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Thread: Is Poolrx for real

  1. #21

    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    All I can say (even though I had some issues with my pool lately, but it was my fault).....anyways all I can say is my pool guy recommened this stuff and I don't know about everyone on here, but my pool is so freakin easy to manage it's not even funny. I truly believe the Pool RX has changed the way I maintain my pool for the better. My pool guy swears by it and so do I.
    20,000 gallon free form plaster pool built in 2001. Pentair Intelliflo pump, Pentair Quad 80 DE Filter, Pentair 40k gallon salt chlorinator, Pentair Easy Touch 8 control panel, Fafco Solar water heater with 7 (4'x12') panels.

  2. #22
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    How is it any easier than what is described on this forum? You still have to add chlorine to your pool, but in addition you also have to pay for PoolRx and hope that it doesn't stain your pool surfaces. The copper ions in the product are an algaecide. You could add PolyQuat 60 weekly for the same effect without any risk of staining or, even easier and with no extra cost, just maintain the appropriate FC for your CYA level and have the chlorine that you have to add anyway prevent algae growth.
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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  3. #23
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    I have the Zodiac Duoclear system which uses a mineral cartridge to add 'minerals' (they are not more specific) in conjunction with a SWG. My pool was put in in 2007. Granted I had no problems with algae, or staining the first year. In subsequent years, I started getting brownish stains on my return eyeballs and both my pump and skimmer baskets. These stains disappeared when I rubbed vitamin C on them, but would invariably return. Last year (late in the season) I pulled out the mineral cartridge and did an ascorbic acid treatment to remove the stains (again)

    For the rest of that season and so far, for almost two months this year, the stains have not come back, and I have not had any problems with algae.

    One thing I find interesting is that Zodiac (Duoclear) states in their FAQ section:

    "Can Nature2 stain my pool?

    No. Nature2 minerals remain well below levels that might cause staining. In fact, Nature2 offers a "no-stain" guarantee."

    I wonder how the levels remain below that that would cause staining, if the unit is constantly introducing minerals. Wouldn't, as time passes, the levels in fact INCREASE more and more? In my case the staining got worse and returned quicker as the years went by, with last year (my fourth with the pool and Nature2) being the worst for the quickness of the stains returning.

    Anyway, this will be my first full season without a mineral cartridge. I can almost guarantee that I won't see the return of the stains.
    16x28 Roman, 55000 litres, salt water, Zodiac Duoclear 130 (mineral cartridge removed!!!), inground, vinyl liner
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  4. #24
    Senior Member solarboy's Avatar
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    I've only been coming here a year or so but I can't remember how many times you see these one post wonders expelling the virtues of metal ion systems
    Self built 5500 gallon bare concrete (temporarily) pool with limestone coping, Pentair Swimmey 1/2 HP pump, Triton sand filter with DE, Simpool peristaltic muriatic acid pump with pH sensor and Monarch SWG. Home made solar heater with Pentair Compool control panel and 3 way valve. 1 skimmer, 1 main drain, 2 returns, 2" plumbing, Hayward auto fill valve.

  5. #25
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    Quote Originally Posted by rcy
    I wonder how the levels remain below that that would cause staining, if the unit is constantly introducing minerals. Wouldn't, as time passes, the levels in fact INCREASE more and more?
    The mineral systems don't really regulate their amount. The ones that work by dissolving minerals from cartridges or electrolysis assume certain flow rates, pump run times, typical rates of dilution, etc. If your pool isn't average, then you can have a problem. Some systems have you measure copper ions and dose liquid containing copper sulfate accordingly. Still other systems use metal sequestrants along with the metal ions to help keep the concentrations lower, but such sequestrants can inhibit the algae prevention properties.

