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Thread: Dry skin problem

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    Dry skin problem

    Hello all. I'm loving the TFP method now that I understand it all and have locked in my water chemistry. The only issue I am having now (and this may be personal) is my skin gets pretty dry and flaky after say a 30-45 minute dip in the pool. Not sure what is going on. I never had the problem before switching to TFP and wanted to see if anyone else is having or has had a similar issue. I use a 10% liquid chlorine from WalMart. Muriatic Acid to reduce PH when needed. Readings are as follows:

    FC. 5.0
    PH. 7.5
    TA. 130
    CH. 230
    CYA. 40
    Borate. 50

    Any thoughts and or suggestions are much appreciated.


    21,000 gal AG w/vinyl liner
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    1.5 HP duel speed pump
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    What is your salt level (chloride)?

    You could add 1500ppm of pool salt to your water to give it a softer feel. You should have some salt already in the water as both muriatic acid and liquid chlorine add chloride ions to the water.
    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: Dry skin problem

    I had the same problem when I first started swimming in my pool after starting TFP. I added enough salt to get me to 2000ppm, and it's much better. But I wonder what the difference is in why the "before" method didn't have this problem.

    17,500 gallon IG Vinyl
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    Taylor K-2006-A, Stenner 45MPHP10 auto chlorine feed

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    Re: Dry skin problem

    I do not have a salt system.


    21,000 gal AG w/vinyl liner
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    I would also add this - your FC could be a bit high if your skin is sensitive to chlorine.

    Your FC/CYA ratio is ~ 12.5%. That's might be too high if your skin is sensitive to higher chlorine levels. You might try targeting your FC additions so that your floor FC value is 3ppm. I realize that 5ppm is probably what you need to keep from going below 3ppm but swimming in a pool with that high a ratio might be a bit harsh. Your dry skin problems could be related to the fact that hypochlorous acid is very good at destroying the essential oils in your skin. When you go above the FC/CYA ratio, it's possible that it could be hard on your skin.

    If you're losing a lot of FC due to sunlight, then you need to increase your CYA so you lose less FC each day and you can keep your FC closer to the proper ratio.
    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: Dry skin problem

    The salt suggestion isn't reliant on a salt system. You will still see benefits of the "softened" water even without a salt system by adding a little bit of salt.

    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    I would also add this - your FC could be a bit high if your skin is sensitive to chlorine.

    Your FC/CYA ratio is ~ 12.5%. That's might be too high if your skin is sensitive to higher chlorine levels. You might try targeting your FC additions so that your floor FC value is 3ppm. I realize that 5ppm is probably what you need to keep from going below 3ppm but swimming in a pool with that high a ratio might be a bit harsh. Your dry skin problems could be related to the fact that hypochlorous acid is very good at destroying the essential oils in your skin. When you go above the FC/CYA ratio, it's possible that it could be hard on your skin.

    If you're losing a lot of FC due to sunlight, then you need to increase your CYA so you lose less FC each day and you can keep your FC closer to the proper ratio..
    Really? Everyone here seems to say it's safe to swim up to SLAM level, and I often see people say they increase their FC level higher than the target value for their CYA when they have heavy swimmer loads, and "no one ever notices". Furthermore, when others try to stay near their minimum value for the CYA, I see them scolded for flirting with algae problems or something of that nature.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Pool Tool View Post
    The salt suggestion isn't reliant on a salt system. You will still see benefits of the "softened" water even with a salt system by adding a little bit of salt.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
    Just to be clear, adding salt doesn't soften the water. You only soften water by removing calcium. However, adding salt makes it more saline, which makes it more comfortable to your skin and eyes.

    17,500 gallon IG Vinyl
    Pentair Tagelus TA60D Sand filter
    Pentair Challenger 1.5HP pump CFII N1 1.5A
    Taylor K-2006-A, Stenner 45MPHP10 auto chlorine feed

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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Please note the quotations, but thanks for explaining.
    16' x 32' (21100 gal), vinyl, 1.5 hp Hayward SuperPump,
    Tagelus TA60/60D Sand Filter, Raypak 399K Digital Heater, TF-100

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Quote Originally Posted by camueller View Post
    Really? Everyone here seems to say it's safe to swim up to SLAM level, and I often see people say they increase their FC level higher than the target value for their CYA when they have heavy swimmer loads, and "no one ever notices". Furthermore, when others try to stay near their minimum value for the CYA, I see them scolded for flirting with algae problems or something of that nature.
    I think there's a big difference between saying that something is "safe" to do and saying that something should be done regularly. Yes, you can swim in water up to shock levels but it's not something I would choose to do regularly. Yes, you can raise your pool water FC up above your target values when you expect high bather loads, but it is not something I would choose to do regularly. I almost always keep my FC near the minimum value for my CYA. My water is crystal clear, I never have algae problems and no one has ever "scolded" me for doing so. But I also regularly test my water and I have an SWG which automates chlorine production. So it is a lot easier for me to keep my pool at a lower and more consistent FC.

