Before now, you may have heard the term “pool shock” or “shock treatment” from your swimming pool maintenance technician or other pool owners.
You’re most likely going to hear about this when your pool is green, has cloudy water, or has undergone heavy use.
Pool shocking involves a process of super chlorination, which is done by adding large amounts of chlorine, depending on the condition of the pool and the amount of pool water.
You can use calcium hypochlorite, dichlor, lithium hypochlorite, or potassium peroxymonosulfate (oxidizer); the type of agent to use must be chosen based on pool types and also the pool liner.
So, what’s the best pool shock to use? This article will answer most of your questions about choosing the best pool shock solutions. Continue reading!
Why Use Pool Shock?
If you have no other way to reliably disinfect the swimming pool, disinfection with chlorine shock is the best choice.
A pool is shocked to remove chloramines and excess swimmers’ waste as well as for killing bacteria and algae in the water.
If a pool is not regularly shocked, the water can turn green overnight.
If the pool is permanently poorly maintained, it will soon become a biotope and the only thing you will see is green-colored water. Surely nobody likes to swim in it!
Without disinfection or water treatment, it’s even possible for the pool water to appear clean and clear and end up with green cloudy water the next day.
This happens quickly and without any warning. In this situation, you have to make use of a swimming pool shock that also fights green algae.
Next, we will see some of the best pool shocks for keeping the swimming pool water crystal clear.
Top 3 Recommendations
Overall Best Pool Shock – HTH 52028 Shock Treatment Swimming Pool Chlorine Cleaner
Best Quality – SpaGuard Enhanced Spa Shock 6
Best Pool Shocks: Our Top 10 Picks
1. HTH 52028 Shock Treatment Swimming Pool Chlorine Cleaner – Our Top Pick
A 7-in-1 shock chlorine cleaner, the HTH 52028 is a one-pound multi-action chlorine product for shock treatment.
With effect against microorganisms, turbidity, and impurities in the water, this product also ensures long-term disinfection of the water, flocculation of turbidity and suspended matter while stabilizing the pH value and the chlorine released in the water.
Its 7-in-1 action helps reduce eye irritation while preventing stains, scale, and more. You only need this bag (one pound) for a small pool of 5,000 to 13,500 gallons of water.
For a larger swimming pool of 20,000 to 25,000 gallons, you’d need two pounds of the product. The product contains sodium bisulfite and no stabilizer.
- Multifunctional shock treatment
- Contains built-in clarifier
- Prevents scale formation
- Ensures crystal clear results in 24 hours
- Ideal for hard water
- Helps reduce eye irritation
- No particular downside found yet for this product
2. DryTec 1-1901-24 Calcium Hypochlorite Chlorine Shock Treatment – Best Calcium Hypochlorite Shock
Another 1-pound shock for swimming pools, the DryTec product comes in a pack of 24 and is, therefore, a product with a very good value for money.
The swimming pool shock is in small granules form and not in tablets.
Each pack contains calcium hypochlorite with no chlorine odor. The solution can help disinfect the water, keeping the pH stable in the range between pH 7.2 and 7.6, which is ideal for pool water.
You can also use the pool shock to maintain total alkalinity in the range of 60 and 120 parts per million. Adding one pound per 10,000 gallons of pool water will raise the chlorine level by 5 to 10 ppm.
It doesn’t contain any cyanuric acid which can weaken the chlorine. Therefore, the pool water stays clear and clean for longer.
The price of this product has been skyrocketing recently due to high demands. It’s therefore advisable that you stock some if you can. Note that it has no expiration date.
- Easy to use, dissolves well
- Ideal for getting clear and clean water the next day
- Requires only one pound per 10,000 gallons pool water
- Doesn’t have any chlorine smell
- A bit expensive but you’ll get value for money
3. SpaGuard Enhanced Spa Shock 6 – Best Oxidizer Shock
Formulated for spa and hot tub owners, the SpaGuard spa shock is a product for those who want clear and sparkling clean water.
