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Thread: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

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    Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    Hello all this is my first post. I have spent the better part of my day researching or attempting to research the above mentioned topic. I noticed an in depth discussion as to why UV is useless but that took place back in 2011 and figured we may have some new opinions or supported facts?

    Why am I concerned about this? Being in a chlorine pool makes me feel sick after a while (not just irritating but literally makes me feel like i'm catching a cold and cough after spending a good amount of time in a pool and there have been studies linking chlorine to respiratory problems). Being in warm beach water makes me feel great. Not sure if anyone has experienced this but swimming in a pool when your under the weather makes me feel worse but swimming in beach water makes me feel better. Beach water has something of a healing effect and pools usually the opposite.

    I'd love to jump into a pool and know I am swimming with the minimal amount of chemicals possible. Spectralignt claims to reduce chlorine use by up to 90% which made me almost buy it on the spot. I'm not so interested in the debate against UV as I am in simply understanding how to get chemicals down as much as possible for a more natural swimming environment, short of moving to the carribean

    I am considering purchasing a 21'x43' 54" oval AG from the pool factory and would really like to know what I'm doing in regard to above before I purchase it. Thanks!!!!

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    Welcome to TFP!

    A pool maintained TFPC style with a proper FC/CYA relationship will not bother you. It is poorly manage pools that give chlorine a bad name. I promise you that you could swim in my pool with FC at 10ppm and you would think there is no chlorine in the pool. If you were closer I would let you give it a try. My pool with FC at 28ppm and CYA at 70 ppm has less harsh chlorine effects than a pool with 1 ppm FC and no CYA in it. People tell me endlessly how great my pool water is, their kids swim all day with eyes open and no irritation. We swim daily. It is CC, combined chlorine, that irritates your nasal and sinus cavities, NOT chlorine. A properly chlorinate pool does not have this problem.

    We had some algae last summer and raised the FC up to shock level of 28 ppm for our CYA of 70 ppm and swam every day and nobody noticed the high FC. FC/CYA Chart

    Seriously, give it a try and if you aren't happy then give something else a try.

    Start here in Pool School, ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry

    I do agree that hot water feels great. And the Caribbean is even better!
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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    Great testimonial and I heartily agree. I wish you could swim in my pool too as it would SO totally convert you to our methods! I have had friends from CA, WA, NM, FL, AZ, WI, MI, IN, IOWA, OH, TX, and down the block, swim in my pool and they are always amazed at how clear the water is and how good it feels. Buy a good testkit (Pool School - Test Kits Compared) and your new pool will be a jewel!

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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    First and foremost, I want to answer your question about minimizing chemicals. The TFPC system is entirely based on using the lowest possible amount of pool chemicals, including minimizing chlorine consumption.

    To have a pool, you need to sanitize to stop pathogens from transferring from person to person. It's like having a bath together, along with everything brought in by all the bugs, birds and critters that stop by. UV does kill pathogens, but only if they go through the circulation (pumping/filtration) system. Only a tiny part of the pool water goes through the circulation system within a given minute that a pathogen is introduced, which is why the UV seller is telling you that you need chlorine as well.

    With respect to your experience with average motel and residential pools which do not use Trouble Free Pool Care (TFPC), the problem is usually over-stabilization which pool stores call chlorine lock. Pool stores then use scare tactics to sell a whole lot of other complex chemicals. We use almost none of those expensive chemicals because they don't work. That average swimming pool is the kind that makes you sick (and me too, and most everyone here at TFP). When a pool is over-stabilized, chloramines (the part that smells bad) stay in the water longer, along with pathogens and algae. Our pools either have zero or almost non-detectable chloramines, which is why people find them so refreshingly clean and odor-free. A pool which is properly chlorinated normally has no detectable smell at all, and yet it does have enough chlorine to kill pathogens before there's much chance of them infecting another person.

    We use correct levels of stabilizer and chlorine in a system which has been well understood for over 40 years. Pool stores and the pool chemical industry generally do not promote our system because we use less chemicals. Our pools have less Active Chlorine (the harsh part of the chlorine system) than most perfectly operated government or university indoor pools.

