We decided to add a swim spa to our small back yard this year. I am an avid swimmer and wanted an option that didn't involve going to the local pool.
I've been "lurking" on TFP for a few days, and I see a lot of posts about pools, and a lot of posts on spas. The swim spa seems to be a hybrid.
I have so many questions I don't know where to start. We have been using the standard spa chemicals (chlorine granules, pH down, scale defense, oxy weekly shock) in addition to filter cleaners about once a month. The water has been fine until a week ago when it got steadily cloudier until we couldn't see the bottom of the spa. Yesterday we drained the spa about 2/3 and refilled because our CYA was 129 ppm based on the pool store test. I have only been using test strips, but I have a TFT100 on the way to do my own testing.
I use the spa about 4 times a week for 1-2 hours per use. And I exercise hard in the spa, so there is probably a fair amount of sweat and spit involved. Also, the spa stays covered when not in use. The spa is under a patio cover, so even with the cover off, it doesn't get a lot of direct sunlight. Don't ask me how we got it under the patio cover - what an ordeal!
So here are some of my questions:
1. Should I follow pool or spa forum suggestions? My spa is kept at about 80 degrees, so it's more pool-like in that respect.
2. What is the best way to keep the CYA down? Because of water restrictions, I really don't want to have to refill the spa every 3 months because the CYA is high. Plus, it's just a pain in the butt to drain and refill.
3. Should I consider a SWG? I've seen a spa version that works for up to 2000 gallons. Can this be used with a mineral cartridge?
Thanks in advance for any help or suggestions. And should I post my questions in the pool or spa forums???