regularly check the amount of chlorine in your pool and top up appropriately if need be. Now, the standard measure of a pool would be approximately 1:10 parts of chlorine per million parts. Measure the amounts correctly, and be sure to check out this tutorial on how you can add chlorine to your swimming pool. 

How Chlorine is Used to Disinfect?

It is true that chlorine kills germs and drives away bacteria, but you might not have known that chlorine does not work instantly. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in a study, found out that E.coli can die in less than a minute when subjected to chlorine.

Additionally, it takes about sixteen minutes for Hepatitis A to die when subjected to chlorine. In a nutshell, chlorine doesn’t take effect instantly, and that’s why it is used to sanitize pool water.

From the above timelines, you can see that chlorine takes much longer to kill some microorganisms regarding how chlorine acts. Other disinfectants, such as isopropyl or ethyl, will take only ten seconds to do away with microbes. However, there’s a unique capability of chlorine than other disinfectants might not have – the ability to kill bacteria pores, a virus that can cause infection when activated. 

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If you doubt about a product, be sure to determine the amount of chlorine using color-change kits, dipsticks, test strips, among others. You will also need reagent water to make 1:100, as well as 1:1000 for successful testing. 

Can You Use Pool Chlorine Tablets in the Toilet?

NO, you should not use pool chlorine tablets in your toilet. If you have issues with your toilet and think that chlorine tablets might be the cause, it would help if you called a plumber to look at your toilet before you do anything on it. 

Pool chlorine contains 90 percent of chlorine, while most toilets will have a chloride type, which in most cases contains less than 2% in concentration. In other words, pool chlorine can have up to 5 parts/ million of chlorine, and this can corrode your toilet’s tank or bowl water. 

While you may have come across advertisements claiming that you can use chlorine tablets in your toilet, the truth is that it’s not safe, and you should avoid it. If you wish to try it out, please research and reach out to people who have used it for their experience with it. 

Not Good for Sits

When cleaning your toilet, the rule of thumb is that no bowl cleaners should sit in your tank for two or more weeks – whatever the manufacturers recommend. And the surprise is that chlorine tablets sit for this long, so it is not recommended. The longer any chemical sits in your toilet tank, the more the danger to yourself and your family members. This is true because these chemicals rot in there and the chemicals released into the air. 

Can You Use Pool Chlorine Tablets in the Septic System?

NO, you should not use pool chlorine tablets in your septic system because they are not suited to treat wastewater. The only chemical approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency is calcium hypochlorite tablets. 

But most aerobic septic system operators still don’t understand why they should refrain from using pool chlorine tablets in their systems. There are three reasons why you shouldn’t use pool chlorine. First, they are legal requirements that prohibit the use of pool chlorine in septic systems. Secondly, safety issues are a concern, and finally, environmental issues make it hard for environmental bodies like EPA to approve of the use. 

According to the Federal Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, it is prohibited to use chlorine tablets contrary to labeling. For example, in Texas, the enforcement will depend on what’s passed by the counties. Additionally, the stalemate about whether chlorine tablets are safe for use in states depends on each of the states, in line with their legal and environmental requirements. That said, only use calcium hypochlorite for your septic systems. 

Be Careful With the Guidelines

There are regulations in each of the states regarding the use of pool chlorine in septic systems. You must know these regulations so that you don’t become a victim of the penalties put in place for violators.

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For example, you could incur a fine of up to $500 for using pool chlorine in your septic systems, and the fine could be more depending on how many offenses you have committed. Additionally, it is also important to note the pool chlorine is not preferred in septic systems because pool chlorine is suited for immersion waters. In septic systems, pool chlorine will be deposited above the water line, which shouldn’t be the case. 

Now when this happens, the chlorine tablets will introduce nitrogen chloride into the water. Nitrogen chloride is very flammable and should never come into contact with Trichlor. This is because these two chemicals react violently and could cause an explosion. Therefore, if you’ve been using Trichlor, it would help if you removed the tablets to avoid the explosion. 

The next thing is to use water to rinse out all the Trichlor residues on the feeder of your treatment system. After you have rinsed the feeder, it will be safe to add calcium hypochlorite tablets to your septic system. You should never use your system if you don’t have the right chlorine tablets approved for use in septic treatment systems. 

If you’ve mistakenly used pool chlorine in your septic systems, the chances are that you have noticed that the grass or plants around where you sprinkle the treatment water have dried or turned brown.

Pool chlorine is usually stabilized, which means that it’s not easily broken down by sunlight, as in the case with calcium hypochlorite that’s recommended for aerobic systems. If pool chlorine is used continuously, it will affect the plants and the essential bacteria in the soil. 

In Summary: Can You Use Pool Chlorine for Laundry? 

  • Exposing your clothes to pool water can cause fading or even whitening of your clothes, but that won’t be instant. Instead, it will be a gradual process when exposure is on several occasions. 
  • Washing your clothes in pool chlorine will gradually damage your clothes, but the effects won’t be instant. It will take some time. 
  • Most people go to the pool during sunny days. The intense sun can cause fading to your clothes. So it isn’t only the pool chlorine that will always fade your clothes; sometimes, the sun does. 
  • Swimsuits are not vulnerable to pool chlorine and are recommended for swimming. So don’t fear that they will be damaged. 

Sarah Walker
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