Pool Stabilizer and Its Fascinating Importance: How CYA Works

How does pool sanitizer work? It is one of the most popular questions among pool owners. If you are one of them, you’ve probably figured out that chlorine is the leading pool sanitizer. But how does it work? Read this article to find out.

Swimming Pool Stabilizer

Pool stabilizer are so important. Swimming pools come with a lot of upkeep that involves keeping the water clean. Getting rid of harmful bacteria is essential in keeping your pool healthy, but it’s not always easy to do.

Pool stabilizer helps reduce algae in your pool by limiting the amount of nutrients and oxygen available. It also prevents algaecides from being applied over-excessively or too often, which can cause damage to your swimming pool.

Today’s article will show you everything you need to know about pool stabilizers or also know as cyanuric acid.

Sounds exciting?

Let’s get started. 

What Is a Pool Stabilizer?

A pool stabilizer is a chemical that is added to pools to help maintain the pH level. A pool stabilizer is often used in an outdoor pool as the water may be subject to seasonal changes in temperature and pH. It works by holding the pH level steady – avoiding drastic changes due to fluctuations of the normal levels through weather change or other influences.

Pool stabilizers are available with two different formulas – a dry powder and a liquid. You can easily apply liquid form in the chlorinated water, while dry powder is often mixed with existing pool water. The amount you need to depends on each pool and its current condition.

How Does the Pool Stabilizer Work?

The chemical in the powder form of the pool stabilizer changes the pH level of the water. It works by developing a film on the water’s surface that prevents minerals and chemicals from dissolving in it. It slows down algae growth by preventing other harmful elements from entering your pool water as well. Different types of stabilizers have different effects on different types of algae – some work better than others for certain types of algae. 

How Does a Pool Stabilizer Prevent Stains and Algae?

The chemicals in the powder form of the pool stabilizer act like sunscreen for your pool’s surface, protecting it from the harsh rays of the sun. It also acts as an anti-fungal agent, keeping unwanted elements from entering your water through fissures or cracks in your concrete and other surfaces.

How Much Pool Sanitizer to Utilize in a Pool?

The amount of pool stabilizer you need to use varies based on the pool’s current condition. One of the most important factors is where you live and how you maintain your pool. If your pool is clear, clean, and well balanced, you may only need to add 3-4 pounds of stabilizer over time. If your pool’s water has become cloudy or greenish because of algae, you may need to add 10-12 pounds.

Experts’ opinions on the proper amount of CYA in a pool differ slightly, but as a general rule of thumb, it should not go below 30 parts per million (ppm) or rise over 50 parts per million (ppm).

Take note that stabilizer levels over 50 ppm do not substantially improve UV protection for chlorine, and they increase the likelihood of bacteria and algae development in the water.

You’ll still want to monitor your available chlorine levels with regular, frequent water testing to ensure that your pool is sanitized correctly, even if your pool stabilizer is at 50 parts per million or below.

Keep your sanitizer levels at 7.5 percent of your stabilizer levels to maintain a healthy free chlorine and stabilizer balance. This implies that if your pool conditioner is 50 parts per million (ppm), you’ll want the free chlorine level to be around 3 parts per million (ppm), which is the optimal amount in any scenario.

When to Utilize Stabilizer to a Pool?

Before adding a pool stabilizer to a swimming pool, it is necessary to test the water to confirm that the right dosage is used or see if any further amounts are required. Compared to chlorine, CYA does not evaporate. It stays in the pool water until it is splashed out, backwashed out, or drained out completely. You can also reduce CYA by adding water to the mixture or when heavy rainfall occurs.

When you use stabilized chlorine in your pool weekly, you are essentially adding a little amount of stabilizer to the water. You will not require any more than that to maintain the proper concentration of pool stabilizers throughout the year.

So in that case, pool stabilizer levels might rise over time as a result of you adding stabilized chlorine regularly. Therefore, you should buy high-quality pool chemistry test strips, so you can keep track of your stabilizer level and maintain a healthy concentration. 

Also, you may also try alternatives like non-stabilized chlorine. Just ensure to keep an eye on your pool’s water chemistry, so you know what works or if you still need to add a stabilizer.

What Is the Proper Way to Add a Pool Stabilizer?

The best method to apply pool stabilizers is through automatic dispensers. These devices automatically dispense chemicals into the pool when needed. They’re very convenient to install and operate, and they save money because you don’t have to purchase large quantities of pool chemical products.

If you choose to manually mix up your own pool stabilizer solution, make sure to follow these steps:

Step 1:

Mix equal parts of the pool stabilizer and chlorinated tap water together using a bucket mixer. The ratio between the two content depends on how much stabilizer you plan to use. 

Pool Shock 4

Step 2:

Add about halfway full of stabilizer to the container. Then pour water. Stir well before pouring the entire contents into the pool.

Add Water to Pail

Step 3:

Wait 30 minutes after mixing before applying the product to the pool.

Wait for 30 Minutes

Step 4:

Apply the stabilizer evenly across all surfaces of the pool. Use caution while working near the pool’s edge where there could be sharp objects such as rocks or sticks. Also, avoid areas where children play or swim.

Pour Stabilizer to Swimming Pool

Step 5:

After application, check the pH and temperature of the water. Adjust accordingly.

Check the Water Pool Temperature

Step 6:

Recheck the PH after 24 hours just to make sure it’s safe for swimming.

Check the pH of the Swimming Pool

Step 7:

Dive in!

Jump to Pool with Sanitizer

You’ll need to have a pool sanitizer if you have an outdoor pool, and there’s no other way around it. If you don’t use pool sanitizer you won’t be able to protect your pool from chlorine loss, and your pool will be at risk of algae infestation and bacteria that you don’t want for any of the persons that will swim in your pool. Also, if your pool sanitizer level is too high, it will reduce the effects of your chlorine.

On the flip side, when used at proper levels, CYA is a useful addition to your outdoor pool because it extends the life of chlorine, which will help you save money in the long run. 

By preserving the chlorine in your pool and extending its life, you will have a solid chance of keeping bacterial and algae at bay, keeping your pool clean and pristine blue throughout the year.


Everything that you need to know about pool stabilizers and their importance is laid in this article. We hope that we have helped you in the best way we can.

If you are interested in more helpful tips and tricks to keeping your family swimming pool healthy, visit our website to see a complete list of our pool articles. Below are some of our interesting articles.

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About the author

Brian Anderson

The rather dry pool world out there is in need of some passion to make it shine. With the help of my son Ruben and his wife Maria our mission is to help you create the favorite spot of your house - your pool.

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