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Thread: Just getting started and need help.

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    Just getting started and need help.

    I see the main differences between these, but are any of them easier to maintain than others. The ecosmart says you need no chemicals and the salt water seems to be easier to maintain than chlorine. So chlorine seems to be the hardest. Can anyone give real feedback on any of these systems. Also how much would it be to covnert from chlorine to saltwater or to the ecosystem one?

    Thanks.

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    Ecosmart is not safe. Period. Do a little searching here and you will find that you do NOT want this.

    Salt pools ARE chlorine pools. No conversion necessary. You just don't have to add the chlorine because the SWG makes it out of the saltwater, which makes it easiest. Not necessarily the least expensive, tho, when you factor in the cost of the SWG and then replacing the cell when it wears out.

    8200 gallon 20' x 48" round vinyl frame pool, manually chlorinated with 10% liquid, salt added to ~2000, 12" sand filter, 1600gph pump, TF100 test kit
    Handy Links: PoolMath, TF-100 Test Kit, Pool School, Chlorine/CYA Chart
    "Shock" is a process, not a product!

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mermaid Queen
    Ecosmart is not safe. Period. Do a little searching here and you will find that you do NOT want this.

    Salt pools ARE chlorine pools. No conversion necessary. You just don't have to add the chlorine because the SWG makes it out of the saltwater, which makes it easiest. Not necessarily the least expensive, tho, when you factor in the cost of the SWG and then replacing the cell when it wears out.
    From what I have been reading the saltwater is expensive to switch over to in the beginning, but if you use it a lot then it is a better option. Do you still have to use all the same chemicals in a saltwater pool as you do a chlorine pool. Obviously you do not have to add the chlorine tablets, but what about other chemicals?

    Thanks.

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    As TMQ said, a salt pool and a manually chlorinated pool are identical except for the salt and they each use a different source for their chlorine.

    That said, you "use" virtually no other chemicals on a constant basis in either pool. What chemicals were you thinking you had to use?

    Again, as TMQ said, nix the eco-smarte.....it's not smart
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh
    As TMQ said, a salt pool and a manually chlorinated pool are identical except for the salt and they each use a different source for their chlorine.

    That said, you "use" virtually no other chemicals on a constant basis in either pool. What chemicals were you thinking you had to use?

    Again, as TMQ said, nix the eco-smarte.....it's not smart
    I guess I am referring to when you are trying to get your pool balanced from not caring for it. Such as acid, conditioner, etc. I am a new pool user so this is all new to me.

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    I understand. Yes, there are several things you may need for a neglected pool but once a pool is balanced, it tends to stay that way.

    Read more about BBB in Pool School.....you can use a lot of grocery store ingredients rather than more expensive pool store additives. Again, regardless of whether you have an SWG or not,
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    So basically with a salt pool the only difference is that you use salt instead of chlorine tablets. From what I have read it is an expensive initial, but will pay for itself if you use it a lot or in a couple of years.

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by laurandavid09
    So basically with a salt pool the only difference is that you use salt instead of chlorine tablets. From what I have read it is an expensive initial, but will pay for itself if you use it a lot or in a couple of years.
    Well, the expense is primarily the SWG and controller (if needed). The salt, though not free, is very inexpensive. You typically want a somewhat higher level of conditioner in a salt water pool (50-80 ppm is recommended instead of 30-50 ppm.) The annual use (and cost) of liquid chlorine is drastically reduced; but you may use a bit more muriatic acid to keep pH down. I guess it could pay for itself (if by using a SWG you are better able to maintain chlorine in the water and avert several chlorine-consuming algae outbreaks) and buy a cheaper unit initially. But for most people, it's the great convenience of not having to add chlorine at regular intervals, the automation providing the insurance over an extended weekend or vacation that could only be achieved in a manually dosed pool by a near-shock level application of liquid chlorine.