    The concentration of copper ions needed to prevent algae growth gets close to the level of staining if the pH gets too high. This is one reason why some systems have you maintain a lower pH. It would be interesting to see how some of these companies handle their "no stain guarantee".
    16,000 gallon outdoor in-ground 16'x32' plaster pool; Pentair Intelliflo VF pump; Pentair IntelliTouch i9+3s control system; Jandy CL-340 square foot cartridge filter
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  6. #26
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    I really respect the knowledge of the people on this forum. Your info on high CYA levels saved me a lot of time and money as I got my pool back under control, having to ignore the nonsense that the pool store was telling me (i.e., shock with even more CYA-containing chlorine powders!). But sometimes I detect a bit of ideological rigidity when anyone suggests something different then the pure approach favored at TFP. I agree that simple is usually best. But the fact is, I have been using a copper/mineral supplement (in my case, the Floatron) for years with great success. Why do I use it? Because I can use less chlorine and save money on that as well as the cost of adding acid to offset the alkalinity of liquid chlorine, or avoid the rapid build-up of CYA if I use tablets. The mfg of these products usually are not trying to deceive. Most say that you have to have some chlorine because the metals and minerals are not sanitizers for all the bad stuff that can wind up in the pool. One can use less chlorine because (I am not a chemist so I am guessing and writing intuitively) some of the algaecidal and disinfecting burden is being shared by the Cu, Ag, and zinc ions, released by the Floatron in my case (they only publicize the Cu but I found out the mineral mix includes some silver and I am guessing some zinc, similar to the Poolrx). In short, my experience is that it is easier and cheaper to maintain a safe, stable chlorine residual (I maintain about 2ppm Chlorine in the presence of 40ppm CYA, i.e., I play it safe at about 50% of normal) with these metals and minerals in the water because the chlorine isn't being so rapidly consumed. Not being a chemist, I can't theorize about rates and whether the rate equations for Cu & Ag vs. Chlorine are consistent with this intuitive notion that a background of active, albeit slower acting stuff is beneficial. It just seems to work. At 0.3ppm Cu as recommended by Floatron I've never had a staining problem. When the Floatron broke for a short while, I used liquid Cu algaecide to maintain the same level until I fixed it.

  7. #27
    Administrator JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    We never said that they can't help, what we say is that they can cause unsightly stains that are very expensive to remove and can turn blond hair green. There are hundreds of people here who have reported staining and blond hair turning green. That doesn't mean that every person who uses a chemical/device like that will have that problem, but enough people have that problem, and removing the stains is so difficult/expensive, that it simply isn't reasonable for most people to risk it. If you actively test and maintain a specific copper level, which by the way hardly any of these products suggest doing, and keep your PH under control it is possible to have great success with copper based products. But with 15+% having unsightly and expensive problems it doesn't even come close to meeting out standards for a trouble free product.

    There are also a significant number of manufacturers who are actively lying about their copper based products. PoolRX and Floatron are certainly not in this category, but there are several others that make outrageous and dangerous claims. Copper/silver/zinc systems are not safe for use without any chlorine at all, yet that is what these companies claim or strongly imply.
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  8. #28
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    There are also other alternatives for controlling algae without the side effects of copper. One can use PolyQuat 60 weekly in their pool or one can add 50 ppm Borates to their pool. While these are not as effective as a high level of copper, they nevertheless take the edge off of algae growth. We don't talk about lower FC/CYA targets when using these products because those have not been worked out explicitly, but they are likely to help. At least in the case of PolyQuat 60 I would say that at least a 50% reduction in active chlorine level is possible based on my own personal experience years ago (it's more like an FC/CYA ratio below 1-2% of the CYA level when algae would start). Borates are harder to assess, but the few reports of people letting chlorine get too low and not getting algae forming quickly do seem to indicate that this too is at least partially effective.
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  9. #29
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    I agree that adding liquid Cu algaecide by simply following a label and not testing the level is a bit risky for staining. It seems there would be a lot of variables as to how quickly it would be consumed with respect to adding top-off doses, and maybe errors in the assumed pool volume.