    UV is not a new technology. There are 100s of decades-old applications where UV sterilization is helpful, including everything from barber shops to food processing to veterinary clinics. An outdoor residential pool receives a fair bit of UV already, direct from the sun. UV pool systems require chlorine as well, because the pool must be kept safe from person-to-person disease transfer. So why not use chlorine properly, and have a trouble free, safe and sparkly pool like we have?

    Rather than debate (I understand your concern) just use our search function (upper right) and find threads started by people coming here with problems arising from alternative sanitizer pools. You'll find 100s of them.

    You can put the UV system on and still use TFPC. The UV system won't hurt anything as long as you follow TFPC. We're passionately trying to save you from wasting your money on it, because it won't change a thing in terms of how you need to operate your pool to keep it safe and sparkly.
    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: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    I'm a very logical person and I have to say you guys have just told me exactly what I wanted to hear. My main concern is steering clear of the nasty smell and sick feeling we get from regular pools. Because this will be achieved with the system you guys use, I now completely understand why it is useless to waste money on UV. I will read up on the TFPC threads here so I can hopefully apply it to my new pool. Anything that I should be careful with or mindful of that I may miss in the ABC's section? ex. special filters? Total newb here

    I am considering purchasing a 21'x43' 54" oval AG from the pool factory and would really like to know what I'm doing in regard to above before I purchase it. Thanks!!!!

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    Mod Squad pooldv's Avatar
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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    Go for a two speed pump and run it on low for filtering. It will make your filter more efficient and save you 75% off your electric consumption. I would get a saltwater chlorine generator to make life better. I would not have a pool that doesn't have one. And the salt will make your pool feel better, because humans are also salty.

    Saltwater pool has @3500 ppm salt
    Tears have 9000 ppm salt
    Seawater has 35,000 ppm salt

    Also check
    Pool School - Getting Started
    Pool School - Recommended Pool Chemicals
    Pool School - Salt Water Chlorine Generators
    Pool School - Pool Filter Comparison

    And you will need a good test kit to test your own water and a Taylor outta the pool store. I use the TF-100 from TFTestkits.net. it is the best value, here's why, Pool School - Test Kits Compared
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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    If you truly want a "low chlorine" pool, a Saltwater Chlorine Generator is the way to go. If you consult the CYA/FC relationship chart, you will notice that you can run your FC levels just a notch lower with a SWG. The why of it seems to somewhat debatable, but it seems to work for most.
    15,000 gallon free form Viking fiberglass pool. Hayward Star-Clear Plus C12002 cartridge filter. Hayward Swim Pure Plus T-15 SWG. Testing with TF-100 Kit. 2 speed 1.5HP Supreme pump. Dolphin Nautilus robotic cleaner

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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    Everyone that swims in my pool comments how they prefer my saltwater pool to a "chlorine" pool because it doesn't smell like chlorine.

    I just smile and nod.
    25000 gallon free-form gunite
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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    Thanks guys. I will start a new thread asking what type of swg i should get with the pool i am buying

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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    No real need to start a new thread.
    Bob - Palm Beach by San Juan Pools. approx 5000 gals., Pentair 320 cartridge filter (all new guts installed by me), Goldline SWG, 'New to me' Kreepy Krauly Sand Shark, Intermec 104 Timer Test kit: TF-100 w/Speed Stir

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    Re: Chlorine/Chemical free or Low Chlorine/Chemical Possible??

    If you want to try it without spending too much money, this would be worth a look. I've used one for years now.



    Amazon.com : Intex 120V Krystal Clear Saltwater System CG-28669 with E.C.O. (Electrocatalytic Oxidation) for Above Ground Pools : Patio, Lawn Garden

    All you'd need is an adapter to plumb it into your non-Intex hoses.
    25000 gallon free-form gunite
    Jandy Stealth pump/CL340 cartridge filter
    Pentair IC40 SWG
    Pentair MasterTemp 250HD heater
    Jandy AquaLink RS automation

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