It contains sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione (58.2 percent) as an active ingredient and weighs 6 pounds. You can use the product for above ground pools or in ground pools.
The dichlor pool shock is a multipurpose 4-in-1 oxidizer product that can be used for shocking, clarifying, and flocculating water, while acting as a pH buffer.
In addition, after the shock treatment, the chlorine ensures the water becomes clear and clean in only 15 minutes while staying so for a longer period.
However, unlike what it’s confused for, it’s not a non-chlorine pool shock.
- Easy to use
- Multipurpose shock product
- For clean and sparkling water
- Ideal for spas and hot tubs
- Raises cyanuric acid
- Advertised strictly as an oxidizer and chlorine-free pool shock
4. Clorox Pool&Spa 33506CLX Pool Shock XtraBlue – Best Chlorine Based Pool Shock
Containing 6 packs, each of which weighs 1 pound, the XtraBlue is a swimming pool shock for those who want their green algae-filled pool to turn blue in no time.
The Clorox pool spa shock is perfect for those who want a pool shock and algaecide in a product.
It’s a multipurpose shock that serves six purposes: killing and preventing pool algae, killing bacteria, among others.
The Clorox pool spa shock improves filter performance and dissolves faster than most swimming pool shock treatments.
- Swim ready in 15 minutes
- Fast dissolving
- Ideal for algae removal
- Ensures crystal clear water
- Only recommended for pools with pumps
5. Rx Clear Super Shock Treatment for Swimming Pools – Best Algaecide + Chlorine Shock
The RX Clear Super Shock is a chlorine hypochlorite shock that acts as a chlorinator and algaecide product.
When you purchase this, you’ll have 12 packs of one-pound bags. The manufacturer recommends adding the shock at night and you’ll wake up to a crystal clear blue pool.
It works by oxidizing organic contaminants while raising the levels of pH.
Finally, the pool shocks kill bacteria and algae by applying three-pound per 10,000 gallons of swimming pool water.
- Works as a sanitizer and clarifier
- Doesn’t raise cyanuric acid
- Ideal for saltwater pools
- Also suitable for green water
- Requires more quantity to be effective
- Could be formulated to dissolve faster
6. Austin 000176 Pool Tech Shock – Best Liquid Pool Shock
The Pool Tech Shock makes its entry as our first pool bleach. It’s a liquid pool shock that is prepared for winterizing the pool.
In addition, it’s a product that can be used for the everyday sanitization of your spas and swimming pools.
Formulated from sodium hypochlorite (12.5 percent), the pool shock is recommended for all types of water, including greywater. You can use it while mixed or unmixed with water.
Finally, the pool shock is not that powerful to damage your vinyl pool.
- Also ideal for maintaining a spa or hot tub
- Suitable for black algae
- Easy to use
- A bit overpriced
7. Nava Chemicals StarPlus 1-1301-12 Chlorinating Pool Shock Treatment – Most Quick Dissolving
Like the Rx Clear Super Shock Treatment, the StarPlus is a 12 pack pool shock treatment chemical with each pack containing one pound of chlorine-based sanitizer.
The quick-dissolving pool shock is for all types of pools, whether you have an Intex pool or an in ground pool. Each pound of pool shock works for up to 10,000 gallons of water.
Superchlorination with the pool sanitizing product can be done every night if the pool is a heavily used facility.
For occasional or one-time use for small pools, you can also purchase a single pack of the product which sells a little more than $20.
However, those who own a large, public pool that is heavily used every day can also choose the 24 pack version, which is the most expensive.
- Available in various packs; 1, 12, and 24.
- Good value for money
- Easy to apply
- Quick dissolving
- Pricey but worth it
8. NAZHUA Zappit 73% Chlorine Shock – Best in a Bucket
The Zappit is a high-chlorine shock product that contains no cyanuric acid that can over stabilize the pool chlorine.