    If I had to do over again, I'd go for the Poolrx instead of the Floatron (assuming the Poolrx actually works). The reason: Cleaning the electrode on the Floatron is a messy and troublesome at least every-two-week job. After amortizing the cost of the Floatron and the cost of an electrode every couple of years, I think the Poolrx annual unit + booster would cost about the same, at least if you buy it at discount (google and you will find it at almost half off). But I'd still test the Cu level with the Floatron test kit ($11, lasts about 3 years) or some other test kit to make sure not to go too high in Cu. Presumably you can control the level with the Poolrx by simply removing the unit from the skimmer when the level gets too high.

  10. #30
    Senior Member Richard320's Avatar
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    Quote Originally Posted by solarboy
    I've only been coming here a year or so but I can't remember how many times you see these one post wonders expelling the virtues of metal ion systems
    Yep!
    16K freeform gunite with spa; Pentair 4000 DE filter; Century Whisperflow 1 HP; Pentair Minimax heater.
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  11. #31
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    All of those who say that Poolrx does not work are probably like the two pool companies in my area who over the past 2 years have sold me thousands of dollars in chemicals to help get rid of a stain in my pool. Both companies have said it was algae under my liner that was causing the stain. One honest supplier who I tried for the first time a week ago said to give it a try and see what I thought, he also said it sounded like algae was under my liner. I installed the Poolrx and in less than 1 week the stain that I have fought for 2 years, with two pool companies and thousands of dollars was gone. Say what you want but it works, and no I am not a rep or company spokesman just a pool owner in central Ohio who has found a product that works for him.
    27" round x 52" ABG Pool
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  12. #32
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    The people around here that say it doesn't work are the ones that come here trying to get rid of the problems it has caused them. and they have used it for more than a week.
    Dave J. TFP Moderator
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  13. #33
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    How do you explain my situation? As I stated 2 years with no luck in treating my problem, and now it has cleared up the problem. Honestly I do not claim to be a pool expert but when I see the results I acheived it is hard to say it is "snake oil" and does not work.
    27" round x 52" ABG Pool
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  14. #34
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    I don't see how any product can kill algae behind the liner, unless there is a leak there allowing water behind, and even that is questionable, or if you are getting the product behind the liner yourself somehow.

    Anyway, pics would have been nice - a before and after of the stain and some pics of the actual product being used in your pool.
    16x28 Roman, 55000 litres, salt water, Zodiac Duoclear 130 (mineral cartridge removed!!!), inground, vinyl liner
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  15. #35
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomaschek
    How do you explain my situation?
    We already told you. Copper ions DO kill algae. Well, technically they just stop their growth. They won't clear a pool of algae already present -- you still need to oxidize it with chlorine and/or filter it out. Copper ions are a registered pesticide. They just can't be used alone for disinfection since they don't even inhibit fecal bacteria, and kill other pathogens slowly. At least PoolRx has both copper and silver so will at least handle fecal bacteria, albeit slowly, though won't handle most viruses (see this post for full technical details and references to peer-reviewed scientific papers).

    Quite frankly, if copper had no risk of staining or tinting of blond hair, then it would be a great product to recommend since a mostly one-time dose would provide some reasonable algae prevention. Note that the chelating agent in PoolRx may keep effective copper levels lower to prevent staining, but that also makes the same effective copper levels lower for prevention of algae growth. If one keeps the copper levels high enough and the pH low enough then one can prevent most algae growth. However, since you have to have chlorine anyway for disinfection and to oxidize bather waste, why not use chlorine alone (at the proper FC/CYA ratio) to prevent algae growth? That's what the tens of thousands of pool owners on this and other forums do. No one is forcing you to do it, but we're not about to let you convince people to use metal ion products that have been reported over and over again to have problems -- maybe not for you, but for others.
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  16. #36
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    i have had a few pools that the poolrx was the only way to get rid of algae. i try not to use it much. but i have found it is the best and often the only way to get rid or control black aglae. I have also had it cause purple staining, and clog the filters. It is not perfect, but sometimes it is really a great help. FYI it absolutely will get rid of algae that is already present. It is my last resort when polyquat 60, sodium bromide, and gallons upon gallons of 12.5 liquid chlorine dont work.