    Skin problems in pools is not an exact science. It can be very subjective and variable as there many different skin types among bathers. Even in my own family there's quite a bit of variation. My oldest son can swim all day, no matter the FC level, and be totally fine. My middle boy needs to wear swim goggles, limit his time in the water and wear a rashie (swim shirt) or else his skin will get irritated. His skin reacts much better to the pool water when the FC levels are lower. He is a lot like me as I do not tolerate heavily chlorinated water - if the water is at or near the minimum, I can swim for longer periods of time. It's also the reason why I typically drop the FC in my raised spa prior to using it because hot, chlorinated water is very irritating to me. My wife, on the other hand, has no problem in the spa at any normal FC levels.

    So the point of my comment was to simply point the OP to another solution other than adding salt - perhaps it might be better if he swims when the FC is lower to see if that resolves his skin issues.
    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: Dry skin problem

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    I think there's a big difference between saying that something is "safe" to do and saying that something should be done regularly. Yes, you can swim in water up to shock levels but it's not something I would choose to do regularly. Yes, you can raise your pool water FC up above your target values when you expect high bather loads, but it is not something I would choose to do regularly. I almost always keep my FC near the minimum value for my CYA. My water is crystal clear, I never have algae problems and no one has ever "scolded" me for doing so. But I also regularly test my water and I have an SWG which automates chlorine production. So it is a lot easier for me to keep my pool at a lower and more consistent FC.

    Skin problems in pools is not an exact science. It can be very subjective and variable as there many different skin types among bathers. Even in my own family there's quite a bit of variation. My oldest son can swim all day, no matter the FC level, and be totally fine. My middle boy needs to wear swim goggles, limit his time in the water and wear a rashie (swim shirt) or else his skin will get irritated. His skin reacts much better to the pool water when the FC levels are lower. He is a lot like me as I do not tolerate heavily chlorinated water - if the water is at or near the minimum, I can swim for longer periods of time. It's also the reason why I typically drop the FC in my raised spa prior to using it because hot, chlorinated water is very irritating to me. My wife, on the other hand, has no problem in the spa at any normal FC levels.

    So the point of my comment was to simply point the OP to another solution other than adding salt - perhaps it might be better if he swims when the FC is lower to see if that resolves his skin issues.
    I certainly understand your point and appreciate it. In fact, I wish it had been made when I posted about it, because I was given the impression that there was no way my target value FC levels were causing my dry skin and red eyes. I guess I'll start keeping mine a little lower as well.

    17,500 gallon IG Vinyl
    Pentair Tagelus TA60D Sand filter
    Pentair Challenger 1.5HP pump CFII N1 1.5A
    Taylor K-2006-A, Stenner 45MPHP10 auto chlorine feed

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Quote Originally Posted by camueller View Post
    Really? Everyone here seems to say it's safe to swim up to SLAM level, and I often see people say they increase their FC level higher than the target value for their CYA when they have heavy swimmer loads, and "no one ever notices". Furthermore, when others try to stay near their minimum value for the CYA, I see them scolded for flirting with algae problems or something of that nature.
    That is all true, we do say all of that. I don't know about the "scolded" part, but certainly cautioned not to let FC drop below minimum.


    OP's FC of 5 is not too high for CYA of 40, that is target level, FC/CYA Chart
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    I too am failing to see how a FC of 5ppm is a problem. I would hardly call that "TOO high". The shock FC level is still less harsh than most non-stabilized public pools.
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Thank you everyone for the replies. At the end of the day it may be a personal issue for me and how my skin tolerates chlorinated water. I am, however, a bit baffled about adding salt to my pool water. I have never read about this anywhere in TFP unless you had a SWG which I do not. I understand the basics of softened water as I live on a well and get to experience the beauty of it everyday with showers and such, especially in the winter! But I need to be careful about this for my pool chemistry so as to not negatively affect my pool heater.

    I may try reducing my FC level a bit to see if that helps. I'll just need to keep a watchful eye on it.

    Any other thoughts or suggestions??