The pool shock is in loose granular form and according to pool owners, the granulated chlorine will get your pool water crystal clear in just a matter of hours.
According to a pool owner, the product works great and leaves the pool crystal clear. They confirm that it contains no cyanuric acid.
The active ingredient it’s formulated from is calcium hypochlorite which is quite potent at 73 percent.
- Not stabilized
- Ideal for in ground pools and above ground pools
- Comes with a measuring cup
- Leaves the water clear in 4 to 5 hours
- Report of the shock increasing cyanuric acid reading
9. In The Swim Chlorine Pool Shock – Best Shock for Pool Experts
In The Swim is the Rolls Royce brand of the pool industry. Its powder chlorine pool shock is the best choice for pool cleaning experts.
Its effectiveness, quality, performance, and low price make it one of the best pool shock products in powder form of 2022 for pool experts.
The In The Swim chlorine pool shock contains 24 bags of chlorine shock and measures 1 pound each. The content contains 68% calcium hypochlorite.
You can use a pound of the pool shock for every 10,000 gallons of water. However, it’s too powerful for vinyl pools.
Some of its advantages over other brands of shock chlorine include that it’s cheap in the most positive sense.
The value for money that this product has makes it one of the best on the market.
- Quick dissolution
- Each bag is enough for 10,000 liters of water
- Easy application; just pour the chlorine powder around the pool edge
- You don’t need to premix it
- Not compatible for vinyl liners
- Leaves sediments in pool bottom
10. Doheny’s Chlorine Super Shock – Best Shock for Regular Maintenance
Doheny’s super shock chlorine is a super chlorinating product that features 24 bags of calcium hypochlorite pool shock.
Each bag is one pound in weight and contains 68 percent of calcium hypochlorite.
It’s a powerful chlorine shock that is formulated for regular maintenance and overnight shock.
The formula ensures the quick elimination of bacteria and algae, as well as other harmful organic contaminants in the pool water.
- For killing and prevention of algae and bacteria
- Good value for money
- Easy to use
- Ideal for regular maintenance
- Sediments settle at pool bottom; doesn’t dissolve well
Commonly Asked Questions
Why shock pool at night?
The UV rays from the sun and chlorine are two elements that can be counteractive to each other.
The sun rays can dissolve chlorine content quicker, especially when it has no stabilizer. So, shocking your pool at night ensures the chlorine can all be released.
How much pool shock should I use?
The right chlorine level in your pool should be between 2 to 4 parts per million (PPM), according to the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals.
However, a different dosage is recommended between stabilized chlorine and unstabilized chlorine.
For the stabilized pool shock, your residual chlorine level must be between 1.5 and 2.5 parts per million, while for the non-stabilized pool shock, the chlorine level must be between 2 and 2.5 PPM.
Another important point, the pH must always be between 7 and 7.6.
Is pool shock the same as stabilizer?
No! Pool shock usually contains chlorine while the stabilizer is cyanuric acid. However, when both are mixed, you will have stabilized pool chlorine. The cyanuric acid content acts to protect chlorine.
Will pool shock kill mosquito larvae?
Yes, it will. Pool shock involves the use of a large amount of chlorine. This will kill mosquito eggs and larvae.
Will pool shock lower pH?
Super chlorinating the pool will increase the pH of the water slightly. So, it’s always good to test the water after chlorination to adjust accordingly.
What is pool shock vs chlorine?
Chlorinating a pool is different from shocking a pool. You can chlorinate a pool by adding a small amount of chlorine gradually (with a chlorinator) while you can only shock a pool with a large amount of chlorine at a time (between 1 and 3 pounds).
Buying Guide: How to Choose the Best Pool Shock
If this is your first time buying chlorine for your new pool, you may be wondering where to start and how to choose the best sanitizer for your water.
Today, we are going to introduce you to the different types of chlorine that exist on the market, and present our advice for buying the best possible product, depending on your pool!
