The days are getting hotter, and that backyard pool is looking very inviting. But this year, keeping that Florida pool clean and sparkling this summer could become more challenging, as market forces have converged to reduce chlorine supplies and drive up prices.
Last August, the factory that produces the majority of the nation’s chlorine tablets burned down during Hurricane Laura. The fire destroyed a huge amount of dry chemicals used to make trichlor (short for trichloro-s-triazinetrione) tablets and the granular chlorine product known as pool shock.
Prices for bulk containers of the trichlor tablets have doubled for pool service companies, and some suppliers are limiting the sale to two buckets of tablets to any individual purchaser. Retail prices have increased sharply as well.
Because the fire at the Louisiana-based factory occurred near the end of the 2020 summer season, the effects of the shortage weren’t felt right away. This will likely change as pool owners across the country start reopening pools and purchasing supplies. More time spent at home, fewer vacations, and increased home improvement projects led many people to rush out and buy swimming pools and spas during the pandemic.
Now, as the demand for supplies will soon be in full swing, the higher prices and shortage of chlorine tablets could mean that everyone’s favorite summer pastime could be under threat.
It might be worth consulting a pool expert for advice on alternative ways to maintain a healthy pool, such as chlorine alternatives or an ozone generator. With temperatures rising, you’re not going to want to miss a minute of pool time!