CHLORINE: Common in every aspect of life – whether you knew it or not!
When people think about chlorine, they normally think about the chlorine compounds in their homes – namely swimming pool maintenance products and household bleach. What most people don’t know is that chlorine is an essential part of everyday life. Chlorine in its many forms can be found in every home, place of work, and elsewhere – making life cleaner, safer and more comfortable for all of us.
Elemental Chlorine vs. Consumer Products Containing Chlorine Compounds
While an important part of our everyday lives, it is important to distinguish the chlorine seen being shipped on railcars with the chlorine compounds in the products consumers buy everyday, including swimming pool maintenance products.
The chlorine on rail cars is elemental chlorine shipped as a liquefied gas under pressure. It is hazardous if spilled or leaked in an uncontrolled environment. Though chlorine compounds used in pool and spa maintenance products must be handled in accordance with the directions that are provided on the label, they are not the same as elemental chlorine and thus do not present the same hazard level. Consumer products containing chlorine compounds are far less dangerous than elemental chlorine when handled properly.
- An Important Element
- Chlorine is the eleventh most abundant element on the planet. When combined with other chemicals to form a variety of compounds it can be used to make pharmaceuticals, plastics, nylons, paint, and hundreds of other items.
- Chlorine helps make automobiles safer, more efficient, and more comfortable as a component in the manufacture of seat belts, air bags, upholstery, bumpers, floor mats, dashboards and other plastic items, fan and alternator belts, hoses, gaskets, seals, gasoline additives, brake and transmission fluids, anti-freeze, and air conditioning systems.
- Chlorine is used to make polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or vinyl, which is used for home construction products from siding, windows and doors to decks, fences and moldings.
- Probably the most familiar chlorine compound is table salt (sodium chloride).
- Everyday Uses
- Water is the spice of life Chlorine is essential for safe drinking water. Virtually all public water systems that disinfect their water use some form of chlorine, either alone or in combination with other disinfectants. Chlorine is the only water disinfectant that purifies all the way to the tap and is partly responsible for the 50 percent increase in Americans’ life expectancy in the 20th century.
- You are what you eat Food-born bacteria, including Salmonella and E. coli, breed in kitchens. While restaurants and meat and poultry processing plants rely on chlorine bleach and other chlorine-based products to kill germs, it is important for homes to have clean and disinfected countertops, cutting boards and other food preparation areas, as well.
- Medicine cabinets More than 85 percent of all pharmaceuticals contain or are manufactured using chlorine.
- Indoor and outdoor The modern-day office depends on chlorine for many electronic devices, such as microprocessors, telephones and computer disks, and plastic housings for computers and keyboards. TVs, compact disks and computers are all made with the help of chlorine chemistry.
Even recreational activities depend on chlorine chemistry. Vinyl soccer balls, golf bags, nylon tents and water-proof jackets, wet suits and inflatable rafts, surfboards, tennis rackets, football helmets, and hundreds of toys are just a few of the items that need chlorine for their manufacture.
Rest assured, chlorine is here to stay!
For all of its many uses, chlorine has a special place in the lives of pool and spa owners. Nearly every public pools and nine out of ten residential pools are sanitized with chlorine compounds due to their dependability. As the first widely accepted method of treating and maintaining swimming pools, consumers find comfort with the fact that it’s maintained its prominence in throughout the pool and spa industry.
As a provider of pool and spa products, BioGuard® strives to provide safer and easier to use pool and spa maintenance programs. It’s what we do and have done for more than 50 years. For more information on swimming pool and spa maintenance products, visit www.bioguard.com. Guarding more than your pool