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Thread: Cheaper solution for D.E.

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    LittleTagAlong's Avatar
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    Cheaper solution for D.E.

    I love this forum. It has helped me immensely.
    I was doing research on D.E. because I want to add just a little to my sand filter. Well, I don't need or want a 25lb bag. I thought maybe the insecticide kind would work. No, the chemistry and process is different. The D.E. for the pool is heat treated to make it more crystallized or calcined. Lo and behold, at Napa Auto Parts, they have a product called "Floor Dry part #8822" that is exact chemical composition of D.E. Filter Product. It is only a little over $8 for 24 qts. Will update weight when I get back with it.
    AG, Intex 18' x48" Easy Set pool( =/- 5455 gal)
    Intex SF80110 sand filter & SWG ECO 7110, Hayward AquaCritter
    Well water, location is north Texas, usually up from late May to Oct.
    Taylor TF-100 test kit, TDS Digital Salinity meter and Taylor salt kit

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    I don't think this is pool grade DE. First off, pool grade DE is calcined and crystallized silica. It is an inhalation hazard and could never be used in the manner that this product (Floor Dry part #8822) states. Here's a link to an MSDS for the product -

    http://nova.saisd.net/storage/upload...Environ/sds699

    Here's two sections -

    INGREDIENT IDENTIFICATION
    Diatomaceous Earth, Calcined (kieselguhr)......... 100%
    Crystalline Silica (Cristobalite) .......................... <1%
    Crystalline Silica (Quartz) .............................. <1%
    But then, here in the "Chronic Exposure Section" it says (emphasis added)-

    This granular product can contain respirable dust, composed primarily of amorphous silica but possibly with a small fraction of crystalline silica. Amorphous silica is not classifiable as carcinogenic to humans. Crystalline silica, when inhaled as respirable dust, has been classified as carcinogenic to humans over prolonged and sustained exposure. Long-term inhalation of respirable crystalline silica may contribute to the respiratory disease “silicosis”, a non-cancerous lung disease. In a 1997 monograph (Volume 68, “Silica”), the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) concluded that overall the epidemiological findings support increased risk of lung cancer from inhaled crystalline silica resulting from occupational exposure (classified in Group 1), while there was inadequate evidence in humans for the carcinogenicity of amorphous silica (classified in Group 3).
    Pool grade DE is not amorphous silica, it is crystallized silica. This is why pool grade DE is an inhalation hazard. My best guess is that they are using the term "calcined" in the ingredient section to refer to process of thermally removing organic matter but it is not processed at a temperature high enough to cause crystallization of the silica. Either that, or they simply made a mistake in the MSDS and should have used the term "uncalcined" instead.

    I would caution against using this product and, if you've purchased some, return it. If you put anything but pool grade DE into your filter, you could be in for a clouded pool nightmare which will possibly require draining your pool or using flocs and clarifiers to restore clarity.

    On a different note, most pool stores around my parts sell pool grade DE in 10-lb bags. I realize that is still a lot of DE but I don't think it is money wasted if you use it; it does not go bad or expire. It's not that expensive to have on hand but it will be VERY EXPENSIVE to clear a pool that is clouded with DE.

    Your call, but I think it's a mistake.

    Matt
    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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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    Update -

    The term "kieselguhr" is German which literally translates as "gravel yeast". It refers to the as-mined product, NOT the heat treated product.

    This from the Wikipedia entry on Diatomaceous Earth -

    Diatomite produced for pool filters is treated with high heat (calcination) and a fluxing agent (soda ash), causing the formerly harmless amorphous silicon dioxide to assume its crystalline form
    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: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    I plan on bequeathing my DE to my son when I die... Maybe even my grandkids; I have plenty! It only cost me $20 bucks for the 25# box. I bet the pool store box is close in price.

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    Re: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    The big box I bought at Lowes ~8yrs ago for $30(IIRC) is still serving me 2 cups at a time for polishing after I neglect the pool and get an algae bloom.
    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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    LittleTagAlong's Avatar
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    Re: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    Thanks for the input! I was very lucky and irritated that Napa was closed when I got there. Had to go to Walmart�� and they had a 10 lb box. Put about 2/3 of a cup, mixed in water, in the skimmer. It kicked pressure up for about 20 minutes. Then I attached my AquaCritter and let them run all night. Looking better this morning.

    Last edited by LittleTagAlong; 07-25-2016 at 11:42 PM. Reason: added pic
    AG, Intex 18' x48" Easy Set pool( =/- 5455 gal)
    Intex SF80110 sand filter & SWG ECO 7110, Hayward AquaCritter
    Well water, location is north Texas, usually up from late May to Oct.
    Taylor TF-100 test kit, TDS Digital Salinity meter and Taylor salt kit

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    Re: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    I too have way more than I can ever use. I'd like it give it to a local TFP'er if I could.

    I was surprised that something apparently so dangerous is packaged so carelessly: a sloppy bag inside a loose box... If anyone from S.E. Mich to N Central OH wants to share some DE, let me know.
    12,000 gal Diamond Brite indoor​ pool. Pentair Triton TR-60 Sand Filter +added DE, Lochinvar Energyrite ERN-200 gas heater, Pentair Multi-valve, Pentair SuperFlo VS pump, TF-100 kit, Pool Math App - iOS

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    banditig's Avatar
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    Re: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    I wear a dust mask and mix with water in a bucket. Still get a funny taste on my lips even though I didnt breath it in.
    15x54 swim & play vinyl metal wall AG
    Hayward S210T sand filter 1.5 HP Pentair Superflo vs
    Rheem raypak 130,000 BTU mv ng
    Jacuzzi 345 whirlpool bath
    TF-100 test kit, HM digital com100 Wanda the Whale

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    Re: Cheaper solution for D.E.

    DE is really not as bad as the warnings state. There are OSHA permissible exposure limits(PEL) for inhalation exposure, you'd have to be around the dust for 8hrs a day everyday to meet a threshold of exposure.
    It's one of those things once in your lungs it is near impossible to get out - similar to silica dust, asbestos, cement dust.

    As a pool owner you may see a PEL excursion for ~1min while sprinkling in your skimmer (or mixing in a bucket) a few times a year. Just stay upwind of the dust and worry about dying from something else - like old age
    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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