  17. #37
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    Quote Originally Posted by keene3b07
    FYI it absolutely will get rid of algae that is already present.
    What I meant was that using PoolRx ALONE without using any chlorine won't get rid of existing algae. It may stop it from growing, but metal ions are not oxidizers. Presumably, you had chlorine in your pools as well. As for black algae, that is an indication of a long-term problem with too low an active chlorine level. Most likely it's because the Free Chlorine (FC) level is too low for the Cyanuric Acid (CYA) level in your pools, possibly because you've been using stabilized chlorine (Trichlor and/or Dichlor) in such pools so the CYA level built up over time. With a 2 ppm FC per day chlorine usage, Trichlor will add over 35 ppm CYA PER MONTH to the pool if there is no water dilution.

    Again, you can use algaecides or other systems including PoolRx if you don't want to properly manage a pool using chlorine alone, but that's not what we promote here. When you say you had a few pools where you could not get rid of algae any other way, did you even test for the CYA level with an accurate test kit and then do a partial drain/refill to lower the CYA level and then shock the pool to maintain an appropriately high shock level for that CYA level (roughly an FC that is 40% of the CYA level, unless you have yellow/mustard algae in which case it's 60%) and brush the pool?

    In fact, your resorting to sodium bromide is another indication that you were not properly measuring the CYA level and using the appropriate FC level for it. Sodium bromide works by creating bromine in the pool where bromine is NOT moderated in its strength by CYA. A similar approach uses ammonium products to create monochloramine. These are just band-aids to work around a high CYA level because chlorine alone won't work well when the CYA is high and it's doubtful you added enough chlorinating liquid to have a high enough FC level (i.e. 40% of the CYA level). When the CYA is sky high, it's better to lower it with water dilution.

    You've only just come on this forum so it is doubtful that you heard about the chlorine/CYA relationship elsewhere (except at a few other pool forums). In this post you say you have a Taylor K-2005 test kit so with its DPD chlorine test you can't even properly measure chlorine levels above 10 ppm since the DPD test will bleach out (you can dilute, but that loses accuracy). This is why we recommend using a FAS-DPD chlorine test. It won't bleach out (you just add more powder if it flashes pink) so can measure even high shock levels. It also gives more accurate and consistent results by simply counting drops until pink/red turns clear compared to visually matching pink against a standard in the DPD test.
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  18. #38
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    your right i had not heard about the chlorine/cya relationship anywhere else. The information on this forum has been very helpful. I have already got a fas-dpd test kit and i love it. The pools that i have used the pool rx in are pools that are already in that condition when i get them, so i don't know what had been put in the pool beforehand. The CYA is usually at 100. These pools always have terrible plaster that is cracked. In these pools the poolrx extreme is the only thing that i have been able to use to get rid of that algae. I do not want to partially drain the pool because i want the cya to be around 100 in order to maintain the pool on a weekly basis.

  19. #39
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    Quote Originally Posted by solarboy
    I've only been coming here a year or so but I can't remember how many times you see these one post wonders expelling the virtues of metal ion systems
    Mainly because of the mantra BBB people must follow pool school. I have plenty of messages from mods who would rather I didn't post about copper.

    I bought an ioniser years ago as an experiment and to be honest it has worked like a charm, No one has had green hair and no staining and absolutely no algae! but I maintain the level very carefully. On TFP, FAS DPD is used to far more accurately measure the chlorine level than just about any one else, the kits are even quite hard to find in Europe. If the same cautious approach to the level of copper was observed there probably wouldn't be any concerns and you could certainly maintain your pool with lower chlorine levels. Along with lower chlorine levels comes lower acid levels therefore less trips to the store for supplies.

