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Thread: A Few Questions About Salt Chlorinators

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Campobello, SC

    A Few Questions About Salt Chlorinators

    I live in South Carolina and for some reason, I've always struggled to keep my PH in check. I'll spend a week trying to get it to rise up to 7.2 but after a decent rain, it completely collapses into the low 6's. I was told by several installers that a salt chlorinator would help solve that problem so I just installed a Pentair IC40 and a VS pump.

    Also, our pump died last fall and we never got to close the pool properly, so I've been working on it for about two weeks as a chlorine system- the installer told me not to waste the salt and wait until it was mostly clear to switch over. So I've been hitting it with liquid chlorine and shock (alternating between the two each day) and the pool is almost 100% clear...just the deepest part where we are still gathering leaves is a little cloudy. I've also been adding salt for about five days now and the indicator says I'm at the correct salt levels; Oh, and I hit it with flocculent two days ago and it worked beautifully....everything dropped and I've been vacuuming to waste and backwashing multiple times per day. However, most of my measurements are off the charts-

    PH- bouncing between 7.6 and 7.9
    Alkalinity- 150 (I have a liner pool, so good there)
    Hardiness- I forget but it was good
    Chlorine- not sure exactly; strips only go to 10+ and it was much darker than that
    Free Chlorine- also off the charts high
    Stabilizer- fell into the "very high" range

    I realize that time can get the chlorine levels in place, but then again I've never had stabilizer read high before either. So here's my questions; and note that it's too cold to swim for at least a few more weeks. So there's no rush for overnight magic-

    1) Should I unplug the salt chlorinator until total and free chlorine drop to normal levels?
    2) Do I worry about the PH at this point? How high is typically too high? Will it still crash in a hard rain?
    3) What can I do about high stabilizer? Is that even an issue?
    4) Should I continue to use shock to try and bring the free chlorine down? Or just give it time? I haven't added anything (except flox) since I got the salt system balanced 3-4 days ago.

    I know that's a lot from a newbie...sorry! After years of pool problems and a completely new system, I figured that I better ask about the chlorine/PH now while the pool is on the verge of looking good. This is the first time I've EVER had a high PH so I'm out of my league. =)
    Pentair Intelliflow 3HP Pool Pump, Pentair IC40 Salt Chlorinator, Jandy Sand Filter
    Pool Size- approx 26,000 gallons; 18 by 34 rectangular w/ a liner

  2. Back To Top    #2
    frustratedpoolmom's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    SWSuburban Chicago, IL

    Re: A Few Questions About Salt Chlorinators

    Shock is something you do to your pool, not something you buy, despite what the pool store sells. It is likely you've been adding dichlor granular, which increases the CYA level and explains your level if it is indeed high. High CYA is a very big issue. Hopefully this is not the case. But there is only one way to find out...

    The first thing you need to do is order one of the recommended test kits and take control of your pool. While you're waiting for it to arrive, start reading Pool School. Button, top right corner.
    Helpful links: Pool School; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner

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