Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

A BBB guide to supermarket poolcare.
Use store-bought bleach, baking soda
and borax to replace proprietary pool chemicals.
amtrakusa
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Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

Postby amtrakusa » Fri 22 Jul, 2011 07:56

Greetings All!

Second post here. I have a client who was having a pool service use gas Cl for chlorination and a ph of 8 to keep his pool clear. Those aspects mixed with shallow (60 foot) well water yielded an extreme iron deposit situation. He's only trying to get a couple of more years out of the pool because he is going to be moving the pool location after he has his house remodeled. (He's on 4.5 acres)

Well, I painted the pool with Insl-x pool paint and now it looks great. Now for the tricky part > starting the BBB method. I've searched and searched on the site for the balance order which should be established. I realize adding certain items (baking soda, muratic acid, etc) messes with levels of other items (ph and so forth) so in what order do I introduce and adjust each item.

If this orderly recipe is located somewhere please just provide the link.

The pool was gunite (14 x 33) (2.5' shallow x 4.5" deep) 1.5 hp on a sand filter (12,500 gallons). The city water (NO more well water) finished filling pm of July 21, 2011. All I've introduced at this point is 128 oz of Clorox.

I purchased a him a big box of Baking Soda, one box of Borax, a gallon of liquid CYA, a $55 pool test kit (each of these I got at Leslie's) and 2 gallons of Chlorox (1 of which has already been used)

I have my own pool. It's a Intex 15' metal frame with a dual filtration system (cartridge-Intex model 633T and 36' DE Titan) on the BBB system. I modified the pool a little and installed a in-wall skimmer which feeds both filtration systems. I love the BBB system! I 've never had any algae (3 years running!) and the pool water looks like diamonds sparkling about 97% of the time. It's true > After a while you can just look at the water and tell when something's not right.

After I get there today I'll be checking all the aspects of the water with the test kit and reporting back. I expect a decent level of Cl and a fairly normal ph. Many thanks and sorry for the long post. I'm all about information as opposed to lack thereof.

Dan


chem geek
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Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

Postby chem geek » Sat 23 Jul, 2011 01:17

There's nothing that different for BBB for the pool you are describing except that there is the question of whether or not calcium carbonate saturation is required for a painted pool. If there is exposed grout from tile, then the answer is yes, but it it's fully painted with no exposed plaster or grout then that's a harder question to answer. For safety, one could certain target a saturation index close to 0, but I'm not so sure that is necessary -- that is, it might be more similar to what is done for a vinyl pool.

As for the order of introduction, if you are going to be using bleach or chlorinating liquid as the primary source of chlorine, then you rarely need to use either borax or pH Up product or baking soda since the pH will tend to rise over time or be stable and the TA will likely tend to be stable or rise. Instead, you are more likely to need to add Muriatic Acid every so often. For initial adjustment, get the pH lower closer to 7.5 and if the TA is very high you could lower it faster right away by following the procedure outlined in this post or you could just add acid more frequently over time and the TA should drop over time as well. The FC level should be set appropriate to the CYA level. Even with the lower pH, you may need to use an HEDP-based metal sequestrant to prevent further iron staining.

See the Pool School for more info.
amtrakusa
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Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

Postby amtrakusa » Sat 23 Jul, 2011 07:00

Thanks very much for the info. These are the values when I arrived yesterday with a freshly filled pool.

ph - 7-9 - 8.0
fc - .5 (it quickly consumed an entire 196 oz of Clorox)
tc - 1.0
cc - .5
Alk - 110 (really surprised to see Alk & CH with these values from city water)
CH - 110
CYA - 0

At 9am - To start treatment
1. added the other 196 oz of Clorox and 30 minutes later;
2. added 3 cups of Borax through the skimmer (I firmly believe in the anti-bacterial properties of it)
3. placed one 3" Cl tab in the farther skimmer (for slower flow rate)

At 7pm - the new values were

ph - 8.0
Cl - all Cl values remained unchanged
Alk - 110
CH - 110
CYA - 0

Before I left the Cl tab in the farther skimmer had begun to show some signs of breakdown so I placed 2 fresh tabs in the nearer skimmer. I figured a fresh pool needs to have a somewhat higher Cl (5-6) to get going and hopefully when I arrive this morning it reflects that. I also added 3/4 of the bottle of liquid CYA. The dosage recommendation on the bottle said to add the full bottle but I rather tweak it up as opposed to draining water out to lower it. And lastly I added 2 cups of muratic acid to start the adjustment on the ph.
I'll post new readings when I get in this evening.

Have I missed anything?
Many thanks to Mr. Chem Geek! Dan
czechmate
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My Pool: 16 x 32 gunite21000 gal., Diamond Brite Blue, Swimquip XL pump, DE36
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Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

Postby czechmate » Sat 23 Jul, 2011 10:50

Borax is a good thing, but you would need to add good 50 pounds in average size pool to start seing any real benefits.
Meanwhile the 3 cups that you have added pretty much canceled out the two cups of acid.
When lowering PH adding borax is couterproductive.
amtrakusa
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Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

Postby amtrakusa » Sun 24 Jul, 2011 08:05

Greetings:
New values from morning of 7/23

ph - 7.6 after adding 2 cups of acid.
fc - 3.0
tc - 3.0
cc - 0.0
alk - 110
ch - 110
cya - 10

Water sparkles like diamonds. CYA did not come up hardly any after adding 3/4 bottle of liquid CYA. I'm guessing the value will increase over time. If not I'll introduce dry CYA until the level reaches 40-50.

Czechmate: I guess I don't fully understand the BBB principle (specifically the borax part). I wasn't trying to affect ph with the Borax. I was just using some for it's anti-algae properties. You mentioned 50lbs for an average sized pool. This one is 12,500.

With that much Borax what would the goal be your trying to achieve?
Also, 50 pounds of Borax would seem to me to be making the water a little rich in the soap department to be swimming in. Your thoughts on this please.

Also, if anyone sees where I've lacked on something please forward your thoughts. I thought a pool startup with fresh water would have been a little trickier. Of course it's only been 36 hours at this point.

Dan
Many thanks to all.
amtrakusa
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Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

Postby amtrakusa » Sun 24 Jul, 2011 08:31

UPDATE: I just found the excellent thread by waterbear on the Borax properties, benefits and procedures. No need to comment on the Borax. Thx. :D
czechmate
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My Pool: 16 x 32 gunite21000 gal., Diamond Brite Blue, Swimquip XL pump, DE36
Location: Texas

Order of Chemical Adjustments Needed

Postby czechmate » Sun 24 Jul, 2011 10:40

Amtrac, couple things I would suggest if you try later to add borates to your pool.
I have used Boric acid instead. It dissolves nicely in big bucket of the warm water and contrary to the use of Borax does not need any Muriatic acid to counter the rise of PH.
There is a wholesaler on Diplomacy Row in Dallas, that sells 55lb bags for about $92.00.
Pool calculator will tell you how much you need to attain 40-50ppm of borates.
It is not cheap for sure.( Cheaper way than buying all that extra acid with Borax).
But the reward of soft, shimmering water, that is more PH stable plus algae resistant properties make it worthwhile to me.
And of course, you only loose it by dilution, same as CH.
BTW, I live in N. Dallas.

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