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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Thanks for bringing your thread back on track. With respect to salt, there's a fair number of people here who add salt to make their water a bit easier on eyes, along with keeping their pH between 7.2 and 7.8. Salt is an option for any pool and will not have a noticeable effect on the rest of your water chemistry. Perhaps it's worth trying for your dry skin. Most people will not taste salt up to around 3,000 PPM and most non-salt chlorinated pools will have a level around 500 to 1500 PPM salt. For reliable salt level testing, the Taylor K-1766 test kit is the way to go, or good quality salt strips are not that bad for a rough idea.

    Your water chemistry is within TFP guidelines, so I was wondering if it might be worth testing the feeling of some harsher water, from a chlorine perspective, by swimming at a few well operated commercial pools. Active chlorine will likely be higher, and it might be a way to test yourself for chlorine sensitivity. Such a sensitivity is thought to be fairly rare, but nonetheless worth knowing more about. You could even take a water bottle with you and sample the water on your way out, have the test kit in the car, and get more information that might be useful.

    I think about this one a lot, because I've had a variety of skin issues most of my life. I make myself the tester on my own pool, and after any significant change I swim in it with my eyes open to be sure it's safe for my grandies. I haven't noticed any ill effects up to 24 PPM FC (at 70 PPM CYA), although in that case, I did sense the smell of CCs on my skin from FC combining with my sweat and other things on my skin, and showered after that test.

    I personally haven't needed to do this, but I think a skin moisturizer would help, before or after swimming.

    With respect to eyes, I was personally very successful after discovering not to rub my eyes, from the article linked below. This was almost life-changing for me, due to a condition I manage in my eyelids. To stop rubbing, I had to keep my glasses by the pool and put them on right away when I came up, to stop myself from rubbing and learn to blink instead. It's a habit for me now, and what I thought was irritation from shampoo in the shower turned out to be eye-rubbing as well. Swimming Teaching: Bloodshot Eyes After Swimming or Sore Eyes From Swimming?

    Just a few ideas to help you in your quest. If it were me, I would also think about what else might have been different before switching to TFP, but that gets pretty tough to do!! Good luck with it.
    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

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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Just to add and let you know I have added salt to a non salt water pool/spa.. I have psoriasis and my skin is very dry, salt helped immensely, I took it to 2000 ppm and it made my skin less itchy... I have since changed over my spa to a salt water generator and my pool has been SWG since day 1..

    It worked for me and my family
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Thanks for the input. I've never looked into adding salt to my pool so I will need to do some reading to get more comfortable with the option.

    I don't get itchy skin, just very dry. Mostly on my legs. They almost turn a slight white. I'm pretty tan so it is very noticeable. I took my 3 year old swimming last night and I even noticed it on her. We even took showers after but it didn't help.

    I would have switched to a SWG but with my pool size the cost of the unit was pretty steep and not something I could afford right now. I really love how clear and sparkly the water is. Just wish I didn't feel that tight skin after 30 minutes.



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    Re: Dry skin problem

    I appreciate this thread, immensely. My son has Hidradenitis and the chlorine helps. I bet salt would help even more. I'm going to try it!
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Glad to hear you're considering salt.

    TFP guidelines allow a very wide range of water chemistry. How were you running your pool before TFP when you didn't notice dry skin? Maybe we can explore the differences which could point to a way to find safe levels closer to what you used to do.
    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

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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Johnny, some people find that vitamin c cream used before and after swimming help skin that reacts to chlorine -- the vit c neutralizes the chlorine. Its avail cheap in drug stores, etc. Give that a try too.
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    Re: Dry skin problem

    Something else you may consider and I don't know if this is an issue for you but if you use sunblock maybe try a different brand. If you use sunscreen it reacts once applied to your body and the water it is in. Each brand will act uniquely to the person it is applied to. A different brand may react differently to your body chemistry and water chemistry. Just that act alone may provide some relief.

    If by chance you would have chlorine sensitivity simply spraying off or showering after you exit the pool and getting out of your wet clothes may provide relief. I know too there are products for people who are sensitive, on the market. I found out about them when someone I know had one of their kids on the swim team and they used a product after they exited to pool. I don't have any personal experience with it and unfortunately don't even know the name of the product, but if you looked into competitive swimming I would think it would pop up for you.



    Sidenote: We too here are also big on the eye rubbing. Started for me as a child with my Grandmother, she was always on us about not rubbing our eyes. And it just kind of stuck with me. I have preached/ promoted that with my kiddos as well.

    I do hope you are able to figure out what you have going on and find resolve.
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