    Chlorine tablets provide a convenience as well, but if used extensively can add vast quantities of unwanted additional chemicals to your pool (usually calcium or cyanuric acid.)
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    I had someone come out tonight and show me how to use all my equipment. He was saying my polaris was not working well due to some bearings in the wheels that are messed up. He said if I take it to leslies pool supply they will repair it for free, but you pay for parts for it. So he said I just need to get the stablizer stable and then once that is done will use shock and acid until I can see clearly to the bottom. Once that is done then clean the filter and should be good to go.

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by laurandavid09
    <snip> So he said I just need to get the stablizer stable and then once that is done will use shock and acid until I can see clearly to the bottom. Once that is done then clean the filter and should be good to go<snip>.
    I respectfully disagree. Adding chemicals blindly to your water will end up causing much more problems than it will solve. We here at TFP advocate learning how to properly test your water and then use the results of the testing to determine what chemicals need to be added to balance your water; as a bonus, most of the chemicals needed can be found at your local store.

    So, the first decision you need to make is do you want to take control of your pool, or do you want someone else to maintain it for you? If it's the first option, then the first thing you need to do is get your water tested at a local pool store, and post the results here so we can help you determine what you need to add to your water. Don't buy anything the pool store wants to sell you, just tell them you'll come back later. Also, tell us what your water looks like - is it green, cloudy, green+cloudy, etc. Second thing is to start reading the articles in Pool School about the ABC's of pool maintenance, etc. Read them once, read them twice, and ask any and all questions you have. Eventually you'll want a good test kit so you don't have to rely on the pool store, but this should get you started. Trust me, it always seems intimidating when you first start, but you'll be surprised how easy it is to maintain your water once you get it balanced and learn how to keep it balanced. If you choose the second option, then I wish you the best of luck with your pool. We'll be happy to answer any questions you might have, but I would suspect that our advice will conflict with what your pool maintenance person advises, as shown above.
    24' x 52" AGP - approx 13,500 gallons
    Pentair Optiflo 1 hp/2sp pump w/ Swimpro Voyager 150 sq ft cartridge filter
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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeInTN
    Quote Originally Posted by laurandavid09
    <snip> So he said I just need to get the stablizer stable and then once that is done will use shock and acid until I can see clearly to the bottom. Once that is done then clean the filter and should be good to go<snip>.
    I respectfully disagree. Adding chemicals blindly to your water will end up causing much more problems than it will solve. We here at TFP advocate learning how to properly test your water and then use the results of the testing to determine what chemicals need to be added to balance your water; as a bonus, most of the chemicals needed can be found at your local store.

    So, the first decision you need to make is do you want to take control of your pool, or do you want someone else to maintain it for you? If it's the first option, then the first thing you need to do is get your water tested at a local pool store, and post the results here so we can help you determine what you need to add to your water. Don't buy anything the pool store wants to sell you, just tell them you'll come back later. Also, tell us what your water looks like - is it green, cloudy, green+cloudy, etc. Second thing is to start reading the articles in Pool School about the ABC's of pool maintenance, etc. Read them once, read them twice, and ask any and all questions you have. Eventually you'll want a good test kit so you don't have to rely on the pool store, but this should get you started. Trust me, it always seems intimidating when you first start, but you'll be surprised how easy it is to maintain your water once you get it balanced and learn how to keep it balanced. If you choose the second option, then I wish you the best of luck with your pool. We'll be happy to answer any questions you might have, but I would suspect that our advice will conflict with what your pool maintenance person advises, as shown above.

    I want to be able to do it myself. Right now the pool is green, but you can still see to the bottom in the shallow end. When I go get my water tested, they never tell me my results just what I need to buy. How can I get them to tell me the results or should I trust what they say? Getting this pool together seems like a lot of work and I keep hearing conflicting information all over the place. I have read the pool school part of the site and none of it really make sense. I just really want to get the pool back to where it was prior.

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    If the pool store is not giving you the results, only selling you chems "you need" then I'd go elsewhere if you any other pool stores nearby. Ideally you should order a TF100 today. You would receive it by like Tuesday or Wednesday, and then you wouldn't have to rely on anyone else.

