Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 29

Thread: Baquacil Alternative

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Carthage, Il
    Posts
    47

    Baquacil Alternative

    Is there a cheaper, non-chlorine alternative to the Baquacil chemicals? I have one child that is allergic to the chlorine, and just getting ready to place my $500+ order for baquacil makes me wonder if there's any household substitutes for the shock, sanitizer and algicide.

  2. Back To Top    #2


    TFP Guide

    cowboycasey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fletcher, OK
    Posts
    3,346

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Welcome to TFP

    We always ask how do you know for sure he is allergic to chlorine? It is usually because of public pools or very bad pools that have a high Combined Chlorine, did the pool "SMELL" like chlorine?

    I have a test that you can do to see if he is allergic to a TFP pool the way we do here but post back if you would like to try it.

    I hope this helps
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
    links: pool school * Recommended-Levels * SLAM * CYA chart * Test kits * How To Post Pictures * Poolmath * OCLT ** Support your website if we helped you :) **

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Carthage, Il
    Posts
    47

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Since he was a baby(he's 14 now), any time he's been in a chlorine pool whether private or public, his eyes burn horribly bad. The burning continues for several days. I have eye drops from the doctor we can use if he does swim, but he usually chooses not to. I do not want a chlorine pool. Just wondering if there are any household products to substitute for Baquacil. We've used it for 15 years with great success, but it's getting very pricey. We have an above ground 27'x52" pool with a sand filter. Our water is usually clear, sometimes if I neglect to add shock on time it clouds, but is corrected quickly. I have substituted baking soda for the alkalinity increaser. Just wondering if there's anything else out there.

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Carthage, Il
    Posts
    47

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    PS.....What is the test for allergy?? I'd be curious to try it.

  5. Back To Top    #5


    TFP Guide

    cowboycasey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fletcher, OK
    Posts
    3,346

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    This will test if it is chlorine Here is a link for the ABC's of pool water chemistry Pool School - ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

    Run a luke warm bath about 80/85 degrees, about 40 to 50 gallons
    put 1 tablespoon of regular 8.5% bleach in and mix

    this is about 1.5ppm chlorine

    Do the following in steps and if any reaction have him get in the shower and wash off, we want his safety in mind doing this..

    see if the smell bothers him, let him put his feet in and see if there is any reaction
    if none move on to getting completely in with his head out of the water, Monitor his eyes and see if anything is bothering him
    let him splash water on his face with eyes closed 1 time, again monitor his eyes for a reaction

    From what you are explaining his reactions are not from chlorine, it is from Combined chlorine (chlorine cleaning bad stuff out of the water) and PH being high (above 7.8) or low (below 7.2)

    With a proper test kit and testing we can teach you to do yourself you can have a very sparkly safe pool for your family

    I hope this helps
    Pool: Intex 16x32 15000 gal, 2 speed 340042, Pentair CC320 Filter, CircuPool SJ45 Salt System, Intermatic PE653RC; Hot Tub: 650 Gal SWG Megachlor
    links: pool school * Recommended-Levels * SLAM * CYA chart * Test kits * How To Post Pictures * Poolmath * OCLT ** Support your website if we helped you :) **

  6. Back To Top    #6
    Mod Squad tim5055's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Columbia, SC
    Posts
    8,495

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    On another note, burning eyes is more often attributed to improper pH levels than to chlorine.

    Due to my high CYA the first year I had my pool I had to keep the chlorine at around 15ppm (very high). No problems with our eyes unless I didn't remember to add the acid to keep the pH in check.
    TFP Moderator 39 X 18 23,000(ish) freeform gunite; built 2007ish; Pentair Triton II TR100 600lb Sand filter; 2 HP Pentair pump with 2.2 HP AO Smith single speed motor; 2 skimmers, 1 main drain, 4 returns w/waterfall, Stenner 45MHP2 3GPD running@ 60% - 15 gal Tank; heated by the sun CYA 200+ when I started - 50 now. Dolphin Supreme M5 Pool Cleaner. Hot Springs SX Spa, 285 gallon

  7. Back To Top    #7

    In the Industry

    Donldson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    NW Ohio
    Posts
    2,637

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    To get this out of the way: I don't like Baqua, it is far inferior to chlorine and much more costly (as you have noticed). We have found through the years that most pools are mismanaged and as such most people who think they have a chlorine allergy or sensitivity are just reacting to the bad pH or CC levels in these mismanaged pools. That is why we always get very weary when someone claims a chlorine allergy that wasn't diagnosed by a physician. I promise any questioning of your son's allergy is not personal, just from our experience.

