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Thread: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

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    Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Stopped at the pool store today to pickup more CYA stabilizer and thought I'd ask about liquid chlorine to see how much it is even though I've been using generic grocery store bleach so far to raise my FC. The pool store girl showed me a gallon of "Liquid Shock" which was labelled as 12.5% Sodium Hypochlorite and which cost $5. She then suggested that it would be more cost effective to get a 16 oz. bag of Turbo Shock for $5 since that had 78% chlorine in it:

    Amazon.com : Poolife TurboShock - 1 lb. : Swimming Pool Chlorine : Patio, Lawn Garden

    Side note: I think the chemical it actually contains is Calcium Hypochlorite which I'm assuming is different. Also, not totally sure she is right about that being more cost effective since it seems like a different chemical and I was buying 128 oz. of liquid vs. 16 oz. of powder, but what do I know. I majored in English.

    She also mentioned that I shouldn't use grocery store bleach in my pool water.

    Me: Why not?
    Girl: It has extra chemicals in it that can cloud your water.
    Me: Like what?
    Girl: I don't know. I just know that it does. This [the liquid chlorine] is made especially for pool water.
    Me: Um, okay.

    So, I got the liquid chlorine and now I'm wondering two things. First of all, pool store girl is off her rocker, right? Obviously, I'm not using lavender scented bleach so it's not actually gonna cloud my water. It's literally exactly the same chemical, correct? I mean, the liquid chlorine isn't made by magical pool fairies who sprinkle it with a special pool dust, right?

    Also, maybe someone who is better at math can tell me the answer - which is the cheaper option?

    121 oz of 8.25% sodium hypochlorite at $3 a bottle (labels says it yields 7.85% available chlorine if that matters)

    OR

    128 oz. of 12.5% sodium hypochlorite at $5 a bottle

    Keep in mind that choosing the second answer as the more cost-effective option means seeing pool store girl and getting her helpful advice yet again (of course, it also means I will be spared the horror of cloudy water from my grocery store bleach).
    Just bought first above-ground pool!
    24' x 54" round Matrix by Sharkline
    150 sq. ft. Pentair cartridge filter with 1 1/2 HP dual speed pump
    Looking into heaters now...
    Any help is appreciated!

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Yeah, the girl did not really know what she was talking about. The bleach and liquid chlorine are the same as you surmised.

    Comparing sources of chlorine you can use this tool: Liquid Chlorine Cost Calculator which is really just: Price / (% * bottle size)

    Your 8.25% is slightly cheaper.

    - - - Updated - - -

    As far as comparing the liquid chlorine and the 78% cal-hypo, using PoolMath:
    The Gallon of 12.5% would add 9.3ppm of FC and 15ppm of salt to your pool
    73% cal-hypo would add 6.4ppm of FC, 6.5ppm of salt and 4.5ppm of CH

    So the liquid gives you more FC and no CH which you did not want anyway.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Pool stores are best for pool toys and parts. Assuming you can't wait for Amazon to deliver.
    In ground, 14,000 gallon, white plaster, unheated, stone waterfall, DE Filter, Rainbow 320 Cl, Polaris 3900, FloVis flow meter, F100 test kit, Circupool RJ30+ SWG, Circupool VJ1/Speck Badu EcoM3V variable speed pump.

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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    The "splashless" formulations of household bleach contain a number of additives which would probably not be ideal for pool use but it's also much more expensive than plain vanilla bleach, so it's less appealing from the start. Otherwise, bleach is bleach.
    Geebot
    Chicago, IL
    30K gal, InGround Plaster Finish, 3.5'-9.5', Maytronics S300 Cleaner

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    I imagine the girl meant well, and really believed what she was telling you. Unfortunately, she is misinformed. Most likely by the forked tongue of a smooth talking chemical salesman.
    Divin Dave,
    IG Vinyl, 15' x 30', 3 1/2' - 6' deep, Oval, ~15K gal, Intelliclor IC40, Intelliflo VS pump, Clean and Clear 420 Filter, auto-fill-disabled, Retrofit LED Color Light, Dolphin Nautilus Robot, TF100 Test Kit, Taylor K1766 Salt Test Kit, Tftestkit Pressure Gauge.
    www.tftestkits.net Experience- it's what's learned just after you needed it most !!

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Quote Originally Posted by jblizzle View Post
    Yeah, the girl did not really know what she was talking about. The bleach and liquid chlorine are the same as you surmised.

