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Thread: Refilling Hot Tub

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
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    Refilling Hot Tub

    Hello all, Im new to the hot tub world here. I've got a 500 gallon tub that I use Bromine in. I've had it for 3 months, still cannot get the strong smell to go away. I just drained the water and refilled. I've read both articles on Water Balance and using Bromine on the sticky tabs. I put in a packet of HTH Brom Start and was trying to put in a half packet next and it all fell in. I then put in 2 cups of bleach like the directions stated to. I also tested TA and was around 240(on a test strip, my Taylor kit got here today), the Ph was 7.8 and CH was 0. I put in the amount of Calcium Up the bottle said to, and on the TA the Pool Math said to lower the Ph to 7 and the TA would come down, so i added the instructed amount of Ph down. I aerated during all of this. I have no floater or tabs in the water yet. I still have a strong smell(chlorine like, but assuming Bromine). I got the Taylor kit today and the Bromine is coming in at about 35 still. This seems to be throwing off all the other measurements. On the strips I was showing a CH of around 200, and a TA of 0. With the drop kit Im still showing a TA of 0 and not showing any CH at all. Ph on the strip appears to be around a 6.8 but just turns purple in the other kit. This is what Im thinking, so please tell me if Im wrong...

    1. I put in way too much Bromine. How do i get it to go down if so?
    2. testing the other 3 things is useless until I get the Br down? Should I go with the strip for now and try to raise Ph or wait for the Bromine to go down?

    My tub doesnt get much use, about three-4 nights a week with 2 people for 20-30 min. and sometimes the kid will get in with friends for an hour or so.

    Gotta get this thing going again. Thanks in advance for the help..

    Rick

  2. Back To Top    #2

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    Re: Refilling Hot Tub

    I think the chlorine shock is what's affecting your test results. That should come down with more aeration. You didn't put in too much bromine. You put in too much bromide, but that shouldn't be a problem. The chlorine you put in reacts with the bromide to produce bromine (sanitizer).
    The bromine will eventually turn back to bromide and your bromine level will come down.

    That, and it sounds like you added the Ph Down all at once? That needs to be done in steps and takes hours to bring down a TA of 240 to 50. You should only add about 1/2 of the amount that the calc. says will be needed, aerate for 1/2 hour+, test, add 1/2 the amount now needed, aerate, repeat until you reach the goal.

    Your plan now should be to aerate until the bromine comes down and the PH comes up. If the PH doesn't come up, and you really have a TA of 0, then you'll need to raise the TA to @ 50.
    Hot Springs Sovereign (1999?)

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Refilling Hot Tub

    Test strips are, for all intents and purposes, worthless. With bromine as high as you say it is, none of the tests, including pH, are going to work correctly. Use your drop-based test and wait until the bromine comes down to normal levels before testing anything else.


    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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    Re: Refilling Hot Tub

    I just got a Taylor kit and I've compared the test results to my test strips.
    I don't think the strips are worthless. They seem to read pretty darn close to my Taylor results. ymmv
    I will continue to use the cheap strips for "ballpark" testing. If I've got to drop a high TA, and I know it's gonna take a bunch of steps/tests as mentioned above, I'll save my drop test stuff until I get close and need accurate #s.
    Hot Springs Sovereign (1999?)

  5. Back To Top    #5

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    Re: Refilling Hot Tub

    All
    Thanks for the advice and help. I go back to work today until Sunday so it will just be filtering and holding temp. I'll retest on Sunday afternoon and see what the results are. Again thanks for all of the help.

    Rick

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    Re: Refilling Hot Tub

    So here is where Im at now. My Br is around 14, TA is about 20, PH is 7, and CH is still reading 0(but says its around 150 on the test strip). Im going to keep aerating it until the BR gets under 10. It no longer smells like Chlorine. So I guess I need to add some Baking Soda to raise the TA and PH. Do I need to add Borax also?

    thanks again

    Rick

  7. Back To Top    #7

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    Re: Refilling Hot Tub

    Quote Originally Posted by fishin665 View Post
    Do I need to add Borax also?
    Not necessary, but not a bad idea. I'd probably get my other #s in order first.
    Hot Springs Sovereign (1999?)

  8. Back To Top    #8
    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Refilling Hot Tub

    Yes, raise TA to 50 and then add 50ppm of borates.

    There is a detailed discussion about PH, TA and borates here, How do I use Chlorine in my Spa (or pool)?
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