Sanitizers, algaecide, stabilizers, balancers and shocks are all examples of pool chemicals that keep your pool safe and clean. If pool chemicals are imbalanced, it can be detrimental to swimmers, a pool's heating, filtering and pumping system. Lower or higher levels of chemicals can corrode pool, as well as cause skin and eye irritation. Chlorine is the best-known pool disinfectant. It can be purchased in tablets, grains or sticks. Bromine also kills bacteria and is often used over chlorine because it has a less harsh smell. Algaecides destroy and prevent algae; while shocks, a high dose of a combination of chemicals, are administered if your pool has been inactive over the winter.