    The counter argument, The initial cost of the units is high and that would pay for a lot of chlorine and acid. As Chemgeek frequently posts chlorine does two jobs and a little more of the simple chlorine will take care of most things. Plaster/Tile/concrete pools have a high Ph from the chemical calcium in their make up, this seems to stabilise after a while of curing but brushing the surface as part of normal pool care can expose a fresher calcium layer with a high Ph and at a Ph of 8.3 copper drops out of suspension and can stain. I am not talking about the bulk pool water reaching Ph8.3 just at the very surface of the pool walls and floors Some of the "mineral" units allow almost un metered dosing depending where they are placed and that has caused more problems but so would almost any un metered dose of anything, it's all about control.

    I completely agree with TFP that it has to be a simple mantra BBB as some people are easily confused and the KISS principle works for a big percentage. I like Chemgeek completely agree that the marketing people who stretch the truth about copper and copper/silver's killing ability over chlorine just as Australia has done with all these units being used with low chlorine doses because you need a fast acting sanitiser and an oxidiser to get rid of bather waste.

    I wish I could find some real information on the hair staining levels, there is never a complaint that hair has been bleached although that happens all the time.

    Cyanuric acid is probably responsible for more green pools than anything else so the level is tested and the CYA/CL chart produced. I am experimenting with an alternative to CYA that gives full chlorine strength and protects it from UV. Another benefit, it doesn't become another source of food for bacteria and increases the self sterilisation of all surfaces in contact with the water by photoelectro oxidisation. Last year I ran with 0.2ppm free chlorine and I am doing the same this year. Downside it's not a one time addition and when the sun isn't strong enough you get higher chlorine loss. In the US where you have really strong sun I would love to see how that goes.

  20. #40
    Administrator JasonLion's Avatar
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    Re: Is Poolrx for real

    Quote Originally Posted by teapot
    I bought an ioniser years ago as an experiment and to be honest it has worked like a charm, No one has had green hair and no staining and absolutely no algae! but I maintain the level very carefully.
    Have you been reading what chem geek and I wrote above? No one said it couldn't work. With professional levels of attention copper works just fine.

    However, very few people here are pool professionals like you are. If you give copper systems to 1,000 residential pool owners, less than half of them will have problems. But, because residential pool owners don't have you level of experience and won't be paying as much attention, quite a few will have problems. And some of those problems will be extremely expensive to recover from. Copper stains on a vinyl liner often mean replacing the liner, which can run into several thousand dollars.

    Quote Originally Posted by teapot
    On TFP, FAS DPD is used to far more accurately measure the chlorine level than just about any one else, the kits are even quite hard to find in Europe. If the same cautious approach to the level of copper was observed there probably wouldn't be any concerns and you could certainly maintain your pool with lower chlorine levels.
    There is a huge difference between the problems that come up when the FC level is ignored for a week and when a copper treated pool is ignored for a week. Again a fair percentage will be fine in any case. A significant number of the BBB people will get algae after a week of ignoring the pool. They will need to spend a couple of days and perhaps $50 shocking the pool. Meanwhile a somewhat smaller percentage of the copper pool people will get stains that cost thousands of dollars to remove.

    Would you rather have a 10% chance of needing to spend $50 (to shock the pool), or a 1% chance of having to spend $3000 to replace a liner stained with copper, or $1500 to drain and acid wash a plaster pool?

    We promote methods that are simple to follow, hardly ever have problems, and when they do have problems those problems are easy to recover from. Copper systems completely fail two of those three criteria, problems are common and when problems occur they are sometimes very expensive/difficult to recover from. It may be possible to come up with new procedures that make problems less common, but the very expensive/difficult to recover from when there is a problem issue will still remain no matter what procedures you use.
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