    Ok, that out of the way, if you have to have a chlorine-free pool then Baquacil is the way to go. Chlorine, bromine, and biguanide (Baquacil) are the only EPA approved sanitizers for pools. Now there is no regulation of private pools so there are plenty of other chlorine-free options out there but they do not provide nearly the bacterial kill rates as the three approved sanitizers so I would not even consider them. Biguanide is available under other brand names that might be less expensive than Baquacil brand, but aside of the oxidizer being hydrogen peroxide there are no easy off the shelf replacements for chemicals used.

    So welcome to TFP and I hope you stick around. Even if you don't use the system there is a lot of great information available to browse. But I do promise, the system taught here is not like any chlorine system you have experienced before...
    JD - 28' Round Above Ground Pool, 17,000 Gallons. Dual speed Jacuzzi pump with cartridge filter. Dual speed 1 HP pump, Hayward S210T sand filter
    Pool School - PoolMath - HIGHLY Recommended Test Kits

  8. Back To Top    #8
    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    11,602

    Baquacil Alternative

    Beth,

    Which Baquacil products are you using?

    The sanitizer/algaestat is PHMB. That's the proprietary Baquacil chemical and there is no "substitute" generic for it.

    The algaecide is typically a cheap linear quat algaecide (ADBAC) of differing concentrations. You can sometime find those in pool stores under various names. Not sure how much you will save by using a pool store chemical but you could prove compare.

    The oxidizer/shock is nothing more than hydrogen peroxide BUT it's typically 27.5% concentrated in water. Standard drug store peroxide is 3% and outside of the pool world, it will be hard to find peroxide that concentrated (because a bad person can make acetone/peroxide explosives out of it).

    This is why we advocate chlorine. Baquacil is a very expensive alternative and the fact that you've been able to get away with 15 years of use without a problem is well outside the norm. Most Baquacil users are dying to quit after three years when the persistent white mold and pink slime problems become impossible to solve.

    I do believe your sons allergies are not allergies at all but the result of being sensitized to chloramines when swimming in improperly sanitized and managed pools. Once you understand pool water chemistry you'll never want to swim in any pool other than your own ever again. Most people incorrectly manage their pool water and the results range from gross/disgusting to potentially dangerous. Then, when problems arise, folks tend to blame chlorine rather than the person who did not properly manage their pool.

    Anyway, that's my soap-box and you seem to be getting good results from Baquacil. I'm sorry the chemicals are so expensive but that's how Baq is...a VEEEERY expensive alternative.
    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

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Augusta, GA
    Posts
    90

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Quote Originally Posted by cowboycasey View Post
    This will test if it is chlorine Here is a link for the ABC's of pool water chemistry Pool School - ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

    Run a luke warm bath about 80/85 degrees, about 40 to 50 gallons
    put 1 tablespoon of regular 8.5% bleach in and mix

    this is about 1.5ppm chlorine

    Keep in mind that if you use city water, there is a good chance that it is coming out of your tap chlorinated, and unstabilized at that!
    30'x52'' AGP 21,000 Gallons
    TWM 2.64 SF Sand Filter w/ Century 1.5 HP Pump
    BBB'er for life!
    TF-100 Test Kit

  10. Back To Top    #10
    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    'burbs of Augusta, Georgia
    Posts
    6,481

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Quote Originally Posted by tommyd123 View Post
    Keep in mind that if you use city water, there is a good chance that it is coming out of your tap chlorinated, and unstabilized at that!
    How funny that I was just about to type the exact same thing, Tommyd123!
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

