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Thread: Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

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    Exclamation Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    Hello, everyone. I'm a newbie to the BBB method and began to adjust my pool chemistry using Bleach, Baking Soda, MA, and stabilizer. Currently PH 7.5, FC 4, TA 80, CYA 70. I read some threads pertaining to adding borate to 30-50 ppm to pool water. I have a 12000 ga Salt water pool. My wife is somewhat concerned with me adding borate to our pool water because my youngest 8 yr old doesn't drink the pool water but will occasionally ingest some during the course of her swim. Not sure why but it happens. I wanted to add borate to help with my PH drift which causes me to use MA more often to keep PH at 7.5. Members, any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    12,000 Gallon IG Saltwater, Blue Quartz/Glass Bead Plaster, Pentair Quad 80 Cart Filter, A&A Infloor Cleaning System, Pentair IC60 SWG, EASY Touch Control Panel with 4Button Wireless Remote, Pentair Inteliflo VS, Pentair Ultra-Temp 120 Heat Pump, FLOWVIS Check Valve & Flow Meter 2"

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    Never regretted it.

    I have three boy (3, 6 & 10) who swim everyday and get plenty of water in their mouths (I yell at them to not play fountain). They are all perfectly healthy and happy kids.

    If you read the specific article on borates including the thread about borate safety, you will find that TFP recommends a very conservative level of 50ppm. That is very far below the levels where any kinds of biological effects occur. As well, all mammals with kidneys have the biological pathways necessary for excreting excess boron (boron is actually a micro nutrient that humans need for good health and you will find it in vitamin supplements) This is why borates are toxic to insects and algae but not humans. Insects and algae lack the necessary biological pathways for getting rid of excess boron.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    JayBauman's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    I would love to use borates to help control my constant pH rise, but I've never taken the plunge. My dogs spend a lot of time in the water, and I'm a bit leery of the canine health consequences....but that's the only thing keeping me borate-free.
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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    Quote Originally Posted by JayBauman View Post
    I would love to use borates to help control my constant pH rise, but I've never taken the plunge. My dogs spend a lot of time in the water, and I'm a bit leery of the canine health consequences....but that's the only thing keeping me borate-free.
    I'm not a dog-person so I don't have the emotional attachment to this topic, but I seriously wonder how much the borate-dog concern is blown out of proportion to the actual danger level involved. I don't have the boron toxicity numbers memorized (but they are available in some threads) but I really think dogs would have to drink an amazing amount of pool water with boron in it to be dangerous. Also, I would think that the health effects of boron ingestion would be acute but reversible as opposed to chronic-debilitating.

    I understand the reticence and would never pressure anyone to do something they're not comfortable with but I would love to see a more thorough exploration of this topic. My gut feeling is there's more smoke than fire when it comes to borates and canines.


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    JayBauman's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    I'm not a dog-person so I don't have the emotional attachment to this topic, but I seriously wonder how much the borate-dog concern is blown out of proportion to the actual danger level involved. I don't have the boron toxicity numbers memorized (but they are available in some threads) but I really think dogs would have to drink an amazing amount of pool water with boron in it to be dangerous. Also, I would think that the health effects of boron ingestion would be acute but reversible as opposed to chronic-debilitating.

    I understand the reticence and would never pressure anyone to do something they're not comfortable with but I would love to see a more thorough exploration of this topic. My gut feeling is there's more smoke than fire when it comes to borates and canines.


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    My hesitation comes from reading Chem Geek's take in this thread, and there are several others on this forum that go into this topic. In the 100°F Texas heat, my dog swims and laps the pool water constantly. If my dogs drink anywhere as much from the pool as they do from the inside water bowl, then they are getting quite some dosing. To me, it's just not worth the risk to my pets. I have no such worries about human consumption, since it's easier to control kids than it is dogs.
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    Quote Originally Posted by JayBauman View Post
    My hesitation comes from reading Chem Geek's take in this thread, and there are several others on this forum that go into this topic. In the 100°F Texas heat, my dog swims and laps the pool water constantly. If my dogs drink anywhere as much from the pool as they do from the inside water bowl, then they are getting quite some dosing. To me, it's just not worth the risk to my pets. I have no such worries about human consumption, since it's easier to control kids than it is dogs.
    Post #8 by chemgeek in that thread (as well as post #7 by JasonLion) seems to indicate that a 100-lb dog would be pretty safe (would need to consume 8 liters of 50ppm borate water to be at the NOAEL level which has a 3X safety margin built into - NOAEL is 3X lower than the concentration of any observable adverse effect).

    But hey, I get it. It's your dog(s) and you love them and you're not about to do anything that could possibly harm them.

    But do consider this - I saw a post by chemgeek once that stated that one (not so clean) dog swimming is the equivalent of 5 person-hours of bather waste that needs to be oxidized....yuck! Keep those doggies well groomed and shampooed or else borates will be the least of your worries


    Matt
    16k IG PebbleTec pool, 650gal spa, spillway and waterfall, 3HP IntelliFlo VS / 1.5HP WhisperFlo, Pentair QuadDE-100 filter, IC40 SWCG, MasterTemp 400k BTU/hr NG heater, KreepyKrauly suction-side cleaner Dolphin S300i robot, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    Regarding the subject of ingesting borated pool water, here is an indepth look at it from chem geek

    Are Borates Safe to Use?
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    Since adding borates (non-SWG) I have not adjusted my pH or TA. It's been almost 2 seasons. Lucky me.

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    We are on season 4 with borates. I top it off to 50ppm every spring. I was a little late adding it this year and it really upped the sparkle and improved the feel. It also noticeably reduced the number of bugs in the water. Both water and non-water bugs. We live in the woods.

    We swim an hour or two every single day, 2 kids and me, wife doesn't swim every day. And on the weekend we are in the pool several hours to all day. We have 1 dog who will not get in the pool but drinks it and one dog who is in the pool multiple times per day and drinks plenty too. There are water troughs and a water bowl for them to drink from also so it is not their soul source of water.

    There are no apparent side effects from the borates. Unless borates cause laziness! The dog who hangs out in the pool also spends a lot of time in dog beds, couches and recliners.

    Now that I think about it I don't actually know what issues borates might cause in dogs. I should read up so I can keep an eye out.

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    Re: Anyone regret adding borates?

    If I remember correctly, I think it's only very thirsty breeding males. Could be wrong...

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