    If ordering your own kit right now is not an option, go into the pool store and have them test, and tell them "my uncle is retired from the pool care business and he's going to help me clear it up, but he wants to see the test results, so I can I please have the print out" or have them write the results on a piece of paper. A little white lie like that won't hurt them and it will help you because then you can post the results here and we'll hold your hand thru the process and tell you exactly what to do to clear the water, and we will save you money in the process.

    once that is done will use shock and acid until I can see clearly to the bottom
    Acid won't clear up green water.
    Helpful links: Pool School; 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
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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    I'm not trying to "pile on" but I want to emphasize what has essentially already been said.

    1. You will get no better advice than what you receive on this forum.....it's the premier pool site on the net.

    2. That said, The advice here is all about learning and understanding what goes on in your pool. It follows that if after reading the Pool School,
    none of it really make sense
    , then what is taught here may not be your best path.

    3. Do not look for any "magic bullets" to clear your pool. You must be willing to learn the root causes of your green pool and you can keep it from ever happening again.

    4. Do your own testing. You will likely never go to the pool store again.

    5. Acid is not the answer to your algae issues, nor is stabilizer........proper use of chlorine is
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Ok just ordered the TF100

    Topics Merged by Moderator for consistency

    So just placed an order for the TF100 kit. I belive what I have at home is the test kit from walmart (hth) and a strip test kit. Can I use those and post my results and see if I can get some help? I am so upset because I just drained my pool to get it at a reasonable level since it was full and then a huge rainstorm filled it back up.

    Before I take any test should I drain the pool and get it back to a reasonable level or will that not matter. The only reason I say this, is that we are supposed to get another huge rainstorm again and it will more than likely fill it up again.

    Thanks.

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    Re: Ok just ordered the TF100

    Yeah, rain is like that... Go ahead and post your question along with the results from whatever kit you have on hand. Draining will have no effect on the results, the next rainstorm might though.
    --paulr
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    Re: Ok just ordered the TF100

    Also after all these test and I get it back where it should be, do I need to take apart the DE filter and clean it that way or can I just backwash it. I was told that I should be between 10-20 psi. If it gets above 20 around 25 it needs to be cleaned. So can I backwash it or do I need to take apart. I also heard taking it apart can be difficult the first time, but you get better as you do it more and more.

    Thanks.

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    Re: Ok just ordered the TF100

    Quote Originally Posted by laurandavid09
    Also after all these test and I get it back where it should be, do I need to take apart the DE filter and clean it that way or can I just backwash it. I was told that I should be between 10-20 psi. If it gets above 20 around 25 it needs to be cleaned. So can I backwash it or do I need to take apart. I also heard taking it apart can be difficult the first time, but you get better as you do it more and more.

    Thanks.
    Do you know when the last time the DE filter was taken apart and cleaned?
    Helpful links: Pool School; 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
    http://www.PerfectlyClearPoolService.com

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    Re: Ok just ordered the TF100

    Quote Originally Posted by frustratedpoolmom

    Do you know when the last time the DE filter was taken apart and cleaned?
    That I do not know. The guy that came out and showed me how to use all my equipment, said do the pressure it has been steady at, more than likely it has been cleaned recently. It has been steady at 15 psi for a few weeks or so. Also when I clean it, since it is a DE filter, I should add DE to the simmer basket correct. I do this when I backwash or when I take it apart to clean correct.

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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    I do not own a DE filter but there is a good article in Pool School, Maintenance and Cleaning of Pool Filters, that will certainly help you get the basics.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    Re: Ecosmarte Systems vs Saltwater vs Chlorine

    Just an update, Tuesday morning I added 4 lbs of schock to the pool. That has made a definte improvement to my pool. I can see the bottom in the shallow end, but not the deep end. I also picked up a chlorinator to put in the pool, instead of putting the tablets in the skimmer basket. So not sure which one helped, but a improvement. Hopefully I am well on my way to restoring my pool.

    Also another question, is it imperative to close your pool. As we know here in Texas, sometimes you could be swimming in december sometimes. So do you have to close or not?

    Thanks.

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