    Comparing sources of chlorine you can use this tool: Liquid Chlorine Cost Calculator which is really just: Price / (% * bottle size)

    Your 8.25% is slightly cheaper.

    - - - Updated - - -

    As far as comparing the liquid chlorine and the 78% cal-hypo, using PoolMath:
    The Gallon of 12.5% would add 9.3ppm of FC and 15ppm of salt to your pool
    73% cal-hypo would add 6.4ppm of FC, 6.5ppm of salt and 4.5ppm of CH

    So the liquid gives you more FC and no CH which you did not want anyway.
    I agree with the FC analysis of liquid chlorine versus cal-hypo. But, if you factor in the weight and size of the container (or chemical), then the cal-hypo is certainly more potent and easier to store. As well, cal-hypo, when properly stored, can last for years whereas liquid chlorine degrades in weeks to months.

    So, if you live in an area of the country with short swim seasons and high annual rainfall totals (i.e., lots of fresh water exchange), then cal-hypo can be a much more cost effective option especially when it goes on sale at the end of the season.

    Just sayin' is all...


    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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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Fair points ... I was only considering the bang for the buck. Not the weight training from lugging and storage considerations.
    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!

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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Thanks, everyone for the helpful links for figuring out the math on these things (I definitely couldn't do it in my head on the spot as she talked). I'm guessing she meant well, too, and was told those things by her bosses to sell more chemicals. I worked in retail for many years so I'm sure I said many of the same things about the stuff I sold without realizing it!

    It is frustrating because I'm just starting out and know nothing about this pool stuff, so, if I hadn't discovered this forum I would have been inclined to believe whatever she said. I probably would have just bought whatever she recommended thinking she was the expert and she must know what she was talking about!

    This isn't the first time I've gotten questionable chemical advice at this pool store (I know I should stop going there, but it's literally five minutes from my house and they do have reasonable prices, so it's more convenient to research before I go and then only buy exactly what I need once there and just ignore their advice). I just thought her answer of "I don't know... but the bleach will just make your water cloudy somehow" was just kind of funny. Thanks all!
    Just bought first above-ground pool!
    24' x 54" round Matrix by Sharkline
    150 sq. ft. Pentair cartridge filter with 1 1/2 HP dual speed pump
    Looking into heaters now...
    Any help is appreciated!

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Welp, if you like this site and you get good results following our methods this season, please consider becoming a paid supporter of TFP It's a tax-deductible contribution that brings you some benefits (coupons at TFTestKits and Inyo Pools) and helps us keep the lights on for other "lost pool souls" to find us...


    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: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    I honestly witnessed 4-5 folks get "pool-stored" today while buying a new spider gasket.
    kind of want to interject on their advice but that's keeps folks employed there.
    30k in ground vinyl lined pool surrounded by decking in the woods.
    Hayward sand filter circa mid 80's
    If there is a way to do things less expensively and yield a superior product I am all ears

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Quote Originally Posted by basod View Post
    I honestly witnessed 4-5 folks get "pool-stored" today while buying a new spider gasket.
    kind of want to interject on their advice but that's keeps folks employed there.
    Wait outside and hand them a TFP business card.

    I once witnessed a couple being told that their green swamp had water that "went bad" and there was no way to fix it. They were told to drain their 20k gallon pool in the middle of the AZ summer which, technically should never be done due to heat induced plaster cracking so the guy basically told them their pool was done for the summer. I heard them say they couldn't even do it if they wanted to because they couldn't afford to stress their well that much and trucked water would be too expensive. They walked away from the counter dejected. I followed them outside the store and told them to look up TFP and that their water was not "bad" and could be fixed. They thanked me. I don't know if they ever came onto the site, but my hope is that they did.


    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: Adventures in Pool Store Chemical Shopping

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    Welp, if you like this site and you get good results following our methods this season, please consider becoming a paid supporter of TFP It's a tax-deductible contribution that brings you some benefits (coupons at TFTestKits and Inyo Pools) and helps us keep the lights on for other "lost pool souls" to find us...
    I will! Still trying to get the pool SLAMed properly and opened for business, but this site has been my lifeline so far!
    Just bought first above-ground pool!
    24' x 54" round Matrix by Sharkline
    150 sq. ft. Pentair cartridge filter with 1 1/2 HP dual speed pump
    Looking into heaters now...
    Any help is appreciated!

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