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Thread: Phosphate Remover

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    Phosphate Remover

    The directions for most Phosphate removers say to wash/flush filters 2 days after application of the solution. If the filters are not cleaned for a week after application, is it possible for the phosphates to be reintroduced back to the into the pool? This question relates to a pool that is only visited on weekends.

    Thanks.
    Boyd
    57,000 gal IGP / Intelliflo Circ Pump / 540 sqft Cartridge Filter / IPS Chlorine & ph Control / Two (2) Hayward HP21404T Heat Pumps / Coverstar Autocover

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    Welcome to TFP!!!

    There is almost ZERO reason to be concerned about phosphates. We typically ignore them as they are irrelevant if you are maintaining adequate FC levels. As such, TFP does not generally recommend wasting the money on them and so hardly anyone here will have any experience with using that product.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    Other than being ripped off by local pool store it'll just clog you filter. If you can return it please do. You'll be saving you self time from cleaning the stuff out over a few day period. (Nothing talks like experience). All you'll ever need is chlorine for algae.

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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    I'm going to have to disagree with the other replies on this one. If the pool is only visited on weekends, it will be difficult to maintain a proper chlorine level throughout the week. So using a phosphate remover can help reduce the severity of the inevitable algae outbreak. So this is a rare instance where a phosphate remover might actually be worth the money.

    As for the original poster's question: Phosphate removers aren't oxidized by chlorine, so there should be no risk of the phosphates being released back into the pool. I'd be more worried about the filter getting clogged while you're away, as Pete23 warned above. You may want to backwash right before you leave to reduce the chance of the filter pressure rising too high before you return. Or maybe get one of the neighbors to stop by mid-week to backwash. (I'm assuming it's a sand filter.)
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    While what Tom says is true given the weekly visti, I think poly 60 algaecide would be better insurance than phosphate removers.
    Or better yet, automate your chlorine additions with a peristaltic pump or SWG.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    Maybe a pool cover would be good for your situation. Less debris in the pool and less sunlight to nurish algea.

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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    Quote Originally Posted by TomBorg View Post
    I'm going to have to disagree with the other replies on this one. If the pool is only visited on weekends, it will be difficult to maintain a proper chlorine level throughout the week. So using a phosphate remover can help reduce the severity of the inevitable algae outbreak. So this is a rare instance where a phosphate remover might actually be worth the money.

    As for the original poster's question: Phosphate removers aren't oxidized by chlorine, so there should be no risk of the phosphates being released back into the pool. I'd be more worried about the filter getting clogged while you're away, as Pete23 warned above. You may want to backwash right before you leave to reduce the chance of the filter pressure rising too high before you return. Or maybe get one of the neighbors to stop by mid-week to backwash. (I'm assuming it's a sand filter.)

    TomBorg,

    Thanks a bunch for the information - your answer was exactly what I was looking for. Our weekend pool is located in the heart of orchard country and this year's windy conditions has given a huge dose of phosphates which were aimed that the fruit trees but instead hit a bunch of area pools. I do clean the filters prior to any new applications and pay attention to the pressure variations.

    As for the suggestions for choline automation and pool covers, please note the information in my signature.
    Boyd
    57,000 gal IGP / Intelliflo Circ Pump / 540 sqft Cartridge Filter / IPS Chlorine & ph Control / Two (2) Hayward HP21404T Heat Pumps / Coverstar Autocover

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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    If you have chlorine control, and maintain the correct FC level (as a function of your CYA level), then the phosphate level is irrelevant.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    this thread brings up something I've never thought to ask before, since it is ultimately of no concern. But how to phosphates get in your pool in the first place?

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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    ^lots of ways, but most notably, metal sequestrants when they break down into orthophosphates, municipal water that uses diphosphonic metal sequestrants, fertilizer drift in AG areas, organic matter decay, and soil primarily.
    Phosphate removers remove orthophosphates, but not organic phoshhates. Algae can feed on either, but more slowly on organic.

