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Differences Between Sodium Sulfite and Sodium Thiosulfate for DeChlorinating Pool Water

Updated July 20, 2017

Sodium sulphite and sodium thiosulfate are two of the most common chemicals used to dechlorinate pool water. Although they are somewhat similar, and sodium sulphite is used in the production of sodium thiosulfate, they do have differences. Many municipalities require dechlorination before disposing of pool water, so you will need to be familiar with these differences to make the right choice for your own at-home pool maintenance.

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Handling and Storage of Chemicals

Manufacturers sell sodium sulphite in tablet form, while sodium thiosulfate comes in a powder. Many people who routinely perform pool maintenance find the tablets easier to store, to handle and to use.

Hazards to the Environment

Environmental protection advocates consider sodium thiosulfate to be less hazardous to the environment and marine life than sodium sulphite, because it is less of an oxygen scavenger. This is important, because when you dispose of your pool water, it eventually makes its way back into rivers and oceans.


Sodium sulphite is less costly than sodium thiosulfate. It costs less initially. In addition, it dechlorinates more effectively than sodium thiosulfate, meaning that you need to use less of it to treat your pool water.


Sodium sulphite is relatively unstable. If it is not stored properly, it will break down and no longer be effective. Sodium thiosulfate is more stable, meaning that it is preferable if you need to store your pool chemicals over time rather than using them immediately upon purchase.

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About the Author

Nancy Lichtenstein

Nancy Lichtenstein began writing professionally in 1995, focusing on fashion, music, lifestyle, entertainment and business communications. Her credits include the websites for Woman's Day, Zappos, QVC, The Frisky, Express, AOL StyleList, DIY Life, La-Story and Jamsbio Magazine. Lichtenstein holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Fordham University.

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