Quick Definition:

Combined chlorine (chloramine) is the irritating and smelly creation of free chlorine with organic and inorganic contaminates in the pool.

What is Combined Chlorine (Chloramine)?

Combined chlorine, also collectively called chloramines, is created by the reaction of free chlorine with contaminates in the pool, often from the ammonia and nitrogen byproducts producing from swimmers and microorganisms. Combined chlorine is the source of the noticeable “chlorine smell” often associated with public and hotel swimming pools.

Burning eyes and dry skin are also caused by the combined chlorine in the pool.  Ideally, you do not want combined chlorine in your swimming pool, but contaminates are always working their way into the pool water, so this is a continuous concern for pool owners.  Shocking the pool water is the most common way to rid the water of combined chlorine.


  • “Pool & Spa Water Chemistry, A Testing and Treatment Guide, Waterproof Edition, 2005. Taylor”

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