Does Chlorine Smell Because of Pee?

Have you ever thought what could be the effect of peeing while still in the pool? To make it clear, peeing into a chlorinated pool is not uncommon. In fact, research shows that about 40% of adults express that, at a point in time, they have peed in the swimming pool. But what if the pool is chlorinated? 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that chlorine is an effective compound that is ideal for killing inimical bacteria in pool water and drinking water. It’s a potent disinfectant for both outdoor and indoor pools. So, if you see that the chlorine in your pool smells, could it be because you or someone else has peed in it?

You should expect an odor from the chlorine in your pool if mixed with urine, body oils, or sweat. Research shows that the best way to avoid chemical smells from a swimming pool is to treat it properly. The reason behind this is that chloramines (chemical irritants) are produced when chlorine mixes with the dirt, sweat, poop, or pee from swimmers’ bodies. The smell is released by these chloramines, which could affect your eyes during exposure.

Does Chlorine Smell Because of Pee

You May Like

How Many Chlorine Tablets for 10ft Pool
No Free Chlorine in Salt Water Pool
What Chlorine level Is Too High to Swim

Does Chlorine Smell?

Yes, chlorine does smell. This smell usually comes from the reaction of the mixture of chlorine with other substances in the swimming pool. The chemical that smells in the pool is referred to as chloramines.

What are chloramines?

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), chloramines are disinfectants produced when chlorine and ammonia are mixed to treat drinking water. These chloramines are also formed through the reaction when the nitrogen-based compounds in urine, skin, hair, and sweat of swimmers mix with the chlorine disinfectants.

What does Chlorinated Water Smell Like?

You should be able to tell the difference between chlorinated water and one that is not. It’s very common and even advisable to treat drinking water or swimming pool with chlorine to ensure its safety. And due to this treatment, there is the possibility that the water will produce a bleach-like smell. You may expect this smell, particularly when you over-chlorinate the water. Besides, you should notice that your pool smell like bleach if you swim in it not long after it has been chlorinated.

Does Chlorine Smell because of Pee?

Treating pools with chlorine is very important because it’s a way to ensure that they are free of germs that could affect swimmers’ wellness. Even though this disinfectant is highly potent, they are still prone to some substances (such as makeup, deodorant, dirt, sweat, poop, and urine) from swimmers’ bodies.

The nitrogen-based compounds in these substances can affect the potency of the chlorine on germs and also result in the chemical irritants called chloramines. These irritants can have serious health implications when breathed in. These health effects include wheezing, coughing, nasal irritation, rashes, red & itchy eyes, and asthma attacks.

The secret to having a pool with a weak chemical smell is ensuring that it’s chlorinated in a healthy way. However, if the smell of chlorine comes strong, it could be due to chloramines. This is very common with indoor swimming pools that are adequately ventilated.

According to CDC, chloramines can be prevented. And the best way to do this is to avoid swimming in the pool if you have diarrhea. Also, you may want to have a shower first before moving into the pool. Besides, it’s logically advisable that swimmers prevent chloramines by not peeing in the pool.

Chlorine and Urine Reaction

What do you think about urinating in a chlorinated pool? It’s gross, right? Yes, it is. But it is more than that. Peeing in chlorinated water can have negative health effects.

The reaction between chlorine and Urine creates toxic compounds referred to as disinfection byproducts (DBPs). Some of these disinfection byproducts include chloramines (these make pools smell in a certain way), cyanogen chloride (a chemical warfare agent), and nitrosamines (swimmers may develop cancer because of these byproducts).

Even though the reaction between chlorine and urine can be dangerous to swimmers’ health, it doesn’t imply that they shouldn’t swim in the pool anymore. What you need to do when you experience any form of reaction after swimming is to find out what could have been the cause.  If you have an indoor pool and have any respiratory condition, you may be more likely to react after swimming. This could be because of poor ventilation and insufficient sunlight, breaking some dangerous compounds down.

According to experts, a simple way to avoid chlorine and urine reaction is not to pee in the pool or tell your family and friends to stop doing such. Obviously, the act is both discourteous and potentially harmful.

You should know that there is no other way to get rid of Pee in the swimming pool than to change the water. Nonetheless, due to how more costly replacing water completely is, a lot of pool operators would rather add water. This is a very dangerous practice because water will worsen the longer it stays in the pool. As they continue to chlorinate the water, it will form chloride, which will lead to more DBPs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Check out the questions below for further knowledge:

Does chlorine kill pee in pools?

According to medical experts, chlorine doesn’t kill pee in pools. In fact, the mixture of chlorine and pee can make the water in the pool smell and even have some negative health implications.

Does chlorine smell like bleach?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, chlorine gas has a pungent and irritating smell similar to bleach. If you notice that your pool smells this way, it could indicate that you may be exposed to over-chlorination or chloramines.


To defeat ignorance, you need to search for knowledge. After learning what could be the result of peeing in a chlorinated pool, you should know that such an act should not be encouraged at all. Yes, the chlorine will smell because of pee, but its implication is far more than that.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.