A Urine-Revealing Pool Chemical Does Not Exist

No matter what you heard growing up, no magical chemical exists that when added to a swimming pool will reveal the presence of urine in the water by producing a brightly-colored cloud. Those in the pool supply business are routinely confronted with requests for the “urine-indicator dye” — as the mythical substance has come to be known. Experts on such matters say that although a reliable urine-detecting dye could perhaps be produced, the trick would be getting it to react only to urine and to not trigger in the presence of similar organic compounds that are likely present in swimming pools. It’s not a compound anyone appears to be working on, and with good reason. Who would want it? Kids are kids, and their expected reaction to the news that peeing in the pool would produce bright purple or red trails would be to jump right in with the intent of putting that theory to the test. Chalk the pee-detecting theory up to exactly what it is: another sneaky parent trick meant to keep the kids in check.