  11. Back To Top    #11
    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    37,389

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    This is true ... in many locations the active chlorine level in the tap water is greater than that in pools following the TFP recommended levels.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
    18k IG pebblesheen pool, Hayward ProLogic P4 w/ T-15 SWG, Pentair 1HP 2-speed Superflo, Hayward 6020 DE filter
    500 sqft Heliocol solar panels, ThePoolCleaner, TF-100 test kit w/ SpeedStir
    Pool School + Test Kit + PoolMath = A TROUBLE FREE POOL
    If you found TFP helpful and we saved you money ... Become a TFP Supporter!

  12. Back To Top    #12
    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    'burbs of Augusta, Georgia
    Posts
    6,481

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Quote Originally Posted by bethdorothy View Post
    Since he was a baby(he's 14 now), any time he's been in a chlorine pool whether private or public, his eyes burn horribly bad. Badly managed private and public pools cause burning eyes, and people mistake the smell of chlorine as a sign that the owners are keeping things clean. The fact is that if you smell strong chlorine at a pool it isn't a good sign- it means that the pool's chlorine is overwhelmed with contaminates and you're smelling the combined chloramines. As others have said, overly high or low pH is the cause of eye discomfort.

    Just wondering if there are any household products to substitute for Baquacil. Plenty of substitutions for commonly sold "pool chemicals"...such as baking soda as you've discovered, regular borax and chlorine bleach from the laundry aisle.

    We've used it for 15 years with great success, but it's getting very pricey. I just about fell off my chair reading you say you were going to order $500 worth of chemicals! OMG.. I probably spend between $50-100/year for my pool care. Maybe. I have a salt system chlorine generator that chugs along happily and makes our pool easy to care for. I've never once had algae or cloudy water.

    We have an above ground 27'x52" pool with a sand filter. Our water is usually clear, sometimes if I neglect to add shock on time it clouds, but is corrected quickly. I have substituted baking soda for the alkalinity increaser. Just wondering if there's anything else out there.
    Before you make that expensive order, consider that this would be the time to switch to chlorine. People just aren't allergic to chlorine or he'd be unable to bathe or drink the water. I'm sure he's sensitive to the combined chloramines. I think you and he would enjoy the crisp, clean water a pool managed our way provides. And I'm positive your wallet would enjoy the savings!
    My Amazon Smile for November12K Fiberglass IG, Infinity 4000 automatic cover, SWCG, Hayward Sand Filter, Hayward 1.5 Pump, Doheny Discovery Robot, Savi Melody LED pool lights, outdoor speakers and other assorted doo-dads. Sundance Altamar Hot Tub.
    Our pool build--> Our Pool Solved Our Sloping Yard Skippy's Cheap Pool Cooler -->Skippy's New Fountain

  13. Back To Top    #13

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Carthage, Il
    Posts
    47

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Alright, I'm ready to switch to salt water!! We closed our pool last fall and it was FULL of water mold. I'm done with baquacil! Any and all help would be greatly appreciated. I have no idea where to even begin, or what salt system I need to look for. Thank you in advance!!!!

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Administrator Leebo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Eastern Ohio
    Posts
    6,605

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Before really worrying about which Salt system to switch to worry about getting all the Baquacil out of the pool. Have you read the article about Converting Your Baqua Pool to Chlorine? This step must be done before firing up a SWG.

  15. Back To Top    #15
    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Tallahassee, FL
    Posts
    26,710

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Good morning! I was just coming to share that link Lee posted. THAT is what you need to do BUT you must have a good test kit in hand before you can really start. Look in my siggy below for the test kit you will need. You do need to get the XL as you will have a fight on your hand and will be doing a lot of testing.

    It WILL be worth it in the end. Better water and fatter wallet! WIN-WIN!