    Boyd...if youre using Orenda or Seakleer brands, which are lanatham chloride, my understanding is that the lanatham combines/bonds with the phosphate fairly strongly.

    How high is your reading? Just so you know, if you use a commercial-strength dose, it may act like floc and in this case you can let it settle and slowly vac to waste before leaving for the weekend. This will in theory reduce the likelihood of extreme pressure rise on your filter because you will have less circulating.
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    The point of the 48 hour wait period for phosphate removers has nothing to do with filter pressure. It's purpose is to optimize the removal of phosphates.

    Upon dissolving in water, lanthanum chloride will react with the carbonate alkalinity in your water and form lanthanum carbonate which is an insoluble compound. This reaction occurs more quickly than the formation of lanthanum phosphate because the carbonate concentrations is, in some circumstances, 100X larger than the phosphate concentration. However, lanthanum carbonate is not stable in the presence of phosphates and it will convert (slowly) to lanthanum phosphate. This reaction happens slowly in your filter and takes time.

    So, in order to optimize the removal of phosphates, you must add the remover and wait 48 hours. After that time, most of the inorganic phosphates will be removed and you can safely flush/clean your filter. It is always best to add PR when you have time to clean your filter properly as the built up lanthanum phosphate can irreversibly clog up cartridge and DE filters.
    Matt
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    The point of the 48 hour wait period for phosphate removers has nothing to do with filter pressure. It's purpose is to optimize the removal of phosphates.

    Upon dissolving in water, lanthanum chloride will react with the carbonate alkalinity in your water and form lanthanum carbonate which is an insoluble compound. This reaction occurs more quickly than the formation of lanthanum phosphate because the carbonate concentrations is, in some circumstances, 100X larger than the phosphate concentration. However, lanthanum carbonate is not stable in the presence of phosphates and it will convert (slowly) to lanthanum phosphate. This reaction happens slowly in your filter and takes time.

    So, in order to optimize the removal of phosphates, you must add the remover and wait 48 hours. After that time, most of the inorganic phosphates will be removed and you can safely flush/clean your filter. It is always best to add PR when you have time to clean your filter properly as the built up lanthanum phosphate can irreversibly clog up cartridge and DE filters.
    What about sand filters? Can they get clogged too? Ironically my neighbor's pool is cloudy today. The pool store sold him some phosphate remover.

    17,500 gallon IG Vinyl
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Phosphate Remover

    Quote Originally Posted by camueller View Post
    What about sand filters? Can they get clogged too? Ironically my neighbor's pool is cloudy today. The pool store sold him some phosphate remover.
    Typically no. Sand filters do not work well at removing fine particulates. The clearing time will take A LOT longer. When you use a PR with a sand filter (assuming it's a commercial strength product like Orenda or SeaKlear), you want to also add a polymeric clarifier or use DE in the filter. This will help clear the water faster.

    In my pool with a DE filter, my initial pressure rise was 3psi and my pool water was completely clear within 8 hours after dosing with a phosphate remover. Some with sand filters and clarifiers have reported needing 24hours. I suppose it depends a lot on flow rates and turn over.
    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: Phosphate Remover

    Thanks to all for the information.

    To answer your questions:

    I can only say that I have treated the pool with enough Hasa Phos Out to theoretically remove 6000ppb. At this point I still am at the top of my testing capability, +1500 ppb. Hence my question about allowing the product to remain on the filter from Sunday to Friday evening. I was just wondering if I was treading water. It sounds like no, the product must be removing something because the filters are sure a mess, but not that tough to clean.

    I get the comments about ignoring phosphates and for the last three we have ignored them. this year is proving to be a bit tougher to get settled down.

    Thanks again for the feedback.
    Boyd
    57,000 gal IGP / Intelliflo Circ Pump / 540 sqft Cartridge Filter / IPS Chlorine & ph Control / Two (2) Hayward HP21404T Heat Pumps / Coverstar Autocover

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