What is the Orenda Philosophy?

Orenda's philosophy on water treatment is one of minimalism.




The Orenda philosophy has three tenets: 

  1. Proactive pool care (or water treatment), with
  2. No chemical conflicts, and
  3. No long-term byproducts left behind.

The Orenda program is implemented by pool owners and operators who want as little in their water as possible. Rather than adding more chemicals to the water to force "balance", we at Orenda believe in removing as much from the water as possible. We are minimalists.

Proactive pool care

We believe in being proactive; at addressing the root causes of common problems so they never occur in the first place. A good example of this is removing non-living organics, oils and other hydrocarbons with enzymes, because we know that over 90% of chlorine demand is from these substances.

Related: How to use CV-600/700 enzymes

We take proactive thinking quite seriously at Orenda. In fact, we created a dedicated online course (Orenda Academy: Four Pillars) to teach our Four Pillars of Proactive Pool Care. The four pillars are:

  1. LSI balance and calcium management
    1. Action step: Maintain LSI balance year-round.
  2. Non-living organics and carbon management
    1. Action step: Supplement chlorine against the oxidant demand.
  3. Phosphate removal
    1. Action step: Maintain phosphate levels below 500 ppb.
  4. Minimal cyanuric acid (CYA)
    1. Action step: Maintain CYA levels below 50 ppm.

Being proactive is the most cost-effective way to do anything. Especially pool care.

water clarity enzymes

No chemical conflicts

An Orenda pool is one that obeys physics and only uses compatible chemicals in it.

There are no two products that conflict with one another in an Orenda pool. For instance, we don't use phosphate-based sequestering agents because we know phosphates are an issue, and a phosphate remover must be used to remove them. Why would we put in a product that we will have to remove with another product? That's wasteful. There are plenty of sources of phosphates without adding them ourselves.

We do not put products in the pool that create chlorine demand either, as this is another type of chemical conflict. Products such as synthetic polymer-based clarifiers, algaecides, and metal-based products will all conflict with chlorine directly.  Orenda pools do not use products that conflict with chlorine. The caveat to this is the temporary conflict with chlorine when SC-1000 is first introduced to the water...but once SC-1000 does its job and binds to metals and minerals, it is fully chlorine-compatible again. And we know how to accelerate this process.

No long-term byproducts

Finally, the third tenet of our philosophy: no long-term byproducts left behind. This is as simple as it sounds. If a product leaves something behind that is undesirable or accumulates into a problem down the road, that product is disqualified from our program. The common culprits are algaecides and other metal-based systems.

Every type of algaecide (not named chlorine) leaves something behind that eventually conflicts with chlorine:

  • Copper sulfate - leaves behind copper, which is oxidized by chlorine
  • Quat - Quaternary ammonia combines with chlorine to create chloramines
  • Polyquat - same as quaternary ammonia, but with the additional chlorine demand caused by oxidation of the polymer chain (hydrocarbon)
  • Ammonium sulfate - leaves behind ammonia, which will combine with chlorine to create chloramines, and sulfates, which can accumulate to cause corrosion and other sulfate issues
  • Dimethyl Ammonium Chloride - leaves behind ammonia, which will combine with chlorine to create chloramines
  • Sodium bromide - puts bromide ions in the water that stay in the water long-term, and chlorine has an affinity to oxidize them first. Oxidizing bromide ions creates active sanitizer (Hypobromous acid, HOBr), but HOBr cannot be stabilized in sunlight and therefore degrades quickly in sunlight. One harmful byproduct of this sunlight degradation is the known carcinogen, Bromate ion. Eventually, enough sodium bromide use will turn a chlorine pool into a bromine pool.

There are other products that leave behind long-term byproducts that we don't want. The main one is stabilized chlorine, either trichlor or dichlor. These chlorine products can be fine in moderation, but they become problematic when the cyanuric acid (CYA) level gets too high. This is a condition called overstabilization, and it impacts both sides of water chemistry (water quality and water balance). So it's not the chlorines that are the issue; it's the CYA byproducts they leave behind that accumulate into an issue. Therefore, these chlorines should not be used as primary chlorine types in an Orenda pool.

It's fine to use Trichlor in an Orenda pool if used properly. The correct way to use trichlor is to use it in a properly installed in-line feeder. And only use it sparingly to supplement non-stabilized chlorine, such as liquid chlorine or a salt chlorine generator.


The Orenda philosophy is one of minimalism. Be proactive, and do the action step for each of our Four Pillars. Avoid using products that will conflict with other things in the water (like chlorine). Avoid using products that leave behind long-term byproducts...especially those that are harmful.

All our products do is enable you to successfully implement the program, which gives you clean, beautiful water that is predictable and more affordable to manage.