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Thread: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

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    Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Hello,

    Iíve owned the same house for 3 years, filling the pool with well water without issues, but for the first time this spring I noticed yellowing below the waterline on my usually white fiberglass stairs. I did the Vitamin C tablet test and concluded it was iron staining.

    So I did the treatment as advised here - lowered the chlorine to 0, added ascorbic acid which removed the stains, and also added Metal Magic to make sure the iron stayed ďsuspendedĒ in the water. I also added a CuLator pouch in my pump basket for good measure. All that worked liked a charm - stairs back to bright white. I used Polyquat 60 to keep the algae away while keeping the chlorine low for two weeks as recommended.

    Now Iím in the process of SLAMing the pool since my chlorine level was dropped to zero. Suddenly I notice my stairs are yellow again!! I estimate Iíve spent about $100 on this issue between the Polyquat 60, CuLator, Metal Magic, vitamin C, and chlorine needed for the SLAM. I really donít want to go through this process again. Want to enjoy the pool for the summer and have guests over without embarrassing yellow stairs! Anyone have any suggestions?
    2005 build, 16K gal, IG - vinyl, 3/4 hp WhisperFlo pump, sand filter, Polaris cleaning robot

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    You may need to repeat and replace water with metal free water once the stains are lifted, there is only so much that sequesterants can do before you reach the saturation point and the stains come back. Do you know how the metal got there in the first place? (high metal levels in fill water vs using a mineral system or copper based algaecide)
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Quote Originally Posted by Isaac-1 View Post
    Do you know how the metal got there in the first place?
    My only guess is the fill water since I'm on a well. Never had the problem before, but my neighbor did just drill a new well next door, so maybe that stirred things up.
    2005 build, 16K gal, IG - vinyl, 3/4 hp WhisperFlo pump, sand filter, Polaris cleaning robot

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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    It got even worse today This is just cosmetic right? I guess I'm going to have to truck water in from now on. I think the chlorine made it worse because it coincided exactly with when I SLAMed.
    2005 build, 16K gal, IG - vinyl, 3/4 hp WhisperFlo pump, sand filter, Polaris cleaning robot

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Yes, it is just cosmetic. Raising chlorine or PH can cause stains to return. More here, Pool School - Metals in the Water and Metal Stains
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Quote Originally Posted by eskewj View Post
    It got even worse today This is just cosmetic right? I guess I'm going to have to truck water in from now on. I think the chlorine made it worse because it coincided exactly with when I SLAMed.
    When the water is in the ground the lack of oxygen allows the iron to be dissolved. Exposure to air in filling the pool allows it to be precipitated out. If you get a lot of splashing (air) in the fill, you will see it quicker. If not, it takes longer for air to react and could be the reason why it got worse over time

    I don't have the iron issue myself, but can envision what I may try based on treatment in municipal water supply. And this would be something you may try in the future instead of trucking in water. It's not going to help you now once the water is in. The basic principal is air takes it out of the dissolved state and once that happens it will settle and/or it can be filtered.

    There are a lot of variations that can be tried on this principle. For example, I have a spill over spa and this is how I would do it. I would connect a venturi injector that can screw into a hose line (something like this Venturi Injector - Venturi Injector Exporter, Manufacturer Supplier, Delhi, India), but leaving the fertilizer side open would suck air (instead of liquid) and aerate the line as you filled the spa. I would probably also turn on the spa pump and the air. I would then place filter media across the exit to filter out what has been precipitated out and what hasn't fallen to the bottom of the spa.

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    Mod Squad YippeeSkippy's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    I seem to recall reading that Polyquat 60 and Metal Magic don't play nice with each other? Can anyone confirm or correct this?

    Correction Found!--> Jack's Magenta and Polyquat60 = milky water
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    The problem here is you SLAM'ed your pool after doing the AA treatment. I know you said that you waited the two weeks but, in reality, your water has metals in it now so SLAM'ing is to be avoided when possible. If your FC dropped to 0ppm, that is not necessarily a reason to SLAM. You only want to SLAM your pool if an OCLT shows that you have some kind of nascent algae bloom or if you actually see cloudy water or green algae.

    This is unfortunately life with metals, you can not have high pH and/or high FC with metals in pool water.
    Matt
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    If your FC dropped to 0ppm, that is not necessarily a reason to SLAM.
    The reason I thought this is because the SLAM page says so.

    "If you have algae, or the CC level is above 0.5, or the free chlorine (FC) level is zero, you should SLAM the pool."

    2005 build, 16K gal, IG - vinyl, 3/4 hp WhisperFlo pump, sand filter, Polaris cleaning robot

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Quote Originally Posted by eskewj View Post
    The reason I thought this is because the SLAM page says so.

    "If you have algae, or the CC level is above 0.5, or the free chlorine (FC) level is zero, you should SLAM the pool."

    What exactly happened that caused the zero FC?

    You did the AA treatment, you brought your FC back up slowly, pool was clear .... zero FC.

    What happened during the "....." ?
    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: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    What exactly happened that caused the zero FC?

    You did the AA treatment, you brought your FC back up slowly, pool was clear .... zero FC.

    What happened during the "....." ?
    I've been testing this in my other thread, not knowing where metal levels were (deposited or suspended) my CU & FE readings were 0 with stains.
    with stains removed and no suquesterant added they stayed zero.
    AA will consume the FC, how much obviously depends on lbs added/water volume and the amount of metals being placed into suspension.
    I saw CC readings for ~3hrs after direct application, but FC consumed for 72hrs.
    In my case fine precipitates have dropped out, could be turbidity from the pills I used though.

    My thoughts are folks are over prescribing AA/gal for instant results. Extra AA is then consuming FC, with resultant CC numbers for days/weeks giving false indications of an algae bloom in the waiting.
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    Swampwoman's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    ^Yup

    Esk, since you've now oxidized the sequestrant through elevated chlorine, you'll want to add a startup level dose of sequestrant again. If using Metal Magic, that will often remove the fresh stains itself.

    If you want to be sure, do this sponge test...after the first few seasons on well, I stopped doing AA and just used the sponge test and Metal Magic instead...reasoning was that on well, I had to continually sequester my water anyway.

    Here's a link: http://www.proteampoolcare.com/image...SpongeTest.pdf

    Also, filling from well the trick is to try to manage the AMOUNT of metals getting in. Ths can be helped by pre-filtering your water when you top up. Heaviest duty variant of this is to get two filter housings, connect to hose, and use a 5 micron filter in one then a 1 micron filter in the other. Here's a housing unit example: Pentek 150469 3/4 Scientific

    Lastly, and what I've done, it to plumb the pool spigot to the house water softener and upgrade to a dual tank system for the constant regeneration. That way you can get a good top up without much iron. Eg. My well s 2 ppm iron, and about up to .5 comes out of spigot, which is more easily anaged by mechanical filtration and sequestrant.

    Hope that helps give you some options.
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    Re: Help! Iron stains returned immediately

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    What exactly happened that caused the zero FC?
    The AA treatment article says "Take your chlorine down to 0 and PH down to 7.2".

    Ascorbic Treatment to rid Pool of metal stains

    @Swampwoman: The filter idea will give me something to think about. I have city water to the house and well water to the irrigation and spigots. I might have to change over at least one spigot to city water for pool filling.
    2005 build, 16K gal, IG - vinyl, 3/4 hp WhisperFlo pump, sand filter, Polaris cleaning robot

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