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Thread: Saltwater Pool Newbie - first winter closing questions

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Saltwater Pool Newbie - first winter closing questions

    Hello and thanks ahead of time for any help/suggestions.
    First, thanks for a great site. I have read the pool school a few times, but still need to ask a couple questions.

    This is our first winter closing of our 24'X48" round above ground salt water pool. We converted from Bacquacil back in June by draining and starting fresh. We use an Intex SWG. Works fine so far. The water is crystal clear and feels great. Salt, chlorine and CYA levels are perfect. Calcium is still on the high side but I'll work on that next year. No algae since start up.

    My question is, when I winterized our Bac pool, all I did was clean it, drain below the skimmer and return lines, bring the bac level up to normal, pour in some algaecide, put in my air pillow and put on the cover. Then I drain the filter and lines, store it, etc... In the spring it was ready to go. I haven't winterized a chlorine pool in 12 years, let alone a salt water pool. What do I do besides clean it, run the SWG until the chlorine is up to level, make sure the CYA is up to level, drain below the lines and cover? Do I need to add any algaecide? If so, any suggestions as to brand/type? Anything else I need to add or check?

    Again, thanks in advance for any suggestions.
    21k IG : Hayward Perflex EC65A DE Filter + 1.4 THP Northstar pump : Aquabot Turbo T2 : DelZone Eclipse-4 Ozonator : Floatron Ionizer : Some chlorine
    Pool cover an elephant can stand on. Painted concrete base or shell, with fiberglass upper side walls, and plastic/vinyl rim. Concrete deck.

  2. #2
    Senior Member dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Saltwater Pool Newbie - first winter closing questions

    welcome to TFP ...we have a very similar set-up. You can follow the above ground pool closing instructions in pool school. Algaecide isn't really needed, but if you decide to use it you can add polyquat60 after you bring your water up to shock level. Also covered in the article. I would bring your FC up to shock level via liquid chlorine. Although the Intex SWG may be able to get you there in a few days running 12hr cycles for that long will just promote wearing out the cell.

    Also I wouldn;t worry about your CYA since the pool will be covered. CYA has a tendency to disappear in the offseason. Adjust CYA when you open next season. Good luck
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

  3. #3
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    Re: Saltwater Pool Newbie - first winter closing questions

    Make sure your PH/TA is in range because high CH is managed by keeping the PH below 7.6 to prevent scale build up.

    You should shock the pool before you close, find your shock level on the CYA chart. If you elect to use Polyquat 60, add it a full day before shocking, as it will consume some of the chlorine. Then the next day shock.

    Always a good idea to use liquid chlorine or bleach to raise the FC up to shock level - using the cell will shorten the useful life of the cell.
    Helpful links: Pool School; The Pool Calculator; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    NO LONGER FRUSTRATED thanks to TFP.com
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

  4. #4
    Senior Member dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Saltwater Pool Newbie - first winter closing questions

    Hey FPM...I know I still have a lot to learn, but I believe Pool School teaches us to shock first and add polyquat last, right before draining below skimmer level. The shock process would kill off any potential algae/bacteria. After that the Poly is added as a preventative. I know Richard (Chemgeek) may know for sure, but I believe shocking after adding the poly would just increase chlorine demand and breakdown the poly...I hope that make sense?

    I thought I read that in Jason's in-groung pool closing instructions as well
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

  5. #5
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    Re: Saltwater Pool Newbie - first winter closing questions

    I agree, it does break it down, I've read that too.... it is confusing, sorry.

    My first BBB winterization in 2007 I couldn't find it readily at stores here, so I closed up without it - opened in May with a FC residual aroud 2-3.... then I decided to buy it the second winter, and guess what, forgot to add it. Opened in April with a FC of 4.5 I still have that bottle - anyone know the shelflife?

    I read the info in another post to add the PQ first, then raise the FC back up. Probably doesn't have to be shock level tho....

    IMHO in certain areas of the country, the PQ isn't necessary if we're talking Midwest type weather - provided you wait till the water is cool (October) to close and you open early enough in the spring before the water reaches 60 (April-early May). I know alot of people close in September cause they don't want the elec bill for the pump but I don't like to do that and risk green water. So I wait to close. The chlorine demand and pump run time are less than in summer months so it's no biggie. I don't drain below the skimmer either - I have an Aqua Door.

    If you are in any area where the water doesn't freeze, or get as cold as it does here in Chi-town, the PQ might be more useful. Perhaps in some areas you don't need a solid winter cover you can just tend the pool during the winter (use a mesh leaf cover) use a leaf net to scoop out the crud and add the occasional PQ and chlorine....stir with a big spoon :P
    Helpful links: Pool School; The Pool Calculator; CYA/Chlorine Chart
    24' round AG pool, 52" high, Raypak heater; Waterway 2 spd Pump;
    150 Sq ft. Clearwater Cartridge Filter; Former and DISSATISFIED "Pool Frog" owner
    NO LONGER FRUSTRATED thanks to TFP.com
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

  6. #6
    Senior Member dmanb2b's Avatar
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    Re: Saltwater Pool Newbie - first winter closing questions

    yup...I hear you. Given poly is optional and I am in the northeast, I plan to skip the polyquat as well. Even if I open up to some algae in the spring, it's nothing a few bottles of $2.54 walmart bleach bottles can't solve.
    24'x52" AGP (13,500 Gallons), Intex SWG, (2)Solar Bear 4x20 panels, Hayward S220T Filter, 1/2hp Pentair Superflo

    Pool School, TFTestKits, Pool Calculator

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