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Thread: Bees and Borates

  1. Back To Top    #1
    W-Otter Woman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Seattle, WA

    Bees and Borates


    This W-Otter Woman is all new, to pool.

    We set up over July 4th , 2016 weekend and the w-otter life has been wonderful. Iíve been using the flippin frogger, which was super-fast and easy and got me in the water a.s.a.p. As the frogger depletes, I will switch to TFP method.
    Iíve added salt and baking soda.

    • FC = 1.5
    • TC = 1.5
    • Salt is around 1600
    • TA is now at 90
    • Ph has risen and is probably 7.8
    • Temp around 72

    Bees have found my pool and now we fight for pool time. Itís a bit scary in the water, when theyíre at all four corners. My thought is to add Borate (borax and M. acid), in hopes that the buggers will find the water distasteful. I donít have the test strips for this.

    I am hesitant to start all of the additions. I should probably get the bleach in the pool, before FC drops any further.

    Is adding bleach OK, even though I donít have CYA?
    Is the order/timing of additions critical?
    Here is what Iím thinkingÖ

    • Bleach
    • M. Acid (to get Ph down) I believe I need to add this, and let the acid circulate and retest? Wait overnight? Y/N?
    • Add Borax & M. Acid Ė amounts prescribed in Pool Math - I do not have test strips

    If my level of borate isnít perfect, but the bees stay away, Iím happy. Would low levels of borate do more harm than good?

    Thank you for any guidance.

    Annette has - Intex Prism AGP 2016 - Seattle
    8' x 16' x 35" deep
    2900 gallons - about 72 degrees
    1,000 GPH cartridge filter pump
    TF-100 test kit

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Mod Squad
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    DFW, TX

    Re: Bees and Borates

    Welcome to TFP!

    Yes to chlorine all the time. Keep it above minimum for your CYA at all times to keep the pool sanitary and algae free, FC/CYA Chart
    It is important to maintain PH between 7.2 and 7.8 at all times

    I have borates, 20-30 ppm right now, and wasps, bees and dragon flies stop by our pool for drinks all the time. This is the first year for bees. We usually have 2-5 bees getting a drink by the waterfall, same spot every time. Occasionally they get washed into the water and I have to rescue them. I don't know where their hive is, we live in the woods. They can't take off from the water. Wasps have no issues taking off from the water, they land on the water in random spots and then take off again. Pretty cool.
    TFP Moderator
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    2012 build and pics, 20k gal gunite, black onyx pebblesheen, OK flagstone, IntellifoVS, cart filter w/Pleatco, IC40 SWG, Solartouch, 5 12'x4' solar panels, HP50HA heat pump, 8mil solar cover, borates, TF-100 test kit, SONOS, Doheny's Discovery Robot, hot tub on bleach

  3. Back To Top    #3
    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Tucson, AZ

    Re: Bees and Borates

    What test kit are you using? If you wish to continue to have a nice pool, you need to get a proper test kit. The Flippin' Frog almost certainly has added some CYA to your water as it contains tricolor as the primary sanitizer. As best I can tell the minerals in it are silver ions (from silver chloride) which probably aren't doing much at all for your water. So, without knowing exactly what your CYA level is, there's no way to know what level of FC you need. Your water could be improperly sanitized at this point.

    Until you get your water chemistry sorted out, I would not bother with borates. I have had 50ppm borates in my pool for a long time and, as far as I can tell, it has had no impact on bees visiting my pool.
    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, EasyTouch controls, city water, K-1001, K-2006 and K-1766 test kits, Mannitol test for borates

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    May 2012
    Montville NJ

    Re: Bees and Borates

    As others have said.

    1) Get chlorine in the pool
    2) Test your CYA, and adjust if nexssary
    3) Get your chlorine level appropriate to your CYA level

    Now, you can begin to think about borates. I have been adding borates slowly over the last two seasons. Rather than dump all the borax in, and then adjust the pH with acid, I just add borax every so often. My pH drifts downwards every so often (acid rain ? - who knows) and I add borax to bring it back up. I have about 30 ppm of borates in my water right now. Never had any problems with having them at any sort of low level. I fish bees (not wasps or yellow jackets - bees) out of the pool every so often. Borates do not seem to deter them.

    27' Round ABG (17,000 gal) - +/- 11 hours of full sun per day
    Hard plumbed Hayward Perflex EC-40 DE filter w/ 1 HP pump (Got a new one June 2015)
    Filered 4 hours per day (on a timer)
    Pentair Aqualuminator - now working - and now dead once again, this time for good.
    Zodiac Wahoo

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