Which type of pool shock is best?
To help you buy the best pool shock for your pool, let’s start by showing you the different forms it can take: liquid, tablet, or powder.
Powdered or granulated chlorine shocks are particularly the best pool shock treatments.
It dissolves quickly in water, which gives it the advantage of spreading and acting very quickly in your pool. The downside is that it tends to disappear just as quickly.
Tablet chlorine offers the great advantage of diffusing slowly in the water (unlike powder chlorine). So, it’s not ideal for shock chlorinating the pool.
You can place it directly in your skimmer, or even better, in a floating diffuser. Since it diffuses slowly, it is much less effective in shocking your pool, but it finds its usefulness for everyday use.
And with experience, you will eventually learn how long a tablet lasts you before it completely dissolves.
Liquid chlorine is a rather special case. Although effective, it is generally less concentrated than powdered chlorine or tablet chlorine.
It is perfect if you have a chlorine regulator that will distribute it for you, at the right dose, at the right time.
You should also know that liquid chlorine (sodium hypochlorite) comes from the same active ingredient as bleach!
It will also raise the pH of the pool, but if your water is well balanced, it should quickly return to level.
Stabilized or unstabilized chlorine?
Now that you know almost everything about forms of shock chlorine, learn about the two main pool shock options you have:
- Stabilized chlorine: This type of chlorine will not change the pH of your water, but its stabilizing side will not dissolve in the water, which means that if the dosage is wrong, the disinfectant effect of chlorine will be inactive.
- Unstabilized chlorine: Pool shock chlorine without stabilizer degrades quickly, unlike the one with stabilizer, but has no counter-effect.
The chemical composition or active ingredient
It’s time to brush up on your chemistry knowledge from high school. The main ingredient of any brand or product is always either sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione sodium, hypochlorite calcium, hypochlorite, trichloroisocyanuric acid, or trichloroethene.
However, most manufacturers combine other chemicals to extend the life and longevity of the pool shock and increase their effectiveness against algae.
While these chemicals can extend the life of the tablets by slowing the release of chlorine, some of them can decrease overall effectiveness.
It can be a bit difficult to understand the ideal balance. But to make things easy to understand, if your pool stays clear and fresh most of the time, you should use high trichlor concentration tablets.
On the other hand, if you have frequent algae build-up and other problems, you might want to use pool shock with a higher percentage of other algae-killing additives.
Dosage to pool size
How much chlorine is needed in the swimming pool depends on the pool size.
The chlorine content of pool water should always be 1 to 3 parts per million. One pound of pool shock chlorine is usually enough per 10,000 gallons of water.
Meanwhile, trichlor tablets contain up to 90% of chlorine. This means they have more chlorine and therefore you need fewer tabs to treat your pool.
Price per quantity
Chlorine tablets are not overly expensive. But regular pool treatment usually comes with a hefty price tag.
That’s because it includes so many different components that they can add up at the end of the day.
So wherever you can save a few bucks, it will ultimately reduce the overall cost of maintaining your pool.
We’ve tried our best to include only the most affordable pool shock chlorine in our top 10 list, so you can have complete peace of mind when shopping.
But remember to compare the prices of two different products by quantity. This is because some manufacturers offer higher volumes than others, which can make comparisons a bit difficult.
You may want to chlorinate your pool every week. To save money and time, buy the pool shocks in bulk and always have a bucket on hand.
Are Pool Shocks Worth the Money Paid?
The best pool shock chlorine will keep your pool water crystal clear without breaking the bank.
The pool shocks on our top 10 pool shock reviews are not only highly powerful but also long-lasting. In addition, there are many other ways they can make your life easier.
Firstly, you don’t have to chlorinate your pool too often. Secondly, they work fairly quickly to correct cloudy water and eliminate bacteria, viruses, pathogens, mucus, and other germs.
In addition, most of the recommended pool shocks are very safe and come in handy packages.