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

  16. Back To Top    #16
    needsajet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Sydney, NSW, Australia
    Posts
    3,553

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    In case you're wondering about cost, after the baq is gone (good decision by the way), you can buy and install an SWG for around $800 (ish) and you will have bought all your chlorine for the next 7 to 10 years. At the end of 7 to 10 years, you can buy a replacement electrolytic cell for a few hundred. Or you can use bleach (or chlorinating liquid) and pour some in daily or every other day, for $80 (ish) per year. The costs are wild guesses, because I don't even know your pool size, but mostly want to give you a heads-up regarding the upfront cost. The SWG saves you having to go get chlorinating liquid and gives you free days between tests and manual chlorine addition, which isn't too big a deal either.

    You can have a salt water pool either way, which improves eye comfort for some. (albeit pH and CC being much more important)

    This article was a life-changer for me, in case it's helpful. You can ignore their comments about pool water chemistry, but the rest is worth reading.
    Swimming Teaching: Bloodshot Eyes After Swimming or Sore Eyes From Swimming?

    Good luck with the switch!
    12k IG salt; glass beads in plaster; K-2006C, K-1766, CCL, and Aussie 4in1 (HTH); Pentair Eco800 1.2HP VS; Zodiac SWC 1.3 lb/day (25 g/hr); 25" filter recycled glass; OKU solar panels; 1/2 HP solar pump; Rebel (Warrior) pool cleaner; FlowViz; prior pool AG 10k | Read Before Posting to get the best possible advice | ... and this helped me a lot!: TFPC for Beginners

  17. Back To Top    #17

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Carthage, Il
    Posts
    47

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    I printed that out yesterday. There should be little to no Baquacil left in the water since I didn't add anything at the end of the year last year. I was so disgusted that we had water mold again I just covered it up!

    - - - Updated - - -

    So I wouldn't HAVE to purchase a SWG? I'm not sure about adding bleach to the water. (We have an above ground, 27x52 round pool)

    - - - Updated - - -

    I printed that out yesterday, so will do that as soon as we uncover the pool. I added NO closing baquacil chemicals last fall as I was completely disgusted that we had water mold, AGAIN. I'm interested in which SWG works the best, and is most economical. (27'x52" round, above ground pool)

    - - - Updated - - -

    New to the whole chlorine thing.....the test kit is for chlorine levels? Baquacil has strips, this whole kit looks overwhelming!

  18. Back To Top    #18

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    lebanon tn
    Posts
    370

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Adding bleach is easy and not hazardous. Obviously don't pore straight into eyes band wear work clothes as splashes will cause deteriorating cloth. Just pour directly in pool. Or poor in measuring cup as if you were doing laundry then poor in pool. And splash on yourself just rinse in pool. All done
    24ft x 52in AGP 18000 gal
    sand filter, 200#,1.5 hp single speed pump
    Wood deck (still in progress...)

  19. Back To Top    #19
    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Tallahassee, FL
    Posts
    26,710

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Beth we can and WILL walk you through each test. There are also videos so you can watch as you do the tests.

    For now lets not worry about at SWG as you have to get all of the other stuff out of your pool with chlorine/bleach. Once we get your pool balanced with chlorine we can get you set up with a SWG if you want.

    I do not have a SWG. I am a "jug slinger" LOL It is no big deal for me.

    When are you thinking of uncovering the pool? You really need the test kit before you do so we can hit it hard and get it cleared up.

    we are here for you!

    Kim
    TFP Moderator 33x52 round AG 25,600 gals Sand Filter 1.5hp Pump - 2 Speed, SLAM, Pool School, Recommended Levels, Recommended Chemicals, Pool Math, Chlorine/CYA Chart, TF-100 Test Kit

  20. Back To Top    #20
    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    11,602

    Re: Baquacil Alternative

    Can you please update your signature with your pool equipment details. What type of filter you have matters. Also, did you use any of the Baquacil CDX product? The CDX tend to make the conversion process take longer. Keep your test strips as it will be good to know what your sanitizer (PHMB) levels are before starting; hopefully they register low to zero!!

    As others have said, don't worry about SWGs right now, there will be plenty of time for that later.
    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

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •